SACUA discusses changes to Standard Practice Guide
The Senate Advisory Committee on University Affairs met Monday to discuss changes to several documents that govern faculty policy at the University.
At a December SACUA meeting, University President Mark Schlissel addressed the assembly on possible changes to the Principles of Faculty Involvement Blue Document that would increase faculty involvement in undergraduate admissions.
The document, which describes the general responsibilities faculty members have in governing the University, has not been revised since the Senate Assembly endorsed its second edition in 2008.
During the December meeting, many members of SACUA said they felt the document should be further amended to address the role faculty play in undergraduate admissions.
At Monday’s meeting, SACUA members presented possible revisions to the document, concerning several aspects including the faculty involvement in undergraduate admissions, faculty involvement in faculty disciplines and the definition of faculty sections.
Revisions to the definition of faculty within the principles sparked a discussion among the members. Kinesiology Prof. Stefan Szymanski said the current definition of faculty is too ambiguous, and said SACUA should address whether administrators are also considered faculty.
“The point is that the things that they are doing, they are not doing as faculty, they are doing as administrators, so that’s what we need to establish,” Szymanski said.
Comparative Literature Prof. Silke-Maria Weineck, SACUA chair, said SACUA will work to outline the difference between a faculty member and an administrator.
“We need to have a very clear memo that lays out what we mean by faculty,” Weineck said. “We don’t want to take their power, we just want to say in document defining faculty from administrators.”
SACUA plans to work on the Principles document over the next few weeks and will discuss its conclusions with University Provost Martha Pollack and Schlissel when they have reached a conclusion. Until formal suggestions have been made, SACUA will continue to adhere to the current guidelines.
The committee also discussed changes to the Standard Practice Guideline, which outlines professional standards for faculty, in further detail during an executive session. This session was not open to the press.
During the meeting, Weineck said SACUA had received possible revisions to the SPG from Provost Pollack.
“Martha (Pollack) expressed that she now gave us back a document with a considerable number of edits that do not address our concerns, but actually aggravate our concerns,” she said.