Faculty Policies and Procedures

Wintermester 2014 Policies and Procedures

As a guide to policies and procedures governing the offering of classes during the Wintermester of 2014, the Office of Academic Budgets and Administration presents the information below.

Teaching Assignments and Instructional Stipends

1. It is imperative that departments/schools finalize and confirm teaching assignments as soon as possible; we cannot send contract letters until the database is accurate.  Therefore, using the RG-32 form, all “TBD” assignments must be switched to instructors’ names by Tuesday, December 9, 2014 (one week prior to the beginning of the term). Assignment letters will be sent to instructors from the Offices of the Deans.  Chairs/Directors are expected to keep faculty informed about the status of their courses.

2. Standard compensation for Wintermester for Teaching and Research faculty teaching a traditional course will be at the rate of 3.00 percent of the annual base salary per credit hour, with a minimum of $1,248 and a maximum of $2,808 per credit hour. Other compensation scenarios are listed below.

3. Lectures/Lab:  If the College budget model allows, alternative compensation may be offered at the discretion of the Dean, in consultation with the chair, for courses taught during Wintermester. Alternative compensation should only be offered with compelling justification for doing so. The Deans have the latitude to negotiate salaries consistent with their college's strategic priorities as long as the colleges do not run a deficit within their budgeted allocations.

4. Internships, Independent Studies, Directed Studies, Theses, et al:  Salaries for faculty supervising internships, independent studies, directed studies, theses, and similar courses will be paid on a per student stipend basis of $300 per student enrolled on the census date, up to a maximum of the amount the faculty member would earn if he/she were teaching a traditional three-hour course.  This applies to both graduate and undergraduate courses.  
Salaries for faculty in this type of offering will be based upon the enrollment on the census date for the session in which each class is scheduled.  No “late adds” to this type of course will be made by the Registrar’s Office without the permission of the instructor, who will receive no additional compensation.  Exceptions will be considered in cases in which it can be documented that the instructor and the Chair/Director approved the course prior to the deadline to add courses.

5. Adjunct faculty will be paid at their academic year rate for each assigned course.  Note: all adjunct faculty assigned to teach during the Wintermester must first be part of the University’s Adjunct Database, as must adjunct faculty who teach during the fall and spring.  This enables departments/schools and Deans to verify that instructors have the credentials to teach the course(s) they are assigned.

6. Administrative and Professional faculty who teach  Wintermester courses will be paid at the adjunct rate for faculty in their discipline, unless otherwise specified in the faculty member’s contract.  Unless teaching responsibilities are part of the contract, Administrative and Professional faculty are typically limited to teaching courses offered outside of the normal 8-5 hours.

7. The maximum number of semester hours a faculty member should teach during Wintermester is 3.  Except in unusual circumstances, faculty should not teach more than one traditional course during Wintermester. Policies related to faculty teaching load outside the academic year are articulated in the Teaching and Research Faculty Handbook.

8. Faculty who teach traditional classes scheduled as part of an approved extended campus program during Wintermester will be paid the same rate and will be subject to the same guidelines as faculty who teach on campus.  Reimbursement for travel and associated expenses incurred in travel to off-campus teaching sites or to meet with off-campus students engaged in independent studies or similar activities must be pre-approved by the Provost or designee.

9. Shortly before the beginning of Wintermester school, Deans, Department Chairs and School Directors will be asked to verify the teaching assignments for faculty in their units. (See Wintermester 2014 Actions Timetable/Deadlines.)

10. Contract assignments for faculty teaching in any Wintermester session will be distributed through SSB-FLAC prior to the session beginning.   These letters should be acknowledged by the instructor through the MyRU Portal in SSB-FLAC (Faculty Load and Compensation Module) prior to the session.

11. Because we cannot determine actual compensation until all students have had the opportunity to register, the Deans will review the census data and verify the amount that the faculty should receive based upon their signed contract agreement.  The Deans must notify the Office of Academic Budgets and Administration of stipend changes on the day following the census date by 9:00 a.m.

12. In the event that a faculty member is unable to fulfill the requirements in the teaching contract, he/she should notify the Chair/Director and the Dean.  The Chair/Director, in consultation with the Dean, will assign another qualified instructor or cancel the class (depending on the circumstances and the availability of a qualified instructor) and will notify the Director for Academic Affairs and the Director for Academic Budgets and Administration.

Payroll Schedule for Wintermester

The payroll schedule during Wintermester will be included with contract notes in SSB-FLAC.

Cancellation of Wintermester Classes

Ideally, careful and thoughtful planning on the part of colleges and departments will minimize cancellation of classes.  Deleting classes from the University’s planned schedule has the potential to create hardship for students and inconvenience for faculty.  Since that hardship and inconvenience increases as the University approaches the beginning of Wintermester, decisions about cancellation should be made as early as possible.

As soon as it becomes obvious that the enrollment for a class is likely to fall short of the target census date enrollment [for traditional undergraduate courses, fewer than fifteen (15) students, and for traditional graduate courses, fewer than twelve (12) students], the class should be cancelled by the department/school in consultation with the Dean, unless exceptional circumstances warrant the offering of the course. Factors the Deans may consider in making a decision whether to cancel a class that has an enrollment less than the target include the following:

1. The need to accommodate groups of students who:

a.  Will not have another opportunity to take the course to meet graduation requirements in a reasonable amount of time
b.  Need the course as a prerequisite for a course that will be offered in the fall semester
c.  Are part of a graduating or continuing cohort of students in a program
d.  Are “caught” by curriculum changes to their programs
e.  Are registered for Wintermester classes to take courses that were shifted to the Wintermester from the spring or fall terms for budgetary or other reasons
f.  Are area professionals who need courses to meet licensure or other certification requirements

2. The extent to which the departmental average enrollment for Wintermester within a course’s category (i.e., on-campus undergraduate, on-campus graduate, extended education) meets the target enrollment.  Please note that delivery costs must be taken into consideration in using this decision factor; i.e., an under-enrolled class offered by a highly paid instructor may not necessarily “balance” a well-enrolled class taught by an adjunct. [1]

If the Chair/Director feels that a course should be offered even if it does not meet the target enrollment, the Chair/Director will so notify the Dean.  If the Dean agrees, the course will be offered, and the Dean will notify the Director for Academic Affairs and the Director of Academic Budgets and Administration.
 
Given the current budget situation, Deans have been asked to be conservative in the offering of Wintermester 2014 courses that do not meet target enrollments.

Cancellation decisions for Wintermester 2014 should adhere to the following timetable:

1. Students have been able to register for Wintermester 2014 classes since April.  If they have not already done so, Chairs/Directors should review course enrollments before the end of October; classes with very low enrollments that are clearly not going to “make” should be cancelled in consultation with Deans now, lest an additional student or two adds the class between now and the beginning of Wintermester.

2. During the week of November 17, 2014, Chairs/Directors should conduct a second review of Wintermester classes and consult with their Deans about possible cancellations.  The Dean and the Director will then engage in discussions about additional courses recommended for cancellation. Another review and discussion will occur one week prior to the beginning of Wintermester.  Deans will cancel courses with fewer than the target enrollments no later than five working days prior to the first class meeting, unless the Dean determines a need to defer the cancellation decision until the first class meeting.  (Such a delay may be appropriate to accommodate students who need to enroll at RU during the Wintermester to improve their GPAs so that they avoid suspension.)

3. The final date for cancellation of courses will be the census date established.  Decisions to cancel classes at this late date should be made only under extraordinary circumstances.

Questions regarding the cancellation of courses should be addressed by the Chair/Director to the Dean, not the Director of Academic Budgets and Administration or the Registrar.  If a course is cancelled, the College Dean will notify the Directors for Academic Affairs and Academic Budgets and Administration, the academic department/school, and the Registrar’s Office.  (The Registrar’s Office will not cancel a course without authorization by the Dean.)  It is then the department’s/school’s responsibility to notify the instructor of the course as well as students enrolled in the course.  Departments/schools should offer students their assistance and that of the Advising Centers in helping them pursue other Wintermester registration opportunities.

Occasionally, it may be necessary to cancel a Wintermester class for reasons unrelated to enrollment, such as the sudden unavailability of a qualified instructor. In such instances, the department/school must immediately notify the Dean of the desire to cancel the class.  If the class exceeds the target enrollment, the department/school should make every effort to find a qualified instructor prior to making this decision.

Action Date
First Review of Enrollments November 3, 2014
Second Review of Enrollments Week of November 17, 2014
Teaching Assignments Confirmed by Departments/Schools   December 1, 2014
Assignments Extracted from INB to SSB-FLAC for Chairs and Deans to Review December 1-2, 2014
Deans will Review and Lock FLAC Records December 3, 2014
Contract Letters Emailed to Instructors via SSB-FLAC
December 3, 2014
Final Pre-Semester Review of Enrollments-All Instructors must be entered in SSASECT/SIAASGN and extracted to FLAC
Week of December 8, 2014
First Day of Classes December 16, 2014
Census Dates (Absolute Final Date for               Possible Course Cancellation) December 19, 2014
Deadline for Payroll Reporting December 22, 2014

[1] In part because of differences in academic programs and in part because of the variables listed in item 1 and 2 above, decisions about the cancellation of courses with enrollments that fall below the target number will vary from college to college or even within a college.  It is possible that a course in a college with an enrollment of 9 students may be cancelled, while another course in that same college or a course in another college with an enrollment of 9 may not be cancelled.  Decisions to cancel a course that do not meet the target enrollment will be based on the criteria in items 1 and 2 above. As guided by these criteria, the decisions whether to cancel an under-enrolled class should have a high level of consistency.  Deans will review decisions to cancel under-enrolled classes and work with Chairs/Directors to ensure that the decision criteria are being applied equitably within the college.