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College Governance

CHABSS Bylaws 11/09/23

Bylaws for College Shared Governance

The bylaws for governance of the College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences were adopted in spring 2012. Revisions were made in May 2018, February 2020, May 2021, December 2022, May 2023, and November 2023.

I. Philosophy

The College of Humanities, Arts, Behavioral and Social Sciences (CHABSS) is committed to the principle of shared governance by the faculty and the Dean. The governance structure shall encourage a balance of responsibility, authority, and accountability with the goals of maintaining and developing the viability and diversity of College programs and promoting excellence in undergraduate and graduate education. College governance shall operate in a spirit of fair play, mutual respect, and commitment to the College community, and with elected representation to reflect the perspectives of academic discipline. The faculty, with appropriate input from staff and students, shall assume primary responsibility for developing, and recommending to the Dean, College academic policy, procedure, allocation of instructional and support positions, and curriculum. It is understood that the Dean will consult regularly and meaningfully with the faculty via the regular governance process, described in this document, about College budgets. On those occasions when the Dean chooses not to follow a recommendation put forth by the faculty or any of the governance committees, the Dean shall strive to clearly communicate their reasons for doing so. College governance shall be consistent with the University and College Mission Statements and the Memorandum of Understanding between the California Faculty Association and the Trustees of the California State University. 

II. College Faculty Meetings

  1. The faculty shall carry out its duties in formulating policies and establishing
    procedures through college faculty meetings and through participation in standing committees (see below). As appropriate, policies related to specified aspects of the College's educational program are to be implemented (administered) by the Dean, academic programs, institutes, centers, program directors, and department chairpersons.
  2. College faculty meetings are essential to the effective governance of the College. At these meetings, faculty will be informed of the business and decisions being transacted in the committees. Of equal importance is the opportunity for faculty to comment upon and give advice to the standing committees and the Dean, who will give brief reports at each meeting, on a regular and formal basis. In addition, the college faculty meetings will be the place where members of the College can call for discussion of College business falling outside the regular business of the committees.
  3. College faculty meetings shall be held at least two times a year.
  4. Given the expectation of routine service, all members of the tenure-track faculty are expected to attend regular and special college faculty meetings, which will be public. Lecturer faculty members are welcome to attend regular and special college faculty meetings. The privilege of voting at college faculty meetings shall extend to all persons holding tenure-line appointments and lecturers on contracts of one year or more.
  5. The Chair of the Faculty will have the responsibility for setting meeting dates, in consultation with the Dean’s office and faculty.
  6. The presiding officers of the college faculty meetings will be a Chair and a Secretary who are elected no later than May 1, with terms of two years that are staggered, if possible. Because tenure-line faculty are required to take leadership in service, the presiding officers shall be nominated from among the tenure-line faculty. All faculty may vote in the election. The Chair shall conduct the meetings and the Secretary shall be responsible for keeping and publishing minutes of the meetings. The Chair may call a special college faculty meeting at their discretion. Clerical support to the Chair and Secretary will be provided by the Office of the Dean.
  7. Recommendations from standing committees need not be approved by the faculty before being forwarded to the Dean. However, the voting members of the faculty are free to call for a vote of endorsement, dissatisfaction, or modification of any aspect of committee business, as well as matters falling outside the regular business of the committees, at any college faculty meeting. If there is cause for a vote during the meeting the Chair shall have the authority to postpone the vote to allow more deliberation or input. The opinions and votes of the faculty will be reflected in the minutes of the meetings.
  8. Bylaws Changes
    1. Changes to the bylaws shall be proposed by the CCC or by the Dean.
    2. The proposal must be in writing and distributed to the faculty ten days prior to a regular college faculty meeting.
    3. The Chair of the Faculty shall ask the Dean’s office to prepare and distribute a ballot no later than two weeks after the meeting. A simple majority of all eligible tenure-line faculty who cast votes in the election and a simple majority of all lecturer faculty on contracts of one year or more who cast votes in the election must vote in favor of the proposed change(s) for the change(s) to be implemented.

III. College Coordinating Committee (CCC)

  1. The CCC shall facilitate communication among the standing committees.
  2. The CCC shall meet in the spring of each year to evaluate the extent to which planning documents such as the current strategic plan and three-year rolling plans are aligning with resource allocations and College priorities, and to advise the Dean accordingly, regarding budget allocations in the upcoming year. The Dean shall provide the CCC with information necessary to make these evaluations and recommendations.
  3. The CCC shall include the following voting members: the standing committee chairs, the Chair of the Lecturer Advisory Committee, the Chair and the Secretary of the Faculty, and one department chair. The department chair representative shall be elected in the spring of the preceding year by the department chairs and shall serve a one-year term. The Dean and Associate Deans of the College shall be non-voting members.
  4. Meetings of the CCC are called by the Chair of the Faculty.
  5. Agendas of the four standing committees shall be discussed at a meeting of the CCC in the pre-instructional or early weeks of the fall semester. The discussion will be aimed at considering issues the College expects to face in the upcoming academic year, and adding them to standing or ad hoc committee agendas as needed. Additions to the committee agendas may be proposed at any time during the academic year by the Dean, by the CCC, or by faculty at College faculty meetings.
  6. In addition to its annual meetings each fall and spring, the Chair of the Faculty may convene the CCC as needed, in order to coordinate the flow of business among committees and enhance communication between committees, the administration, and the faculty. Also, the Dean may request that the Chair convene the CCC to discuss matters pertinent to business carried out in the standing or ad hoc committees.

IV. Standing Committees

  1. Composition and Elections
    1. Each year, elections for TT committee representatives will be held no later than May 1 to select representatives to serve in the following academic year. Lecturer seat elections will be held no later than September 15.
    2. For each of the standing college committees, two tenure-line faculty members shall be elected from each of the two divisions of the College (Humanities and Arts, and Behavioral and Social Sciences). All tenure-line faculty in the division will vote on their slate of nominees; faculty may vote in only one division.

      The divisions are:
      • Division 1: Behavioral and Social Sciences (BSS): American Indian Studies; Anthropology; Communication; Economics; Environmental Studies; Ethnic Studies; Global Studies; Liberal Studies; Political Science; Psychology; Sociology; Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies.
      • Division 2: Humanities and Arts (HA): Art, Media, & Design; Dance;
        History; Literature and Writing Studies; Modern Language Studies; Music; Philosophy; Theatre.
    3. The fifth seat on all standing committees will be reserved for a faculty member elected at-large from the faculty. All tenure-line faculty, across divisions, will vote in the at-large elections for each committee. No faculty member may stand for election in both a divisional race and one of the at-large races for the same committee. The at-large positions may not be filled by a faculty member from a department represented via any of the divisional seats. (In case of such duplication, the at-large seat in question would go to the next runner-up from a department/program not already seated on the committee via the divisional elections.)
    4. Tenure-line faculty will be elected for two-year terms that are staggered to
      maintain continuity across years.
    5. The sixth voting seat on each standing committee is reserved for one at-large lecturer. All lecturer faculty are eligible to nominate and vote on their slate of nominees, but only lecturers on one-year appointments or above are eligible to be nominated. Nominations for the at-large lecturer positions may not be from a department represented via any of the TT seats on that particular committee.
    6. If elected, lecturers will be compensated for their service work on an annual basis. Lecturer faculty will be elected for two-year terms.
    7. In the event that there is a tie among candidates, the CCC shall select a winner by lot.
    8. Write-in candidates shall be allowed for seats with no nominees. The CCC shall review and provide final confirmation of write-in candidates. In the event of multiple eligible write-ins, the CCC shall select a winner by lot. 
    9. In committee votes which take the form of approve/oppose/abstain, a motion is approved with a majority vote. Should a vote end in a tie, the committee can choose to bring the item up for another vote after further conversation.
    10. The Dean’s office shall select one or more representatives (i.e., the Dean and/or one or more Associate Deans) to attend standing committee meetings in order to provide information and advice relevant to the topics at hand. In consideration of the importance of the balance of power implied by shared governance, the Dean’s office committee members are non-voting.
    11. Because tenure-line faculty are required to take leadership in service, the
      standing committees shall select their chairs from among the tenure-line faculty representatives.
    12. Committees will establish a regular meeting time for the upcoming semester before the prior term ends. Terms of office begin the first day of the fall semester.
    13. If a seat on a committee is not filled after the spring (or fall, in the case of
      lecturers) election, or if a committee member cannot fulfill their term of office, the resulting vacancy shall be filled by a replacement member from the same constituency as the original member. The first eligible faculty member to volunteer shall be seated after the CCC has reviewed and confirmed their self-nomination. The offices of the Secretary or Chair of the Faculty, if vacant or vacated, shall also be filled using this procedure.
    14. The Faculty Chair shall call for, and the Dean’s office staff shall carry out, the elections.
    15. Under very rare circumstances a constituency may wish to recall its
      representative to a committee. A petition to recall a committee member may be initiated by a member of the relevant constituency. If 25% of the constituents sign the petition, a recall ballot shall be prepared by the Dean and distributed to all members of the constituency. Recall must be favored by a majority of the eligible constituents.
  2. Decolonization, Anti-Racism, Equity, and Inclusion Committee:
    1. The charge of the Decolonization, Anti-Racism, Equity, and Inclusion Committee (DAREIC) is to make recommendations to the Dean regarding policy, programs, curriculum, services, and recruitment and retention of students, faculty, and staff to obtain equitable outcomes. The DAREIC serves a crucial role by providing advice and guidance on targeted issues related to decolonization, anti-racism, equity, and inclusion,  in the college.
    2. The DAREIC shall make recommendations to the Dean regarding the CHABSS response to policies, issues, or concerns related to decolonization, anti-racism, equity, and inclusion.
    3. At the request of the Dean or at its own behest, the DAREIC may provide advice to the Dean’s Office on any matter of long-term CHABSS planning, development, and/or resource allocation, working in consultation with the other governance committees, as necessary and advisable.
    4. DAREIC will consult with and advise the other governance committees on matters related to decolonization, anti-racism, equity, and inclusion.
    5. DAREIC will disseminate information and policy updates regarding issues of decolonization, anti-racism, equity, and inclusion to the college, and will serve as a resource to college units as needed.
    6. DAREIC members are expected to attend regular meetings, the schedule and modality of which will be determined by the committee.
  3. Budget Committee
    1. The charge of the Budget Committee (BC) is to make recommendations to the dean concerning the allocation of the fiscal budget of the College.
    2. Laboratory course budgets, compensation for department chairs, course-based fees, and other short-range budget considerations will be addressed by the BC. Allocation of College funds for faculty development will also be subject to recommendation by the BC, but decisions regarding the disbursement of those funds will be handled by the Faculty Development Committee.
    3. The Dean or his/her representative shall discuss with the BC the planning, acquisition, and management of the College budget on an annual basis.
  4. Hiring and Academic Planning Committee
    1. The charge of the Hiring and Academic Planning Committee (HAPC) is to make recommendations to the Dean regarding academic planning of the College.
    2. HAPC shall consider the College strategic plans in its deliberations about academic planning.
    3. HAPC shall collaborate with the Dean's office to revise the College Academic Master Plan (CAMP) annually or when necessitated by university planning, such as the Long-range Academic Master Plan (LAMP).
    4. Each fall the HAPC shall issue a call to academic departments and programs for hiring proposals for faculty and staff.
    5. Tenure-track faculty hiring proposals will apply to hires for which searches will be conducted in the following academic year; staff hiring proposals will apply to whatever timeline is established for that cycle of recruitment.
    6. HAPC shall present the Dean a prioritized list of recommended faculty searches late in the fall semester. The list shall consider and attempt to balance the needs of all departments that submit proposals. It shall also consider and attempt to balance needs of large and small departments.
    7. HAPC shall present the Dean a prioritized list of recommended staff searches in the spring semester. The HAPC shall review staff hiring proposals in the context of department and College needs.
    8. The Dean shall respond in a timely manner to HAPC’s recommendations and meet with the committee to explain the final list of faculty and staff searches that the Dean will bring to the Provost as hiring requests.
  5. Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee
    1. The charge of the Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee (CAPC) is to make recommendations to the Dean concerning curriculum and academic policy.
    2. The CAPC shall call for, review, and make written recommendations regarding all proposals for new departments, programs, centers/institutes, majors/minors, courses, and substantive course changes.
    3. The CAPC shall strive to coordinate its efforts with University Curriculum Committee's requirements and deadlines.
    4. The CAPC shall receive from the College community requests for information or clarification of existing University or College policies regarding issues of academic policy.
  6. Faculty Development Committee
    1. The charge of the Faculty Development Committee (FDC) is to make recommendations to the Dean concerning faculty development policies, grants, awards and related activities, and to develop or revise, as necessary, the College RTP policy and procedure.
    2. The FDC shall promote and establish the generation of resources and opportunities on behalf of faculty development and call for applications for intra-College grants in support of teaching, scholarly/creative activity, and service. 
    3. The FDC shall review and evaluate intra-College grant applications and shall recommend the names of awardees to the Dean.
    4. The FDC shall develop and maintain clearly articulated, published standards for teaching, scholarly/creative activity, and service for use in the College retention, tenure, and promotion evaluation process and shall do so with consideration of University RTP policies and procedures.
    5. The FDC shall review and give feedback to departments regarding proposed departmental RTP standards.
    6. The FDC is responsible for planning the Victor Rocha Lecture Series. Nominations will be solicited from the campus community and speakers will be selected at least every two years by the FDC in consultation with Professor Rocha or his designee.
    7. The FDC shall consider issues that affect the well-being and success of faculty, including issues related to inclusion and equity in faculty development.
    8. The FDC shall, as needed, put forward initiatives and policies that enhance the effectiveness of faculty in our College.
  7. Ad Hoc Committees
    1. The Dean may ask the Chair of the Faculty to convene the College Coordinating Committee for purposes of discussing the possible need for ad hoc committees (e.g., task forces). Ad hoc committees would deal with matters that relate to governance but arise outside of regular committee business.
    2. The CCC shall either appoint members to the ad hoc committee under discussion or shall arrange for the election of representatives to the ad hoc committee.