Faculty Handbook 
    Apr 16, 2024  
Faculty Handbook

Guidelines for Professional Conduct and Annual Evaluation Process

In order to pursue its purpose with vigor and implement its educational programs with optimal effectiveness, Fayetteville State University subscribes to the belief that there should be mutual understanding between administration and faculty on the question of faculty responsibilities and professional ethics. These statements are not intended to be exhaustive: Instead, they provide a framework for employment conditions and professional behaviors at Fayetteville State University. These statements also address faculty expectations for employment and obligations.

A. General Expectations of Employment

Initial faculty appointments are explained in Chapter VI of the Faculty Handbook entitled Tenure and Promotion Policies, Regulations, and Procedures of Fayetteville State University. All full-time permanent faculty members are paid on the last day of each month in twelve equal installments.

Persons on a nine-month contract who are to be employed in the summer school are issued a separate summer school contract and are paid on a separate basis.

All full-time employees are required to participate in the retirement and social security programs. Insurance plans for hospitalization, disability, or life are provided under a group plan on a voluntary basis.

If, for any reason, the person does not begin his/her term of employment as indicated on the contract, payment shall be made for the time of actual service. Also, where an employee, for any reason, ceases his/her service with the University prior to completing his/her term of employment, payment will not be made for the uncompleted term.

Fayetteville State University is committed to equality of educational opportunity and employment and does not discriminate against applicants, students, or employees based on race, color, national origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, or disability. Moreover, Fayetteville State University values diversity and actively seeks to recruit talented students, faculty and staff from diverse backgrounds. Any individual with a concern, grievance or complaint of discrimination or retaliation should utilize the internal grievance procedures available under the Code of Student Conduct, the SPA Grievance Policy, or the grievance procedures for faculty and EPA non-faculty employees.

No academic or personnel decision shall be made based on a granting or a denial of sexual favors. See Fayetteville State University’s sexual harassment policy.

It is misconduct, subject to disciplinary action, for a faculty member to neglect or abuse any instructional, research, administrative, or other University employment responsibility or authority, to evaluate or supervise any enrolled student of the institution with whom he or she has an amorous relationship or to whom he or she is related by blood, law or marriage.

No employee of Fayetteville State University should have any interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, or engage in any business or transaction, or incur any obligation of any nature, that is in substantial conflict with the proper discharge of his/her duties in the public interest.

Faculty who wish to engage in external professional activity for pay shall submit the completed form, “Notice of Intent to Engage in External Professional Activity for Pay,” to his/her department head for approval in advance of undertaking the activity. The Notice of Intent should be submitted not less than ten calendar days before the date the proposed activity is to begin.

Faculty is also required to submit a Conflict of Interest Disclosure Form annually. Consult the University’s Conflict of Interest and Commitment and External Professional Activities for Pay policy for additional details.)

The conditions of employment and the policies governing promotion and tenure of the faculty are described fully in Chapter VI, Tenure and Promotion.

B. Ethical Conduct

I. Ethical Conduct: Purpose

Ethical Conduct. Fayetteville State University (University) is committed to maintaining the highest ethical standards in all of its academic and administrative operations and in promoting such standards among its administrators, faculty, staff, and students. In so doing, the University expects all members of the University community to execute their duties and responsibilities with the highest level of integrity, objectivity, and prudence, avoiding acts or the appearance of acts that may be interpreted as improper or unethical.

The purpose of this policy [Ethical Conduct Policy] is to ensure that members of the University community are knowledgeable of the policies, regulations and laws that govern the conduct of University employees as such applies to accountability and ethical conduct. This policy applies to all University employees whether full-time, part-time, temporary or permanent.

II. Personal Conduct

Personal Conduct. Employees are expected to exhibit personal integrity and honesty in all of their actions. Personal interactions among employees and other members of the University community or members of the public should be characterized by mutual respect, openness to new ideas, collaboration, and consideration of the rights of others.

Employees are expected to report and strictly follow the University’s policy on the Misuse of State Property and notify the University’s police department and/or internal auditors when circumstances reasonably indicate fraud or theft of University funds or property has occurred. See policy on misuse of state property.

III. Contracts, Gifts, and Favors

Contracts, Gifts, and Favors. University employees shall conduct their duties with contractors, suppliers, agencies, and other persons transacting or seeking to transact business with the University in a completely impartial manner, without showing favor or preference.

IV. Confidential Information

Confidential Information. University employees shall preserve and respect the confidentiality of University records (i.e., personnel records and student educational records) and recognize the responsibilities of preserving the security and confidentiality of such records.

V. State Government Ethics Act

Certain University officials (members of the Board of Trustees, Chancellor and Vice Chancellors) are governed by the State Government Ethics Act. The purpose of the Act is to ensure that elected and appointed State agency officials exercise their authority honestly and fairly, free from impropriety, threats, favoritism, and undue influence. To this end, the State Government Ethics Act was enacted to ensure that standards of ethical conduct and standards regarding conflicts of interest are clearly established for elected and appointed State agency officials that the State continually educates these officials on matters of ethical conduct and conflicts of interest, that potential and actual conflict of interests are identified and resolved, and that violations of standards of ethical conduct and conflicts of interest are investigated and properly addressed.

VI. Consequences of Failure to Comply with the Ethical Conduct Policy

Each employee is responsible for ensuring that the employee’s own conduct and the conduct of anyone reporting to the employee fully complies with this policy. Violations will result in appropriate disciplinary action up to and including discharge from employment. Conduct representing a violation of this policy may, in some circumstances, also subject an individual to civil or criminal charges and penalties.

C. Annual Evaluation Process

I. Evaluation of Academic Administrators

Academic administrators (provost, deans, associate deans, assistant deans) will undergo an extensive evaluation every year by the faculty and staff in their respective units. The electronic survey is designed to collect data for the use of evaluating the performance of academic administrators. The information obtained through this survey will be included in the evaluation of the administrator and in the development of action plans for needed improvement. Responses are confidential and participation is voluntary. The evaluation process is initiated by the Faculty Senate Chair, Chair of the Faculty Evaluation Committee, and administered through the Office of Institutional Research and is anonymous through the random electronic numerical assignment to protect the identity of individual respondents. Each academic dean’s results shall be reported in a collective summative format for the purpose of continuous improvements and distributed to the faculty by the Provost. No individual’s personal identification will be revealed.

All evaluations must be completed no later than April 15th of each year and should be included on the academic calendar. The results of the evaluations, in order to identify strengths and areas needing improvement, shall be discussed annually with the academic administrator, in consultation with their immediate supervisor and will be a part of the academic administrator’s annual evaluation documents.

II. Faculty Evaluation of Academic Department Chairs

The academic department chair is a senior academic officer who serves at the pleasure of the Chancellor. Each Chair shall be evaluated annually based upon the results of the chairs’ evaluation instrument. Each chair shall be evaluated by the departmental faculty. The departmental faculty evaluations must be completed no later than April 15th of each year. The results of the evaluations shall be discussed annually with the department. See more information on the selection and evaluation of department chairs and school associate deans.

III. Annual Faculty Evaluation (AFE)

All full-time faculty are expected to undergo and complete the faculty annual evaluation process. The process is an annual review of the achievements and activities in the areas of research/creative activities, teaching and service. The evaluation documents the activities faculty have undertaken in their goals of being excellent teachers, outstanding scholars, and citizens of the academic community. Annual assessment in the AFE by self, peers, and the Chair of the department or Associate Dean of a school should guide faculty toward reappointment, promotion, tenure, post-tenure, and assist in deciding award recognitions.

Faculty should be aware of the following tenets of the AFE:

  1. Information submitted in the annual faculty evaluation is documented for review by peers and the Chair or Associate Dean in a hard copy portfolio or an electronic version.
  2. The current university policies and procedures for the annual evaluation and how the evaluation impacts reappointment, promotion, tenure and post-tenure.
  3. The current expectations for reappointment, promotion, tenure, post-tenure according to department, school or college.
  4. The impact the AFE has on the consideration of university awards.
  5. The Class Climate Evaluation is the university-wide accepted assessment tool. Record teaching, research, and service in Digital Measures. Login to: http://www.digitalmeasures.com/login/uncfsu/faculty/

Forms for Personnel Action Requests: The policy and required forms can be accessed HERE.

IV. Post-Tenure Review

Fayetteville State University (FSU) considers excellence in faculty performance a necessary condition for achieving the university’s mission and goals and ensuring institutional effectiveness.

Since faculty members who enjoy the benefits of permanent tenure have an especially important role in helping the university fulfill its mission, FSU has established post-tenure review to ensure ongoing faculty development and promote faculty vitality among tenured faculty. Post-Tenure Review (PTR) is a comprehensive, formal, periodic, and cumulative review that supports and encourages excellence among tenured faculty by the following:

  1. Recognizing and rewarding exemplary faculty performance;
  2. Supporting increasing effectiveness in teaching, services, and research/creative activities and ongoing contributions to the department, school/college, and university;
  3. Providing for a clear plan and timetable for improvement of the performance of faculty found deficient; and
  4. For those whose performance remains deficient, providing for the imposition of appropriate sanctions, which may, in the most severe cases, include a recommendation for discharge, consistent with the criteria and procedures established in Chapter VI of The Code of the University of North Carolina.
V. Awards and Recognitions

Departments, schools/colleges annually recognize the achievements of faculty with awards for research, scholarship, creative achievement, teaching and service.

Teacher of the Year:

Teachers of the Year are recognized annually in departments and schools. The Departmental/School Teacher of the Year portfolios are submitted to the college committees for the selection of the College Teacher of the Year. The results of the awards culminate with one member receiving the Teacher of the Year award for the entire university. Teacher of the Year is recognized during the spring commencement. More information HERE.

UNC Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching:

Each year nominations are requested for the UNC Board of Governor Award for Excellence in Teaching. The faculty member who earns this prestigious award represents Fayetteville State University as one of the faculty members in the 16 campuses in the UNC system earning this honor. Guidelines can be accessed HERE.

VI. Sponsored Faculty Development and Training

Fayetteville State University has sources to fund support for research, creative achievement and special projects for faculty. In addition, workshops are offered throughout the year to assist faculty in their teaching, service objectives, new faculty orientation, and in the area of technology.

Office of Sponsored Research and Programs

The Office of Sponsored Research & Programs serves as the university’s official coordinating office to assist faculty and staff in locating funding support for research, instruction, public service, and other special projects. Information on the Office of Sponsored Research & Programs can be accessed HERE.

Travel requests and reimbursements funded by Title III must be sent to the Title III office for approval prior to submission to the business office. Information on Title III can be accessed HERE.

Office of Faculty Development

The goal of the Office of Faculty Development is to provide faculty the support necessary to carry out their teaching, research, and service objectives. Staff is available to assist faculty, and workshops are regularly conducted throughout the academic year in the following areas: tools and methods for teaching, online teaching and distance education resources, instructional technologies, and classroom resources. Click HERE to get information on the Office of Faculty Development.

Office of Online Education

The mission of the Office of Online Education is to promote quality and integrity in the online course environment by providing high quality services and support to faculty and students. We support high quality online courses and programs that provide access and educational opportunities to students wherever they are located. Further information for Online Education can be accessed HERE.

Information Technology Services

ITS provides training in the form of workshops, one-on-one consultations, and online training. ITS provides computer instruction to members of the faculty who would like to learn new technological skills or improve their existing ones. Information Technology Services can be accessed HERE

Tuition and Fee Waiver Program

A tuition waiver may be available to full-time members of the faculty. Find the regulations HERE and the application HERE.

VII. Faculty-Student Relations
  • Freedom in the Classroom

The instructor in the classroom and in conference should encourage free discussion, inquiry, and expression. Student performance should be evaluated solely on an academic basis, not on opinions or conduct in matters unrelated to academic standards.

  • Academic Evaluation

Students should have protection through orderly procedures against prejudices or capricious academic evaluation. At the same time, they are responsible for maintaining standards of academic performance established by the instructor at the beginning of each course in which they are enrolled.

  • Improper Disclosure and Student Confidentiality

Protection against improper disclosure is an important professional obligation. Information about students’ views, beliefs, political association and grades which faculty members acquire in the course of their work as instructors, advisors, and counselors is considered confidential under the Federal Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). Anyone who improperly discloses confidential information shall be subject to disciplinary action. Information about FERPA can be accessed HERE.

  • Unrealistic and Excessive Academic Requirements

It is the responsibility of students to know the major requirements of their curriculum. If a student elects to meet the requirements of a catalogue other than the one in force at the time of original entrance, the student must meet all requirements of the catalogue elected. Students cannot be held to requirements other than those in the catalogue.

  • Student Exploitation and Student Involvement in Experiments

A student shall not be asked to serve as an assistant to a faculty member or as a subject for research except on a voluntary basis or when the research activity is directly related to the course. Whenever a student is to be a subject for research, prior approval must first be obtained from the Institutional Review Board Committee on Human Subjects. Students, graduate and undergraduate, shall not teach classes unless prior approval has been given by the academic dean of the college concerned.

D. Graduate Faculty Status

Graduate Faculty status is conferred to members of the general faculty who, by their scholarly attainments in their fields of specialization have demonstrated high competence and commitment to offer graduate instruction. Click HERE for detailed information on Graduate Faculty application guidelines, evaluation criteria and selection process. Find the APPLICATION HERE.