Department and Program Meetings
Each department and program has its own tradition of meetings. Generally departments meet more frequently
than programs. The only meetings that
are required are at least two hours of meetings devoted to department and
program assessment. Many departments
meet to determine senior capstone grades and department awards and honors. In general departments should try to meet at
least four times each academic year and programs should try to meet as least
twice each academic year.
A student who believes that he or she has an academic grievance should
discuss the concern with the faculty member in charge of the course in which
the concern has arisen. If a mutually satisfactory resolution is not reached,
the student should confer with his or her academic advisor and should take the
matter to the relevant department chair. If no resolution occurs at this level
or if the department chair is the faculty member in question in the first
instance, then the student should take the concern to the relevant Area Chair.
Concerns remaining unresolved at this level should be taken to the Provost.
Students shall take all concerns regarding graduation requirements and their fulfillment
to the Registrar.
- When talking to students the chair needs to be aware of the official
class attendance and classroom conduct policies as they appear in the Faculty Handbook. If the faculty member is not following these
policies, then the chair should remind the faculty member of the policy in question. The chair should attempt to resolve any
problems by talking to the student and faculty member and facilitating
discussion between them. The chair’s
presence may or may not be needed in these discussions. If the problems cannot be resolved, the
student should be referred to the appropriate Area Chair.
Remember that student complaints can be helpful in at least two
ways. First, the student may simply need
to vent and by doing so with the chair, the problem may resolve itself. Second, student complaints can be valuable
information for the department’s assessment and program planning.
At times the department chair will
need to mediate faculty disagreements within the department. Many issues can be resolved through
face-to-face conversations with the appropriate faculty. If this does not work, the chair should
consult the Area Chair and perhaps remind the faculty member of the grievance
policies outlined in Section F of the Faculty
As described in the Faculty Handbook, a chair may be
approached by a faculty member about a harassment issue. At this point it is most critical for the
chair to re-read and carefully follow the policy as written.