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A professor emeritus or emeritus professor is a title that may be given to a full professor who retires in good standing. According to the American Council on Education it is typically awarded for "long and distinguished service".[1] Standards for granting professor emeritus status vary considerably from one institution to another.[2]

The term is also used as a title given to retired professors who continue to teach and to be listed; they may also draw a very large percentage of their last salary as a pension. The title may also be given to full professors who have left for another institution but are still working full time. The concept has in some places been expanded to include also tenured associate professors. In some systems and institutions, the rank is bestowed on all professors who have retired in good standing, while at others it needs a special act or vote. Depending on local circumstances, emeritus professors may retain their offices and/or other privileges in order to remain active in the academic community of an institution as a mentor or subject matter expert.


  1. (2001) A Brief Guide to U.S. Higher Education, American Council on Education. URL accessed 2010-05-15.
  2. Gish, Nancy, Diana Long, Bruce Roberts Professor Emeritus Guidelines. University of Southern Maine. URL accessed on 2010-05-15. CAS Ad Hoc Committee on Emeritus Status Proposal

See also

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