Faculty Resources: Departmental Guidelines

Per the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, Article 9, departments are to create new guidelines to replace their former bylaws. The rationale for guidelines was to allow the university to create more universal rules and expectations around specific issues–namely additional summer appointments and travel funding–while allowing faculty within departments to outline what they see as their most important duties and accomplishments (for evaluation purposes). 

Faculty within departments should use this opportunity to determine the criteria upon which they are to be evaluated (annual evaluation, progress toward tenure, third year review, and promotion and tenure review). Faculty may choose to weigh specific kinds of teaching activities, scholarly activities, or service activities as they see fit and as appropriate to their discipline. A major rationale for having department-level guidelines is to allow faculty within departments to highlight their unique disciplinary contexts (contexts that may differ significantly from what faculty in other departments consider most important). Departments that already have strong bylaws that reflect faculty members’ views of what they believe is most important to their work and thus to their evaluations may choose to continue using these bylaws by editing out routine departmental business (and putting that information elsewhere) and renaming their bylaws “guidelines.”

The new guidelines should relate only to evaluative measures; they should not contain or describe routine departmental functions such as the names and functions of standing committees (aside from evaluation-related committees like Promotion and Tenure) or other departmental business.

The creation of departmental guidelines should be a faculty-led endeavor. While department chairs and college deans have a say in what the guidelines will look like, faculty should be empowered to develop said guidelines sans overt pressure from administration. Administration will have ample opportunities to provide feedback on drafts of guidelines and, when appropriate, send the guidelines back to the department for revision. Faculty should refer to the CBA for any questions regarding limits to their guidelines and should report to officers of the union any undue influence from administration upon the form that their guidelines are to take.

Please REFER TO THE CBA for any major questions and to ensure that departmental guidelines meet the stated criteria (and to ensure that guidelines do not conflict with the CBA in any way). Faculty and administrators may also refer any questions to union officers.

CBA Language

9.2  Guidelines for Application of University Criteria on Performance Evaluations.

Guidelines may be developed for a unit to assist chair(s)/ supervisor(s) in applying the University Criteria set forth in Article 18.4 during the performance evaluation process, and to provide guidance to faculty members in achieving standards of performance corresponding to the evaluation ratings. Guidelines may clarify, but shall not delete from, or conflict with, or change in any substantive manner, the University Criteria set forth in Article 18.4. Guidelines may identify those University Criteria, individually and as a group, that are appropriate or specific to the discipline(s) within the particular unit and to the respective faculty members’ positions (i.e., tenured or tenure earning, clinical, non-tenure earning, library faculty). Guidelines may specify the relative weight each University Criteria, or group of criteria, should be accorded in the annual evaluations of faculty members in the unit. No provision of the guidelines shall be inconsistent with the provisions of this Agreement or with the mission and goals of the unit or of the University.

Additional Resources

Guidelines PowerPoint

Sample Departmental Guidelines

Approved Guidelines

DepartmentGuidelinesDate ApprovedDate Ratified
ChemistryTenure, Promotion10/04/2016
PhysicsTenure, Promotion12/06/2016
Philosophy and Religious StudiesTenure10/24/2016
Political Science and Public AdministrationTenure
Promotion to Full
Instructor Promotion
BiologyTenure, Promotion12/19/2016
CommunicationTenure, Promotion11/21/2016
Economics and GeographyTenure
HistoryTenure, Promotion
Construction ManagementEvaluations10/24/2017
NursingEvaluation of Teaching
Evaluation of Scholarship
Evaluation of Service
Promotion and Tenure
Foundations and Secondary EducationEvaluation
Promotion and Tenure
EnglishPromotion and Tenure01/2021

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