November 24, 2004
Professor Jean Olson
Chair, Committee on Rules and Jurisdiction
University of California
Re: Request for Legislative Ruling on Voting by Non-Senate Faculty
The Academic Federation appreciates this opportunity to further clarify our position regarding the departmental evaluation of non-Senate instructional faculty. This letter will: 1) briefly describe the UC Davis Academic Federation; 2) present the Academic Federation’s answers to the four questions that have been submitted by the CERJ of the Davis Division of the Academic Senate; and 3) submit evidence in support of the Academic Federation’s position.
I. Overview of the UC Davis Academic Federation
Because the Davis campus is the only UC campus that has an Academic Federation, it might be helpful to explain our current organization and function. The Academic Federation has been in existence for over 30 years and is the constituent organization that includes approximately 1,000 non-Senate faculty on the UC Davis campus including academic personnel who hold the following titles: Agronomist, Adjunct Professors, Academic Administrators, Academic Coordinators, Clinical Professors, Cooperative Extension Specialists, Lecturers, Librarians, Professional Researchers, Project Scientist, Supervisors of Teacher Education, Supervisors of Physical Education, and University Librarian. The Academic Federation is the voice of its members to Administration and the campus on a range of issues and areas (through appointments to the Chancellor Advisory Committees, various administrative search committees, the Academic Planning Council) including personnel evaluation of non-Senate academic appointees. These campus-level Academic Federation Personnel Committees have advised the Administration directly and functioned independently of the Academic Senate Committee on Academic Personnel for over 30 years.
II. Academic Federation’s Responses to the four questions posed by the the CERJ of the Davis Division of the Academic Senate (UCD-CERJ)
Does the Code of the Senate (including the Standing Orders of the Regents) give the Academic Senate the right and duty to provide definitive advice to the Administration on the instructional performance of non-Senate personnel?
UCRJ should answer No. The word “definitive” appears to be used as meaning exclusive or final. The Senate has the right to provide advice, but not to prevent others from providing advice directly to Administration.
Do academic departments act as committees of the Senate when giving advice on the instructional performance of non-Senate instructional personnel?
UCRJ should answer No. In the case of personnel actions of non-Senate instructional faculty, academic departments act as Administrative units.
Is voting on a departmental recommendation in a merit action involving non-Senate instructional personnel limited to members of the Academic Senate?
UCRJ should answer No.
If departments consult with non-Senate instructional personnel on the personal actions of departmental non-Senate instructional personnel, may the department letter report the results of this consultation in the form of a vote distinct from the vote and recommendation of Senate members of the department?
UCRJ should answer Yes.
In this document, the definition of the term “faculty” is derived from the Academic Personnel Manual to describe both Senate and non-Senate academic appointees.
In discussions among Academic Federation members UC Davis administrators and Academic Senate members, the Federation consistently supports an inclusive form of peer review at the level of the department. The Academic Federation neither seeks to vote on Academic Senate personnel actions nor exclude Academic Senate members from voting on Academic Federation instructional personnel actions. Rather, we are supporting peer review at the department level that would include non-Senate faculty voting on the personnel actions of non-Senate instructional faculty.
A. QUESTION 1: DO THE STANDING ORDERS OF THE REGENTS VEST IN THE ACADEMIC SENATE, THE SOLE AUTHORITY TO EVALUATE NON SENATE ACADEMIC PERSONNEL?
There is no evidence to support the opinion of the UCD- CERJ that the Standing Orders of the Regents vests solely in the Academic Senate, the authority to evaluate non Senate academic personnel.
In the APM and in the practice of the Academic Senate, there are no regulations or procedures that support the interpretation of “authorize and supervise all courses and curricula” to include sole evaluation of non-Senate instructional personnel.
In its brief, the UCD-CERJ presents the position that its delegated curricular authority includes the sole right to evaluate non-Senate instructional faculty. The Academic Federation believes that the authority for faculty personnel actions is vested by the Regents in the Administration of the University of California. Further, there is no evidence to suggest that the curricular authority delegated to the Academic Senate includes the sole authority to advise the Administration about the personnel actions of non-Senate instructional faculty.
SHARED GOVERNANCE AND THE AUTHORITY OF THE STANDING ORDERS OF THE REGENTS
The Academic Federation concurs with UCD-CERJ ‘sbrief that all authority in the University of California is derived from that vested in the Regents and transmitted to other actors. The APMs, thoroughly vetted by relevant UC Davis constituent groups including the Academic Senate, are the documents that define the campus practice of these authorities.
The UCD-CERJ opinion argues that the two key authorities in considering Question 1 are the Standing Orders of the Regents 105.2(B) and105.1(B). The Academic Federation believes that Standing Orders of the Regents 101.1 and 100.4.c address this issue more directly for ALL members of the campus’s academic community.
Standing Orders of the Regents 101.1 which vests in the President of the University the authority for personnel action for “all faculty members and other employees.
Appointments, promotions, demotions, and dismissals of all faculty members and other employees, except as otherwise provided in the Bylaws and Standing Orders, shall be under the jurisdiction of the President of the University, and of the Secretary, Treasurer, and General Counsel of The Regents in their respective areas of responsibility.
Furthermore the Standing Orders of the Regents 100.4.c, by stating “in accordance with such regulations as the President may establish,” provide to the President of the University the right to establish regulations related to the appointment, promotion, demotion, dismissal, and compensation of University employees.
The Academic Personnel Manual contains the regulations that guide these personnel actions. As such, APM 100.6.a and APM 100.6.d describe the authority of the President of the University and the Chancellor:
….The Regents have delegated major responsibility for academic personnel policies and procedures to the President of the University and to the Chancellors…. APM 100.6.a
The Chancellor receives delegations of authority in relation to academic personnel from the President of the University. Authority for implementing academic personnel policies may be redelegated by the Chancellor unless otherwise restricted. APM 100.6.d
Finally, the Standing Orders of the Regents 100.4.c includes the provision for consultation with an advisory committee of the Academic Senate when the personnel action relates to a ” Professor, Associate Professor, or an equivalent position; Assistant Professor; a Professor in Residence, an Associate Professor in Residence, or an Assistant Professor in Residence; a Professor of Clinical (.e.g, Medicine), an Associate Professor of Clinical (e.g., Medicine) or an Assistant Professor of clinical (e.g., Medicine); a Senior Lecturer with Security of Employment, or a Lecturer with Security of Employment”.
It is clear that the Standing Orders of the Regents 100.4 have vested in the Administration, that is the President of the University and the Chancellors and their designees, the authority for personnel actions, consulting with the Academic Senate about personnel actions of its members.
THE MEANING OF CURRICULAR AUTHORITY
Standing Orders of the Regents 105.2(b) states that” The Academic Senate shall authorize and supervise all courses and curricula offered under the sole or joint jurisdiction of the departments, colleges, schools, graduate divisions, or other University academic agencies approved by the Board…” The UCD-CERJ cites the phrase “authorize and supervise all courses and curricula” as the source of the Academic Senate’s authority to provide the sole evaluation of non-Senate instructional personnel actions. It is clear from the APM, and from the Academic Senate’s work over the years related to courses and curricula, that “authorize and supervise all courses and curricula” is not interpreted to mean evaluate instructional non-Senate personnel.
APM 005 states …
“A Standing Order of the Board of Regents requires the Senate to authorize and supervise all courses of instruction in the academic and professional colleges and schools. In practice, the Senate delegates this duty to its Committee on Courses of Instruction….”
Further, a review of the Academic Senate’s work related to “authorize and supervise all courses of instruction”, (which is embodied in the text of the UC Davis Academic Senate’s regulations regarding course and curricula) clearly demonstrates that the operational definition of “supervision of courses of instruction and curricula” includes requirements for higher degrees, general education requirements, academic credit, course prerequisites, academic internships, examinations, grading, dropping courses, minimum academic progress, program reviews, etc. This broad range of regulations is consistent with APM 005. In the APM and in the practice of the Academic Senate, there are no examples that would support the interpretation of “ authorize and supervise all courses and curricula” to mean providing the sole evaluation of non-Senate instructional personnel.
B. Questions 2,3 and 4.
- Do academic departments act as committees of the Senate when giving advice on the instructional performance of non-Senate personnel?
- Is voting on a departmental recommendation in a merit action involving non-Senate instructional personnel limited to members of the Academic Senate?
- If departments consult with non-Senate instructional personnel on the personal actions of departmental non-Senate instructional personnel, may the department letter report the results of this consultation in the form of a vote distinct from the vote and recommendation of Senate members of the department?
The Academic Federation acknowledges that the Academic Senate has a right to organize and govern itself and has a unique role in shared governance of the University of California. However, the by-laws of the Academic Senate apply only to Academic Senate members.
The authority for personnel policies and procedures is conferred by the Standing Orders of the Regents on the Administration of the University of California and therefore, the decision about who may advise Administration on non-Senate faculty personnel actions also resides with Administration.
APM 245 Appendix A states that the department chair is “responsible for the recruitment, selection, and evaluation of both the faculty and the staff personnel of the department.
Departments function as administrative units for all employees. When considering personnel actions for members of the Academic Senate, the department can be viewed as the lowest level of Senate organization; when considering personnel actions for members of the Academic Federation, the department functions as an administrative unit. Therefore, non-Senate faculty members of a department should be able to fully participate and vote during the peer review process of other non-Senate faculty.
For the past 30 years, the Academic Federation has advised the administration directly about personnel actions of its members.
The Academic Federation does not dispute the assertion that departments may serve dual functions as both administrative units and the lowest level of Senate organization. The key question in this issue is whether the department may function ONLY as the lowest level of Senate organization when evaluating the performance of instructional non-Senate faculty.
The UCD-CERJ has given the opinion that the department functions ONLY as a committee of the Senate acting under the provision of “supervision of the curriculum” when evaluating instructional non-Senate faculty. This assertion rests on the assumption that evaluation of teaching is solely and entirely contained within the function of “supervision of the curriculum.” However, Standing Orders of the Regents 101.1 clearly states that responsibility for “appointments, promotions, demotions, and dismissals of all faculty members and other employees,” is vested in the President of the University (as discussed above). APM 245 gives the Chancellor the authority to appointment department chairs. APM 245 Appendix A states that the Chair is “responsible for the recruitment, selection, and evaluation of both the faculty and the staff personnel of the department.” Thus, in the case of personnel actions for non-Senate members, the department acts as an Administrative unit, not as a committee of the Senate. Therefore, non-Senate faculty members of a department should be able to fully participate and vote during the peer review process of other non-Senate faculty.
The UC Davis campus practice for evaluation of non-Senate faculty within departments currently involves established peer and voting groups for all Academic Federation titles except for Unit 18 Lecturers. The Federation membership includes many titles that have instructional roles. In addition, members of the Academic Federation who hold non-instructional titles (for example, Cooperative Extension Specialist and Professional Researcher) share their expertise with campus undergraduates and graduate students by a Lecturer-without-salary appointment. Restricting evaluation of instructional non-Senate faculty to Senate department members would deny peer review participation to hundreds of non-Senate faculty at UC Davis and potentially to thousands across the UC system.
Is voting on a departmental recommendation in a merit action involving non-Senate instructional personnel limited to members of the Academic Senate?
The Academic Federation’s belief is that a separate vote of the non-Senate faculty should be included in the review packet of non-Senate faculty as advisory to administration. In fact, the administration requires that a similar “vote” or numerical tabulation of student opinion of ALL teaching faculty (Senate and non-Senate) be submitted with the merit review packet. Therefore, requiring that a vote of non-Senate faculty accompany the personnel action will provide the most informed and comprehensive advice about the candidate’s performance.
The UCD-CERJ has stated that they would accept a “restricted” vote of non-Senate department members only as advisory to the Senate members of the department. The Academic Federation has the right and duty to advise directly the Administration with respect to personnel actions of our membership. Responsibility and authority for our appointments, merits and promotions rests with Administration, including instructional personnel. The practice of directly advising Administration is well established on the UC Davis campus. The three Personnel Committees of the Academic Federation have advised the administration directly for decades.
The UCD-CERJ stated that it would be impractical for administration to require a vote of non-Senate faculty members of the department because of their “transitory” relationships to departments and irregular appointments. While it is true that some non-Senate faculty have short-term appointments, a significant number of non-Senate faculty appointments at UC Davis have been employees for decades. The logic of the UCD-CERJ recommendation is unclear. The end result of the CERJ opinion would be a personnel process that tabulates the voice of the most transitory group of all--the undergraduate students—and at the same time, denies that voice to the closest peers of the non-Senate instructional faculty.
The UCD-CERJ implied that it would be difficult to formulate a rule to govern the voting of non-Senate faculty. The Vice Provost for Academic Personnel has already approved departmental peer and voting groups for the personnel actions of all Academic Federation titles (with the exception of Unit 18 lecturers because they are covered by a Memorandum of Understanding). Therefore, it is reasonable to expect that in consultation with the Academic Federation, rules to govern voting on non-Senate instructional faculty within departments would be forthcoming.
In summary, the salient points of the Academic Federation’s position are:
- It is clear from the Standing Orders of the Regents, APMs and campus practice that the authority for faculty personnel actions is delegated to the President and designated Administrators, including Department Chairs.
- There is no evidence to support that supervision of the curriculum includes exclusive review of non-Senate instructional faculty.
- For non-Senate instructional personnel actions, the department functions as an administrative unit.
Catherine A. VandeVoort
Chair, Academic Federation