Faculty Handbook


Instructional Departments – Department Bylaws

Each department has its own bylaws, which are on file in the department offices.

I. Department Chairperson

Each academic department is located within an appropriate school and has a Chairperson who is the official spokesperson for the department members. The Chairperson shall, under most circumstances, assume office on the first day of the academic year.

Selection Procedures

A.  Preamble
The department has the primary responsibility for selecting the individual who will serve as Chairperson because of the role the Chairperson has in the Department. The position interfaces with both the academic and administrative spheres of the University so that the Administration also has a right to be involved in the selection process.

The Department has the role of selecting the nominee and no individual may be appointed as Department Chairperson unless that person has been approved by the Department. The Departments must therefore exercise care and responsibility in their selection.

The Administration has the right to appointment and no individual may serve as Department Chairperson unless appointed by the Administration. However, because of the responsibility exercised by the Department in making its selection, it is expected that the individual nominated will be appointed except for compelling reasons.

Careful consideration by those who are involved should be given to the nomination and appointment of the Department Chairperson.

The individual who is Chairperson should have ability and interest in working effectively with and having concern for the faculty of the Department and students who utilize the Department; in curriculum development and review; in the Department functioning smoothly as an entity in itself and as a part of the University; in representing the Department to the profession at large.

The eligibility requirements, such as academic credentials, years of experience, etc., and the term of office will be contained in the Department bylaws.

    1. The Department, using the procedures and rules of eligibility as in its bylaws, elects one nominee.
    2. The Department submits to the School Dean, in writing, the name of the nominee and specifies the term of office.
    3. If the Dean and Department agree on the nominee, the Dean, as the designee of the President, appoints.
    4. If the Dean disagrees with the Department’s recommendation, the name is returned to the Department with an explanation, in writing, of the reasons for the disagreement. A mutually agreeable date is set at which time the Dean and Department meet to discuss and resolve the differences.

      a.  If the Dean and the Department resolve in favor of the nominee, the Dean, as designee of the President, appoints.

      b.  If the Dean and Department resolve in favor of a new election, the process goes back to Step 1.

      c.  In case of impasse, the process continues to Step 5.

    5. In the event that an impasse arises and further discussion appears counterproductive, the following steps shall be taken:

      a.  The name of the nominee shall be forwarded by the Department to the President of the University.

      b.  The President shall call a joint meeting of the School Dean and the Department or Department’s representatives. At this meeting, the rationale of the Dean and of the Department will be given to the President.

      c.  The President’s recommendation will be given to the Department.

      (1)  If the recommendation is in favor of the Department, the President appoints the nominee as Chairperson.

      (2)  If the recommendation is not in favor of the Department, the procedure reverts to Step 1.

    6. Department that wishes to select a Chairperson from off-campus

      a.  If a Department wishes to select a Chairperson from off-campus and the School Dean concurs and if there is a faculty position available in that Department, then a Department Search Committee shall be established. The Dean shall be an ex officio member of that Committee.

      b.  All established employment procedures for instructional faculty will be followed.

    7. Chairperson for a Department formed from existing Departments

      a.  Follow the procedure as in A. 1-5.

    8. Chairperson for newly created Departments

      a.  The Dean appoints a Search Committee of three faculty members from the School. The Dean serves as an ex officio member of the Committee.

      b.  All established employment procedures for instructional faculty will be followed.

    9. Interim appointments caused by a leave of absence, resignation, or recall by the Department must be specified in Department bylaws.

      a.  Follow procedure as in A. 1-5. except that the term will end on the same date as the term of the individual being replaced.

    10. Associate Chairpersons

      The election of an Associate Chairperson, term of office, and recall procedures will be contained in the bylaws of those Departments who want an Associate chairperson. Total reassigned time for Chairpersons shall not exceed that provided by the CSU-AAUP contract.
    11. Calendar for Selection of Department Chairperson


      Time Interval

      Section to be initiated


      By 1 March of the year that the term of office of the Department Chairperson expires or within 10 School days of a vacancy occurring.



      Within 2 school days after A.1

      Within 10 school days after A.2


      A.3., or, if needed, A.4


      If needed, within 10 school days after a.4.

      A.5. (A.5.a.and A.5.b.)


      If needed, within 14 school days after A.5. (A.5.a. and A.5.b.)


B.  Responsibilities of Chairperson

The Department Chairperson is a member of the Department whose specific responsibilities include:

    1. Conduct of department meeting according to approved bylaws in such manner that members are informed and involved in appropriate decision making concerning the academic program. Minutes of each meeting are to be filed with the appropriate Deans.
    2. Coordination of departmental activities to ensure that duties—teaching, advisement, committees, community relations—are fairly apportioned.
    3. Transmittal to appropriate administrators or committees and defense of department proposals concerning program and course development, equipment and supply needs, staffing recommendations, space needs, community services, and the like.
    4. Provision of in-service assistance to Department members.
    5. Facilitate involvement of appropriate Department members in DEC activities. (See procedures for faculty evaluation).
    6. Submission to appropriate Deans for approval of proposed staff assignments semester by semester.
    7. Development with Academic Deans and Graduate Director of the cycling of course offerings.
    8. Development of effective academic advisement procedures for students assigned to the Department, both undergraduate and graduate.
    9. Recommendations to the Provost/Academic Vice President through the appropriate Deans concerning persons to be appointed to the department staff according to University procedures for hiring.
    10. Transmittal of DEC recommendations to the appropriate administrators or committees concerning faculty retention, dismissal, tenure, promotion (see Bylaws of the Promotion and Tenure Committee).
    11. Maintenance and proper supervision of University property assigned for instructional or service purposes.
    12. Supervision of all Department members to ensure that all regular obligations such as office hours, filing of book orders, reporting of grades, clearance for professional and personal absences, are properly met.
    13. Arrangements for coverage of Department courses in the event of absence of a faculty member.
    14. Supervision of clerical staff in the Department, including student workers and graduate assistants. The Department Chairperson is responsible for the final selection, assignment, performance evaluation, and recommendation for termination of departmental clerical staff. The Department Chairperson should contact the Office of Human Resources to discuss matters pertaining to the clerical staff. Questions concerning student assistance should be directed through the Department Chairperson to the Office of Financial Aid, and those concerning graduate assistants through the Dean to the offices of the Graduate Studies.
Senate Approval: Jan. 14, 1979

II. Instructional Department Members

A.  Selection of their representatives

    1. Elect the department members to be nominated for Department Chair.
    2. Elect representatives to appropriate committees.

B.  Determination of Department program within the framework of the total school and University program.

    1. Participate in development of programs, courses, teaching skills, instructional strategies, advisement roles and the like in accordance with procedures outlined in Academic Policies and Procedures section of the Faculty Handbook.

III. Faculty And Department Teaching Assignments

A.  Instructional Load

See the CSU-AAUP contract for provisions pertaining to work load.

B.  Course Assignments

    1. Prior to the start of the spring semester, each Department Chair will submit to the appropriate School Dean a proposed four-semester rotation listing of all courses recommended as offerings in the next two academic years. In turn the Dean will submit that portion of the proposed offerings list which apply to the Graduate School and the Evening baccalaureate program to the Registrar’s Office.
    2. The Dean will review the proposed offerings in relation to (a) the various student populations to be served, (b) the program demands of the various populations, (c) the resources of the Department to support the proposed offering, and d) catalog identification of schedule for offering.
    3. The Dean will consult with each Department Chair concerning any needed additions or deletions in the four-semester projection and will, after such consultation, return to each Department an approved four-semester course projection.
    4. On or before the date specified by the appropriate Dean, each Chairperson shall submit to the Dean the proposed semester program including number of sections of each course and individual faculty assignments to support the proposed program. The School Dean will receive the total proposed program. The Dean of Graduate Studies and the Registrar will receive that portion which pertains to graduate and evening offerings.
    5. Each chairperson recommends to the Dean the staffing of all departmental offerings, indicating those staff members who are being proposed to the Graduate Dean for a portion of their load.

      a.  All department members are expected to share in the general education offerings of their department.

      b.  All department members are expected to share in the undergraduate evening program if needed to complete load or to support baccalaureate majors in the discipline.

      c.  Those faculty teaching graduate level courses shall consist of those members who hold the appropriate terminal degree or who have professional experience which provides a special competency to teach a particular course or courses.

    6. The Deans will review the proposed semester offering and staffing using the same criteria as in 2 above and will consult with each Department Chair concerning any needed additions or deletions. The Dean will, after consultation, provide to the department and to the Registrar the final approved section and staffing list on which individual faculty schedules will be based.

      a.  Any problems arising between undergraduate and graduate course offerings and staffing will be resolved by the School Dean and the Graduate Dean in consultation with the Department Chairperson.

      b.  If needed, the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs will assist in that resolution.

C.  Scheduling of Assigned Courses

    1. Scheduling is done by the Registrar.
    2. Faculty members may have teaching schedules up to 5 days per week.
    3. Faculty members may be assigned to Saturday or evening classes.
    4. Special requests for scheduling from faculty members.

      a.  Any faculty member who is involved in graduate study may request that a particular time be left free to attend classes or meet with his/her advisor.

      b.  All requests (a. above) are sent to the Academic Deans by the concerned Department Chair. The Academic Deans transmit approved requests to the Registrar to be incorporated into the total schedule, if possible.

D.  Individual Faculty Schedule

    1.  Schedules are sent to the faculty member by the Registrar upon approval by the Academic Dean and Graduate Dean.

    2.  No changes may be made in the schedule without authorization of the Department Chair and the appropriate Dean.

    3.  After receipt of schedule the faculty member shall, at the start of the semester, provide to the appropriate Academic Dean or secretary copies showing teaching assignments, office hours, and any regularly scheduled graduate study commitments of his/her own. These are used to determine meeting times and to facilitate communication with faculty members.

E.  Procedures and Policies Governing Class Meetings, Size, Cancellation, and the Like

    1. Classes will meet at times scheduled. Neither students nor faculty may revise the schedule. Faculty may not schedule make-up classes for periods for which the faculty member has been absent nor may students expect faculty members to hold make-up classes resulting from student absences.
    2. Faculty members must notify their Department Chair or secretary in the event of inability to meet classes due to illness or emergency.
    3. From time-to-time the University schedule may be altered or suspended for special reasons. Such changes are administratively determined, and, except in emergencies, announced well in advance. These changes are binding on all faculty.
    4. A faculty member may permit a student who does not meet specific course prerequisites to enroll in a given class when he/she is convinced the student can do the work. A faculty member cannot deny any student who meets prerequisite requirements the right of enrollment.
    5. Class size limits shall be determined on sound educational principles by the appropriate Academic Dean in consultation with the Department (see CSU-AAUP contract).
    6. Cancellation of classes due to insufficient enrollment is administratively determined, whenever possible, in consultation with the Department Chair (see CSU-AAUP).
    7. When maximum class size has been reached, no additional students may be enrolled without the consent of the instructor of the class and the permission of the Department Chairperson. Such override that generates additional load credit for the instructor requires the written approval of the Dean of the School.
    8. A student may register for a class after the beginning of the second week of the class only with the approval of the instructor of the course and the appropriate Dean.

Senate Approved R-07-03-03
Admin. Approval 10/26/07

IV. Faculty And Department Responsibility For Student Advisement

A.  Definition of Academic Advising

Academic advising is a “decision-making process during which students realize their maximum educational potential through communication and information exchanges with an advisor.” (Thomas J. Grites) “It is the primary means of helping students benefit from an array of programs. It is always a process composed of timely responses in areas relevant to student education.” (IDEA Paper No.3) Advising provides the student with assistance for optimum progression through the University experience with opportunities for continued personal and professional growth and fulfillment.” (Wichita Report)

B.  Responsibility for Academic Advising

The responsibility for appropriate and effective academic advisement rests with the faculty and the students. The faculty member is responsible for communicating accurate and up-to-date academic information. The student is responsible for implementing decisions derived from the advising process in order to fulfill the requirements necessary for graduation. Both the faculty member and the student must make a commitment to the advising process to enable it to be efficient and effective. Without a shared responsibility, academic advising will fail to achieve the goal of optimum progression through the University experience.

Senate Approval: May 15, 1985


C.  Responsibilities of Faculty Advisors

Faculty members will each have a group of students assigned by their department for whose academic advisement they are responsible. The responsibilities of an advisor are:

    1. To know the program requirements and University regulations with which the student must comply.
    2. To assist each student in planning his/her sequence of courses to meet graduation requirements.
    3. To approve, semester by semester, the specific program of courses which the student takes.
    4. To refer students to appropriate University staff in matters which are outside the area of the faculty member’s competence (e.g., Health Services, Counseling, Academic Deans, Graduate Dean, etc.)
    5. To recommend to the Department Chair and to the appropriate dean any waivers or exceptions to the program requirements which he/she judges to be essential for the student’s best academic interests.
    6. To advise the department on the status of each advisee as he/she reaches various stages in his/her program (e.g., admission to standing as upper class major, approval of application for independent Study or Student Developed Study, etc.).

Revised R-07-03-03
Admin. Approval 10/26/07


D.  Academic Advisement Duties

    1. Students should meet an advisor appropriate to his/her major at least once a semester prior to registration academic interests.
    2. Each Department Chair (or his/her designee) should coordinate academic advising procedures for his/her Department.
    3. The advisor should be responsible for reviewing prerequisites, core requirements, and program requirements with the student.

Senate Approval: Nov. 20, 1985
Admin. Approval: Dec. 5, 1985
Updated July, 2005
Revised R-07-03-03
Admin. Approval 10/26/07


E.  Procedures

    1. Each Department Chair should receive a list of majors by week 2 of the current semester (from the Computer Center via the Dean).
    2. Each Department Chair should receive a student activity report for each major by week 3 of the current semester (from the Computer Center via the Dean).
    3. All Departments have computer access to student transcripts. At such time, the score received by each student on the English and math placement exam should be included in the student’s record, along with the required math and English course noted based upon these scores, and the Departments have access to that computerized record.
    4. Departments should determine how individual students will be assigned to advisors and Chairs should be sure that all advisors are aware of advisement policies.
    5. Adviser’s responsibilities are included in the Recommendations of the Committee on Academic Advisement accepted by the Senate, November 1985, and approved by the University President.
    6. The Office of Admissions should send the appropriate Department a program sheet with credits transferred clearly noted for each transfer student admitted.
    7. If a student transfers from one Department to another, the new Department should be responsible for obtaining the student’s file from the former Department.
    8. Up-to-date Department program sheets should be available as University/School/Department requirements are changed.
    9. Information to faculty about curriculum changes will be disseminated through appropriate channels.
    10. Faculty workshop(s) on advisement should be offered.
    11. Departments should begin registration advisement as early as possible each semester, and no later than the first day following the publication of semester schedules.


Senate Approval: Feb. 19, 1986
Revised Senate R-07-03-03
Admin. Approval 10/26/07

V. Academic Probation policy

A.  Academic probation letters from the Dean are sent concurrently with end-of-semester grade reports to each first semester freshman with a grade point average below 1.7 and to all other students with averages below 2.0. Students on probation must meet with their advisors to review their program requirements, course selections, credit loads, and other pertinent information.

B.  The probationary period will commence the semester following the one for which the letter of probation was initially issued. The Dean will review the student’s activities during the period of probation.

C.  Probation shall be limited to one semester only, i.e., probation may not be extended to a consecutive semester.

D.  Should the student not meet the required average, the student shall be suspended for academic deficiency. Students on probation should consider a semester course load of 12 credit hours and limit their participation in co-curricular activities. Appeals to these policies should be made to the appropriate Dean who, for extenuating circumstances only, may waive the policy.

Admin. Approval: April 18, 1986*

*Clarification of President: Of course, individual schools or programs may have standards for probation and dismissal from that school or program that are higher than the University standards. A student can be on probation or be dismissed form a school or program and still be in good standing at the University.

VI: Minimum Student Preparation Hours

A.  The Faculty and Administration of the University endorse the concept of a issued guidelines to students of a minimum expectation of two hours preparation per hour of class time. This guideline will be stated at Student Orientation and be printed in both the Student Handbook and the Catalog.

Admin. Approval: Dec. 5, 1985

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