University Closing Due to Water Main Break

Southeast Missouri State University

F. Academic Administrative Organization

Each individual in Academic Affairs assumes a responsibility for academic leadership. For faculty members, this responsibility is reflected primarily through excellence in teaching, research, scholarly and creative activity, and service to the University. Their efforts in the formation and operation of policies and procedures also contribute directly to the effective administration of academic programs. Similarly, professional staff members make an important contribution to the overall administration of the divisions. Vice Provost, Assistant Provost, Deans and department chairpersons assume an expanded role in the development and administration of academic policies and procedures.

Academic Affairs is composed of ten major academic administrative units that report directly to the Provost. These units include the Donald L. Harrison College of Business, College of Education, College of Health and Human Services, College of Liberal Arts, College of Science and Mathematics, School of Graduate Studies, School of Extended Learning, School of University Studies, School of Polytechnic Studies, and Academic Information Services. The dean or director of each unit assumes responsibility for overall leadership of the designated area.

The Dean of Academic Information Services and Director of Kent Library reports directly to the Provost and is responsible for providing the leadership and administration to enable the library to meet the information needs of the University community through the provision of both traditional and electronic collections and services. General responsibilities of the position include personnel, budgeting, developing policy, and representing the library to other units within the University, to individuals and organizations outside the University, and to other libraries throughout the country. Management of resources, including finances, personnel, equipment, and the physical building and its space, is of paramount importance. The dean articulates the role of the library to the University community and leads in the development of the library through planning, implementation and evaluation. He/she participates in activities consistent with the teacher/scholar model.

The Associate Provost of Extended & Online Learning, reporting to the Provost, has responsibility for the leadership and administration of all functions that are housed within the School of Extended Learning. These functions include Southeast PM, summer session, off-campus instruction, Advanced Placement instruction, outreach centers, and Continuing Education. In addition, the Assistant Provost, through the School of Extended Learning, provides leadership and administration for technology used for distance learning, including ITV technology, and provides administrative support for distance learning delivered via the internet. General responsibilities of the position include personnel, budgeting, policy development and representing the School of Extended Learning to the University community, as well as to the external community.

The Dean of the School of Graduate reports to the Provost and is responsible for providing leadership in those areas which affect the University's role in meeting the graduate education needs of the region. To provide this type of leadership, the dean must demonstrate evidence of distinguished teaching, research/scholarship, and service, together with effective administration. The dean is charged with the administration of policies and procedures affecting graduate admissions, retention, graduate assistantships, graduate faculty research activities, sponsored research, curricula, degrees, programs, and faculty. General responsibilities of the position include resource allocation, personnel, policy development and representing graduate studies to the University community and the region at large. In a collegial relationship with the departments, colleges, and Graduate Council, the dean is responsible for stimulating policy and program development and review designed to enhance the quality of the University's graduate programs.

The Dean of the School of University Studies is responsible for providing leadership for the University Studies program, the Honors program, the Governor's Scholars, co-curricular activities, and the Writing Outcomes program. The dean is charged with the administration of policies and procedures affecting curricula, programs and review procedures. In a collegial relationship with the departments, colleges and the University Studies Council, the dean is responsible for stimulating policy, program development and review designed to enhance the quality of the University's general education program.
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Dean of the School of University Studies: Role, Responsibility, Review and Selection

The organizational structure of Southeast Missouri State University is designed to foster participation by all members of the academic community in the formulation of academic policies. Under this system, the professional expertise of faculty members and administrators is integrated, and their many perspectives unite to form participatory academic decision making. Within this framework, the University establishes the teaching/learning environment essential for faculty and students and permits faculty members to fulfill their teaching, research, and service responsibilities. It is from this perspective that the School of University Studies was organized and is operated.

The Role of the School of University Studies

The School of University Studies has the responsibility to provide a University response to the needs of the University Studies program, the Writing Outcomes program, the Honors program, the Governor's Scholars, and co-curricular activities. Primary monitoring of policies and procedures affecting curricula in these programs is the responsibility of this unit.

The School of University Studies seeks to integrate school programs into the total educational experience of students, to provide support for these programs to academic colleges and departments, and to provide responsible self-government of University-wide policies.

The Role of the Dean of the School of University Studies
Responsibilities

The Dean of the School of University Studies is responsible for providing overall leadership for the University Studies program, Honors program, Governor's Scholars, co-curricular activities, and the Writing Outcomes program. Consequently, the dean must possess the ability to identify closely with the various disciplines of colleges and departments in order to articulate their program concerns and relate University-wide aims and purposes to the needs and goals of the colleges and departments. The dean assists college deans and department chairpersons by coordinating the development of school programs. The dean, together with college deans and department chairpersons, strives to maintain a high quality of performance by the faculty teaching courses in the programs of the school.

The dean is responsible for providing overall leadership in meeting the general education needs within the University. In a collegial relationship with the departments, colleges and University Studies Council, the dean is responsible for stimulating policy and program development. The dean is ultimately responsible for all recommendations to the appropriate academic officials, committees, or agencies outside the college or University. To provide this type of leadership, the dean must continue to show evidence of distinguished teaching, research/scholarship, and service, together with effective administration. The dean must elicit the professional trust and respect of the faculty teaching University Studies courses and speak on matters concerning general education with a representative and persuasive voice in the larger University community.

Consistent with this perspective, the Dean of the School of University Studies must be willing to be evaluated on the basis of progress toward meeting these responsibilities.

Specific Duties of the Dean
Resource Allocation

Coordinates the planning process and makes recommendations to higher administrative levels concerning staffing needs, administrative unit equipment, space, and operations. Administers the revenues allocated to the school.

Personnel
  • Provides leadership in establishing teaching standards in University
  • Studies courses.
  • Supervises the evaluation of office personnel.
  • Coordinates the duties and responsibilities of directors and coordinators within the school.
Teaching and Research
  • Assists in the development and maintenance of quality curricula.
  • Provides academic leadership by encouraging and promoting innovative ideas.
  • Encourages research projects related to the program on the part of faculty teaching University Studies courses and assists in securing support for them.
  • Encourages development of interdisciplinary efforts. Coordinates assessment activity within the school.
Communication
  • Presides over meetings of the University Studies Council. Facilitates communication within the school.
  • Facilitates communication of the school with other administrative units.
  • Secures and maintains national prominence for the program.

Updated August 15, 1997

The Director of the Center for Scholarship in Teaching and Learning provides leadership in the improvement of teaching at the institution. Specific areas of responsibility include sponsoring a teaching enhancement workshop for all new faculty, developing workshops on teaching and learning issues, providing individual counseling for faculty who want to improve their teaching, offering peer observations through classroom visits or videotaping when desired, and promoting cooperative research with faculty in the area of teaching and learning. The center also offers a standardized student evaluation process for those faculty who desire it. Finally, the director serves as an advocate for quality teaching where appropriate within the University structure.

The Dean of Students, reporting to the Provost, is the primary advocate for all Southeast Missouri State University students. The dean works collaboratively with faculty, staff, and other administrators to enhance student learning and personal development. Specifically, the dean works to ensure that students understand their responsibilities and rights as members of the academic community. She/he is responsible for coordinating the University's response to psychological and behavioral crises occurring in the student population. In addition, the dean is responsible for the development, supervision and evaluation of units assigned to the area of Student Development. Currently, these units include the Learning Enrichment Center, Career Services, the Center for Health and Counseling, Minority Student Programs, Student Support Services, Upward Bound, Substance Abuse Prevention and Education, Judicial Affairs, and Student Life Studies. These units provide personal counseling and health services, career counseling and development, academic success skills training and tutoring, accommodations for students with disabilities, and advocacy related to general student concerns. This area also includes programs that provide access to higher education to underserved populations and to integrate student populations historically underrepresented in higher education into the community of scholars at Southeast. Furthermore, the dean is a faculty member in the College of Education and a member of the Council of Deans. She/he serves on a variety of University and city committees. He/she also participates as a full member of the Provost's planning team.

The organizational structures of Southeast Missouri State University are designed to foster participation by all members of the academic community in the formulation of academic policies. Under this system, the professional expertise of faculty members and administrators is integrated, and their many perspectives unite in participatory academic decision making. Within this framework, the University establishes the teaching/learning environment essential for faculty and students and permits faculty members to fulfill their teaching, research, and service responsibilities. It is from this perspective that the University's colleges were organized and are operated.

The Role of the College

A college is a group of academic departments so assigned according to common methodologies or related curricular, research, or disciplinary orientations. Thus grouped, the departments maintain their uniqueness and integrity while the college coordinates joint administrative tasks. A college may also house interdisciplinary centers, programs, and institutes.

The college structure facilitates the smooth flow of information and direction from the central administration to the departments and information from the departments to the central administration. It thus encourages administrative efficiency and effectiveness at all levels.

The college represents and promotes to the University and the general community the common as well as the unique interests of each of its units. It encourages cooperation and mutual support between the units, mediates conflict, and thus stimulates broader and more useful applications of the work of the constituent units. The college fosters and monitors instructional, scholarly, and creative activity.

Identifying immediate and long-range objectives and assisting departments in similar activity at their level, the college is the location for evaluating achievement of these objectives. The college is the primary recipient of resources which are reallocated by the Provost for support of departmental programs. It also monitors the use of fiscal resources.

The Role of the College Dean
Responsibilities

The dean is responsible for providing leadership which allows the departments in the college to attain their unique educational objectives while promoting the common interests of faculties in closely related academic areas. Consequently, the dean must possess the ability to identify closely with the various disciplines within the college in order to articulate their concerns to the administration and to relate University-wide aims and purposes to the needs and goals of the departments. The dean assists department chairpersons in fostering the professional development of the college faculty and coordinating the development of departmental programs.

The dean is responsible for representing the financial needs of the college in the annual academic budget and coordinating the allocation of approved operating and equipment funds to the departments. In personnel matters, the dean is advised by a college council and other established committees composed of department chairpersons and/or elected departmental representatives; however, the dean is ultimately responsible for all recommendations to appropriate academic officials, committees, or agencies outside the college or University. To provide this type of leadership, the dean must bring to this office a distinguished career in teaching and research/scholarship, together with effective communication skills and administrative experience. He/she must be able to elicit the professional trust and respect of the college faculty so as to speak with a representative and persuasive voice in the larger University community concerning matters of concern to the college.

The dean is responsible for encouraging departments to identify and articulate their immediate and long-term objectives and to assess progress toward the attainment of these objectives through periodic department reviews. In concert with the department chairpersons, the dean strives to promote the scholarship, research, and program development activities of the college faculty. Consistent with this perspective, the dean must be willing to have her/his own performance evaluated on the basis of the extent to which her/his efforts promote growth of programs and the professional activities of the faculty.

In curricular and personnel matters, the college dean is advised by a College Council, the College Promotion Committee, the College Tenure Committee, and other committees composed of department chairpersons and/or elected depart- mental representatives. The college dean assumes responsibility for all recommendations to appropriate academic and administrative officials, committees, or councils.

Specific Duties of the Dean

The following listing is representative but not all-inclusive:

Resource Allocation
  • Coordinates the planning process and makes recommendations to higher administrative levels concerning equipment, space, operations, and personnel needs.
  • Administers the resources allocated to the college. Supervises faculty development expenditures in the college. Coordinates the use of physical space in the college.
Personnel Actions
  • Organizes and presides over college promotion proceedings and makes appropriate recommendations to the Provost.
  • Coordinates tenure procedures and makes appropriate recommendations to the Provost.
  • Assists in recruiting faculty and provides recommendations for and approval of appointments
  • Certifies proper credentialing of faculty.
  • Administers instruments of chairperson evaluation and coordinates evaluation of probationary faculty.
Teaching and Research
  • Assists in the development and maintenance of a quality curriculum.
  • Provides academic leadership by encouraging and promoting new ideas.
  • Encourages worthwhile research projects of the faculty and helps secure support for them.
  • Fosters and encourages teaching effectiveness and faculty development activity.
  • Encourages, where appropriate, development of interdisciplinary efforts.
Communication
  • Facilitates communication flow within the college.
  • Facilitates communication flow into and out of the college to other administrative units.
  • Mediates conflicts among college departments when the differences are not resolved at the departmental level.
  • Interprets the work of the college to constituencies outside the University.
  • Presides, in an appellate capacity, over student academic problems not resolved at the departmental level.
The Review of the College Dean

The review of the dean is an extension of the collegial process that encourages faculty participation in the governance of the college. The assessment of the dean is made possible through both formal and informal review mechanisms and periodic review cycles. Each of these is designed to aid the dean in assessing individual performance and for suggesting areas that might be strengthened. Throughout the academic year, department chairpersons and administrators share a responsibility to provide informally to the dean insights that may improve his/her overall leadership effectiveness. Annually, the dean will meet with the Provost for the purpose of discussing his/her administrative performance. A written summary of this meeting will be shared with the individual dean and the President.

Periodic Dean Review. A newly appointed dean will be reviewed during the third year of her/his service as dean at the University. In the middle of the third year, the Provost will inform the dean and faculty members in the college that the review is being initiated. All faculty members will follow the general procedures and use the standard instrument. Department chairpersons in the college, other deans on campus, and other selected individuals will be asked by the Provost to follow the same general procedures and submit assessments directly to the Office of Institutional Research. The continuing appointment as dean will be subject to this review. The normal periodic review for individuals continued in the deanship will be within a three- to five-year cycle as recommended by the Provost.

Extraordinary Review of the Dean. An extraordinary review of the dean may be initiated at any time by a vote of the majority of the departments in the college. A majority vote of the members of a department in accordance with departmental procedures will be considered a departmental vote to call for the review. The Provost may also initiate a review.

The Review Process

For both periodic and extraordinary reviews, these procedures will be followed:

  1. At the initiation of the review cycle, the Provost will submit to all full-time faculty in the college a letter outlining the process to be followed.
  2. At the same time, the Provost will provide College Council members with a copy of the review instrument. In consultation with the Provost, the College Council may construct up to five additional items for the instrument. The council will have at least one month in which to submit the additional items.
  3. Upon receipt of additional items, the Provost will submit to the full-timefaculty a copy of the review instrument. Individual faculty members will have at least two weeks to complete and return the instrument to the Office of the Provost at their convenience.
  4. Additional information from the faculty may be solicited through other appropriate means. Upon a majority request of the faculty in a department, as indicated on the review instrument, the Provost will meet with members of the department.
  5. Concurrent with the solicitation of faculty response, the Provost will collect information from the chairpersons in the college, the other deans, and other individuals within and outside the college. Information from chairpersons will be obtained through the review instrument and other appropriate means; information from the other deans and other individuals will be collected through the review instrument and/or other appropriate means.
  6. Within a month after all information has been collected, the Provost will summarize the information and draft a letter to the dean. The summary will include the following:

    a. A tabulation of responses from the review instrument.
    b. A listing of the strengths and improvement areas enumerated at the end of the instrument, categorized according to chairpersons and faculty.
    c. A summary of information gathered from other sources.

  7. Following submission of the summary report to the dean, the Provost will meet with the dean to discuss the report. The dean will have an opportunity to respond to all parts of the report.
  8. After due deliberation, the Provost will meet with the college faculty concerning the outcome of the review.
  9. The Provost will submit to the President a final recommendation, along with a summary document including the information described in Step 6 above and the dean's response; as indicated in Step 7.

Approved by the Faculty Senate, September, 1984 Approved by the President, September, 1984 Approved by the Board of Regents, September, 1984 Updated August 15, 1997

The Selection Process
Qualifications

Each college dean should substantially meet the following criteria:

  1. An earned doctorate from an accredited University in a discipline represented by one of the departments in the college.
  2. Evidence of scholarly and/or research achievements.
  3. Distinguished teaching experience at the college/University level.
  4. Administrative experience or demonstrated administrative capability.
  5. Commitment to the principles of collegiality in governance.
  6. Commitment to academic excellence.
Search Committee

When a vacancy occurs, the Provost instructs the chairperson of each department in the college to conduct an election to select two nominees from which a representative will be selected to serve as a member of the search committee. In addition to these departmental representatives, the President of the University with the advice of the Provost appoints two administrators, student representation, and when appropriate, a representative from outside the University to serve on the search committee and designates its chairperson. The Dean of the School of Graduate officer or designee will serve on the search committee.

Search Process
  1. The search is open to outside applicants as well as applicants from within the University. The search committee is responsible for preparing a position description which, with the authorization of the Provost, governs the screening and recommending of candidates and; ultimately, the appointment.
  2. All finalists normally are invited to spend two full days on campus so that they and the appropriate segments of the University community have adequate time to assess each other. The search committee sets the interview schedule, but it should include extensive meetings with the search committee, chairpersons of departments in the college, faculty members from within the college, the deans of other colleges, the Provost, and the President of the University. The chairperson of the search committee is responsible for preparing a written summary of each finalist's campus visit, listing specific strengths and weaknesses as they emerge in the interview. This summary should accompany the dossier of any recommended candidate.
  3. After conducting finalists' interviews, the search committee recommends at least three candidates to the Provost. Recommendations are made without rank ordering.
  4. The Provost forwards to the President of the University the names and supporting materials of all candidates recommended by the search committee and includes his/her own recommendations on the candidates. The President negotiates an appointment with a recommended candidate and recommends the appointee to the Board of Regents for confirmation.
    Updated August 15, 1997

The role of the department chairperson is recognized as a primary leadership position in the University. As the foremost departmental administrative officer and representative of the academic discipline, the chairperson serves in the unique position of exemplifying the highest standards in both faculty and administrative responsibilities, maintaining standards of the discipline, and meeting the expectations of the department. The maintenance of balance between these responsibilities requires careful attention by the department chairperson, departmental colleagues, and administrative officers. It suggests the need for considerable latitude in the leadership style utilized by the chairperson while performing within institutional guidelines, departmental constraints, and limitations imposed by the availability of resources.

The department chairperson is responsible for leadership which provides educational purpose and direction for the department. The chairperson is the faculty member of the department authorized to speak for and on behalf of the department, and links the department to the office of the dean of the college and other appropriate University administrative offices. The department chairperson must not only represent the legitimate interests of individual faculty members and the department to other members of the administration, but also must present accurately and fairly to colleagues in the department the positions of other administrators while interpreting the established policies of the University.

To provide effective leadership in the department, the chairperson must cultivate and retain the respect of colleagues. A successful chairperson leads the department through consistency, openness, candor, decisiveness, and fair and equitable treatment of all department members. As the departmental administrative leader, the chairperson is expected to evaluate issues with a broad point of view, analyze questions, and perceive consequences of decisions with clarity and accuracy. Regular consultation and open communication should be used in weighing and deciding questions before the department. Whether consultation is by private counsel, committee recommendation, or other means, the department chairperson assumes responsibility for those decisions assigned to the department by University policies and procedures.

From a faculty perspective, the department chairperson is a colleague who acts on behalf of members of the department in the administration of departmental activities. Administratively, the chairperson carries out duties assigned to the office. This is accomplished with the advice and judgment of the faculty when making recommendations concerning such matters as curriculum development, budgetary requests, and faculty recruitment, hiring, promotion, tenure, and termination. The chairperson is both a member of the department and a liaison between the department and the rest of the University. As a member of the department, the chairperson provides leadership in the common pursuit of departmental goals. As a departmental liaison, the chairperson represents the best interests of the department to the college and University administration.

While considerable diversity exists in the operation of the various academic departments, there is a common core of responsibilities assumed by the department chairperson. The leadership of the chairperson, however, cannot be viewed in isolation, for members of the department assume broad responsibilities and share accountability for departmental programs, operation, and personnel actions. The general responsibilities of the department chairperson are grouped under the following major categories: Administrative Functions, Faculty Personnel Functions, Liaison Functions, Student-Related Functions, Leadership Functions, and Operational Functions. While these categories provide a basis for grouping functions, many are interrelated. They are presented, however, as a guide to chairpersons in providing academic leadership and to departments as colleagues participate in the assessment of department chairpersons.

Administrative Functions

The chairperson is the chief departmental administrative officer and the primary representative of the academic discipline. Among the specific administrative tasks for which the chairperson assumes responsibility and accountability are

  1. Communicating department goals and needs to the dean and, when appropriate, to the Provost;
  2. Communicating and interpreting college and University decisions to the faculty;
  3. Maintaining open lines of communication among specializations within the department and encouraging appropriate balance;
  4. Encouraging the development and improvement of the departmental curriculum and seeing that the proper curriculum materials are submitted;
  5. Ensuring the preparation of catalog information and schedules of class offerings in accordance with established procedures;
  6. Supervising the departmental budget, support staff, record keeping, and the requisition of supplies, equipment, materials, and other instructional needs;
  7. Scheduling regular departmental meetings and distributing minutes to appropriate individuals;
  8. Serving as the chief spokesperson for departmental curriculum proposals and ensuring that requirements are consistent with University policies;
  9. Assigning and evaluating support and clerical personnel in the department;
  10. Developing and following procedures to assign faculty to classes, laboratories, studios, and other responsibilities;
  11. Reporting undesirable or potentially hazardous conditions with respect to the physical plant;
  12. Providing appropriate information and reports as requested by the dean and other administrative offices;
  13. Facilitating and encouraging grants and contracts from extramural sources;
  14. Coordinating and supervising the development of departmental five-year plans, accreditation and departmental evaluations, and other reviews; and
  15. Administering the departmental budget within established guidelines.
Faculty-Personnel Functions

Among the most important responsibilities of the chairperson are those relating to the faculty. The success of the department is frequently dependent upon the abilities of the chairperson in this regard. Among the specific tasks for which the chairperson assumes responsibility and accountability are

  1. Exercising leadership in recruiting and retaining capable faculty;
  2. Evaluating faculty performance and the development of procedures for assessing faculty accomplishment;
  3. Exercising independent judgments and making recommendations relative to faculty employment, continuation, promotion, tenure, termination, salary adjustments, and leaves of absence;
  4. Encouraging improvement of faculty performance by fostering effective teaching and stimulating research, scholarly performance, and creative activity;
  5. Promoting faculty professional development and enrichment, and encouraging faculty in their service to the University, the community, and professional organizations;
  6. Maintaining faculty morale by preventing and resolving conflicts and by arranging for the effective and equitable distribution of faculty responsibilities;
  7. Orienting new faculty members to department, college, and University policies and procedures;
  8. Serving as a role model in the performance of teaching, scholarly, and other faculty responsibilities; and
  9. Coordinating the departmental sabbatical leave review and recommending candidates to the dean of the college.
Liaison Functions

The department chairperson has primary responsibility for representing the department and the discipline to the college, the University, and the community at large. Among the specific areas for which the chairperson assumes responsibilities and accountability are

  1. Maintaining liaison with other departments and support units;
  2. Encouraging public relations activities and enhancing the departmental image and reputation on and off campus;
  3. Promoting interdepartmental and interdisciplinary cooperation in the development and maintenance of academic programs; and
  4. Cooperating with departments, colleges, and other units in the accomplishment of their tasks.
Student-Related Functions

The recruitment and retention of outstanding students is often dependent upon how wisely and effectively the departmental chairperson responds to student needs. Among the specific areas for which the chairperson is responsible and accountable are

  1. Coordinating the academic advisement process and monitoring the process to ensure that it is responsive to changing student needs and aspirations;
  2. Encouraging student clubs and organizations which foster achievement and professional development;
  3. Following procedures for resolving student complaints about faculty, courses, and programs;
  4. Promoting the establishment of scholarships and fellowships for students in the department;
  5. Informing students of special departmental registration procedures and enrollment criteria, etc., and administering those procedures when appropriate; and
  6. Encouraging student participation and involvement in department activities.
Leadership Functions

The precise nature of leadership is difficult to define. There are different styles and techniques for carrying out the responsibilities of the chairperson. There are, however, a number of qualities that are important to the leadership of a department. Among them are

  1. Judging people fairly and thoughtfully;
  2. Initiating and sustaining action toward defined goals and encouraging the initiative of others;
  3. Demonstrating interpersonal relations that foster a professional working atmosphere;
  4. Working with committees and promoting their effectiveness;
  5. Engaging in consultation and participatory decision-making;
  6. Being open to fair criticism; and
  7. Demonstrating objectivity.
Operational Functions

The fulfillment of leadership responsibilities balances the specific tasks completed with the manner in which the assignments are accomplished. In this respect, the chairperson assumes responsibilities for

  1. Involving departmental faculty in decisions on program development and operational procedures;
  2. Recognizing the advice and judgment of the faculty in making curriculum, budget, and personnel recommendations;
  3. Providing guidance and leadership in formulating department academic and operational policies;
  4. Consulting with the faculty in assigning teaching loads, instructional responsibilities, and academic schedules;
  5. Representing the department effectively and responsibly in college and University-wide meetings;
  6. Consulting with the faculty in the preparation and administration of the budget;
  7. Working with department members in formulating faculty personnel procedures and making employment-related recommendations; and
  8. Reporting to faculty members and the dean recommendations made that differ from actions taken by faculty in the department.
The Review of Department Chairpersons

As a department chairperson, a faculty member assumes broad leadership roles that have specific functions and raise certain expectations. The review of a chairperson represents the ultimate in the collegial process, for it encourages faculty participation in departmental governance and effectively balances administrative decision-making responsibility. While the review of a department chairperson systematically focuses primarily on one person, the assessment of one's performance cannot be separated from the responsibilities assumed by all colleagues in the department. Similarly, administratively assigned tasks must be kept in their proper context. Colleagues in the department share in the responsibility for maintaining this perspective, as do deans, in making their recommendations to the Provost.

There are commonly accepted procedures in place for the appointment of department chairpersons and the replacement of department chairpersons for due cause. The review process described in this document is viewed as a constructive process. Its primary focus is gaining insights from the various constituencies that relate to the department chairperson so constructive advice may be given and recommendations made to improve the overall effectiveness of the department chairperson in providing departmental leadership.

The assessment of a department chairperson is made possible through both formal and informal review mechanisms and periodic and extraordinary review cycles. Each of these is designed to provide input to the department chairperson in assessing individual performance and for suggesting areas that might be strengthened.

Formal and Informal Reviews

Throughout the academic year, departmental colleagues and administrators share a responsibility informally to provide insights to the department chairperson that may improve his/her overall leadership effectiveness. Annually, the dean will meet with the department chairperson for the purpose of discussing administrative performance. A written summary of this meeting will be shared with the individual chairperson and the Provost.

Periodic Department Chairperson Review

A newly appointed department chairperson will be reviewed during the third year of service concurrent with his/her appointment at the University. At the beginning of the third year, the dean will inform the Provost and call the department together for the purpose of initiating a review, discussing the process, and agreeing on the specific procedures to be followed. All departments will follow the general procedures and the specific instrument included in this document, along with mutually determined approaches at the department and college levels. The continuing appointment as chairperson will be subject to this review. The normal periodic review for individuals continued will be within a three- to five year cycle as recommended by the dean and approved by the Provost.

Extraordinary Department Chairperson Review

An extraordinary review of the department chairperson may be initiated at any time by a majority vote of the members of the department in accordance with departmental procedures. The respective college dean or the Provost may also initiate a review at any time. Upon receipt of a request for extraordinary review, the appropriate college dean will call the department together as described in the periodic review cycle. The general procedures and instrument described in this document will be followed. Special attention may be focused on the timing of the review and areas of special concern resulting in the extraordinary request.

The Review Process

The entire review process will be conducted within the context of the responsibilities of the department and its individual members and the functions of the department chairperson. Emphasis will be placed on the nature and focus of the review, along with the following guidelines and procedures. Throughout this entire process, the department chairperson retains his/her right to resign the position.

Guidelines for the Review of Department Chairpersons. The review of a department chairperson requires cooperation and mutual discussion. It is important that professional integrity and respect be maintained by all parties involved. The following guidelines are provided for those involved in the review process to ensure proper focus so the overall effort will not be counterproductive to the stated purpose:

  • Adequate time should be provided throughout the process so individuals can effectively participate.
  • Individual responses should be secured before written documents are shared.
  • Input from faculty members, students, other chairpersons, and administrators should be properly balanced.
  • The constructive nature of the review should remain foremost. Informal dialogue should be fostered on a continuing basis. Full departmental involvement should be stressed.
  • The need to provide anonymity should be balanced with the need to fulfill professional responsibility.
  • Opportunity for chairperson and faculty self-assessment should be encouraged.
  • Flexibility in the process should be maintained so departmental differences can be addressed.
  • The time frames near the beginning and ending of semesters should be avoided for the purposes of the review.
  • Chairpersons may provide a Record of Service summary to faculty members to highlight recent activities.
Procedures for the Review of Department Chairpersons

The specific purpose of the review process and the suggested guidelines provide a basis for the review of the department chairperson. Such factors as the size and complexity of the department and type of review may suggest variations in the approaches utilized. However, the intent of the following procedures should be maintained.

  1. Colleagues in the department are encouraged to provide informal suggestions to the department chairperson on an ongoing basis. Departments may develop internal procedures to delineate additional items to be added to the "Review of Department Chairpersons" instrument.
  2. At the initiation of the review cycle, the dean shall meet with the department for the purposes of discussing the process, reporting format, and procedures to ensure appropriate anonymity and follow-up; reviewing the procedures; agreeing upon a timetable; and determining whether additional items should be added to the instrument. Where the source of an instrument cannot be identified, the responses will not be discarded.
  3. The review instrument with a return envelope should be distributed to members of the department. Faculty members will have at least two weeks to complete and return the instrument. All faculty are encouraged to participate. Upon completion, the faculty member will return the instrument to the office of the dean. The dean will have an opportunity to schedule individual meetings with faculty members for purposes of follow-up, clarification, and additional input.
  4. Concurrent with the solicitation of faculty input, the dean will collect information through the review instrument or through other appropriate means, from other chairpersons and individuals outside the department associated with the department chairperson.
  5. Within a month after all information has been collected, the dean will summarize the input and draft a letter to the department chairperson. Among other matters, the document will present responses received from those solicited.
  6. Following submission of a proposed summary report to the department chairperson, the dean will meet with the individual to discuss the report. The department chairperson will have an opportunity to respond to all parts of the recommendation.
  7. After due deliberation, the dean will submit a document to the department for review and response. The document will include a tabulation of the items on the instrument, a summary of written comments, and specific recommendations.
  8. Approximately two weeks after the document has been shared with the department, the dean will meet with members of the department for additional discussion. A summary of this meeting will be appended by the dean to the final recommendation submitted to the Provost.
  9. The dean will submit the final summary recommendations, along with all support data, to the Provost. The summary and recommendations will also be shared with the chairperson involved and will be made available to members of the department.
  10. Upon receipt of the recommendation, the Provost will schedule a meeting with the dean and department chairperson for the purposes of discussion and determination of appropriate action.
  11. The Provost will discuss the recommendation with the President for final disposition.
  12. The Provost will properly inform the dean, department chairperson, and members of the department of the recommendation.
  13. Upon continuation, the department chairperson and the dean will mutually agree upon a chairperson Development Plan which shall be filed with the Provost.
    Academic Services, 1981
The Selection Process
Search Committee
  1. When a vacancy occurs, the dean of the college arranges a meeting of all full- time faculty in the department. At this meeting, two decisions are made: first, departmental members of the search committee are selected, and second, the method for choosing a chairperson of the search committee is determined. For obvious reasons, candidates for the position do not serve on the search committee.
  2. After the search committee is established, an additional faculty member from any other department in the University should be added to the search committee. Both the dean of the college and the search committee should agree on who will serve in this capacity. The additional faculty member operates as a full member of the committee.
Search Process
  1. When the chairpersonship vacancy coincides with a faculty opening in the department, the search must invite candidacies from within and outside the University. Where no faculty opening exists in the department, the search is limited to candidacies from within the department.
  2. The search committee is responsible for establishing its own procedures for reviewing candidacies. Finalists are interviewed by the search committee, the college dean, and the Provost. After completing its search, the committee makes no fewer than three recommendations to the college dean.
  3. After reviewing the search committee's recommendations, the college dean makes no fewer than two recommendations to the Provost who, in turn, makes a final recommendation to the President.
  4. In the event that none of the recommended candidates accepts the appointment, the search is reopened.

As a complex social institution, a University is composed of individuals with divergent perspectives and of sub-structures that represent the multiplicit nature of its mission. The organizational structures at Southeast Missouri State University foster open communication and dialogue and place responsibility on individual members of the academic community to participate in charting directions and formulating academic policies. Through a process of shared governance, the professional expertise of faculty members and administrators is integrated to encourage mutual contributions from the various segments of the University. When recommendations and decisions from the many perspectives are appropriately combined, they form a shared, participatory mode of academic decision-making. It is through this framework that the University addresses its overall mission and presents the teaching/learning environment essential for faculty members to fulfill their teaching, scholarly, and service responsibilities.

The Role of the Department

Within this context, the department serves as the fundamental grouping of faculty whose common professional interests and expertise provide continuity for the instructional programs. Members of the department are responsible for determining appropriate internal organizational structures and operational procedures consonant with general University procedures and policies. The basic responsibility for maintaining the programs and operations of the department rests with its faculty as a whole. Faculty members are directly involved in the processes whereby recommendations and decisions are made regarding their disciplines and the professional status of their colleagues. In fulfilling their educational goals and responsibilities as an integral component of the University, departments assume broad leadership roles as related to instructional programs, departmental operations, and recommended personnel actions.

Departmental Instructional Program Responsibilities

The educational and instructional programs of the University serve as the focal point for departmental activities. The major functions of the department in terms of the instructional programs include its responsibility to:

Develop and maintain current curricula, instructional programs, and course syllabi;

Encourage appropriate curriculum modifications, changes, and innovations in programs sponsored by the department;

Approve internal modifications and solicit input from other departments where program changes and offerings may impact;

Establish and utilize procedures for reviewing and evaluating existing and new courses, programs, and curricula;

Maintain strong departmental academic, instructional, and grading standards;

Select library and other material related to its curriculum and establish procedures for effective and appropriate use of instructional media and other learning activities; and

Foster the development of undergraduate and graduate programs within University guidelines.

Department Operational Responsibilities

While the department chairperson assumes specific administrative responsibilities, the department maintains broad operational roles. The more critical functions of the department include its responsibility to:

Establish and maintain operational procedures consistent with University-wide academic policies;

Develop guidelines for the planning, organizing, coordinating, and administering of department programs, budgets, and activities within college and University guidelines and parameters;

Determine short-term and long-range needs, place resource requests in priority order, and utilize resources effectively;

Provide input into the preparation and administration of the department budget and other activities of the department; and

Function as an integral component of the academic community in providing input, responding to proposals, and suggesting ways to enhance the overall operation of the institution.

Department Personnel Responsibilities

The department serves as the initial unit for the review, assessment, and evaluation of colleagues in the department, and the recommendation of appointment and appropriate faculty personnel actions. The essential department functions include its responsibility to:

Establish and maintain processes and procedures within University guidelines to search for candidates and review, assess, and evaluate departmental colleagues;

Encourage and facilitate study, research, and other professional activities of members of the department;

Evaluate faculty members in terms of employment, continuation, promotion, tenure, and termination;

Determine the need for additional faculty and, when approved, participate in the recruitment and selection of new faculty members;

Provide recommendations regarding the employment of department chairpersons and participate in the review of department chairpersons; and

Evaluate the departmental sabbatical leave proposals and make recommendations to the chairperson.
Academic Services, 1981 Updated August 15, 1997

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