Governance Documents

Faculty Constitution

Approved October 10, 2021

Article I

The Faculty

I. Section 1

The Faculty of Reed College shall consist of academic members and administrative members as follows:

I.1.A. Academic members shall include: Each member of the teaching or research staff who hold academic rank, including those on visiting appointments, those on sabbatical and leave, and those emeritus faculty teaching during the current academic year. "Academic rank" means the rank of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, or Professor.

I.1.B. Administrative members shall include:

I.1.B.1. The President, Dean of the Faculty, Vice Presidents, Librarian, Registrar, Chief Information Officer, Dean for Institutional Diversity and Associate Dean of the Faculty.
I.1.B.2. Each member appointed to the Faculty with the title of Assistant Director, Associate Director or Director, including those on "Acting" or "Visiting" appointments.
I.1.B.3. Administrative officers appointed to membership in the Faculty by the President with the approval of the Committee on Advancement and Tenure for one-year terms that shall not be extended except after discussion with the Faculty.

I. Section 2

Unless otherwise specified,

I.2.A. "Faculty" and "Faculty members" when used with reference to the operations, rights, and responsibilities of the collective group, shall mean both academic and administrative members, and

I.2.B. "Faculty member" when used with reference to the rights, privileges, appointments, academic tenure, etc. of individuals, means an academic member.

I. Section 3

The Faculty, in cooperation with the President and the Dean of the Faculty as Chief Academic Officer, is charged by the Board of Trustees with the fundamental responsibility for the formulation, revision, and continuous review of educational policy. The Board of Trustees shall make no alterations in the basic educational policy of the College without a prior and full review by the Faculty.

I. Section 4

The President shall appoint all committees of the Faculty, except those otherwise provided for in this Constitution or the Faculty Bylaws. He or she may assign to appointive committees individuals who are not members of the Faculty.

I. Section 5

The Faculty shall determine the time for holding regular Faculty meetings. A special meeting may be called by the President, by the Committee on Advancement and Tenure, by the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning, or by any fifteen members of the Faculty, at any time. Written notice stating the time and place and the business to be considered shall be given at least 48 hours in advance of any special meeting.

I. Section 6

The President with the approval of the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning shall annually or semi-annually appoint a Clerk of the Faculty. The Clerk shall keep minutes of all Faculty meetings and distribute them regularly to all members of the Faculty including those on leaves of absence and sabbatical.

I. Section 7

One-half of those academic faculty who are tenured or on the tenure track and are not on Sabbatical or other leaves of absence during the semester in question, partial or otherwise, shall constitute a quorum for the conduct of all business at Faculty meetings other than taking any action for which the vote of a larger percentage is required. What constitutes a quorum will be tallied for each semester on the first day of classes.

Article II

The President

II. Section 1

As specified in the Bylaws of the Reed Institute, the President of Reed College is the chief executive officer of the College. He or she is appointed by the Board of Trustees and holds office at the pleasure of the Board. He or she is selected from the nominee or nominees of a special search committee appointed by the Chair of the Board of Trustees and including equal numbers of Faculty and Trustee members, plus the Chair of the Board ex officio. The Committee on Advancement and Tenure, after discussion with the Faculty, will present nominations to the Chair for such Faculty membership on the Search Committee.

II. Section 2

If there is a vacancy in the office of President, the Board of Trustees may appoint an Acting President, after receiving the advice of the Committee on Advancement and Tenure. During his or her term in office, an Acting President carries out the duties of President unless limited in specific ways by action of the Board.

II. Section 3

The President may receive tenure as part of their appointment, subject to a positive recommendation by CAT. If tenure is granted, this shall be considered an addition to the regular FTE allocation for the college. This additional FTE will therefore not pre-empt any existing FTE assignments.

II. Section 4

The President is directly responsible to the Board of Trustees. He or she recommends the appointment, promotions, salaries, academic tenure, and other conditions of employment for the members of the Faculty and for administrative officers. Within budgetary and other limitations set by the Board or Executive Committee, he or she employs other required staff members of the College. He or she recommends budgets for the management and operation of the College, and he or she is responsible for sound financial conduct of the College. He or she reports on the state of the College and makes recommendations on desirable changes or clarifications of policy at each regular meeting and at appropriate special meetings of the Board.

II. Section 5

The President is the presiding officer of the Faculty and the representative of the Faculty to the Board.

Article III

The Dean of the Faculty

III. Section 1

The Dean of the Faculty shall be the Chief Academic Officer of the College, and in the absence of the President, assumes the role of chief executive officer of the College. The Dean of the Faculty shall be appointed by the President from the recommendations of a search committee appointed by the President on recommendation of the CAT. If there is a vacancy in the office of Dean, the President may appoint an Acting Dean, after receiving the advice of the Committee on Advancement and Tenure. An Acting Dean may serve until a Dean has been appointed pursuant to the second sentence of this section.

III. Section 2

The Dean of the Faculty shall be a tenured member of the Faculty or shall be appointed to a regular faculty position and considered for tenure no later than immediately following his/her third semester of service as Dean of the Faculty. If tenure is granted, this shall be considered an addition to the regular FTE allocation for the college. This additional FTE will therefore not pre-empt any existing FTE assignments. If the Dean of the Faculty does not receive tenure, his or her term as Dean of the Faculty will conclude with the end of the academic year following the negative tenure decision.

III. Section 3

As Chief Academic Officer, the Dean of the Faculty is the representative of the Faculty to the President, serves as Chair of the CAPP, ex officio non-voting member of the CAT, and such other committees as the President shall direct. He or she is a member of the President’s Executive Staff with standing equal to that of the rank of Vice President, and participates in meetings as representative of the Faculty and Chief Academic Officer, and participates as representative of the College and the Faculty to external constituencies as the President directs. Working with the President and the Faculty (consistent with Article I, Section 3), and the CAPP (consistent with Article IX), he or she shall have administrative and planning responsibility for educational policy and the academic program. In addition, the Dean of the Faculty shall have administrative and planning responsibility for Faculty personnel policy and processes working with the CAT (consistent with Article VII). The Office of the Dean of the Faculty shall provide staff assistance and support to the CAT, the CAPP and other College committees as the President directs.

III. Section 4

The Dean of the Faculty serves at the pleasure of the President. An evaluation of the performance of the Dean of the Faculty in his or her role as Chief Academic officer shall be conducted by the CAT at the end of the first year of service as Dean of the Faculty, and at least every two years after that.

Article IV

Faculty Appointments, Promotions, and Granting of Academic Tenure

IV. Section 1

The mission of Reed College is to provide a serious and systematic program of undergraduate education in the liberal arts and sciences. Academic Faculty at all ranks are appointed initially on the basis of their potential for outstanding contribution to this goal, based on the criteria of Article IV, Section 2. Academic Faculty are evaluated for advancement (continuation of appointment, promotion in rank and salary, or granting of academic tenure) on the basis of demonstrated achievement and promise of continuing contribution to this goal, based on the criteria of Article IV, Section 2.

IV. Section 2

The criteria for Academic Faculty appointment and advancement are listed below, in rank of order of importance. Demonstrated achievement in both teaching and scholarship as defined below is expected of all Reed faculty. Community service is a secondary consideration; high levels of achievement on this criterion alone are not sufficient for advancement. However, unsatisfactory community service can be sufficient for denial of advancement. All of the criteria below require performance conducted in a professional manner.

IV.2.A. Effectiveness of teaching, including, as appropriate, conference leadership, lecturing, laboratory teaching, studio teaching, curriculum development, thesis advising and general academic advising.
IV.2.B. Scholarship, defined as knowledge and understanding of, and active engagement with, the materials of one's discipline and, where appropriate, of related disciplines.
IV.2.C. Service to the Reed community (and to external communities where relevant) through department and committee work, or through activity that fosters and enhances the quality of the intellectual community.

 

Candidates who have not completed the terminal degree in their field at the time of tenure decision shall not normally be eligible for tenure.

IV. Section 3

An academic member of the Faculty on regular appointment shall be notified whether or not he or she has been granted tenure at the end of his or her probationary period. The normal probationary period shall be six years of appointment (either tenure track or visiting) at Reed College at the rank of Assistant Professor or higher. The probationary period must include at least eight semesters of full-time teaching at Reed that have been completed prior to the semester in which the CAT tenure evaluation occurs. If at least eight semesters of full-time teaching at Reed have not been completed prior to the semester in which the tenure evaluation is scheduled to occur, the probationary period will be extended – hence the tenure evaluation delayed – so as to permit the completion of the required number of semesters.

IV.3.A. For faculty who, prior to joining the Reed Faculty, have held a full-time teaching appointment at a college or university that awards a baccalaureate or higher degree, the normal probationary period may be reduced by one year, and the full-time teaching requirement reduced by two semesters, for each year of prior full-time teaching, except that in no case will a tenure evaluation occur until the faculty member has completed at least four semesters of full-time teaching at Reed.
IV.3.B. For faculty who have not held a previous full-time teaching appointment at a college or university that awards a baccalaureate or higher degree but who have held, at such a college or university, either one or more previous full-time full-year post-doctoral research appointments or one or more previous full-time full-year appointments involving a combination of teaching and post-doctoral research, the normal probationary period may be reduced by one year and the full-time teaching requirement reduced by two semesters.
IV.3.C. For faculty who have held a previous full-time teaching appointment at a college or university that awards a baccalaureate or higher degree and have also held either one or more previous full-time full-year post-doctoral research appointments or one or more previous full-time full-year appointments involving a combination of teaching and post-doctoral research, the normal probationary period may be reduced by one year for each year of such full-time appointment, except that in no case will a tenure evaluation occur until the faculty member has completed (1) at least four semesters of full-time teaching at Reed if the previous experience includes two or more years of full-time teaching or (2) at least six semesters of full-time teaching at Reed if the previous experience includes one year of full-time teaching.
IV.3.D. The decision as to whether or not to reduce the probationary period and the full-time teaching requirement in accordance with Sections A, B or C must be communicated by the faculty member to the Dean of the Faculty no later than during the semester immediately following the faculty member’s first full evaluation (which itself normally occurs in the Fall semester of the second year of the faculty member’s appointment).
IV.3.E. The normal probationary period of six years may be extended by one year for each parental leave that a faculty member requests and receives in accordance with college policy. In such cases, the decision as to whether or not to extend the probationary period must be communicated by the faculty member to the Dean of the Faculty as part of the formal leave request.

IV. Section 4

A temporary Academic Faculty appointment, such as for sabbatical or leave replacements or for positions that are not funded beyond a fixed term, shall be designated as "visiting."

IV.4.A. Full-time or nearly full-time appointments for visiting faculty members shall not exceed five years. There is no specific limitation on the duration of appointments for visiting faculty members that are not full-time or nearly full-time appointments.
IV.4.B. Faculty members on visiting appointments shall not be considered for a tenure track appointment, except on the basis of a full national search or in accord with policies explicitly adopted by the Faculty.

IV. Section 5

The evaluation of performance of an Administrative member of the Faculty and the assessment of a candidate for appointment to such a position shall take account of present and potential effectiveness of his or her relationship with other Faculty members and of his or her effectiveness as a member of that body. In such evaluation and assessment, the President shall seek advice of the Committee on Advancement and Tenure.

IV. Section 6

Procedures for appointment and advancement of the Academic Faculty shall be agreed upon by the President, the Committee on Advancement and Tenure, the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning (where appropriate), and the Faculty, and shall be specified in the Faculty Handbook.

Article V

Academic Freedom And Responsibility

V. Section 1

Each Faculty member has individual freedom of inquiry and expression in research, in publication, and in the teaching of his or her subjects and courses. Academic freedom and responsibility are here defined as the liberty and obligation to study, to investigate, and to discuss facts and ideas concerning all branches and fields of learning. No limitations on such freedom shall be imposed other than those required by generally accepted standards of responsible scholarship and research.

V. Section 2

When a faculty member speaks, writes, or acts as a citizen, he or she shall be free from institutional censorship or discipline, and he or she should undertake to avoid any implication that he or she is speaking on behalf of the institution.

V. Section 3

No individual shall be excluded from initial appointments to academic rank, from continuation of appointments, or from academic tenure, nor shall any individual have his or her appointment terminated before the end of his or her stated term or have his or her academic tenure terminated because of his or her views or associations.

Article VI

Termination of Appointment or Academic Tenure

VI. Section 1

Termination of the appointment of any Academic Faculty member on academic tenure, or of any other Academic Faculty member prior to the end of the term for which he or she was appointed, shall be only on the basis of:

VI.1.A. Academic cause, which means service falling significantly below the standard that the College may reasonably expect of a person holding the academic rank attained, as such standard is defined according to the criteria set forth in Article IV, Section 2.

VI.1.B. Physical or mental disability of such a nature as to produce academic cause as defined in paragraph A.

VI.1.C. Personal conduct in flagrant conflict with the purposes of teaching and scholarship.

VI.1.D. Bona fide financial exigency of the College.

VI. Section 2

The President and the Board of Trustees recognize the necessity for judgment by an Academic Faculty member's colleagues prior to a decision on termination of appointment. Proceedings to terminate an appointment shall be governed by the Faculty Rules of Procedure.

Article VII

The Committee on Advancement and Tenure

VII. Section 1

The Academic Faculty shall select annually a Committee on Advancement and Tenure. The President shall preside at Meetings of the Committee, but shall not be a member of the Committee. The Dean of the Faculty shall be an ex officio, non-voting member of the Committee. The Committee shall select from among its members a secretary who shall keep minutes of the meetings and other records, who shall preside in the absence of the President, and who shall serve as the representative of the Committee in presentations to the Faculty.

VII. Section 2

The President shall refer to the Committee for its advice on the membership of search committees and search committee recommendations and all recommendations by the President to the Board of Trustees relating to the appointment of new members or changes in title, salary or term of service of any existing member of the Faculty, including members of the Committee. The President shall also seek advice of the Committee on performance of administrative officers in their roles as Faculty members and may seek advice of the Committee on performance of other staff members of the College. The Committee shall have the responsibility for assembling and evaluating the evidence upon which its advice is based. The recommendations of the Committee and the rationales thereof shall be submitted to the President in writing.

VII. Section 3

Any action taken by the President at a time when the Committee cannot meet on a matter that would normally come before the Committee shall be reported promptly to the Committee.

VII. Section 4

If a majority of the Committee disagrees with a recommendation by the President to the Board of Trustees, the Committee may refer the matter to the Appeals and Review Committee. The Committee, the President, and the affected faculty member may submit written explanations of their respective positions to the Appeals and Review Committee.

VII. Section 5

Any faculty member shall have the right to present to the Committee and the President a written objection to any decision affecting his or her employment status. If the matter is not satisfactorily resolved, he or she may refer the matter to the Appeals and Review Committee, to which he or she may present a written statement. The Appeals and Review Committee shall respond in writing.

Article VIII

The Appeals and Review Committee

VIII. Section 1

VIII.1.A. The Appeals and Review Committee as established under the bylaws of the Reed Institute consists of ten members: four Trustees appointed by the chair of the Board of Trustees, four members of the Academic Faculty elected by the Faculty, and the chair of the Board and the President ex officio. The Committee chooses its own chair. The Committee meets on the call of the President or upon the written request of two or more members. The Office of the Dean of the Faculty, and where appropriate the Office of the President and College Relations, provide administrative support to the Committee.
VIII.1.B. The Appeals and Review Committee shall consider appeals concerning tenure decisions and tenure-track reappointment decisions. The committee shall also consider any other matters referred to it by the Board of Trustees, the President, the Faculty, the Committee on Advancement and Tenure, or the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning, that in the determination of the president, have important financial or legal implications for the college. In reviewing Academic Faculty employment matters, the Committee should not re-deliberate the case but should limit its review to determining whether the original decision was reasonable insofar as it (1) was supported by substantial evidence, and/or whether there is any new evidence so substantial that the complaint should be reconsidered and (2) followed fair and adequate procedures. In making this determination, the Committee reviews the evidence in the record before the Committee on Advancement and Tenure that made the original recommendation, supplemented by any written statements that the Committee on Advancement and Tenure, the President or the affected faculty member may wish to submit.
     If supporting statements are submitted, the Committee may solicit additional information or materials to clarify particular claims made in the statements, but it will neither hold a hearing nor interview parties to the case. The Dean of the Faculty may operate in an advisory capacity to the President and the Committee on Advancement and Tenure in helping them prepare their statements. Appeals and supporting statements will be forwarded to the Committee upon receipt.
     At the conclusion of its review, the Committee makes such written reports or recommendations to the Board of Trustees, to the officers of the Board, or to the officers of the College as it deems advisable, transmitting a copy of such reports or recommendations to the Committee on Advancement and Tenure or the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning. In case of disagreement, a minority may, if they desire, submit a written minority report to the Board of Trustees or its officers or to the officers of the College, with a copy to the Committee on Advancement and Tenure or the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning.

VIII. Section 2

The four faculty members of the Appeals and Review Committee shall constitute the Faculty Appeals and Review Committee and shall have authority to consider appeals regarding any faculty employment matters (other than those matters delegated to the Appeals and Review Committee under Section 1.B) and all matters concerning the Constitution, Bylaws and Rules of Procedure of the Faculty, including, but not limited to, the oversight of elections and making recommendations relating to constitutional changes proposed by other committees. The Faculty Appeals and Review Committee shall elect a chair to oversee its proceedings at the beginning of each academic year. In reviewing Academic Faculty employment matters, the Faculty Appeals and Review Committee shall observe the same procedures and constraints as the Appeals and Review Committee. 

 

Article IX

The Committee on Academic Policy and Planning

IX. Section 1

The Academic Faculty shall select annually the members of a Committee on Academic Policy and Planning. The President and Dean of the Faculty shall be ex officio, non-voting members of this Committee. The Dean, or in his or her absence, a Chair selected by the Faculty members of the Committee from among its members, shall preside at meetings of the Committee. The Committee shall select from among its members a Secretary who shall keep minutes of the meeting and other records. The Committee may include student members with such rights and privileges as the Faculty may specify.

IX. Section 2

The President shall use the Faculty members of the Committee as a forum for testing and seeking advice about Faculty opinion on matters concerning the College and its resources. This shall include, but is not necessarily limited to, the following:

IX.2.A. The President shall seek the advice of the Committee during the preparation and review of the College budgets that are to be submitted to the Board of Trustees for approval.

IX.2.B. The President shall refer to the Committee for discussion all issues relating to the assignment of Faculty FTEs or to Faculty awards and workloads. These shall include: requests for leaves and sabbaticals; requests for replacements for leaves, sabbaticals, resignations, and retirements; assignment of temporary FTEs and new positions; approval of job descriptions for regular and temporary appointments; staffing (FTE allocations) in the humanities and other interdisciplinary programs; the appointment of faculty members to committees.

Section 3

The Committee shall work with departments and divisions in order to maintain a working knowledge of the current curriculum and to formulate and maintain a long-range plan of curricular priorities from which it may initiate and shall review all proposals relating to the curriculum and educational goals of the College, including: proposals for new programs and majors, combined programs, foreign programs; proposals for changes in departmental or divisional structure; proposals for new courses and new requirement structures; extramural grant proposals that affect the curriculum. The Committee shall report its findings and recommendations to the Faculty. The Committee shall also coordinate, with other appropriate bodies, any external reviews of the College's academic programs or departments. The committee is responsible for setting the academic calendar, upon recommendation of the Registrar.

Section 4

If a majority of the Committee disagrees with a recommendation by the President to the Board of Trustees, the committee may refer the matter to the Appeals and Review Committee, to which it may present its position in whatever way it desires.

Article X

Community Government

X. Section 1

The Faculty may join with the student body to institute procedures and set policies for such matters of joint concern as they may jointly deem appropriate and as do not infringe on the authority and responsibility of the Board of Trustees.

Article XI

Rules of Procedure and Bylaws

XI. Section 1

The attached appendix setting forth rules of procedure shall constitute a part of this Constitution.

XI. Section 2

The Faculty may adopt and amend such Bylaws and other regulations as it desires consistent with this Constitution and Rules of Procedure.

Article XII

Amendments

XII. Section 1

This Constitution, including the Rules of Procedure but excluding the Bylaws, may be amended by the following procedure:

XII.1.A. An amendment originating from the Faculty or the Board of Trustees shall be submitted to the Appeals and Review Committee for consideration and recommendation.

XII.1.B. The proposed amendment shall be submitted to the Academic Faculty for approval.

XII.1.B.1. Approval of an amendment shall require an affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the Academic Faculty who have cast ballots, provided that the number of affirmative votes is equal to at least one-half of all members of the Academic Faculty.

XII.1.B.2. Voting shall be by secret mail ballot and the voting period shall be determined by the Academic Faculty. The Dean of the Faculty shall monitor during the voting period and maintain after the voting period a record of faculty who did and did not cast ballots.

XII.1.C. The proposed amendment shall be submitted to the Board of Trustees. Upon their approval, it shall become effective. If the Faculty fails to approve, or if the President opposes an amendment, the text of the amendment and the fact of the opposition shall be submitted to the Board at one meeting and action on the amendment shall be postponed until the next regular meeting of the Board. In cases of Faculty opposition, approval shall be by two-thirds vote of all members of the Board.

XII. Section 2

Amendment of the Bylaws of the Reed Institute affecting any matter covered by Article IV or Article VII of this Constitution shall automatically amend this Constitution to conform with the Bylaws of the Reed Institute. The Board of Trustees shall not consider or adopt such an amendment to the Bylaws of the Reed Institute without first discussing the matter with the Faculty and receiving the recommendations of the Committee on Academic Policy and Planning.

Article XIII

Ratification

XIII. Section 1

This Constitution and the Rules of Procedure shall be in effect upon approval by two-thirds of the Faculty not on sabbatical or other leaves of absence, and upon approval by the Board of Trustees.