The purpose of the bylaws is to provide rules that the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science will follow in governance of its day to day business. These bylaws also serve as guidelines that the constituent departments within the School should observe in drafting their own bylaws. The bylaws of the departments should be consistent with, and must not contradict, the bylaws of the School.
In the rest of this document, the School denotes the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, the Dean denotes the Dean of the Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, and the University denotes the University of Texas at Dallas. A majority shall mean more than 50% of those voting.
All School and departmental meetings, as well as the meetings of all standing and temporary committees of the School and its constituent departments and programs, shall be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order, as defined in “Robert’s Rules in Plain English,” by Doris P. Zimmerman.
1.2 Terminology and Rules of Order
1.3 Table of Contents
2.2 Meetings of the Faculty of the School
2.3 Hiring of Faculty
3.2 Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education
3.3 Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
3.4 Department Heads
3.5 Heads of Programs and Chairs of Governing Committees
3.6 Other Officers
4. STANDING COMMITTEES
4.1 Faculty Personnel Review Committee
4.2 Academic Affairs Committee
4.3 Committee on Effective Teaching
4.4 Undergraduate Curriculum Committees
4.5 Committees for Graduate Studies
4.6 Governing Committees for Interdisciplinary Degree Programs
5. ADOPTION, AMENDMENT AND INTERPRETATION OF THE SCHOOL BYLAWS
The Faculty of the School consists of all persons appointed at least half-time for at least nine months during the current academic year to one of the following positions:
The Voting Faculty of the School consists of all Professors, Associate Professors, and Assistant Professors appointed at least half-time for at least nine months during the current academic year, together with a number of Senior Lecturers appointed at least half-time for at least nine months during the academic year to be determined as follows:
The number of Senior Lecturers in the Voting Faculty may not exceed 10% (rounded to the nearest integer) of the total number of Professors, Associate Professors and Assistant Professors who, at the start of the fall semester, are appointed at least half time for at least nine months.
At the beginning of each Fall Semester, the Senior Lecturers appointed at least half-time in the School shall meet to elect as many representatives as are allowed in the Voting Faculty.
All non-Voting Faculty and Senior Lecturers may attend School and departmental faculty meetings and participate in discussions, except when the faculty meets in executive session or when matters subject to privacy protection are under consideration.
Conduct of meetings
At least three working days' written or email notice must be given of meetings of the Faculty of the School. The notice of a meeting must include a proposed agenda.
Meetings of the Faculty are normally called by the Dean. A meeting may also be called at a specified date and time as a result of a petition signed by at least five members of the Voting Faculty and delivered to the Dean or a member of the Academic Affairs Committee at least four working days prior to the date of the meeting. If a meeting is called by petition, the petition must specify at least one topic to be placed on the agenda.
An item may be placed on the agenda of a meeting of the Faculty of the School by the Dean or through a petition signed by at least two members of the Voting Faculty and delivered either to the Dean or to a member of the Academic Affairs Committee at least one working day prior to the date of the meeting, or through a motion to amend the agenda made at the meeting, provided that the motion carries.
A meeting can be postponed by a majority vote of those present.
One of the following shall preside at meetings of the Faculty of the School: The Dean, an Associate Dean who is a tenured faculty member of the School, or an elected member of the Academic Affairs Committee.
In the months of September through May, a quorum shall consist of 50% of the members of the Voting Faculty. During the months of June, July and August, a quorum shall consist of 60% of the members of the Voting Faculty. No business may be transacted in the absence of a quorum or when the University is closed.
A meeting of the Faculty of the School must be convened at least once in each nine-month academic year.
The convener of a faculty meeting is responsible for ensuring that business minutes are recorded at each meeting and are circulated to the Voting Faculty for approval. Copies of minutes of all School and departmental faculty meetings will be kept in the department offices and the Dean’s office, and will be made available to faculty members upon request.
No motions may be made or passed in executive session.
Rules for voting in School and departmental faculty meetings:
Only members of the Voting Faculty, as defined above, may vote.
Any member of the Voting Faculty who is present at a meeting may request a vote by secret ballot on any motion presented, other than non-debatable motions.
Proxy voting is not allowed.
A member of the Voting Faculty who cannot attend a meeting may cast a vote in absentia on any matter on the agenda distributed prior to the meeting, other than matters pertaining to promotion and tenure, provided that the vote is delivered by email or in writing to a member of the Academic Affairs Committee, clearly specifying the intent.
Votes may not be cast in absentia, either by email or in writing, on matters of promotion and tenure.
Votes on the approval of minutes of the most recent meeting of the Faculty of the School may be cast by email, in which case the vote of a faculty member who fails to respond within three working days shall be recorded as “aye”.
Each year the need for faculty positions will be identified by the Dean in consultation with the heads of departments and interdisciplinary degree programs, and the School faculty. The Dean shall recommend search plans and the rationale for the hiring plan in consultation with the department heads and program heads, taking into consideration the number and distribution of positions that the School plans to fill.
Each department shall recommend one or more Faculty Search Committees to the Dean consisting of a subset of the tenured and tenure-track faculty members in the department. The Dean may also recommend special search committees that may include members from more than one department and/or from outside the School.
Each departmental committee or special committee shall conduct the search process for each position according to University regulations and departmental bylaws, including advertisement of the positions, review of applications, invitations to prospective candidates for interviews, soliciting of faculty votes for the candidates, and forwarding the recommendations of the faculty to the Dean.
Recommendations from the search committee for offers at the Associate or Full Professor levels in a department must be voted upon by the departmental faculty members at that rank and higher. Recommendations from the search committee for offers to all candidates for tenure-track faculty positions in a department must be voted upon by the tenured and tenure-track faculty in the corresponding department. In addition, recommendations from the search committee for offers with tenure must be voted upon by the tenured faculty members in the corresponding department.
The Dean is the chief administrative officer of the School, and is responsible for the School’s day-to-day operation in accordance with its bylaws and University regulations, its finances and physical resources, as well as for the safety of School personnel in laboratories and classrooms. The Dean, in consultation with the School’s faculty, also defines the vision for the School’s future. The Dean is to be selected according to the policy laid out by UTD. The Dean must be a tenured faculty member in the School. The Dean serves at the pleasure of the President and Provost of the University.
The Dean may appoint committees and choose their members as (s)he sees fit, with the exception that standing committees mandated by School or departmental bylaws will be constituted as provided in the bylaws.
The Dean may use his or her discretion in creating, filling and replacing administrative positions in the Dean’s office, including, but not limited to, associate/assistant dean positions and supporting staff positions. The Dean is encouraged to seek faculty input in a manner of his or her choosing when appointing Associate Deans (e.g., the Dean may seek faculty input through the department heads and program heads rather than directly).
The Dean has final authority within the School for recommending faculty appointments to the Provost, and has all of the authority provided by the University (See UTDPP1077) with respect to promotions and tenure. Hiring, tenure and promotion of all tenured/tenure-track faculty in a particular department must be voted upon by the appropriate subset of the department’s faculty as provided in Section 2.3 of these bylaws.
The faculty bears primary responsibility for curricular matters. All decisions made by the Dean relating to curricular matters should have approval of a majority of the corresponding department/program faculty. Similarly, any curricular policy change approved by the faculty that has an administrative effect (e.g., needing additional resources beyond what the department currently has) requires the approval of the Dean.
The Dean, together with the Academic Affairs Committee and the department heads, should set out the criteria to be used for annual faculty evaluations. These criteria should be communicated to the faculty within the first 30 days of the beginning of the evaluation year.
The Dean shall make an annual “state of the School” report to the faculty. The report should describe the progress the School has made in the past year, its accomplishments in the areas of research, teaching and service, and directions that the school may take in the near future, as well as problems that it may face.
The Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education (ADU) is appointed by the Dean from the tenured faculty of the School. The ADU reports to and is evaluated by the Dean.
Functions and responsibilities of the ADU include:
The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs (ADAA) is appointed by the Dean. Only a tenured full professor may be appointed to this position. The ADAA reports to and is evaluated by the Dean.
Functions and responsibilities of the ADAA include:
The Dean shall appoint department heads in consultation with the corresponding department’s faculty. Department heads must be tenured faculty members in the School, and shall serve at the Dean’s pleasure. A department head is the chief administrative officer of his/her department and the principal liaison between the department’s faculty and higher administration.
Functions and responsibilities of department heads include:
Each department head shall be formally evaluated three years after his/her initial appointment as head and every six years subsequently using instruments from UTDPP1047. It is the responsibility of the Dean to conduct such evaluations.
A summary of each department head’s evaluation will be made available to him/her. The evaluation will provide feedback for him/her and will constitute part of the Dean’s overall appraisal.
The Dean shall appoint the heads of interdisciplinary degree programs in consultation with the corresponding program’s faculty and the heads of the participating departments or programs. The head of an interdisciplinary degree program shall chair the program’s governing committee and shall serve at the pleasure of the Dean. Heads of programs must be tenured faculty members in the School.
Functions and responsibilities of program heads include:
Heads of interdisciplinary degree programs shall be evaluated anonymously by the cognizant faculty three years after their initial appointment as program head and every six years subsequently using instruments from UTDPP1047. The Dean is responsible for conducting such evaluations for interdisciplinary degree programs. The head of the relevant department is responsible for conducting evaluations of the heads of degree programs that are entirely contained within that department according to the department’s bylaws.
A summary of the evaluation will be made anonymously available to the program head or governing committee chair. The evaluation will provide feedback for him/her and will constitute part of the Dean’s or department chair’s overall appraisal.
The Dean may appoint other officers as he or she may see fit to help in administrative tasks.
Each School standing committee will elect its own chairperson, unless these bylaws or University policy provide otherwise. If a committee chairmanship is elective, the election of the chair should be the first item of business in the first meeting of the committee held after its appointment. A new chair should also be elected if the composition of the committee changes. The election of the new chair should be the first item of business during the first meeting of the altered committee. If a committee with an elective chairmanship does not elect a chair, then the Dean shall appoint a chair.
Each standing committee of the School shall write or revise its charge, subject to the approval of the School faculty.
Every standing committee, except the Faculty Personnel Review Committee, must keep and publish minutes, and must submit an annual report of its activities to the School faculty and Dean.
Meetings and agendas of standing committees shall be filed with the department offices at least one day in advance, and shall be publicly posted in a manner that makes them accessible to all faculty. Any School faculty member may observe a meeting of a standing committee, and the voting members of a standing committee may invite the participation of others as non-voting members, except when the committee is in executive session or when matters subject to privacy protection are under consideration.
The chair of each standing committee in the school shall file a report with the Dean at the end of his or her term summarizing the activities of the committee during that term.
The School Faculty Personnel Review Committee (FPRC) serves as the School Peer Review Committee mandated in UTDPP1064. Each department must have its own Faculty Personnel Review Committee for annual evaluation of its faculty members. The School FPRC also serves as the School Peer Review Committee (SPRC).
The FPRC of the School will be chaired by the Dean and shall consist of three members from each department, elected by secret ballot in conformity with UTDPP1064. Only full-time, tenured faculty members can serve on the School FPRC. At most one School FPRC member from each department can be an Associate Professor; the rest must have the rank of Professor. School FPRC members who are Associate Professors cannot participate in evaluations of full Professors. The incumbent School FPRC members shall serve as the elections committee for School FPRC members for the following academic year. The composition of departmental FPRCs will be in accordance with the departmental bylaws.
Manner of appointment:
The members of the School FPRC are elected by the voting faculty of each department. No appointment to the School FPRC shall exceed three consecutive years. Members may be elected for a shorter term. Members who have served their full three-year terms may not be re-elected within one year. The appointments should be staggered so that at least one member is elected from each department every year. The appointment of members of the departmental FPRCs will be in accordance with the departmental bylaws.
Responsibilities of the School FPRC:
The School FPRC is responsible for post-tenure review of faculty as described in UTDPP1064.
Responsibilities of departmental FPRCs:
The departmental FPRCs are responsible for performing an annual evaluation of each faculty member, in accordance with University policy (UTDPP1077) and criteria defined as provided in Section 3.1.6 of these bylaws. Members of the departmental FPRCs will be evaluated by the Dean and the cognizant department chair.
The result of the evaluation of a faculty member by the School or departmental FPRC, whether for post-tenure review or for an annual review, must be communicated promptly to that faculty member by the department chair. The result of the evaluation will also be communicated to the Dean.
The Academic Affairs Committee (AAC) acts as the School’s faculty Executive Committee. The function of the AAC is to advise the Dean and Associate Deans on important matters concerning the School. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will have the responsibility to ensure that members of the committee are elected in a timely manner, and that the committee operates smoothly.
The Academic Affairs Committee shall consist of two tenured faculty members elected by each department, plus one tenured faculty member appointed by the Dean, rotating among the departments. The AAC shall elect one of its members as chair at the beginning of each academic year. The normal term of service on the AAC is two years. Terms of service on the AAC should be staggered to provide continuity in the representation of each department.
The Dean is encouraged to consult with the AAC for advice on matters pertaining to the School. However, consultation with the AAC must not be used to circumvent School faculty meetings.
The AAC will meet at least two times during each of the fall and spring semesters.
A School Committee on Effective Teaching (CET) is mandated by UTD UTDPP1006.
The membership of the CET shall be two faculty members, one of whom may be a senior lecturer, elected by each department, and one faculty representative appointed by the Dean. The appointment is for two years with staggered terms so that every year only half of the committee members are newly appointed. The Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies serves as a voting ex-officio member.
Purpose and Composition:
The Dean, through an appropriate representative, provides for undergraduate curricular planning in each department by the following means. (S)he shall:
Each department in the School must have a Committee on Graduate Studies (CGS) appointed as provided in the departmental bylaws. For an interdisciplinary degree program, the governing committee may serve as the CGS.
The Dean, in consultation with the Academic Affairs Committee and the faculty of the School, shall appoint governing committees for such interdisciplinary degree programs as may be established according to University and UT-System regulations.
Each governing committee for an interdisciplinary degree program shall have at least two members of the faculty, appointed by the Dean, from each department that contributes substantially to the program. Appointments shall be for staggered, renewable two-year terms. The Head of the respective interdisciplinary degree program shall chair the governing committee.
The governing committee of an interdisciplinary degree program may serve as the program’s committees on undergraduate studies, graduate studies, and graduate admissions.
These bylaws shall remain in effect in perpetuity unless and until they are amended in accordance with the rules outlined in this section. A copy of the amended bylaws shall be sent to each member of the faculty in printed or electronic form within one week after amendments to these bylaws have been approved according to the rules outlined below.
These bylaws shall take effect if they are approved by a two-thirds majority of all current voting School faculty using written, signed, double-envelope ballots during a spring or fall semester while classes are in session.
The bylaws of the School can be amended only by a tallied two-thirds majority vote of the current Voting Faculty of the School using written, signed, double-envelope ballots during the period of the spring and fall semesters while classes are in session. Such a vote can be called at a faculty meeting or by mail. Any member of the voting faculty may start this process by providing a written request to amend the bylaws containing:
Each proposed amendment to the bylaws must be considered individually as part of a separate vote and request for a vote. Proposed amendments to the bylaws cannot be artificially linked for any reason. The written request to amend the bylaws shall be delivered to the chair of the Academic Affairs Committee, who shall distribute such request to the Faculty and the School administrators in a timely fashion.
Once the request to amend the bylaws has been delivered to the Faculty and the School administrators, a minimum two-week period for consideration of the amendment shall begin. At the conclusion of this period, a Faculty discussion meeting shall be held. The time period for voting on the proposed amendments is one week after the conclusion of the discussion meeting. All votes must be cast using signed, double-envelope ballots.
One member of the Academic Affairs Committee, one representative of the Dean’s office and one Voting Faculty member chosen by the Dean shall conduct the tally.
The final responsibility for interpreting the School bylaws rests with the Academic Affairs Committee of the School. The interpretation given by the School AAC shall be final. Any interpretation provided by the AAC should be given in writing and made available to the whole school faculty.
Given the interdisciplinary nature of modern research and teaching, it is important that departments within the School have the ability to appoint tenured/tenure-track faculty members jointly with other departments of the School, or jointly with other departments of the University, or jointly with another organization or company. This addendum to the bylaws is intended to cover all such joint appointments. This addendum uses terminology defined in the Jonsson School Bylaws.
In this context, a “joint appointment” (also called a “split appointment”) often includes a faculty appointment that is supported through a salary allocation from more than one department or School. This appointment is distinct from “affiliated” or “courtesy” faculty appointments, which are established according to departmental by-laws, and do not entail faculty salary support.
A tenured/tenure-track joint appointment comes with a number of privileges for the appointee. It also comes with certain duties and responsibilities. Privileges include access to the resources of the department (these include physical resources as well as students), and the ability to shape department policy as determined by the School and departmental bylaws. Duties and responsibilities include upholding the reputation of the department and the School by conducting top quality research and teaching, and providing service inside and outside the University.
The bylaws for tenured/tenure-track joint appointments laid out in this document are applicable to new appointments only. Faculty members who already have a full-time appointment in the Jonsson School who seek a joint appointment with another department of the University outside the Jonsson School, another outside University, or another outside organization or company, shall be governed by applicable University regulations.
In the Jonsson School, hiring is done only for the departments, and not for Programs within the Jonsson School. For tenured/tenure-track joint appointments of more than 50% in a particular department of the Jonsson School, the hiring and evaluation procedures of the School, as laid down in the School Bylaws, shall apply. Hiring and evaluation of joint appointees with appointment below the 50% level shall be governed by the departmental bylaws of the respective department.
Each tenured/tenure-track joint appointee with an appointment of more than 50% must have a home department in the Jonsson School. The home department is the department where the appointee shall be considered for tenure (if untenured), promotion, and annual evaluation. Tenure, promotion, and annual evaluation of such an appointee shall be governed by the School Bylaws and the applicable university regulations. Appointments below 50% cannot be tenure-track or tenured. An appointment below the 50% level must be affiliated with a particular department in the Jonsson School. Promotion and annual evaluation of appointees below the 50% level shall be governed by the bylaws of the department they are affiliated with and the applicable university regulations.
The expected research, teaching and service workload of all appointees above 50% or below 50% shall be in proportion to the research, teaching and service workload of a full-time faculty member. A joint appointee with an appointment of more than 50% in one of the departments of the Jonsson School shall teach at least one regular course per year.
A tenured/tenure-track joint appointment of more than 50% in one of the departments in the Jonsson School will be treated at par with a full-time tenured/tenure-track faculty member. Such an appointee can increase the percentage of the appointment at his/her will in the department subject to the approval of the Department Head and the Dean. However, raising the percentage of an appointment that is below 50%, to 50% or above shall require going through the as laid down in the School Bylaws, unless the appointee has successfully gone through this procedure before.
An appointment of exactly 50% in one of the departments of the Jonsson School is also possible. The home department of such appointees can be either in one of the departments of the Jonsson School or in a department of the University outside the Jonsson School. If the home department of such an appointee is in the Jonsson School, then the rules and regulations described above for joint appointments above 50% shall apply. If the home department of such an appointee is in not in the Jonsson school, then the following rules shall be followed:
A majority of the faculty in the affiliated department must agree to appoint the person under consideration for a joint appointment at the 50% level. Appropriate University administrative officials shall also agree with the 50% appointment.
Privileges: A joint appointee at the 50% level will have all the privileges of a regular faculty member, except that an appointee whose home department is not in the Jonsson School may not vote on hiring, tenure, promotion and may not serve on committees whose members must be tenured in the Jonsson School.
The 50% joint appointee should teach at least one regular course during the year.
The 50% joint appointee will be evaluated in the department of affiliation in accordance to the applicable departmental bylaws.
Elevation of the appointment level: Raising the percentage of an appointment that is exactly at 50% to above 50% shall require going through the hiring procedure laid down in the School Bylaws, unless the appointee has successfully gone through this procedure before.
September 6, 2011
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