Policy and Procedures Manual

 

Preface
Developing and Maintaining Policies and Procedures

Section 1. Overview

1.1 Mission Statement
1.2 Conceptual Framework
1.3 Accreditation

Section 2. Organizational Structure

2.1. Advising Center
2.2 Educational Technology and Training Center

Section 3. Governance

3.1 Executive Committee
3.2 Committee on Committees
3.3 Undergraduate and Initial Preparation Appeals Committee
3.4 Graduate and Advanced Preparation Appeals Committee
3.5 Standing Committees
3.6 Departmental Committees
3.6.1 Personnel Committees
3.6.2 Advisory Committees

3.7 Documentation of Committees and Other COE Group Meetings

Section 4. General Administration

4.1 Professional Community and Collaboration
4.2 Diversity
4.3 Departmental Diversity Plans
4.4 Strategic Planning
4.5 Annual Reports
4.6 External Funding

4.7 Curriculum Revision

4.8 Review and Approval of Academic Program and Course Changes

4.9 Syllabus Format
4.10 Study Abroad
4.11 Student Teaching and Field Experiences
4.12 Field Experiences

4.13 Research
4.14 Thesis and Dissertation Requirements
4.15 Copyright Information

4.16 Student Appeals

Section 5. Faculty

5.1 Faculty Workload
5.2 Faculty Evaluation
5.2.1 Faculty Evaluation Plan
5.2.2 Annual Faculty Evaluation
5.2.3 Course/Instructor Evaluation
5.2.4 Faculty Office Hours
5.2.5 Student Teaching Supervisor and External Placement Evaluations
5.2.6 Pre-Tenure Review
5.2.7 Promotion and Tenure Procedures
5.2.8 Post
-Tenure Review
5.3 Faculty Profession Development
5.4 Administrative Evaluation
5.5 Part-Time Faculty

Section 6. Assessment Policies

6.1 Assessment Plan
6.2 COE Assessment Matrix
6.3 Program Coordinators
6.4 Program Outcomes and Assessments
6.5 Program Assessment Matrix
6.6 Program Improvement Surveys
6.7 External Assessment

Section 7. Budget and Resources

7.1 Technology Resources
7.2 Library Resources

Section 8. Considerations for Hiring New Faculty in the College of Education

8.1 Position Announcements and Position Funding Requests
8.2 Process for Advertising Faculty Positions
8.3 Applying for a Position
8.4 Search Process for Non-Tenure and Tenure Track Faculty
8.4.1 Department Search Committee
8.4.2 Interview Process
8.4.3 Selection and Offering a Position
8.5 Search Process for Full-Time Temporary, Faculty Positions (Temporary Instructor or Lecturer)
8.6 Notification of Unsucessful Applicants

 

Preface

The College of Education (COE) Policies and Procedures Manual describes the organizational structure and governance of the unit. Its purpose is to provide information specific to the organization and activities of the unit. The manual will be reviewed and revised periodically and changes will take effect as approved and adopted. The following additional sources of policies and procedures guided the development of the manual. The information presented is not meant to conflict with, contradict, or supersede the information contained in the documents listed below:

University System of Georgia Academic and Student Affairs Handbook

Valdosta State University Statutes

Valdosta State University Faculty Handbook

Valdosta State University Student Handbook

Additional College of Education policies and procedures concerning admission and program requirements are described in the University Graduate and Undergraduate Catalogs that are printed annually and available on the university web page.

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Developing and Maintaining Policies and Procedures

Policies are governing principles with wide, general application. Written policy sets a course of action that requires compliance and can also constrain action. Procedures are written to implement policy. Clearly written and agreed-upon guidelines describe accepted policies and procedures to ensure that decisions are made considering the common good. It is essential that all policies be clearly written and effectively communicated. Creating and maintaining policies is an on-going process.

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Section 1. Overview

The College of Education proudly maintains a commitment to providing an education for current and future professionals. This commitment began with the inception of Valdosta State as an institution of higher education in 1906. The College of Education draws its student population primarily from the surrounding forty-one counties. Acting as a learning community, the College of Education strives to meet the needs and aspirations of the population it serves by offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs, continuing education programs, and performing research and community service activities. The degree programs address appropriate professional standards and prepare teachers and human resource professionals for challenging positions. Graduates demonstrate a strong background in subject matter knowledge and service delivery skills designed to meet the needs of all learners.

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1.1 Mission Statement

The College of Education shall define its purpose by maintaining a mission statement that meets the following criteria: relates to and supports the university’s stated mission; accurately describes the unit and its characteristics; is developed with input from students, faculty, and administrators; is approved by the Executive Committee and faculty members; and is considered for revision every three years. The mission statement is the foundation upon which the College of Education goals are developed.

The College of Education provides quality instruction through offering comprehensive degree programs in the liberal arts, pre-professional, and professional service areas at the associate, baccalaureate, masters, specialist, and doctoral levels. In addition to a primary focus on preparing future teachers and other professionals, faculty members of the College of Education also maintain a commitment to engage in the scholarly pursuits of research and service for the advancement and sharing of knowledge.

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Philosophy

We, as faculty members, administrators, and staff of the College of Education, envision an educational system where students fully participate in and take responsibility for their own learning process, where interdisciplinary and inter-institutional collaboration is the norm, and where technology is fully integrated into the learning process. We also seek to create an environment that promotes the full development of human potential, supports the conviction that all individuals are capable of learning, and prepares professionals to meet the needs of all learners.

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Vision

An agreed upon vision provides focus and direction for the members of an organization. The College of Education dedicates its resources and expertise to:

Positively Impacting Learning

Through Evidence-Based Practices

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College of Education Goals

The College of Education seeks to ensure excellence in fulfilling its mission by developing goals to achieve and maintain a positive vision for the future of education. The following goals support the mission and vision of the College of Education:

Improve Graduation Rates

Enhance Quality of Academic Programs

Positively Impacting Learning Through Evidence-Based Practices

Recruitment, Retention, and Development of High-Quality Personnel

Diversity (Improvement and Enhancement)

Service

Systematic Planning

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1.2 Conceptual Framework

The College of Education is committed to using standards as a conceptual framework to ensure that all aspects of its operation contribute significantly to developing professionals of the highest caliber. These developing professionals will be prepared to meet any challenges when providing services to enrich the lives of a diverse population. Mutually agreed upon and adopted sets of standards are used by faculty members and administrators to develop a shared vision of professional practice. Standards guide the College of Education's planning for continuous improvement as well as its mission and goals.

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1.2.1 Conceptual Framework: Guiding Principles

Dispositions Principle: Productive dispositions positively affect learners, professional growth, and the learning environment.

Equity Principle: All learners deserve high expectations and support.

Process Principle: Learning is a lifelong process of development and growth.

Ownership Principle: Professionals are committed to, and assume responsibility for, the future of their disciplines.

Support Principle: Successful engagement in the process of learning requires collaboration among multiple partners.

Impact Principle: Effective practice yields evidence of learning.

Technology Principle: Technology facilitates teaching, learning, community-building, and resource acquisition.

Standards Principle: Evidence-based standards systematically guide professional preparation and development.

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1.2.2 College of Education Conceptual Framework Standards for Teachers (CFS)

I. CONTENT AND CURRICULUM: Teachers demonstrate a strong content knowledge of content area(s) that are appropriate for their certification levels.

II. KNOWLEDGE OF STUDENTS AND THEIR LEARNING: Teachers support the intellectual, social, physical, and personal development of all students.

III. LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS: Teachers create learning environments that encourage positive social interaction, active engagement in learning, and self-motivation.

IV. ASSESSMENT: Teachers understand and use a range of formal and informal assessment strategies to evaluate and ensure the continuous development of all learners.

V. PLANNING AND INSTRUCTION: Teachers design and create instructional experiences based on their knowledge of content and curriculum, students, learning environments, and assessment.

VI. PROFESSIONALISM: Teachers recognize, participate in, and contribute to teaching as a profession.

 

Standards adopted by the College and Departments include:


American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance (AAHPERD)

American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL)

American Library Association/American Association of School Librarians (ALA/AASL)

American Society of Exercise Physiologists (ASEP)

American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA)

Association for Childhood Education International (ACEI)

Association for Education Communications and Technology (AECT)

Commission on the Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE)

Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP)

Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)

Educational Leadership Constituent Council (ELCC)

International Reading Association (IRA)

International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)

Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC)

National Association of School Psychologists (NASP)

National Association for Schools of Art and Design (NASAD)

National Association for Schools of Music (NASM)

National Association for Sports and Physical Education (NASPE)

National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS)

National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE)

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM)

National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)

National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS)

National Middle School Association (NMSA)

National Science Teachers Association (NSTA)

Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

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1.3 Accreditation

The College of Education maintains accreditation with the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), and each of its individual teacher preparation programs are accredited by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GPSC). In addition, the Sports Medicine/Athletic Training Program is accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE). The Speech and Language Program is accredited by the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) and the graduate program in School Psychology is accredited by the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP). In the College of the Arts, the Music Program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Music (NASM) and the Art Program is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).

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Section 2. Organizational Structure

The College of Education is headed by the Dean, who reports directly to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Personnel reporting directly to the Dean include the Assistant or Associate Dean for Administrative Services, the Director of Teacher Certification and Student Teaching, the Director of the Advising Center, the Doctoral Program Coordinator, and the Assessment Coordinator. In addition, each department has a Department Head who reports directly to the Dean. Faculty members and departmental staff report directly to the Department Head to which they are assigned. The College of Education is organized into the following seven departments:

1. Adult and Career Education

2. Curriculum, Leadership, and Technology

3. Early Childhood and Reading Education

4. Kinesiology and Physical Education

5. Middle Grades and Secondary Education

6. Psychology and Counseling

7. Special Education and Communication Disorders

In addition, the Dean’s office supervises Technology Support Specialists, Technology Training Specialists, the Copy Center Director, and the clerical staff who report directly to the Dean. An organizational chart is included in Appendix A.

2.1 Advising Center

The mission of the Advising Center is to assist students in meeting requirements for admission into their chosen major in the College of Education. The Center has a Director and experienced faculty members are selected to work with the Center. Additionally, Peer Advisors are hired by the Director to assist with orientation sessions and other College of Education functions. The Center activities include: assisting students in scheduling classes; giving information on policies and procedures; and helping students explore short and long-range consequences of their academic choices. All incoming freshmen and transfer students who don’t meet requirements for admission into their programs of study are assigned to the Center. The Center maintains a website which provides information about admission to teacher education. The Advising Center maintains all records related to admission to teacher education.

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2.2 Educational Technology and Training Center

The COE provides facilities for, and support to, the Educational Technology and Training Center (ETTC) that is funded through the Georgia Department of Education. The Center’s primary purpose is to provide training and support for public school personnel to aid them in integrating technology into teaching by learning through InTech workshops. Faculty members in the COE may also take advantage of InTech training sessions.

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Section 3. Governance

The COE maintains four statutory committees: the Executive Committee, Committee on Committees, Undergraduate and Initial Preparation Appeals Committee, Graduate and Advanced Preparation Appeals Committee; and a number of standing committees. Each of these committees supports the goals of the college and provides an organizational structure that facilitates shared governance. All committees are required to adopt and follow a set of operational guidelines. Each committee’s purpose and membership is regularly reviewed by the COE Executive Committee and the Committee on Committees.

3.1 Executive Committee

The College of Education Executive Committee is chaired by the Dean and is composed of selected Dean’s office personnel, all Department Heads, representatives from the Colleges of the Arts and Arts and Sciences offering teacher education programs in conjunction with the College of Education, and a faculty representative. The faculty representative is elected by the COE faculty annually. Policies specific to the College of Education are approved by the Executive Committee. Suggestions for policies and procedures can be submitted by faculty members or administrators to the Executive Committee.

3.2 Committee on Committees

The COE Committee on Committees is charged to maintain faculty membership on standing committees, oversee the election of Faculty Senators and other University committee members, and advise on appointments for membership on college-wide special committees or task forces. The COE CoCo arranges the membership of each standing committee so that, wherever possible, each department or required stakeholder group are properly represented. This representation is determined by the charge and membership requirements of the committee. The CoCo also reviews all standing committees annually to determine whether overlap or duplication exists and reports its findings to the COE Executive Committee. The COE CoCo is composed of one faculty member elected from each department and an ex-officio appointed by the Dean.

3.3 Undergraduate and Initial Preparation Appeals Committee

The Undergraduate and Initial Preparation Appeals Committee is charged with hearing college level appeals pertaining to academic program issues involving undergraduate or initial educator preparation students (including those enrolled in the Master of Arts in Teaching degree).  All college level academic appeals are remanded to this committee. The committee will provide a timely, fair and independent appeals process and make an appropriate recommendation to the Dean. The role of the committee is also to provide policy recommendations. The committee is composed of one faculty member from each department with an undergraduate or initial educator preparation program and one Dean’s office representative.

3.4 Graduate and Advanced Preparation Appeals Committee

The Graduate and Advanced Preparation Appeals Committee is charged with hearing college level appeals pertaining to academic program issues involving graduate or advanced educator preparation students. All college level academic appeals are remanded to this committee. The committee will provide a timely, fair and independent appeals process and make an appropriate recommendation to the Dean. The role of the committee is also to provide policy recommendations. The committee is composed of one faculty member from each department with a graduate or advanced educator preparation program and one Dean’s office representative.

3.5 Standing Committees

It is the policy of the College of Education to maintain a standing committee structure to ensure that critical issues related to the health and functioning of the unit are addressed in a consistent manner and that faculty members have an on-going involvement in the decision-making and problem-solving processes. To this end, the standing committee structure and charge are annually reviewed by the Committee on Committees and the Executive Committee. Committees may be added or deleted depending on the current needs and directions of the unit. Each standing committee is assigned a charge important to the mission and goals of the unit. The standing committees’ chairs maintain committee membership, coordinate the activities of the different committees, and report the results of committee work to the Executive Committee. Faculty members volunteer for membership through the Committee on Committees. Generally, the individual committees have at least one representative from each department in the College of Education and other appropriate stakeholder groups as determined by the committee’s charge. The current standing committees for the College of Education are:

1. Department Heads Council

2. Tenure and Promotion Committee

3. Conceptual Framework Committee

4. Educator Preparation Council

5. Technology Committee

6. Assessment Committee

7. Field Placement Committee

8. Professional Development Committee

9. Scholarship and Honors Committee

3.6 Departmental Committees

The following committees are required at the department level. Each department may decide how to best organize committees as long as there are committees that serve the following functions.

3.6.1 Personnel Committees

Each department maintains a Personnel Committee for the purpose of reviewing specified decisions related to faculty. Faculty members on this committee, as part of their professional responsibilities, participate in the evaluation process by making formal recommendations on the status of their colleagues in respect to initial appointment to the faculty; pre-tenure and post-tenure review; promotion in professorial rank; and the awarding of tenure at the institution. Determining the status of colleagues is a primary responsibility of faculty because of their expertise, credentials, and experience. Recommendations to promote or award tenure are made after consideration by the appropriate personnel committee according to procedures adopted by the faculty.

This committee is also responsible for carrying out searches to fill vacant positions. Faculty members have input into establishing the qualifications for appointments to the faculty. Specific requirements concerning searches are described in the Valdosta State University Recruitment Handbook which is available from The Office of Social Equity.

3.6.2 Advisory Committees

Each COE department is responsible for creating and maintaining an Advisory Committee for the purpose of soliciting input from external constituents concerning instructional programs. Minutes from all departmental Advisory Committee meetings are maintained.

3.7 Documentation of Committees and Other COE Group Meetings

Statutory committees are required to maintain formal minutes. Standing committees and other groups use the approved Meeting Documentation Form

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Section 4. General Administration

The following sections describe general administrative aspects of the College of Education.

4.1 Professional Community and Collaboration

The College of Education maintains a number of Centers designed to serve both academic and community goals. Each Center is approved by the Board of Regents and is supervised by a College of Education faculty member.

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4.2 Diversity

The College of Education maintains that all programs have the responsibility of preparing professionals for a diverse society. Multicultural perspectives should not be limited to isolated courses, but awareness should permeate throughout the curriculum. Teacher education faculty and candidates need to address multicultural issues within each educational experience. The goal of providing culturally appropriate educational experiences is to increase respect for diversity, reduce prejudice, and positively affect student learning.

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4.3 Departmental Diversity Plans

The College of Education requires Diversity Plans from each department as one method to focus attention on the goal of building an inclusive community that respects and values differences. The Diversity Plans are submitted to and approved by the COE Executive Committee each Fall semester and describe diversity efforts, programs, and on-going projects planned for the up-coming academic year and provide a summary of progress made in maintaining and advocating diversity for the past academic year. The Plans also describe the current status of faculty and student diversity based on information from the VSU Enrollment Analysis and the Faculty Data Base.

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4.4 Strategic Planning

The College of Education Strategic Plan is developed to identify major long-range goals of the College of Education and to guide the actions of the college toward accomplishing the agreed-upon goals. The plan is reviewed by the Executive Committee and the faculty of the college and submitted to the Vice President for Academic Affairs every year. The major factors that influence the planning process of the College of Education include its mission statement, the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia Policy Directives, Valdosta State University’s (VSU) Mission and Goals, the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) Standards, the Georgia Professional Standards Commission's (GaPSC) standards, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools' (SACS) criteria, standards from professional organizations, other accrediting commissions, and the specific needs of the service area. The College of Education Strategic Plan directly addresses the Board of Regents’ and Valdosta State University’s planning documents wherever appropriate.

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4.5 Annual Reports

Each department submits an annual report to the Dean and the Dean submits a college annual report to the Vice President.

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4.6 External Funding

The College of Education promotes and encourages faculty members to pursue external funding for research and community service projects. All grant and contract activities follow the guidelines set by the Grants and Contracts Office. For more information on the guidelines, refer to the VSU Grants and Contracts Handbook.

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4.7 Curriculum Revision

Faculty members, program coordinators, and Department Heads are responsible for all curriculum revision in the COE. All curricular changes go through a rigorous approval process described in the following sections.

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4.8 Review and Approval of Academic Program and Course Changes

Faculty members with the appropriate academic and experiential qualifications have primary responsibility for curriculum development for each major in a degree program. The following items describe the steps required for the approval of curriculum development and revision.

All curriculum changes in the COE must be reviewed by the Teacher Education Council and approved at the department and college level before being forwarded for approval to the University Academic Committee and the Board of Regents. Curriculum changes to graduate programs must also be approved by the Graduate Executive Committee. In other words, proposals for curriculum changes originate from faculty members and are approved by the following groups:

Departmental Curriculum Committees

Departmental Faculty

Departmental Advisory Committee

Teacher Education Council

College of Education Executive Committee

Graduate Executive Committee (for graduate program changes)

University Academic Committee

Faculty Senate

Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia

The university distributes two forms required for curriculum changes, one for course changes and one for program changes. Forms are available from Department Heads, departmental secretaries, or on the web.

The Request for New or Revised Course form is used to propose new courses and to revise course titles, numbers, credit hours, or bulletin descriptions. A course syllabus, following the COE syllabi format, must be attached to this form. The Request for Curriculum Change form is used to propose new programs or make changes in existing programs. Syllabi, following the COE syllabi format, must be attached to this form when significant changes in programs and course content are being proposed.

Both forms include a justification section that should be used to describe the rationale for the proposal. COE faculty members should reference the conceptual framework, appropriate learned society professional standards, the Georgia Professional Standards Commission standards, the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education standards, or Board of Regents’ guidelines, wherever relevant.

The forms, once approved, become the official record of all curriculum changes and are used to make the appropriate changes in the University Catalogs. Therefore, it is essential that the forms submitted to the various committees are complete and without error.

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4.9 Syllabus Format

The College of Education has an approved syllabus format to facilitate consistency of required components across departments and programs. The consistency in format aids students in understanding course requirements and facilitates syllabi review for program and unit accreditation reviews. Faculty members may add items to the format as necessary.

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4.10 Study Abroad

Study abroad opportunities for both students and faculty members are organized through the Center for International Programs office.

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4.11 Student Teaching

The Student Services Office is responsible for overseeing all activities related to student teaching and teacher certification. Policies and procedures governing student teaching are described in the COE Student Teaching Guidelines. Guidelines are available from the Student Services Office. The Student Services Office also maintains all records related to criminal background checks, teacher certification, and teacher testing.

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4.12 Field Experiences

Field experiences prior to student teaching are determined by each department in which the field experience is required.

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4.13 Research

All research projects planned by students or faculty members are reviewed and approved by the Institutional Review Board for the Protection of Human Research Participants. Forms and procedures are described at the following website.

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4.14 Thesis and Dissertation Requirements

The College of Education abides by the Thesis and Dissertation Information published by the Graduate School. Individual departments may approve additional requirements.

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4.15 Copyright Information

The COE requires faculty and students to abide by the USG Copyright Policy, published by the Board of Regents, University System of Georgia.

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4.16 Student Appeals

The COE has an appeals process in place to help students and faculty resolve academic issues. This process endeavors to protect both faculty and students by assuring a process that allows dialogue at each step. In general, students who wish to appeal must first discuss the problem with the instructor/staff member or advisor. While the initial appeal may be informal such as a conversation between the faculty/staff member and the student, if the situation is not resolved, the formal appeals process is initiated. The appeals process is student driven, so students may decide at each stage if they wish to go to the next stage. The student must initiate this process within 10 instructional days after notification of the decision. Students desiring to file an appeal should refer to the Appeals Process on the COE webpage.

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Section 5. Faculty

Full-time teaching faculty members are responsible for performing diverse professional activities including the delivery of quality instruction to students, student advisement, research, and service activities. Faculty members are also primarily responsible for the development, implementation, and evaluation of curriculum. Additional information can be found under Faculty Rights and Responsibilities in the university Faculty Handbook.

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5.1 Faculty Workload

Faculty members coordinate their workloads with their Department Heads. Issues involved in determining workload include candidate committee work, teaching, scholarship, assessment, advisement, supervision of field experience in clinical practice, online courses, off-campus courses, collaborative work with P-12 schools, grant work, and collaboration with the community. Faculty's courseloads on campus generally do not exceed 12 hours for undergraduate teaching and 9 hours for graduate teaching. Supervision of clinical practice generally does not exceed 18 candidates.

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5.2 Faculty Evaluation

The COE faculty evaluation process is designed to highlight the accomplishments of faculty members and to encourage faculty members to improve the quality of their teaching, scholarship, and service when appropriate. Procedures for evaluating the teaching, scholarship, and service of faculty members involve colleagues, administrators, and students. These procedures are established and maintained with appropriate input from faculty and administrators.

Evaluation of COE personnel includes the following:

1. Faculty Evaluation Plan

2. Annual Faculty Evaluation

3. Course/Instructor Evaluation

4. Student Teaching Supervisor and External Placement Evaluations

5. Pre-Tenure Review

6. Promotion and Tenure Reviews

7. Post-Tenure Review

8. Administrative Evaluation

A brief introduction to each of these areas is presented below. Additional information on specific policies and procedures for each area is available from the Dean’s Office or from individual departments. The University System Policy Manual for Academic Affairs, available on the web and the University Faculty Handbook, distributed by the Faculty Senate, are important sources of information regarding policies and procedures concerning faculty evaluation. One factor to consider when reviewing the procedures is that the University’s and COE’s schedule of activities are based in part on the calendar year (which is from January to December) and in part, on the fiscal year (which is from July to June). Exact due dates for all materials are posted on the COE webpage.

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5.2.1 Faculty Evaluation Plan

The purpose of the Faculty Evaluation Plan is to describe the objectives the faculty member anticipates achieving in the upcoming calendar year. It is a comprehensive outline of the activities the faculty member agrees to pursue in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service. The plan, which is generated by each faculty member, is reviewed and approved by the Department Head at the beginning of the calendar year. If the plan is not agreed upon by the faculty member and the Department Head, a meeting is scheduled with the Dean to review the plan. These plans may be revised during the year after consulting with the Department Head to take into consideration any unanticipated circumstances. The accomplishments of the faculty member, based on the agreed-upon plan, are then taken into account when the Department Head prepares the Annual Faculty Evaluations and recommends merit pay. Each department revises the Faculty Evaluation Planning process to meet the needs of the faculty and department.

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5.2.2 Annual Faculty Evaluation

Using the Faculty Evaluation Plan, faculty members submit a summary of their accomplishments to their Department Head at the end of the calendar year. Annual faculty evaluation forms are then completed by Department Heads, discussed with the faculty member, and submitted to the Dean on a form that describes the faculty member’s accomplishments in the areas of teaching, scholarship, and service. After this process is completed, merit pay is recommended by Department Heads, with the approval of the Dean, based on the outcomes of the Faculty Evaluation Plan and Annual Faculty Evaluation. If a faculty member wishes to appeal a merit pay recommendation, the process is initiated by the faculty member submitting a written justification to the Department Head. If the faculty member’s request is not supported by the Department Head, the written appeal may be forwarded by the faculty member to the Dean. The Dean consults with the faculty member and the Department Head to reach consensus. If agreement is not reached, the faculty member may continue the process by submitting the written appeal to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.

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5.2.3 Course/Instructor Evaluation

The primary purpose of student ratings of courses and instructors is to improve teaching and programs. Faculty members use the COE Course/Instructor Evaluation form as a means of summative evaluation for all courses. These forms, and the specific directions for administration, are provided to faculty members by individual departments--they may be completed by students either electronically or manually. Forms should be completed in the last class prior to the final exam; forms that are completed manually are to be returned directly to the Dean’s office. The Dean’s office processes the forms, prints individual reports and overall comparisons, and distributes the reports to Department Heads after grades have been recorded. Copies are then distributed to individual faculty members and kept on file by the department. Departments or faculty members may supplement the COE forms as they see fit. The COE supports and encourages faculty members’ use of innovative teaching methods and considers multiple data sources when evaluating faculty members’ teaching, taking into consideration the research on validity and reliability of student ratings. Faculty members are also encouraged to use various forms of formative assessment in their courses throughout the semester.

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5.2.4 Faculty Office Hours

The College of Education expects faculty members to maintain a minimum of ten office hours per week when classes are in session to ensure that students have access to instructors/advisors. Office hours must be posted on the faculty member’s office door, and a copy must be given to the departmental secretary at the beginning of each semester. Office hours must be distributed throughout the week. Temporary changes to posted office hours, due to meetings, appointments, etc., must be communicated to the departmental secretary. Deviation from the required hours due to off-campus teaching or supervision may be approved by the Department Head.

During summer sessions, faculty members are expected to maintain a minimum of one office hour a week for each semester credit hour of teaching load when classes are in session to ensure that students have access to instructors outside of class.

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5.2.5 Student Teaching Supervisor and External Placement Evaluations

Faculty members who supervise student teachers are evaluated by both the mentor teacher and the student teacher on forms that are submitted electronically. Results are compiled and returned to Department Heads to be shared with faculty members. Other external placements are important components of many programs in the COE. These various experiences are designed to give students the opportunity to apply knowledge and skill learned in the classroom. All field experiences, internships, and practica are to be evaluated by departments and the results should be shared with the appropriate faculty members.

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5.2.6 Pre-Tenure Review

Faculty members and administrators in tenure-track positions are given guidance by their peers on progress toward tenure at the mid-point of their pre-tenure period through the Pre-Tenure Review process. This process is described in the university Faculty Handbook.

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5.2.7  Promotion and Tenure Procedures

Criteria for promotion are delineated in the Board of Regents’ Policy Manual, Section 803.08.

Each department is responsible for having approved guidelines for promotion specific to each department. During the pre-tenure period, faculty members are made aware of the criteria to be applied to their evaluation for promotion and tenure through the Faculty Evaluation Plan and departmental requirements. Before promotion is considered, a faculty member should have three years experience as an instructor, four years as an assistant professor, and five years as an associate professor. Tenured status is earned after a probationary period not to exceed seven years. Faculty members are awarded tenure only after a rigorous peer evaluation of their teaching, scholarship, and service based on specific criteria properly adopted by the respective department, the COE, and the university.

Promotion and tenure documents are due to Department Heads midterm in the Fall Semester, (exact dates are disseminated). Application forms are available in the Dean’s office. The documents are reviewed by the departmental personnel committee, which makes a recommendation to the Department Head, who makes a recommendation to the Dean. The Dean then makes a recommendation to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, who submits a recommendation to the President. All promotion and tenure recommendations must ultimately be approved by the Board of Regents.

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5.2.8 Post-Tenure Review

Five years after receiving tenure or after the last personnel action, such as promotion, a faculty member’s accomplishments are reviewed by their tenured peers in the Post-Tenure Review process. This process is described in the university Faculty Handbook.

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5.3 Faculty Professional Development

Faculty members are encouraged to use various sources of assessment information to reflect on their performance and plan for their professional development. The COE and university support faculty professional development by funding travel, sponsoring workshops, and providing leave with pay opportunities.

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5.4 Administrative Evaluation

Faculty members are provided an annual opportunity to evaluate Department Heads and the Dean through the Office of Institutional Research and Policy Analysis.

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5.5 Part-Time Faculty

The College of Education recognizes the important contribution that part-time faculty members bring to the learning environment. Students can greatly benefit from the experiences of part-time faculty who link education to the real world and workplace. The College of Education maintains a handbook for part-time faculty to provide an orientation to campus, to describe college policies and procedures, and to assist them in fulfilling their responsibilities. The Dean interviews each part-time faculty member and the department assigns a full-time faculty member as a mentor to all part-time faculty. The part-time faculty is regularly evaluated by the appropriate Department Head. All courses taught by part-time faculty members are evaluated using the College of Education Course/Instructor Evaluation form. The following is the Board of Regents’ definition of part-time faculty as found in the Academic Affairs handbook:

Non-tenured faculty employed less than full time:

1. Shall be known as "part-time" faculty;

2. Are not accruing time toward tenure;

3. Are not covered under the "Revised Tenure Policies";

4. Are considered temporary appointees, requiring re-appointment from year to year, (if and as needed);*

5. If written agreements or contracts are issued to part-time faculty members, they must be appropriate to the specific assignments;

6. Additional justification will be required when a part-time faculty member's employment exceeds one-half time for the year.

* Does not include Adjunct Faculty. (Persons holding adjunct appointments or other honorary titles shall not be considered members of the faculty.)

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Section 6. Assessment Policies

The College of Education maintains a focus on performance assessment in all programs in addition to participating in systematic assessment in all aspects of the college. The COE Assessment Matrix outlines the major methods used for assessment purposes.

6.1 Assessment Plan

One of the most important activities of the College of Education is maintaining professional and institutional accountability for its degree programs. Collecting information pertaining to effectiveness is an ongoing process, the product of which is used to improve quality and to demonstrate that the College is fulfilling its stated purpose. The COE functions in a complex environment that includes state and national calls for educational reform, compliance with state and national accreditation standards, Board of Regents’ requirements, institutional demands, and a commitment to meeting the needs of its service region. The COE’s stakeholders are numerous and varied. In addition to professional organizations and learned societies, the College must take into consideration the specifications of accreditation bodies, the needs of students, faculty members, public school personnel, and the University System Board of Regents.

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6.2 COE Assessment Matrix

In order to ensure its commitment to the assessment of effectiveness and organize its many components, the COE has outlined an Assessment Matrix. The Assessment Matrix divides the necessary actions into stages that describe exactly what activities are required, who is responsible for the activities, and how the results are disseminated and used. These stages form a cycle that focuses the efforts of the COE on continuously clarifying its purpose, identifying measurable outcomes, assessing the effects of the outcomes, and implementing improvements to enhance effectiveness based on assessment results.

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6.3 Program Coordinators

COE departments have identified specific faculty members as Program Coordinators. The Program Coordinators have expertise and experience related to their respective degree areas and have a primary responsibility to maintain program integrity.

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6.4 Program Outcomes and Assessments

Each degree program has developed three to five program outcomes and matching assessments that are published in the Valdosta State University catalogs. Using the identified assessments, each program collects data to measure students’ levels of achievement based on the outcomes. Results from this process are used in program planning decisions.

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6.5 Program Assessment Matrix

The Program Assessment Matrix is designed to identify the major methods used to evaluate each of the degree programs offered in the COE. The matrix documents the fact that individual programs use various methods to assess student achievement and program outcomes. For example, all teacher education programs use the results from the Praxis II exams, course/instructor surveys, Student Teaching Program Improvement Survey (STPIS), and feedback from public school mentors to evaluate programs. Examples of other programs’ requirements include teaching portfolios, thesis, capstone courses, or applied projects.

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6.6 Program Improvement Surveys

As part of the overall COE assessment process for undergraduate teacher education programs, all student teachers are asked to complete a Student Teaching Program Improvement Survey (STPIS) after completion of the student teaching experience. The students are asked to give their respective programs an overall grade, identify strengths, and make suggestions for improvements. In addition, various questions are asked about the integration of technology into instruction, preparation to meet the needs of diverse learners, quality of advising, and other areas. Results from this survey are shared with Department Heads and faculty members. It is also utilized to make program improvements and when planning for the two-hour Student Teaching Seminar class that is taken simultaneously with student teaching.

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6.7 External Assessment

COE personnel also use survey results provided by the Office of Institutional Research and Policy Analysis to assess programs and services. Examples include the Student Exit Survey, the Alumni Survey, and the Graduate Surveys. All departments are also required to maintain Advisory Committees to solicit feedback from appropriate constituents.

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Section 7. Budget and Resources

The university’s budget is determined by the Board of Regents. The new fiscal year begins each July. The College’s budget is determined by the Office of the President and Cabinet. A budget presentation is required annually. The Dean and each Department Head maintain budgets for the effective management of the college and departments. In addition, faculty members manage budgets associated with external funding sources.

7.1 Technology Resources

The COE provides hardware, software, and technical support to faculty members, staff, students, and administrators. The COE Technology Standing Committee is responsible for reviewing technology needs and for providing support for the integration of technology into teaching and learning.

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7.2 Library Resources

Each department designates a faculty member as the Library Liaison. This person is responsible for overseeing the library materials budget and purchase requests made by faculty members.

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Section 8. Hiring New Faculty 

8.1 Position Announcements and Position Funding Requests

Position announcements are developed by the Department Head in consultation with the departmental personnel committee (or other department governance committee).  The announcement should address rank, tenure vs. non-tenure track, position responsibilities, minimum and preferred qualifications, and application deadlines.

Rank: Advertise for a maximum of two levels, such as instructor/assistant, assistant/associate, etc.

Responsibilities: Teaching, advising, community and institutional service, and research productivity will be expected for tenure-track faculty. Other responsibilities should be delineated according to the needs of the department or program.

Minimum and Preferred Qualifications: Degree level should generally be at the terminal level. Be sure to include three years’ minimum public p-12 school teaching experience (for educator preparation programs).  Include other minimum and preferred qualifications that are aligned with the job responsibilities and expectations. 

Application Deadlines:  Allow a minimum of 30 days for applications to be received.

A Position Funding Request (PFR) is completed by the Department Head for each requested new or rehire position.  This form serves as an official request for approval for the position to be advertised. The request is routed from the Department Head to the Dean, and then the Provost. 

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8.2 Process for Advertising Faculty Positions

The Department Head forwards the written position announcement and PFR to the Dean for approval.  Once approved the position announcement and PFR are sent to the Provost. After the PFR is approved by the Provost and the University Planning and Budget Committee an advertisement is created and posted to the VSU Human Resources website and other venues such as the Chronicle of Higher Education, the University System’s Clearinghouse, and/or other appropriate outlets.

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8.3 Applying for a Position

Candidates for the position must meet the listed minimum qualifications and apply through the Department of Human Resources online PeopleAdmin application system within the timelines stated in the position announcement. All applications must include a letter of application, a resume, and the names, phone numbers, and e-mail addresses of three references.

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8.4 Search Process for Non-Tenure and Tenure Track Faculty

The highest priority of the college is to maintain the excellence of its teaching and research activities while at the same time carrying out an effective affirmative action and non-discriminatory employment program. Both of these needs can be met by undertaking careful and thorough searches each time a new faculty appointment is to be made.

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8.4.1  Department Search Committee

The Department Head, in consultation with the Department Personnel Committee (or other department governance committee), shall appoint a search committee and chair. The committee should also include appropriate stakeholders. The Department Head will meet with the search committee to review the search protocol as outlined in the COEHS Policies and Procedures, the Office of Social Equity’s Employee Hiring Resources, and the Office of Social Equity’s Employment Interview Questions Guidelines.

The search committee and Department Head should develop the specific criteria used to judge all applicants. Such criteria should be drawn from the qualifications and job description in the position announcement. Candidate ratings on the each of the criteria will be evaluated using the COEHS Applicant Evaluation Form and summarized on the COEHS Selection Criteria Matrix.  These evaluation tools will be used in each phase of the selection process.  It is important to note that all applicants must be treated the same at each phase of the process from the initial screening of minimum qualifications through the on-site interviews and recommendations.

Applications are received through the online PeopleAdmin system. Using the Applicant Evaluation Form those applicants who do not meet minimal qualifications should be excluded from further consideration. The reason for their exclusion should be recorded on the Selection Criteria Matrix.

The remaining candidates should be evaluated using the Applicant Evaluation Form and a summary of the results will be recorded on the Selection Criteria Matrix.  The applicant pool should be narrowed to approximately five applicants. Those applicants under consideration should be contacted to determine if they are still interested in the position. This is a good time to clarify for the applicant such items as the selection process and timeline and information concerning the department, COEHS, VSU, and community.

Optional telephone interviews may then be conducted by the committee using a set of predetermined questions.  

References should be contacted using a set of predetermined questions. The faculty interviewer should document the conversation.  Such documentation should become part of the search committee file.

The Selection Criteria Matrix should be updated based on telephone interviews and references and two to three applicants should be selected for campus interviews. If two applicants cannot be selected for campus interviews the search committee should consult with the Department Head about continuing or closing the search.  The search committee chair should send a memo to the Department Head with ranked recommendations for campus interviews.  Additionally, the position announcement, a completed Selection Criteria Matrix (including the reason for exclusion) should accompany the memorandum. This information may be required in the Affirmative Action Approval process.

The Department Head reviews the submitted documentation and either supports the recommendations of the committee or meets with the chair and/or committee to address questions that may arise. The Department Head prepares a memo seeking approval of the selection process from the Affirmative Action Officer in the Office of Social Equity.  The memo should include a ranked order list of the applicants selected for interview (alternates may be named in case an applicant withdrawals from the pool) and a list of venues in which the position was advertised.  This memo should be copied to the Dean.

Following approval by the Affirmative Action Officer, the Department Head writes a memo to the Dean recommending the applicants to be interviewed. Correspondence from the Affirmative Action Officer and the completed Selection Criteria Matrix should accompany the memo.

The Dean then sends a memo and the other documentation to the Provost. The Provost’s office contacts the Dean’s office when permission for interviewing has been granted and the Dean’s office contacts the appropriate Department Head.

It is common practice for units of the University System to employ faculty members from other units of the System. If the search committee has identified another faculty member in the System, the committee should alert the Vice President for Academic Affairs so that a request to bring this person in for a campus interview can be forwarded to the President of the sister institution.

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8.4.2 Interview Process

In preparing for the interview process, the Department Head will meet with the faculty to review the search protocol as outlined in the COEHS Policies and Procedures, the Office of Social Equity’s Employee Hiring Resources, and Office of Social Equity’s Employment Interview Questions Guidelines. Such meetings may take place annually or at the time of the search and may be coordinated with the Office of Social Equity or Human Resources  

Interviews for each applicant need to be scheduled through the Dean’s office. With regard to the finalist, as in the previous phases of the selection process, it is extremely important that in the interview phase all candidates are treated in as equal a manner as possible. Interview events should include:

Interview with the departmental search committee

Individual and/or group interviews with departmental faculty and school partners or other stakeholders  

Individual interview with the Department Head

Individual Interview with the Dean or designee

Meeting with students in that major (optional)

Presentation to students/faculty (optional)

Meeting with local area teachers at local school (optional)

Meeting with the personnel office (optional)

Tour of the campus and Valdosta area

The departmental search committee chair is responsible for arranging or delegating the arrangement for each applicant’s schedule while in Valdosta. It is important that faculty members assist with non-interview activities, such as meals and tours.  The Provost’s office will communicate with the applicant concerning travel arrangements and reimbursement.  The applicant is to pay for lodging and meals and submit an expense forms for reimbursement.

If faculty join the applicant for a meal, the cost is the responsibility of the faculty member unless the department establishes reimbursement through the department’s VSU Foundation discretionary account.

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8.4.3 Selection and Offering a Position

The search committee will solicit feedback from faculty and other stakeholders who participated in the process using the Applicant Evaluation Form (or a similar tool with the appropriate criteria).  The search committee will then present the department head a written recommendation that includes a ranked list of finalists along with the updated Selection Criteria Matrix.  The Department Head will forward a written recommendation to the Dean. The Dean then makes a recommendation to the Provost and requests permission to make an informal offer.  Once approved, the Dean will then direct the Department Head to negotiate with the candidate until an informal offer is accepted. It is at that time a specific salary is discussed. Another topic for discussion may be years credited toward tenure. The Board of Regents of the University System allows a maximum of three years that can be applied to tenure. These years are based on years of higher education experience and any years of credit applied toward tenure must be included in the formal written offer mailed from the Provost’s office.  Once an informal offer is agreed upon the Dean notifies the Provost Office to send out the official offer under the signature of the Provost.

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8.5 Search Process for Full-Time Temporary, Faculty Positions (Temporary Instructor or Lecturer)

In that full-time temporary faculty are employed on an emergency basis to fulfill an immediate need such faculty positions are not required to be posted and advertised.  It is the responsibility of the Department Head in consultation with of the departmental faculty to arrive at a recommendation as to the most appropriate applicant for temporary faculty positions.  This recommendation is forwarded to the Dean in written form. A recommendation for an informal offer is requested by the Dean to the Provost Office; once approved the Department Head then negotiates with the candidate until an informal offer is accepted.  It is at that time that specific salary is discussed. Once an informal offer is agreed upon the Dean notifies Provost Office to send out the official offer under the signature of the Provost. Temporary positions should be reviewed by the Dean and Department Head each year to ascertain the need to continue the temporary status of the position or convert it to and advertise it as a regular non-tenure or tenure track position.

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8.6 Notification of Unsuccessful Applicants

The VSU People Admin system sends a form letter to unsuccessful candidates at each phase of the screening process starting with selection for campus interview and culminating with the filling of the position.  The Department Head must transition applicants in the PeopleAdmin system at each step of the process.

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