shadow_tr

Constitution of the Faculty of the School of Liberal Arts of Tulane University

ARTICLE I

Name

The name of the organization constituted herein shall be the Faculty of the School of Liberal Arts of Tulane University.

ARTICLE II

Membership

The Faculty of the School of Liberal Arts of Tulane University shall consist of voting and non-voting members. All members shall have the privilege of the floor at faculty meetings of the School of Liberal Arts. Rules defining voting and non-voting members will apply to all committees and departments.

A. Voting Members

The full-time assistant professors, associate professors, and full professors whose primary appointment is in the School of the Liberal Arts except as stipulated in section I B constitute the voting members of the faculty. All voting members shall be members of the Graduate Faculty of the School of Liberal Arts.

B. Non-Voting Members

1. Special members

a. All holders of emeritus appointments in the faculty

b. Part-time assistant professors, associate professors and full professors of the faculty; full-time assistant professors, associate professors and full professors whose primary appointment is not to the faculty

c. Visiting faculty and teaching fellows

d. Lecturers and professors of practice

2. Ex officio members

a. The dean of the School of Liberal Arts

b. The president of Tulane University

c. The provost of Tulane University

d. The dean of the Newcomb-Tulane College

e. The dean of the School of Continuing Studies

C. Membership List

Prior to the opening of each academic year, the dean shall prepare a list of the voting members. The Nominating Committee shall review the list and present it for approval to the faculty at the first regular meeting.

ARTICLE III

Responsibilities of the Voting Faculty

The voting faculty of the School of Liberal Arts shall have primary responsibility for:

A. Formulation and implementation of academic plans and policies

B. Its own governance

C. Election of faculty representatives to advisory and decision-making bodies at the university-wide level

D. Discharging the following responsibilities (where appropriate through departments and committees of the faculty):

  1. Admission of students and establishment of academic standards to be met by students
  2. Setting of requirements for degrees and certifying completion of such requirements
  3. Establishment, abolition and modification of curricula and approval of courses of instruction
  4. Establishment and maintenance of educational and instructional standards and policies and the recommending of procedures and decisions governing faculty status, which include appointments, reappointments, decisions not to reappoint, promotions, the granting of tenure, discipline, dismissal and grievance

E. Formation, elimination, division and merger of academic units departments and programs or the transfer of an academic unit, department or program into or out of the School of Liberal Arts

ARTICLE IV

Faculty Officers

A. The faculty shall elect a secretary from its voting members to serve a term of two years, with re-election possible for consecutive terms. With the support of the dean’s office, the secretary shall prepare minutes of the faculty proceedings and debates to be distributed to all members of the faculty.

B. The faculty shall elect a parliamentarian from its voting members to serve a term of three years, with re-election possible for consecutive terms.

ARTICLE V

Chairs of Academic Departments

A. Each department shall have a chair. Chairs shall be voting members of the faculty appointed by the dean after consultation with the voting members of the department. Only in extraordinary circumstances shall such an appointment be made against the wishes of the voting members of a department. In such circumstances, departmental members shall be informed in writing concerning the reasons for the decision.

B. Chairs shall be appointed for three-year terms; ordinarily a person shall not serve more than two consecutive terms as a chair. Exceptions to these rules shall be approved by the voting members of a department.

ARTICLE VI

Meetings

A. Regular Meetings

There shall be at least three regular meetings of the faculty during the academic year. Regular meetings should be scheduled at a minimum in the early fall, mid-year and the early spring.

B. Special Meetings

Special meetings may be initiated by the dean or by written petition signed by at least ten voting members of the faculty. Upon receipt of such a petition, the dean must convene a meeting within two weeks of presentation of the petition, excluding vacation time.

C. Quorum

One-fifth of the voting members of the faculty shall constitute a quorum.

D. Presiding Officer

The dean shall preside at faculty meetings. In the dean’s absence or in case of a conflict of interest, the secretary of the faculty shall preside.

ARTICLE VII

Voting

A. Voting for Candidates

Whenever a slate of candidates is presented for election, there shall be an opportunity for nominations from the floor. All candidates shall be voting members, and elected candidates shall be chosen by a mail vote of the faculty. Elections shall be determined by a plurality of votes cast.

B. Mail Voting

A majority of the voting members present at a faculty meeting may authorize voting by mail. When there is a need for prompt action and a meeting of the faculty is impractical, the executive committee may authorize voting by mail, and where the issue is an election, write-in votes will be permissible. Such action must be reported at the next regular or special meeting of the faculty and may be reconsidered then.

C. Electronic Voting

In extenuating circumstances the Executive Committee may authorize teleconferencing and electronic voting but must ensure the validity of the procedure while also ensuring anonymity when it is appropriate.

ARTICLE VIII

Committees

There shall be standing committees and special committees. Administrators who qualify as voting members above but who report to administrators other than within the School of Liberal Arts, or whose title includes ‘dean’ or ‘provost’, shall be excluded as voting members of committees.

A. Standing Committees

Except where otherwise stipulated, membership on standing committees shall be divided as proportionally as feasible among voting members of three scholarly divisions: (1) the Departments of Anthropology, Economics, History, Political Science, and Sociology; (2) the Departments of Art, Music, and Theatre and Dance; (3) the Departments of Classical Studies, Communication, English, French and Italian, Germanic and Slavic Studies, Philosophy, and Spanish and Portuguese. Except for ex officio members, no more than one committee member shall be from each department. Except where otherwise stipulated, members shall be elected for staggered three-year terms and shall not hold consecutive terms.

Except for ex officio members, all members of the following standing committees shall be elected from a slate assembled by the Nominating Committee and by nominations from the floor of the faculty meeting:

1. The Executive Committee

2. The Promotion and Tenure Committee

3. The Graduate Studies Committee

4. The Undergraduate Curriculum Committee

5. The Grievance Committee

6. The Nominating Committee

7. The Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements

8. The Review Committee for Professors of Practice and Lecturers

B. The Executive Committee

1. Composition

The Executive Committee shall be composed of five elected faculty members, the secretary of the faculty (ex officio), and the dean of the School of Liberal Arts as chair. The committee shall meet on call of the dean, and a meeting must be called when requested by three or more of its members.

2. Duties

In addition to the duties described elsewhere in the constitution, the duties of the Executive Committee are as follows:

a. To serve as an advisory committee to the dean on any matter of administration

b. To receive and act on routine reports of ordinary standing and special committees

c. To act for the faculty at the direction of the faculty;

d. In emergencies, to approve extraordinary means to maintain faculty deliberation and governance after consultation with the parliamentarian

e. In addition to its annual report, the committee shall issue special reports to the faculty when appropriate

f. To supervise elections as required

C. The Promotion and Tenure Committee

1. Composition

The committee shall be composed of nine tenured members of the faculty, six full professors and three associate professors. At least two voting members and no more than four voting members shall be from each of the scholarly divisions, and no more than one member shall be from each department. Members shall be elected for staggered three-year terms and shall not hold consecutive terms. The associate professors shall not participate in decisions regarding promotions to full professor. At its first meeting, the committee will elect a full professor to be its chair.

2. Duties and Procedures

a. It shall be the duty of this committee to receive recommendations for the promotion of and/or granting of tenure to members of the faculty and prospective members of the faculty. All actions pertaining to promotions and tenure shall be taken only after a meeting of the committee.

b. The committee shall also receive all departmental recommendations regarding third-year review of untenured faculty in regular tenure-track appointments.

c. In addition to recommendations from departmental committees, the committee may accept requests for promotion for full professor from individual members of the faculty.

d. The committee shall prepare explicit guidelines for action approved by the faculty. These guidelines shall be distributed to all untenured faculty members and all departmental chairs at the beginning of each academic year.

e. If the Promotion and Tenure Committee recommendation counters a departmental majority recommendation regarding third-year review, tenure or promotion, the committee shall return the case to the department for reconsideration with a written enumeration of specific reservations about the department’s recommendation. The department shall have two weeks to respond to those reservations in writing, though an extension can be requested. The committee’s reasons for a final vote that counters such a departmental majority recommendation shall be communicated in writing to the department and to the administration.

f. Any member of the committee, including the chair of the committee, who is from the same department as a person under consideration for third-year review, promotion, or tenure shall recuse him/herself from all discussions and votes concerning that individual.

g. All actions of the committee concerning third-year review, tenure, or promotion shall be forwarded to the dean along with a summary of the discussions and reasons for the vote, signed by all voting members. After receiving the review, the dean may request a meeting with the whole committee.

3. Reporting Decisions

The dean shall forward the recommendations of the committee, along with his or her own recommendations, to the provost of the university. It is expected that ordinarily the provost and president will follow committee recommendations. In the extraordinary case of disagreement by the provost or president with the recommendations of the committee, the administration shall report the objections to the committee, normally within four weeks of the time when the recommendations were submitted. If after reconsideration the committee resubmits its original recommendations and they are again disapproved, the provost should offer the committee detailed reasons for the disapproval.

4. Requests for Reconsideration

A candidate for promotion may obtain, upon request, notification of the committee’s reasons for his or her unfavorable recommendation. Any candidate may appeal in writing to the committee for reconsideration, and, at his or her option, a candidate may appear personally before the committee. A candidate denied tenure or dismissed at third-year review may request reconsideration of a decision during his or her final year at Tulane; this request must be made before the beginning of his or her final semester.

D. The Graduate Studies Committee

1. Composition

The Graduate Studies Committee shall consist of five elected faculty members from departments having graduate programs including the representatives of the School of Liberal Arts to the Graduate Council. Non-voting members of the committee shall include two student members and the dean of the School of Liberal Arts or his or her representative, ex officio. The committee shall elect annually one of the faculty members as a voting chair, who will report to the faculty.

2. Duties

The functions of the committee shall be to deal with all matters relating to the graduate curriculum, including:

a. To develop policies with regard to admissions and transfer credits; thesis, prospectus, and final examination requirements; stipends; and registration and degree requirements

b. To review and approve interdisciplinary graduate proposals

c. To report each semester to the faculty the list of courses recommended for addition to or deletion from the curriculum

d. To make recommendations to the faculty regarding new degree programs or changes in degree programs

e. To receive recommendations from and to make them to individual departments and the faculty about all matters concerning course curricula and the description of course curricula for graduate programs, including catalog copy

f. To review and to make recommendations to the faculty concerning programs granting graduate credit for work or study conducted off campus, and to receive annual reports from the directors of these programs

g. To advise the dean on any questions concerning curriculum and degree programs

h. To advise the dean or the registrar on any questions concerning registration

i. To make recommendations to the faculty on an honor code for graduate studies

E. The Undergraduate Curriculum Committee

1. Composition

The Curriculum Committee shall consist of seven elected faculty members. Nonvoting members of the committee shall include two student members, the dean of the School of Liberal Arts and the dean of Newcomb-Tulane College or their representatives, ex officio. The committee shall elect annually one of the faculty members as a voting chair, who will report to the faculty.

2. Duties

The functions of the committee shall be to deal with all matters relating to the undergraduate curriculum, including:

a. To report each semester to the faculty the list of courses recommended to the faculty for addition to or deletion from the curriculum

b. To make recommendations to the faculty regarding new degree programs or changes in degree programs

c. To receive recommendations from and to make them to individual departments and the faculty about all matters concerning course curricula and the description of course curricula and major requirements in the undergraduate bulletins

d. To review and to make recommendations to the faculty concerning programs granting School of Liberal Arts credit for work or study conducted off campus under the jurisdiction of Tulane University, and to receive annual reports from the directors of these programs

e. To advise the dean on any questions concerning curriculum and degree programs

f. To advise the dean or the registrar on any questions concerning registration

F. The Grievance Committee

1. Composition

The committee shall be composed of seven elected members of the faculty. The committee annually shall elect a chair.

2. Duties and Procedure

a. It shall be the duty of the committee to receive grievances and complaints regarding conditions of employment; due process; violations of academic freedom or academic responsibility and similar grievances which cannot be settled informally.

b. Such complaints may be originated by faculty members or other instructional and research personnel or administrative officers. The committee shall also hear cases referred to it by the Senate Committee on Faculty Tenure, Freedom, and Responsibility, but all grievances arising from within the faculty shall be submitted in first instance to the Grievance Committee.

c. In case of complaints or grievances, the committee may (1) decide to hold formal hearings, (2) decide that a case does not warrant a formal hearing and provide a statement of reasons, or (3) appoint an ad hoc committee consisting of three members of the faculty to hold a preliminary hearing in order to determine whether a formal hearing should be held. If the ad hoc committee decides that the complaint should be heard, that decision shall be binding.

d. Should a person on a tenure-track appointment or multi-year contract be dismissed at the end of his or her first or second year, the person may appeal to the Grievance Committee for review of the departmental decision.

e. Any member of the Grievance Committee who brings a grievance or against whom a grievance is brought shall be recused from discussion and vote concerning that grievance.

f. If grievances involve departmental decisions, members of that department shall recuse themselves.

g. In cases when multiple recusals make a quorum impossible, the committee may request the Nominating Committee to provide alternates.

h. The committee shall explain its findings in writing to the person or persons who brought the grievance and the person(s) against whom the grievance was brought and, if the committee finds that a grievable offense has been committed, shall report its decision to the dean of the School of Liberal Arts and other appropriate administrative officers.

G. The Nominating Committee

1. Composition

The Nominating Committee shall be composed of five elected members of the faculty, and ex officio the dean and secretary of the faculty. The committee shall annually elect one of its members as voting chair.

2. Duties

In addition to the duties described elsewhere in the constitution, the duties of the Nominating Committee are as follows:

a. To determine the size of special committees

b. To appoint faculty members to special committees except as stipulated elsewhere

c. To propose slates of candidates to fill vacancies on standing committees and to propose slates to fill vacancies in the University Senate, the Committee on Faculty Tenure, Freedom and Responsibility, the university-wide Judicial Pool (as specified in the Code of Student Conduct) and faculty committees for governance of Newcomb-Tulane College. A brief curriculum vitae shall be prepared after consultation with each nominee for elected committees, to be distributed with the mail ballot

d. To propose representatives of the faculty to senate committees at the request of the faculty representatives to the University Senate

e. To propose representatives from the faculty as needed to university-wide committees in accordance with Article IX.

H. The Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements

1. Composition

The Committee on Undergraduate Academic Requirements shall be composed of five faculty members, and the dean of the School of Liberal Arts, or her or his designate, ex officio. The committee shall develop policy on academic requirements and waivers for undergraduates and recommend policy changes to the faculty.

2. Duties

The committee is charged with maintaining the academic standards of the school as established by the faculty and shall concern itself with the administration of the academic progress of the students in the school. The committee shall formulate policy regarding transfer credits and study abroad under the sponsorship of other institutions and shall consider petitions for the waiver of academic requirements.

I. The Review Committee for Professors of Practice and Lecturers

1. Composition

The committee shall be composed of five members, one and only one of whom shall be a senior professor of practice or senior lecturer. All tenured faculty members, senior professors of practice and senior lecturers are eligible to serve. There can be no more than one member from any given department. Members are to be elected by the SLA faculty and will serve staggered three-year terms. At its first meeting, the committee will elect a tenured professor to be its chair.

2. Duties and Procedures

a. The committee shall propose explicit guidelines stating the range of acceptable activities for professors of practice and lecturers, the procedure for review of professors of practice and lecturers, and specific expectations for renewal. The guidelines shall be presented to the faculty for approval.

b. In the course of reviewing individual professors of practice and lecturers, the committee may provide recommendations to the SLA dean regarding appropriate teaching assignments and workload for professors of practice.

c. The dean will work with departments to insure that the duties outlined in the appointment letter are performed.

d. The review will assess the faculty member’s fulfillment of his/her assigned duties as outlined in the offer letter and/or subsequent revision, and with respect to the guidelines outlined by the committee.  The primary emphasis of review will be on teaching practice and will focus on an evaluation of the faculty member’s c.v. and teaching portfolio, which will include a statement of teaching philosophy and pedagogy, student evaluations and grades, syllabi for all courses taught since last appointment, a summary of any contribution the faculty member has made to service learning and at least one report on classroom observations.  To the degree that professional experience/familiarity with the current research in the field affects a faculty member’s ability to perform his/her classroom duties effectively, the departmental review will also address this issue.  The individual may include a statement of professional activities that she or he has taken in order to remain active in the field.  External letters are not included.

e. It shall be the duty of this committee to receive departmental recommendations concerning the reappointment of professors of practice and lecturers. The review of all lecturers, senior lecturers, professors of practice, and senior professors of practice shall be conducted by all tenue-track and tenured faculty members in the department in which they are employed. As evidenced by the departmental recommendation letter, all tenure-track and tenured faculty members in the department shall be included in the deliberations about the review and shall have a vote in the matter. For individuals who signed contracts after the fall of 2010, who are completing their second term as professor of practice or lecturer, and who have requested promotion to senior professor of practice or senior lecturer, the departmental recommendations should also include a recommendation of whether the individual should be promoted. The committee shall then review all the submitted materials thoroughly, vote for or against renewal, and, if appropriate, for or against promotion, and write a recommendation that explains their decisions. All actions pertaining to reappointment or to reappointment and promotion shall be taken only subsequent to a meeting of the committee.

f. If the recommendation of the review committee counters a departmental majority recommendation, on either the matter of reappointment, or, for those hired after fall 2010, promotion to senior status, the committee shall return the case to the department for reconsideration with a written enumeration of specific reservations about the department’s recommendation. The department shall have two weeks to respond to those reservations in writing. The committee’s reasons for a final vote that counters such a departmental majority recommendation shall be communicated in writing to the department and to the dean.

g. Any member of the committee, including the chair, who is from the same department as a person under consideration shall recuse him/herself from all discussions and votes concerning that individual.

h. All actions of the committee shall be forwarded to the dean along with a summary of the discussions and reasons for the vote, signed by all voting members. After receiving the review, the dean may request a meeting with the entire committee.

3. Reporting Decisions

The dean shall forward the recommendations of the committee, along with his or her own recommendations, to the provost of the university. If the provost disagrees with the recommendations, he or she shall report the objections to the committee.

4. Requests for Reconsideration

A candidate denied renewal may request reconsideration of a decision during his or her final year at Tulane. This request must be made by the final week of the penultimate semester of the candidate’s term of appointment. Reconsideration will require significant new evidence of teaching effectiveness and/or excellence in the performance of duties identified in the offer letter. Only this material should be included in the binder for reconsideration. If a majority of the review committee determines that there is sufficient new evidence to warrant reconsideration, then the case will be returned to the department, which shall undertake a new review. The individual will then prepare a complete dossier and the procedure for review will occur as outlined above.

5. Senior Professors of Practice or Senior Lecturers

a. The committee shall make recommendations on the definition of a senior professor of practice and senior lecturer and possible additional duties or responsibilities that this position will entail.

b. Upon appointment for a third term, the faculty member may be promoted to the status of senior professor of practice or senior lecturer. The candidate for promotion to senior professor of practice or senior lecturer must indicate his/her intent by the deadline established in the Faculty Action Timetable, normally in conjunction with the second review, and include in the dossier a rationale for this change in status. A candidate denied promotion may request consideration for promotion to senior professor of practice or senior lecturer in the next review cycle.

c. Senior professors of practice and senior lecturers will be reviewed following the same protocol outlined above.

J. Reports

Each standing committee shall issue an annual report to the faculty.

K. Special Committees

Special committees may be authorized by the Executive Committee or the faculty. Upon their completion of their duties, special committees will report to the authorizing body.

ARTICLE IX

Representation to Bodies Outside the School Of Liberal Arts

A. Terms and Elections of Representatives

All terms shall be three years unless otherwise specified by the bodies.

B. Reports by Representatives

The representatives shall issue a periodic joint report to the faculty about significant debates and votes in their respective deliberative bodies.

ARTICLE X

Recall

All representatives and members of committees shall be subject to recall. Recall procedures can be initiated by a written petition of one-quarter of the voting members of the faculty to the Executive Committee. Recall requires a majority vote. Following a recall, ordinary procedures shall be used to fill the vacancy for the unexpired term as soon as feasible.

ARTICLE XI

The Dean of the School of Liberal Arts

A. Appointment


The dean shall be appointed by the president from a list of candidates submitted by a search committee of seven elected members of the faculty of the School of Liberal Arts. At least two voting members shall be from each of the three scholarly divisions, and no more than one member shall be from any department. The committee shall, in consultation with the president and the provost, elect one of its members as chair. In addition to consulting with the faculty, provost and president concerning the search, the committee shall seek the advice of students and alumni/ae of the School of Liberal Arts. The committee may add non-voting ex officio members from the administration, students, and alumni/ae. All voting shall be by secret ballot.

B. Term of Office

The term of office of the dean shall be no more than five years.

C. Review and Reappointment

A dean may be reappointed, but each reappointment shall be preceded by a faculty review no later than the penultimate semester of his or her term, and there shall be no limit to the number of times that a dean can be reappointed. The faculty review shall be conducted by a special committee of seven members, at least two from each of the scholarly divisions, who are elected by the faculty. The committee shall submit a confidential report and recommendations to the president and the provost. The president and the provost are expected to discuss the report with the dean before taking any further action.

D. Petition for Termination of Appointment

The faculty can request the president of the university to terminate the appointment of the dean. The request must be initiated by a written petition of one-quarter of the voting members of the faculty to the secretary. Upon receipt of the petition the secretary will convene a meeting of the Executive Committee with the dean recused. If the petition is deemed valid, the Executive Committee shall call a special meeting of the faculty. Subsequently, a formal request by the petitioners for termination of appointment must be endorsed in a mail ballot by a majority of the voting members of the faculty and shall contain a statement of reasons. If the request is endorsed and the president denies the request, the president is expected to provide an explanation at a faculty meeting of the School of Liberal Arts.

ARTICLE XII

Parliamentary Authority

The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the faculty in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with this constitution and any special rules of order the faculty may adopt.

ARTICLE XIII

Amendments

This constitution may be amended by two-thirds of those members present and voting at a meeting of the faculty, provided that the amendment has been proposed in writing at a previous meeting of the faculty, held at least one week before. Amendments shall be recommended through the president to the Board of Administrators at its regular or Executive Committee meeting. Amendments shall take effect ninety days after their passing.

Special Rules of Order

I. GUESTS, OBSERVERS, AND STUDENT REPRESENTATIVES

A. The faculty may vote to invite non-members to a particular meeting. The motion to invite shall stipulate whether the non-member has the privilege of the floor.

B. The presiding officer or a majority of the members present at a faculty meeting may decide that the meeting shall be held in executive session with only the voting members present.

II. PROCEDURES FOR MEETINGS

A. The normal order of business for regular meetings shall be:

1. Approval of the minutes

2. Report and announcements by the dean, provost, or president

3. Reports from standing committees

4. Reports from special committees

5. Reports from representatives to the University Senate and other bodies

6. Unfinished business

7. New business, initiated by the dean, by committees, or by individual faculty members.

B. Changes in the order of business must be presented to the faculty for its approval.

C. In special meetings of the faculty, the first order of business shall ordinarily be the subject or subjects for which the meeting was called. In an emergency in which urgent action is required, other business may be considered if approved by two-thirds vote. Such action must be ratified at the next regular meeting of the faculty.

III. AMENDMENTS

These special rules of order may be amended by a two-thirds vote at a meeting of the faculty at which a quorum is present if previous notice has been given at the preceding meeting. Without previous notice, amending the special rules of order requires a vote of a majority of the entire membership. Special rules may be suspended according to the procedures and limitations in the parliamentary authority.


Tulane University, School of Liberal Arts, 102 Newcomb Hall, New Orleans, LA  70118, (504) 865-5225, liberalarts@tulane.edu