Penn State Abington Constitution

Abington College Faculty Senate Constitution

(ratified by Abington College Faculty, March 30, 2006)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, April 21, 2011)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, November 19, 2014)
(ratified by University Faculty Senate, February 24, 2015)
(amendments herein were approved by Abington College Faculty Senate February 23, 2017,
and distributed to Abington College Faculty for ratification, March 16, 2017)
(ratified by University Faculty Senate, August 28, 2018)

Preamble: The Abington College Faculty Senate shall act as a mechanism for shared governance. It shall have legislative, advisory, consultative, and forensic functions as specified below. The authority vested in this constitution has been delegated to the Abington College Faculty Senate by the University Faculty Senate.

Article I Name

The name of the organization shall be the Abington College Faculty Senate, hereinafter called the Faculty Senate.

Article II Purpose and Functions

Section 1. Legislative Functions

The Faculty Senate shall serve as the sole legislative body representing the Abington College Faculty as a whole. The Faculty Senate shall be responsible for matters that pertain to the educational interests and welfare of the College, subject, after consultation, to revision and orders of the Chancellor of Abington College. The following are among the matters within the legislative jurisdiction of the Faculty Senate:

  1. instructional programs
  2. courses and programs of study
  3. academic standards such as entrance requirements to Abington College majors
  4. honors and awards
  5. student retention
  6. Abington College graduation requirements.

When required, the Faculty Senate shall submit its actions for approval through the appropriate academic and administrative units to the University Faculty Senate.

Section 2. Advisory and Consultative Functions

The Faculty Senate shall serve as an advisory and consultative body, both through its corporate whole and any of its constituent parts, to the administrators of the Abington College on matters such as:

  1. establishment, reorganization, or discontinuation of organizational units and degree programs, and areas of instruction or research (see Standing Rules Article I Section 8)
  2. planning of physical facilities when these may affect the attainment of the educational objectives of the Abington College
  3. policies and administration of the libraries, computing, and instructional support of the Abington College
  4. policies affecting the acquisition and utilization of resources
  5. matters pertaining to the general welfare of the Abington College
  6. overall educational policy and planning
  7. Abington College calendar
  8. faculty affairs including academic personnel
  9. student affairs
  10. general admissions policy
  11. other appropriate matters

Section 3. Forensic Function

The Faculty Senate shall serve as a forum for the exchange of ideas among the Abington College Faculty. The Standing Rules of the Faculty Senate shall guide the conduct of forensic business.

Section 4. Interpretation

The Faculty Senate shall interpret its Constitution, Bylaws and Standing Rules.

Article III. Electorate and Membership

Section 1. Electorate

The electorate shall consist of all full-time faculty including all professorial ranks and non-tenure-line ranks as defined in Policy AC21, excluding the Chancellor, Associate Dean(s), Assistant Dean(s), Division Heads, and the Head Librarian. (See Standing Rules: Article I Section 11).

Section 2. Elections

The Faculty Senate shall prescribe procedures for all its elections.

Section 3. Membership

  1. The Faculty Senate shall consist of elected and ex-officio members as established in this article.
  2. One senator for every six full time electors within each division or the Library shall be elected by each division’s full time electors (rounding up for above 0.5). If a division or the Library has fewer than six full-time faculty electors, the division or the library will have one senator.
  3. Two Abington College University Senators will serve as Abington College Senators, hereinafter called University Faculty Senate Representatives, and will represent the entire electorate at large. The University Faculty Senate Council member from Abington will serve as one representative, and, prior to the first Abington College Faculty Senate meeting of the fall semester, the Abington College University Senators shall select the other University Senate Representative.
  4. One Fixed Term II senator shall be elected by Senate Council with the candidate receiving the second most votes serving as alternate.
  5. The Officers of the Faculty Senate shall be the Chair, the Chair-elect, the Past Chair, and the Executive Secretary/Treasurer.
  6. The following members of Abington College shall be designated ex-officio, non-voting members:
  1. Chancellor
  2. Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
  3. President of the Abington College Student Government Association
  4. University Senators, except when also serving as Abington College senators
  5. Staff Advisory Council Convener*
  6. Executive Secretary/Treasurer to the ACFS*
  7. Parliamentarian*
  8. Senior Director of Student Affairs*
  9. Director of Continuing Education*
  10. Division Heads*
  11. Head Libraries*

*Not required to submit reports

Section 4. Duties and Privileges of Senators

  1. To represent the interests of constituents
  2. To communicate to constituents about Faculty Senate matters
  3. To arrange for a proxy, in the case of absence, from among his or her constituents (see Standing Rules: Article I Section 2)
  4. To vote
  5. To raise issues
  6. To present motions
  7. To amend motions on the floor
  8. To make comments and recommendations for the good of the order
  9. To serve on at least one standing committee
  10. If needed, to serve as a committee chair

Section 5. Duties and Privileges of Officers

a. Chair

  1. To be the presiding officer of the Faculty Senate and to preside over meetings as referred to in Article V
  2. To have all the duties and privileges of elected senators
  3. To personally transmit resolutions and other actions to the appropriate administrative officers and to the Student Government Association President, and to notify the faculty of such transmission at the next regular Faculty Senate meeting
  4. To review all written reports from ex-officio members prior to the Faculty Senate meeting, and to highlight selected items during the meeting
  5. To act as a liaison between the faculty, the administration, and the student body
  6. To serve as an ex- officio, non-voting member of all appointed committees
  7. To charge standing committees of the Faculty Senate to investigate matters deemed appropriate
  8. To review the procedures of the elected standing committees with each chair at the beginning of the fall semester
  9. To serve as a member of the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Chancellor
  10. To serve as the Faculty Senate representative on administrative committees as agreed upon by the Chancellor and the Senate Officers
  11. To select an officer or senator as his or her official representative as needed
  12. To write an ACFS End-of-Year report to the faculty
  13. To regularly update Senate apportionment, with distinct representation for each academic Division as well as independent representation of the Library
  14. To serve on the Enrollment Management Council

b. Chair-elect 

  1. To function as the Chair in the absence of the Chair or at the request of the Chair
  2. To have all the duties and privileges of elected senators
  3. To conduct all Abington College Faculty Senate, University Faculty Senate and the Ombudsman elections in accordance with election procedures and timetable (See Standing Rules: Article I Section 5, Article I Section 6, and Article IV)
  4. To preside, at the request of the Chair, over Faculty Senate Council meetings and attend committee meetings in an ex-officio capacity, without the right to vote
  5. To select appointed committee chairs from the body of elected Senators during the spring prior to his or her term as Chair, such appointments effective to no more than half of the appointed committees; and to suggest potential committee members to the incoming committee chairs, the latter having final say in committee membership
  6. To appoint a Secretary and a Parliamentarian/Treasurer from the electorate to serve during his or her term as Chair
  7. To serve as a member of the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Chancellor
  8. To solicit nominations for senate and senate offices; To initiate the formation of a nominating committee by Council

c. Past Chair

  1. To function as the Chair in the absence of the Chair and Chair-elect or at the request of the Chair or Chair-elect
  2. To have all the duties and privileges of elected members
  3. To attend, at the request of the Chair, committee meetings in an ex-officio capacity, without the right to vote
  4. To advise the current Chair and members of the Faculty Senate Council regarding issues of policy and procedure
  5. To serve as a member of the Faculty Advisory Committee to the Chancellor

d. Executive Secretary/Treasurer

  1.  To distribute to all members of the College faculty and administrative staff, and to the Student Government Association President the following documents:
    1. Minutes of each Faculty Senate meeting as well as all written reports within one (1) calendar week of the meeting.
    2. Agenda, as approved by the Senate Council, four (4) calendar days prior to a regular meeting.
  2. To receive reports from Committee Chairs, the College’s University Faculty Senators the Chancellor, Associate Dean and members of the College community who address the Senate
  3. To act as Executive Secretary/Treasurer at any meeting as referred to in Article V
  4. To vote and raise issues in Senate Council
  5. To maintain financial records for the Faculty Senate
  6. To present an account of financial transactions to the Faculty Senate when appropriate
  7. To present a complete account of the financial records at the last regularly scheduled Faculty Senate meeting of the academic year
  8. To sit on the Faculty Advisory Committee at the request of the Chair

Section 6. Duties and Privileges of Appointees

a. Parliamentarian

  1. To become and remain familiar with the Rules of the Senate, with Robert’s Rules of Order, and with the Senate Constitution, Bylaws and Standing Rules
  2. To give opinions on the manner of conduct of Faculty Senate meetings
  3. To vote and raise issues in Senate Council

Section 7. Duties and Privileges of Ex-officio Members

  1. To communicate appropriate matters to the Faculty Senate
  2. To submit written reports to the Chair and Executive Secretary/Treasurer prior to each Faculty Senate meeting (see Standing Rules: Article I Section 3)
  3. To raise issues
  4. To make comments and recommendations for the good of the order

Section 8. Term of Office of Elected Members

  1. The term of office of an elected Senator shall be two (2) academic years. The term of office of half the body of elected members shall expire at the end of odd-numbered years and half at the end of even-numbered years, as determined at the initial meeting of the Faculty Senate.
  2. The election of members shall take place during the spring semester, with offices assumed July 1.
  3. If an elected member should be absent for a period longer than one (1) academic semester, the member’s division shall elect a replacement to complete the term of office.
  4. If an incumbent Senator is elected Chair-elect, he/she will be replaced by a newly elected Senator from his/her division.
  5. No Chair or Past Chair shall be eligible to run for Chair-elect for the succeeding year. With this exception, any full-time faculty member shall be eligible for election as Chair-elect.
  6. The term of office of Chair-elect is three years: one year as Chair-elect, one year as Chair, and one year as Past Chair.
  7. The Chair and Chair-elect will function as co-chairs during April, May and June with both leaders representing the Faculty Senate at administrative, Advisory Board, and other meetings.

Section 9. Term of Office of Appointed Members

The terms of offices of the Executive Secretary/Treasurer, the Parliamentarian, and the Fixed Term II senator shall be for one Senate year. They may be selected from outside the Senate membership and may be reappointed. If selected from outside the Senate membership, the Executive Secretary/Treasurer and the Parliamentarian shall be ex-officio, non-voting members of the Senate.

Section 10. Terms of Office of University Senate Representatives

The terms of office of the University Senators serving as Abington College senators representing the electorate shall be one year.

Section 11. Vacancies

When a vacancy occurs in the office of Immediate Past-Chair, the Senate Council shall elect a faculty member from among Past-Chairs to complete the unexpired term. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair, the Chair-Elect will move immediately into the office, complete the unexpired term, and continue through a full term as Chair. When a vacancy occurs in the office of Chair-Elect, the Senate Council shall immediately designate an independent, temporary election administrator who shall conduct a special election consistent with the Standing Rules’ election procedures (See Standing Rules, Article I Section 5). The new Chair-Elect shall complete the unexpired term and succeed to the office of Chair. If the Nominating Committee of Faculty Senate Council is unable to fill an office, then Senate Council is empowered to hold an emergency conclave consisting of the full membership of Senate Council. This conclave will then elect a person or persons to fill a vacant office or offices.

Article IV. Faculty Senate Council

Section 1. Membership

The Faculty Senate Council, hereinafter called Council, shall consist of the Faculty Senate Chair, the Chair-elect, the Past-Chair, the Executive Secretary/Treasurer, the Parliamentarian, a Member-at-Large elected by the Faculty Senate from its membership during its first meeting of the new academic year, and the Chairs of all appointed Standing and ad hoc committees.

Section 2. Duties

  1. To ensure that the Faculty Senate addresses issues of major concern to the College community
  2. To consider issues referred to Council by any member of the College community
  3. To establish the agenda for the Faculty Senate meetings
  4. To provide a mechanism for Council review of all reports and motions submitted for the Faculty Senate Agenda. Decision on inclusion on the Agenda is to be based on whether a report or motion is adequately prepared and documented as described in the Standing Rules (see Standing Rules: Article I Section 4)
  5. To initiate Faculty Senate legislation in the same manner as a standing committee
  6. To elect a Fixed Term II senator and, if there is a second runner up, appoint that person as the alternate
  7. To charge a standing committee of the Faculty Senate, if necessary, to investigate matters deemed appropriate by the Council
  8. To be responsible for proposing, codifying, and publishing changes in the Constitution, Bylaws, and Standing Rules of the Faculty Senate
  9. In the event that the Chair of the Faculty Senate declares the existence of a situation of special Faculty Senate concern, the Faculty Senate Council shall be empowered to act for the Faculty Senate in all matters until this authority is terminated by actions of the Faculty Senate.
  10. To conduct vacancy-related duties expressed in Article III, Section 11 of the Constitution.
  11. Form and maintain a select Nominating Committee within Faculty Senate Council, one of no less than three (3) and no more than five (5), and empowered to seek out qualified nominees for positions within the ACFS and forward these names to the Chair-elect for inclusion in the ACFS elections cycle

Article V. Meetings

Section 1. Regular Meetings

  1. Regular meetings of the Faculty Senate shall be held at least three (3) times each semester, except as otherwise provided in this article. The Chair may at his/her discretion cancel a meeting if there is not a full agenda or a quorum
  2. A majority of elected members shall constitute a quorum
  3. The Senate Chair may invite any member of the administrative staff, student body, or others to attend and speak in connection with specific agenda items
  4. The privilege of attending regular meetings and speaking when recognized is extended to all members of the Abington College community

Section 2. Forensic Meetings

Forensic sessions of the Faculty Senate may be called at any time by the Chair. The Faculty Senate Chair may invite any member of the administrative staff, student body, or others to attend.

Section 3. Special Senate Meetings

A special meeting of the Faculty Senate may be called at any time by the Chair. A special meeting of the Faculty Senate must be called upon the written request of four (4) Faculty Senators. All rules for regular meetings shall apply.

Section 4. Special Faculty Meetings

Special meetings of the Abington College faculty may be called at any time by the Chair or upon the written request of ten (10) faculty members. A quorum at such meetings shall consist of at least 20% of full-time faculty. Votes taken at such meetings shall be forwarded to the Faculty Senate for action.

Article VI. Amendments

Amendments to this Constitution shall be submitted at a regular meeting of the Faculty Senate and voted on at a subsequent meeting. If passed by a two-thirds majority, the amendment shall be submitted to the faculty. Approval by a majority of those faculty voting electronically, by mail ballot or in a special faculty meeting shall constitute adoption. Following approval, the amended Constitution will be submitted by the Chair to the University Faculty Senate for ratification.


Abington College Faculty Senate Bylaws

(ratified by Abington College Faculty, March 30, 2006)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, November 19, 2014)

(amended by Abington College Faculty, February 23, 2017)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, October 19, 2017)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, January 25, 2018)
(ratified by University Faculty Senate, August 28, 2018)

Article I. Rules and Procedures

Section 1. Rules of Procedure

Except as otherwise specified in these Bylaws, the rules of procedure in Faculty Senate meetings shall be Robert’s Rules of Order.

Section 2. Voting

Except as otherwise specified in these Bylaws, all motions shall be decided by a majority of the votes cast by a quorum.

Section 3. Agenda

Agenda items may be suggested by any member of the College community; such items must be submitted in writing to the Chair at least ten (10) days prior to the next meeting.

Article II. Committees

Section 1. Membership

All persons eligible for membership on the Faculty Senate are eligible to serve on all appointed Faculty Senate Committees. Each Appointed Standing Committee Chair or co-Chair shall be a full-time faculty member who is also a sitting ACFS Senator, with the exception of Abington Curricular Affairs Committee Chair who must be a full-time faculty member but is not required to be a Senator. Each Elected Standing Committee Chair shall be chosen by and from the membership of that committee and is not required to be a sitting Senator. Each appointed Committee shall have at least one faculty member from each division. Additional members of the college community may be asked to serve or consult on Faculty Senate committees, particularly if they have expertise in matters being discussed. Administrators named to committees may designate a representative to serve in their place. Student representatives will be appointed by the Student Government Association.

Section 2. Chair as ex-officio Member

The Chair of the Faculty Senate is an ex-officio, non-voting member of all appointed committees. He/she may authorize any member of the Faculty Senate Council to represent him/her at meetings of any committee.

Section 3. Non-voting Members

Administrators, staff and students serve as non-voting members.

Section 4. Term of Appointment

Chairs or co-chairs of Appointed Standing Committees shall be selected by the Chair-elect of the ACFS in the spring prior to his or her term as Chair, for a term of one (1) year. Chairs may be reappointed for an additional one-year term at the discretion of the Chair-elect. Members of Appointed Standing Committees are appointed annually by the Chair-elect of the ACFS in consultation with the respective committee chairs, and may be reappointed no more than three (3) additional times.

Section 5. Procedures for Appointed Committees

Each appointed standing committee shall meet at least ten (10) days before each regularly scheduled Faculty Senate meeting. Exceptions to this schedule may be made by the Committee Chair in consultation with the Faculty Senate Chair. During the first six (6) weeks of each academic year, the Chairs of standing committees shall present, electronically, all members of faculty with their respective committees’ goals for the upcoming year. By no later than the last day of the academic year, the Chairs of standing committees shall present, electronically, all members of faculty with their respective committees’ activities during the previous academic year. These annual reports shall clearly highlight the committees’ tasks and accomplishments for the year. Each annual report shall be passed down to the incoming committee chairs.

Section 6. Appointed Standing Committees

a.  Curricular Affairs

Chair: ACFS or UFS Senator, or by appointment

Membership:

Two (2) representatives from each Division, including the Honors Coordinator who serves as one of the representatives from their Division, along with the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, one Division Head, the Director of Continuing Education, the Head Librarian, a representative from the Advising Center, and two (2) student representatives.

Duties:

Shall make recommendations concerning curriculum changes, new degrees and minors, certificate programs involving courses for academic credit, academic assessment, the Honors Program, and other curricular matters as appropriate.

b.      Finance and Planning

Chair: Chair-elect of the ACFS

Membership:

At least four (4) faculty members, as well as the current Chair of the ACFS, the Past-Chair of the ACFS Senate, the Financial Officer of Abington College, the Grants Officer, the Chief Operations Officer, and representatives from Development and the Staff Advisory Committee.

Duties:

Shall review and make recommendations regarding matters pertaining to the allocation and management of the college’s resources. These include: reviewing the fiscal year department budget requests and evaluating the financial aspects of Strategic Plan, the Campus Master Plan, grants and external funding, development, sustainability, and safety and security.

c.  Faculty Affairs

Chair: ACFS Senator

Membership:

The FT II senator, as well as six (6) additional faculty members, at least one from each Division, to include two (2) Full Professors, two (2) Associate Professors, one (1) Assistant Professor, and one (1) Fixed Term Lecturer. Additional advisory members for peer review issues only: the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and all Division Heads.

Duties:

Shall review and make recommendations for changes in policies concerning faculty well-being including: faculty rights, duties, work load, salaries and benefits, professional development, research and creative work, promotion and tenure (AC21/23) issues, mentoring, social concerns, and diversity. Additional peer review duties include peer review mentoring and advising.

d.  Matriculation

Chair: ACFS Senator

Membership:

At least two (2) faculty members from each Division, in addition to the FYE Coordinator, as well as the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, the Registrar, the Director of Enrollment Management & Retention, representatives from Intercultural/International programs and Continuing Education, and two (2) student representatives.

Note:

The Committee Chair will serve as the Faculty Senate representative on the Enrollment Management Council.

Duties:

Shall make recommendations on recruitment and admissions, orientation and FYE, enrollment and retention, scheduling and registration, and advising and counseling.

e.  Student Affairs

Chair: ACFS Senator

Membership:

At least five (5) faculty members with at least one (1) from each Division, as well as a representative from Enrollment Management, Financial Aid, Athletics, Student Affairs, Student Life, Career Development, Intercultural/Intercultural programs, and Residential Life, as well as the President of SGA and two (2) student representatives.

Duties:

Shall review and make recommendations regarding issues affecting students in three broad areas: Student Success, to include leadership training, career development, student conduct, diversity, financial aid, disabilities, and veterans; Student Life, to include student health, extracurricular activities, student organizations, and residential life; and Athletics.

f.  Academic Environment

Chair: ACFS Senator

Membership:

At least nine (9) faculty members across all divisions. Members to include: two (2) tenured faculty, two (2) tenure-track faculty, one (1) FT1 faculty, one (1) FT2 faculty, as well as a Scholar Award winner, a Service Award winner, and one (1) of the two (2) Teaching Award winners from the pool of Award winners over the past three (3) years. A representative from Student Affairs, the Library, the Center for Teaching and Learning, CNS/IMS, Learning Center, ACURA/Maker Faire, and University Relations, as well as two (2) students to be appointed by the Student Government Association.

Duties:

Shall review and make recommendations in three broad areas: Community, to include speakers, colloquia, and continuous highlighting of faculty and student research and creative works; Pedagogy, to include teaching and learning, academic support, media, innovation and technology; and Awards.

Section 7. Elected Standing Committees

a. Abington College Promotion and Tenure

Chair: elected from and by the membership of the committee

Membership:

Five (5) faculty members of which three (3) are to be elected at large by tenured and tenure-line faculty and two (2) are to be appointed by the Abington College Chancellor. The committee shall include at least three (3) Professors and two (2) alternate members, one (1) at the Professor and one (1) at the Associate Professor rank. All members and alternates must be tenured and hold a rank of either Professor or Associate Professor.

Selection:

Nominations may be made by any tenured or tenure-line faculty member. Voting shall be by preferential ballot. Committee members shall be eligible for re-election for successive terms. The terms of the committee members shall be two (2) years and coincide with the academic year, with terms being staggered so that about one-half (½) of the committee will be elected each year. The terms start with the fall semester, with elections held during the preceding spring semester. The Committee shall select a chair at the first meeting of the year and notify the Senate Chair.

Duties:

Shall review the dossiers of candidates and make recommendations for promotion and tenure. The Promotion and Tenure Committee shall establish its own review procedures which must include appropriate safeguards of due process and confidentiality. The composition of the committee and its procedure are subject to review by the Provost and must conform to the current guidelines for the implementation of AC23.

b. Abington College Fixed-Term Promotion

Chair: Elected from and by the membership of the committee

Membership:

Three (3) faculty members, one (1) from each division, each to be elected by full-time, non-tenure-track faculty in their division.  Members must be full-time, non-tenure-track faculty at the 2nd rank (Associate Teaching Professor with terminal degree or Assistant Teaching Professor without terminal degree) or at the 3rd rank (Teaching Professor with terminal degree or Associate Teaching Professor without terminal degree)

Selection:

Nominations within each division may be made by any full-time, non-tenure-track faculty member in the division.  Committee members shall be eligible for re-election for successive terms.  The terms of the committee members shall be three (3) years or the time served in fulfillment of a committee vacancy.  Terms shall be staggered to ensure continuity of membership.  The terms start with the fall semester, with elections held during the preceding spring semester.  The Committee shall select a chair at the first meeting of the year and notify the Senate Chair

Duties:

Shall assess candidates for consideration for promotion and prepare letters of evaluation based on candidates’ completed dossiers.  The Fixed-Term Promotion Committee is expected to assess the review process and forward any recommendations to the Abington College Faculty Senate and Associate Dean.  Procedures of this committee must adhere to the current guidelines for the implementation of AC21

Section 8. ad hoc Committees

Committees for consideration of special issues may be established by the ACFS Chair, Faculty Senate, or Faculty Senate Council. Such committees shall remain in effect until they accomplish their charge, but in no case may such ad hoc committees remain in existence more than one (1) calendar year unless explicitly extended by the Faculty Senate or its Council.

Article III. Amendments

Amendments to the Bylaws may be adopted at any meeting of the Faculty Senate by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of those present, provided that the proposed amendment shall have been presented to the faculty at least three (3) weeks prior to that meeting and further providing that the proposed amendment has not been objected to in writing to the Faculty Senate Chair by five (5) or more faculty members since such presentation. If objection by five (5) or more faculty members has been made, the proposed amendment must be submitted to vote by the faculty. Approval by a majority of those voting by electronic ballot or mail ballot, or in a faculty meeting called by the Chair shall constitute adoption. Following approval, the amended Bylaws will be submitted by the Chair to the University Faculty Senate for ratification.


Abington College Faculty Senate Standing Rules

(ratified by Abington College Faculty, March 30, 2006)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, November 19, 2014)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, February 23, 2017)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, October 19, 2017)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, January 25, 2018)
(amended by Abington College Faculty, March 22, 2018)
(ratified by University Faculty Senate, August 28, 2018)

Article I. Procedures

Section 1. Order of Business

The order of business at a regular Faculty Senate meeting shall be as follows:

  1. Adoption of the agenda
  2. Consideration of the minutes of the preceding meeting(s)
  3. Announcements by the Chair
  4. Unfinished business
  5. New business
  6. Communications from College Administrators
    1. Chancellor
    2. Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
  7. Communications from University Faculty Senators
  8. Communications from the Student Government Association
  9. Reports from Standing Committees (6)
  10. Comments and recommendations for the good of the order

The order of business may be altered with approval of the Faculty Senate at the beginning of the meeting.

Section 2. Senate Proxies

  1. Senate proxies shall not be current voting members of the Senate.
  2. A senator who cannot attend a meeting shall notify the Chair or Executive Secretary/Treasurer prior to the meeting.
  3. The senator’s proxy shall inform the Chair or Executive Secretary/Treasurer at the beginning of the meeting.

Section 3. Reports from Ex-Officio Members

The following ex-officio members shall submit reports in writing to the Chair and Executive Secretary/Treasurer prior to each Faculty Senate meeting:

  1. Chancellor
  2. Associate Dean
  3. University Faculty Senators
  4. President of the Student Government Association

Section 4. Uniform Format for Committee Motions (adopted January 2005)

  1. Any motion from a committee to be considered by the Faculty Senate must be submitted in writing to Senate Council for inclusion in the agenda and must be the result of the referring committee’s formal vote.
  2. The motion should be submitted to Senate Council in the form that the committee wishes it to be presented to the Senate.
  3. One of the following templates from University Faculty Senate’s Guidelines for Preparing Senate Reports should be used for committee motions:
    • Advisory/Consultative Report Template
    • Informational Report Template
    • Legislative Report – Motion or Resolution Template
  4. If the committee is not unanimous in its recommendation, an indication of the minority opinion should be included (e.g., 7 yeas, 2 nays), as well as a brief explanation of the minority position.
  5. If there is more than one part to the motion, they should be itemized, and the committee should recommend whether the entire motion is to be voted upon, or whether each item should be voted upon separately (ad seriatim).
  6. Motions prepared and submitted by a committee are presumed to be seconded.

Section 5. Election Procedures (adopted February 2004)

  1. All elections administered by the Abington College Faculty Senate are to be conducted according to the election procedure below. The election administrator is the Chair-elect as dictated by the Faculty Senate constitution.
  2. All Division elections are to be conducted according to the election procedure below. In this case, for example, the election administrator may be a Division Head. (Approved by the Associate Dean on July 16, 2004.)
  3. Procedures: Electronic Voting
    1. The election administrator, in coordination with the College’s instructional designer, shall be responsible for establishing, implementing, and overseeing an accurate, anonymous, and secure mechanism for electronic voting.
    2. Electronic voting shall be open for a 72-hour period. The precise start and finish times for that voting period shall be established by the election administrator.
    3. Immediately after the voting period has expired, electronic ballots shall be tallied and reviewed by the election administrator and two independent faculty members who are not nominees or nominators. The independent faculty members shall be selected by the Senate Council.
    4. The election administrator shall announce the results immediately after the results have become available and certified as accurate by the election administrator and the two independent faculty members.
  4. Abington College Faculty Senate elections may be challenged in writing to the Chair of the Abington College Faculty Senate within one month of the announced results.

Section 6. Elections Timetable

TypeWhen*Who Nominates & VotesTermStart
Division Senators43160Division Members2 Yrs43252
Chair-Elect43160Full Time Faculty3 YrsApril 1**
P & T43160Tenured and Tenure-line Faculty2 Yrs43252
Fixed Term Promotion43160Full Time, Non-tenure-track Faculty3 Yrs43252
Ombudsperson43160Full Time Faculty3 Yrs43252
UFS SenatorsDecemberFull Time Faculty4 YrsAugust

*Elections to be conducted on or before date

**Chair-Elect functions as Co-Chair in accordance with Constitution Article III Section 8

Section 7. Conduct of Forensic Business

The Chair may call special meetings (hereinafter referred to as “forensics”) of selected members of the college community for discussions of matters deemed important to be aired in a wider forum than Senate meetings. Initiating a call for forensics may be made by the Chair, by vote of Senate Council, or at the behest of the Senate. The Chair, in consultation with Senate Council, may invite any or all members of the college community to participate in a forensic. Minutes of the forensic shall be kept and transmitted to the chair. There will be no voting during a forensic.

Section 8. Faculty Awards Timetable and Procedures

Each year, six (6) faculty awards are given:

  • Special Recognition
  • Outstanding Faculty Advising/Mentoring Award
  • Outstanding Teaching Award (non-Tenure)
  • Outstanding Teaching Award (Tenure)
  • Award for Distinguished Faculty Service
  • Scholar Award

The Awards Subcommittee of the Academic Environment Committee will consist of the previous year’s Faculty Senate award winners in addition to at least one (1) member of each other Division (Arts & Humanities, Science & Engineering, and Social Sciences) not represented by the winner, as well as the Chair/Co-chairs of the Academic Environment Committee.  All evaluators will serve to assess at least three (3) different awards, but not on any award that they are either nominated for or have nominated a potential recipient for in that particular academic year.  The process adheres to the following timetable.

Process ItemTime Line
Meeting of the awards subcommittee of Academic Environment Committee Early February
Distribution of nominations formsEarly-Med February
Nomination forms dueLate February
Subcommittee checks nominee eligibilityEarly March
Subcommittee requests supplementary/portfolio materials for nominationEarly March
Supplementary/portfolio materials dueEarly March
Award Deliberation and selectionMid-March
Senate Chair and Associate Dean notified of winnersMid-Late March
Order checks and plaquesLate March
Awards CeremonyMid-Late April

a. Distribution of the Nomination Forms

  • Campus clubs help with distribution
  • The call for nominations is distributed through the following channels:
    • Abington, Faculty, and Student email lists
    • Library front desk
    • Splash screen on campus monitors
    • Link on Abington web site

b. The awards are presented during the faculty recognition reception. The awards are announced at commencement and published in the commencement program.

Section 9.  New Program Development Procedure

  1. A new academic program may be proposed by administration, faculty, or staff. To initiate this process, a form is submitted through email to the Chancellor, Associate Dean, Division Head(s), and the Abington Curricular Affairs Committee (ACAC) Chair(s). This form gives a brief description of the proposed program and a rationale for its development

    New Program Form
    Abington College New Academic Program (Major or Minor)
    Proposal Title
    Proposed by ________________
    Division(s) __________________
    Date ________________________
    Description of Proposed Program
    Rationale for the Proposal
    Include information relevant to the program (e.g. prior discussion with department faculty and/or administration, knowledge of similar programs at other institutions, suggestions for additional action, etc.)



  2. It will be the responsibility of the Associate Dean, either directly or through designation to the appropriate Division Head, Program chair, or faculty member, to investigate the feasibility of the proposal. Important to this feasibility study will be discussions with all affected faculty, facilities evaluation, market evaluation, and costing.
  3. If the proposal receives support of all parties, it will be the responsibility of the Associate Dean, either directly or through a designated Division Head, to use the form and the feasibility study to prepare a brief Prospectus document, which is designed to alert other units in the university that a program is being planned at Abington. The Associate Dean brings the Prospectus to ACAC, then to the Administrative Council for Undergraduate Education (ACUE). While ACAC and ACUE may provide feedback on the proposed program, it is not voted on at the Prospectus level.
  4. Once the Prospectus review is completed, it will be the responsibility of the Associate Dean, either directly or through a designated Division Head, to appoint a working group of faculty to develop a full curricular proposal that follows the guidelines established by the University Faculty Senate Committee on Curricular Affairs(SCCA) and the Office of the Vice Provost for Commonwealth Campuses(OVPCC). It is advantageous to involve the chair(s) and relevant members of ACAC in the discussion while designing the proposal. Should the faculty and administration fail to reach consensus, additional consultation should ensue in an effort to reach a common ground.
  5. The completed proposal will be submitted to ACAC for initial review prior to the dissemination of the proposal for university-wide consultation. The committee may accept, reject, or recommend changes to the program, as well as make recommendations regarding specific consultation sources. If the committee recommends changes to the proposal or rejects it, additional consultation should ensue in an effort to reach a common ground.
  6. Using psu.edu, the ACAC-accepted proposal should be submitted. Consultation responses are collected through curriculum.psu.edu. Assistance on consultation can be found in the University Faculty Senate’s Guide to Curricular Procedures.
  7. The Division Head(s) should be consulted throughout the process but should withhold final sign off until it is clear that all consultations are complete and no further changes are required as once they indicate approval in the system the proposal can no longer be changed.
  8. The Division(s) approved proposal with completed consultation will be submitted to ACAC for the college-level decision. The committee may accept, reject, or recommend further changes to the program resulting from specific consultation action and changes made as a result of consultation action. If the committee recommends changes to the proposal or rejects it, additional consultation should ensue in an effort to reach a common ground.
  9. Upon approval from ACAC, the College’s SCCA representative and the College’s Associate Dean shall indicate their approval in curriculum.psu.edu. The Associate Dean shall be responsible for forwarding the proposal to the University Curricular Affairs Committee following the Senate Office’s procedures.

Section 10. Co-sponsored Committees (Developed by the Chair and Chair-elect of the Faculty Senate in consultation with the Chancellor of Abington College; adopted November 2003)

  1. Any group that is co-sponsored by the Faculty Senate will be charged by representatives of the co-sponsoring bodies.
  2. The charge will be jointly created by representatives of the co-sponsoring bodies.
  3. This co-sponsored group (committee, task force, etc.) will maintain open communication with all sponsoring bodies.
  4. Progress reports, draft reports and the final report are to be transmitted to representatives of all sponsoring bodies. The officers of the Faculty Senate will be the representatives who will review these documents on behalf of the Faculty Senate.
  5. The frequency of and deadlines for progress reports will be specified in the charge.
  6. The Faculty Senate Officers will determine an appropriate and relevant procedure for reviewing all reports, and will determine the need for dissemination to the Senate Council, Senate committees, or to the entire Senate.
  7. A final report which may include one or more proposals will be submitted to the Faculty Senate in the form of one or more motions to be approved by the Senators. If the report is just an informational report it will be posted with the minutes of the meeting in which it is presented.
  8. After the vote (or votes), the final report will be considered accepted, with the exception of those motions which have not passed.

Section 11. Faculty Nominees to Non-Senatorial Groups

Faculty members who are recommended by the Faculty Senate to serve on non-senatorial committees, task forces, and other groups shall report actions of these bodies to the Faculty Senate Chair.

Section 12. Glossary of Terms Defining Faculty Classifications

 

  • Tenured: Full-time professor, associate professor, or assistant professor who has received tenure. Responsibilities include teaching, service, and research. (a continuing appointment)
  • Tenure-track: Full-time associate or assistant professor faculty with a probationary appointment intended to lead to tenure. Responsibilities include teaching, service, and research. (a continuing appointment)
  • Teaching Professor: 3rd rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty possessing a terminal degree.
  • Associate Teaching Professor: 2nd rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty possessing a terminal degree; or 3rd rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty without a terminal degree.
  • Assistant Teaching Professor: 1st rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty possessing a terminal degree or 2nd rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty without a terminal degree.
  • Lecturer: 1st rank full-time fixed term (or non-tenure-line standing) faculty without a terminal degree
  • Fixed Term I (FT I): Full-time faculty with a one-year contract. Responsibilities include teaching and
  • Fixed Term Multiyear (FT M): Full-time faculty with a multiyear contract (usually 3 to 5). Responsibilities include teaching and
  • Fixed Term II (FT II): Part-time faculty with a one-semester Responsibilities include only teaching.
  • Full-time: Faculty with a full course load as assigned by supervisor. Includes all tenured and tenure-track professors, non-tenure line standing faculty and all FT I and FT M
  • Part-time: Fixed Term II
  • Continuing: Tenured and tenure-track faculty, and non-tenure-line standing faculty

Article II. Faculty Advisory Committee to the Chancellor

 

Section 1. Description

The Faculty Advisory Committee to the Chancellor, hereinafter referred to as the Faculty Advisory Committee (FAC), shall be an instrumentality of the Faculty Senate without legislative authority. It shall represent the Faculty Senate, and thus the faculty at large, as an advisory and consultative body to the Chancellor of Abington College. It shall provide advice and consultation to the Chancellor and Associate Dean on matters of general concern to the faculty pertaining to the welfare and effectiveness of the College. (See Article I of the Constitution.) Topics for discussion may include any matter initiated either by the Chancellor or the committee. By mutual agreement, discussions may be deemed confidential. When appropriate, the Chair shall report to Senate Council and at Faculty Senate meetings.

Section 2. Membership

The Faculty Advisory Committee shall include:

  1. Chair of the Faculty Senate
  2. Chair-Elect of the Faculty Senate
  3. Past-Chair of the Faculty Senate
  4. Executive Secretary/Treasurer of the Faculty Senate
  5. Chancellor
  6. Associate Dean for Academic Affairs

Article III. Funds Management

Allocation of funds from the Faculty Senate budget will be determined by the Chair with the advice of Council.

Article IV. Non-Abington College Senate Elections Conducted by the Faculty Senate

Section 1. University Faculty Senators from Abington College

The Faculty Senate shall administer the election for University Faculty Senators as stipulated by the rules of the University Faculty Senate.

Section 2. Abington College Ombudsperson

  1. There will be one elected ombudsperson and one alternate ombudsperson.
  2. Nominations may be made by any full-time Abington College faculty member. There must be at least two nominees.
  3. The ombudsperson must be a tenured, full-time Abington College faculty member. The faculty member may be from any rank and any discipline.
  4. Only full-time Abington College faculty are eligible to vote.
  5. The term of office for the elected ombudsperson shall be three years. The runner-up with the most votes will serve as an alternate.
  6. The elected ombudsperson shall be eligible for re-election.
  7. All faculty members and administrators may use the services of the ombudsperson or the alternate ombudsperson

Section 3. Timetable for Non- Senate Elections

TypeWhen*Who Nominates & VotesTermStart
Ombudsperson1 MarchFull Time Faculty3 YearsJune 1
UFS SenatorsDecemberFull Time Faculty4 YearsAugust

*Elections to be conducted on or before date

Article V. Amendments

Amendments to the Standing Rules may be adopted at any meeting of the Faculty Senate by a majority vote of those Senators present, provided that the amendments have been presented in writing in the agenda for that meeting. Following approval, the amended Standing Rules will be submitted by the Chair to the University Faculty Senate for ratification.

Article VI. Revisions

The governance documents for the Abington College Faculty Senate shall be reviewed for possible revisions every five years (2017, 2022, 2027, etc.).