Thursday, March 31, 2005


For those of you who are fortunate enough not to need to know about the American Association of University Professors' Policy and Documents Report, i.e., the AAUP Redbook, it is the authoritative source on sound academic practice. Recently, this passage has come to my attention:
The role of the faculty in the selection of an administrator other than a president should reflect the extent of legitimate faculty interest in the position. In the case of an academic administrator whose function is mainly advisory to a president or whose responsibilities do not include academic policy, the faculty's role in the search should be appropriate to its involvement with the office. Other academic administrators, such as the dean of a college or a person of equivalent responsibility, are by the nature of their duties more directly dependent upon faculty support. In such instances, the composition of the search committee should reflect the primacy of faculty interest, and the faculty component of the committee should be chosen by the faculty of the unit or by a representative body of the faculty. The person chosen for an administrative position should be selected from among the names submitted by the search committee. The president, after fully weighing the views of the committee, will make the final choice. Nonetheless, sound academic practice dictates that the president not choose a person over the reasoned opposition of the faculty.
I cannot say why this is noteworthy except to note that the highlighted portions could be especially important for a college conducting a job search for a dean of the college.


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