The Faculty of the College of Humanities and Sciences is an organization designed to involve the faculty members of the College in the creation and implementation of academic policies and the development of its departments. To learn more about the organization’s purpose and how you can make your voice heard, read the faculty bylaws below.

Article I – Name
Article II – Purpose
Article III – Membership
Article IV – Faculty Council
Article V – Committees
Article VI – Faculty meetings
Article VII – Parliamentary authority
Article VIII – Amendment to the bylaws

Article I – Name

The name of this organization shall be the Faculty of the College of Humanities and Sciences of Virginia Commonwealth University

Article II – Purpose

The purpose of this organization shall be to provide an effective means of collective participation by the faculty in the consideration, formulation and implementation of recommendations and decisions relating to the academic policies of the College of Humanities and Sciences and to those University policies that affect the College and its faculty. The organization shall provide the opportunity for each member of the faculty to express, through representation, concerns and opinions about matters vital to the welfare of the university and the proper functioning of the College.

Article III – Membership

1.Tenure-eligible and term faculty in the College’s schools, departments, and interdisciplinary programs who hold full-time appointments as professors, associate professors, assistant professors and instructors shall be designated as faculty with voting privileges.
2.Full-time faculty in the above-named departments, programs and school who hold joint appointments in other schools of the university, shall have full voting membership in the College of Humanities and Sciences.
3.Part-time, adjunct, retired, emeriti, visiting and affiliate faculty members shall have the right to participate in general meetings of the faculty without voting privileges.
4.The president, vice-president for academic affairs and the dean of the College of Humanities and Sciences shall be considered ex officio members of the Faculty of the College of Humanities and Sciences. Those administrators holding faculty status in the College of Humanities and Sciences shall be members with voting privileges.

Article IV – Faculty Council

The purpose of the Faculty Council is to represent the faculty of the College. The Faculty Council will be advisory to the dean of the College of Humanities and Sciences on issues of concern to the faculty, such as graduate and undergraduate curricula, programs, evaluation and improvement of instruction, information technology, awards and honors, tenure and promotion, and teaching and research grants. The Faculty Council will represent these concerns to the dean of the College and to other appropriate bodies in the university governance structure.

The Council will assist the dean of the College to establish slates of candidates for certain university and college committees, councils and boards. In extraordinary circumstances, it will work with the dean’s office to fill vacated positions quickly without recourse to a full faculty vote.

IV.1 Composition of the Faculty Council. The Faculty Council shall be composed of the chairs of five of the College’s standing committees (Undergraduate Academic Committee, Graduate Academic Committee, Library Committee, Technology Committee and Promotion and Tenure Committee); an elected representative who is a department chair on the Committee on Administration for a one-year term; one elected representative of each department, school and interdisciplinary program to serve for staggered, three-year terms; one of the College’s representatives to the Faculty Senate for a one-year term; one of the College’s representatives to the University Council for a one-year term; one untenured faculty member who has completed his/her third-year review to serve a one-year term elected in rotation from the three academic clusters in the College (social sciences, mathematical and natural sciences and humanities); one formerly tenured faculty member who retired from the College and the university to serve a three-year term and one term faculty and one adjunct faculty representative to serve one year terms.

IV.2 Department chairs and the directors of schools and the interdisciplinary programs are ineligible for service on the Faculty Council.

IV.3 The untenured faculty representative, the retired faculty representative, the term faculty representative and the adjunct faculty representative to the council shall be elected by the council’s membership at its April meeting from a slate of at least three nominees for each position submitted by the dean.

IV.4 Elections for Faculty Council membership will be held by the April meeting of the council of the year preceding. All candidates should be aware of the normally scheduled time of council meetings and should indicate their willingness to attend such meetings. Each department, school and interdisciplinary program shall elect an alternative representative who will attend meetings when the primary representative cannot attend. The secretary of the Faculty Council will inform all departments of upcoming elections by March 1 and will attempt to ensure that elections are conducted and results are reported in a timely fashion.

IV.5 Membership on the Faculty Council will be considered to constitute an important part of the service workload of those involved and chairs/directors should acknowledge this.

IV.6 The Faculty Council will have the authority to establish such subcommittees as it deems necessary for the conduct of its business.

IV.7 Each council member shall be responsible for a substitute in the event of his/her absence for a council or committee meeting of the organization. The council member or substitute shall notify the president of the council or the committee chairperson of a substitution.

IV.8 Officers of the Faculty Council. The Faculty Council officers will be elected by the Faculty Council by April 25 of the year before they are to take office. Officers will be drawn from the Faculty Council membership. The president will hold a one-year term. Candidates will be selected from the upcoming second-year members of the council. The president or a designee should attend the monthly meeting of the Committee on Administration of the College. The past president will hold a one-year term following his/her term as president. The secretary and parliamentarian shall serve one-year terms with candidates being selected from continuing members of the Faculty Council.

IV.9 Meeting of the Faculty Council. The Faculty Council meetings will be held on the third Monday of each month, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. The Faculty Council shall call special meetings as it deems necessary. The agenda will first reflect any work and priorities deemed important by the Faculty Council. Reports by committee chairs and representatives to the Faculty Senate and University Council will also be included in the agenda. It will be the responsibility of the latter chairs and representatives to contact the president of the Faculty Council of these issues one week before the scheduled council meeting.

IV.10 Faculty Council will distribute the minutes and attendance of its meetings to the Faculty of the College. Department representatives will provide feedback to their departments.

Article V – Committees

V.1.A Undergraduate Academic Committee. The Undergraduate Academic Committee shall be composed of one member of each department, school or interdisciplinary program chosen under the unit’s bylaws for a two-year term, one undergraduate student from the College nominated by the Student Government Association and alternate, and one chosen by the Committee on Administration. The dean or the dean’s designee shall serve as an ex officiomember of the committee. The chairperson shall be elected by the committee for a one-year term; nominees will include all tenured faculty on the committee.

The Undergraduate Academic Committee shall be concerned with degree requirements, academic standards, curriculum development and other matters appropriate to the maintenance and development of the Humanities and Sciences undergraduate academic program.

It shall establish regular communication with the relevant university committees, especially the Undergraduate Academic Committee, and will report in writing its activities to the president of the Faculty Council on a monthly basis.

The Undergraduate Academic Committee shall study all departmental proposals in the College of Humanities and Sciences for addition or deletion of undergraduate courses that carry semester-hour credit.

While decisions regarding technical details of course content shall be recognized to be the province of the department, school or program concerned, the function of the Undergraduate Academic Committee shall be to ensure that courses offered for credit shall be of appropriate quality and to prevent serious duplication of courses offered by two or more departments or schools. It shall study and make recommendations regarding the establishment of new programs or the abolition of existing programs leading to bachelor’s degrees or certificates in Humanities and Sciences. The Committee shall also study and make recommendations concerning new rules, or changes in the rules, affecting the academic status of undergraduate students in the College of Humanities and Sciences, in respect to admission policies, academic advising, degree requirements, grades and any other academic policy matters.

V.1.B Graduate Academic Committee. The Graduate Academic Committee shall be composed of one member elected from each department, school and interdisciplinary program that has a graduate program, one graduate student in the College nominated by the Student Government Association and alternate, and one chosen by the Committee on Administration. The dean or the dean’s designee shall serve as an ex officio member of this committee. The chairperson will be elected by the committee for a one-year term; nominees will include all tenured faculty on the committee. The Graduate Academic Committee shall be concerned with graduate admission requirements, degree requirements, academic standards, curriculum development, the establishment of new graduate courses and programs and the abolition of existing ones, and other matters relating to the graduate programs in the College of Humanities and Sciences. It should establish regular communication with the University Graduate Council and will report in writing their activities to the president of the Faculty Council on a monthly basis.

V.1.C Humanities and Sciences Library Advisory Committee. The committee shall be composed of one member elected from each department, school and interdisciplinary program. Four student members nominated by the Student Government Association, representing the divisions of the College shall also be appointed by the committee at their first meeting each year. A representative appointed by the library and the dean or the dean’s designee shall serve as an ex officio member of this committee. Each member shall also have a designated alternate. The chairperson shall be elected by the committee for a one-year term; nominees will include all tenured faculty on the committee.

The Library Committee is responsible to the College faculty and should attend to and report on library developments that are of interest to the College. The committee shall file monthly written reports to the president of the Faculty Council in addition to an annual report to both the dean and the Faculty Council on its activities. The chair of the committee shall be the College representative to the University Library Advising Committee.

V.1.D Committee on Administration. The committee will consist of the dean, the chairpersons of each department, school and interdisciplinary program, one tenured faculty member elected by the Faculty Council and the associate/assistant deans. The Committee on Administration will select its representative to the Faculty Council and will report to the council on administrative developments that are of interest to the College faculty. The committee shall meet at least once per month to discuss administrative and procedural matters related to the efficient operation of the College. The dean and any other administrative officers of the College of Humanities and Sciences shall be ex officio members of this committee.

V.1.E Technology Committee. The Technology Committee shall be composed of one member from each department, school and interdisciplinary program chosen under the unit’s bylaws for a two-year term and one undergraduate student and alternate in the College nominated by the Student Government Association. No more than half of the department representatives will rotate off the committee each year. The dean or the dean’s designee shall serve as an ex officio member of this committee. The chairperson shall be elected by the committee for a one-year term, nominees will include all tenured faculty on the committee.

The Technology Committee shall be concerned with technology-related developments in instruction, research and public service and their impact on faculty and students of the College. Members of the committee will serve as liaisons to College and university offices which provide computer and communication services and to Monroe Park Campus and university committees that develop and recommend policy and planning in the area. The committee shall also review University Information Technology plans for their effects on the College and make recommendations to the dean about College needs for and use of information technology.

Article VI – Faculty meetings

The Faculty of the College of Humanities and Sciences shall meet at least twice a year. In addition to any regular business at these meetings, the dean and the president of the Faculty Council shall report to the Faculty Council. Additional meetings can be called at the discretion of the faculty.

2015-2016 Meeting Schedule
October 19
November 16
December 14
January 25
February 15
March 21
April 18
May 16

Article VII – Parliamentary authority

The rules contained in the latest edition of Robert’s Rules of Order-Revised shall govern meetings.

Article VIII – Amendment to the bylaws

Amendment to these bylaws may be made by any faculty member of the College with voting rights who brings his/her proposal to the Faculty Council for discussion. Following presentation to the council, the proposal will be sent for discussion to each department and program in the College. Proposals will then be voted on by ballot sent to all faculty members with voting rights. Affirmative votes to the proposal by two-thirds of those voting indicates approval.

Revised April 1971, July 1981, February 1985, April 1990, April 1994, May 2002.
[Changes in the organizational structure of the College of Humanities and Sciences incorporated in 2014.]

Bylaws of the Faculty of the College of Humanities and Sciences (pdf)