USC Faculty Meeting
April 1995

April 3, 1995

The Special General Faculty Meeting was called to order in the Law School Auditorium at 2:30 PM by President Palms. This meeting was called for the sole purpose of considering the proposed revisions to the tenure and promotion procedures proposed by the UCTP. The proposed revisions and a set of pre-filed amendments were distributed to the faculty in advance of this meeting. The President read the rules on page 12 of the Faculty Manual which describe which faculty were eligible to vote. Professor Lowndes F. Stephens, the Chair of UCTP moved each of the sections separately. They were discussed, amendments were proposed and the faculty voted. These minutes will first give a summary statement of what the faculty approved. Then follows a brief outline of the meeting with those amendments that were rejected indicated.

I. Procedures Approved by the Faculty

Recommendation 1 was approved with the following replacing paragraph 4.
The University is committed to achievement in all three areas of its mission. Collectively, the faculty profile of the University and of any academic unit should reflect a record of high quality teaching, research, and service, but because it is recognized that the strength of any university lies in its diversity of talents, not every faculty member need demonstrate exemplary achievements of promise in each of them. Promotion and tenure will generally be awarded as long as the evidence presented shows that a candidates research/scholarship/performance accomplishments are excellent and the candidate’s teaching and service is also strong, or if a candidate’s teaching accomplishments are excellent and the candidate’s research/scholarship/performance and service accomplishments are also sufficiently strong to meet the requirements for promotion or tenure.

It will be unusual and exceptional to award promotion and tenure merely on the basis of strong performance in only one of these areas. In every instance, the record of teaching, research (scholarship or creative performance), and service shall be thoroughly documented in compliance with UCTP guidelines, with unit criteria regarding what constitutes high quality to serve as the basis for such decisions.

Several methods of evaluation should be used, and the record should be thorough enough to indicate not just past performance, but a reasonable likelihood of continued excellence.

Recommendation 2 was approved without change.

Recommendation 3 was approved with the following change in the ending sentence of the first paragraph.

...before January 1, 1995, unless the faculty member chooses otherwise.

II. Summary of the Meeting.

Recommendation 1 was presented to the faculty. The faculty then began consideration of the 9 pre-filed amendments. Amendment #1 was rejected by the faculty. Amendment 2, which required a second, died for lack of a second. Amendment #3 was first rejected then reconsidered and approved.

Amendment 4 was then considered. A series of faculty spoke on both sides of the issue. The major question discussed is what is service and should it be a factor in tenure/promotion. Professor Eldon Wedlock (LAWS) proposed amending the amendment to make it clear that the units set the criteria. After discussion this amendment to the amendment was approved and then substituted for the original amendment. Further discussion of the proper consideration of service and what service is followed. Charles Tucker (SOCY) pointed out that service in Social and Behavior Sciences consisted of "Presentations at professional meetings, chairing, participating, panel member, organizer, speaker at conferences or seminars, book reviews, reviewing manuscripts, book proposals, NSET proposal, editing journals in the discipline, unpaid consulting where one's expertise is used, coordination officer, local arrangement chair, member of executive committee, legislative liaison for professional and learned organizations." Others presented different opinions and views of service. This amendment was approved. By this action, the faculty nullified their approval of Amendment #3 since Amendment #4 was a motion to substitute (final opinion of parliamentarian, chair, and secretary).

Amendment #5 was defeated with minimal discussion. Amendment #6 was defeated. Amendment #7 was rejected as was amendment #8. During the discussion of #8 it was pointed out that scholar and researcher are not interchangeable words, but carry quite different meanings. Amendment #9 was also defeated.

During the general discussion of the amended recommendation the words "or tenure" were added to "... meet the requirements of promotion."

A motion to table was defeated. A motion was made to reconsider the deletion of the original first sentence of paragraph 4. The motion to reconsider failed.

No additional amendments were proposed. The amended Recommendation 1 was then approved.

The faculty then considered Recommendation 2. The faculty discussed the advantages and disadvantages of including a list of possible items for consideration in the Faculty Manual. No amendments were proposed from the floor. Recommendation 2 was approved without change.

Recommendation 3 and its pre-filed amendment were then considered. The amendment was modified by adding "if it is to his or her advantage to do so" to the first paragraph. This modification to the amendment was adopted. The faculty then discussed why we would revise tenure requirements and the effects of the amendment on that effort. A motion was made to keep tenure and promotion standards for 7 years. This motion died for lack of a second. The modified pre-filed amendment was rejected by the faculty.

Professor Charles Tucker (SOCY) argued that this recommendation is in violation of AAUP principles. Professor Marco Valorta (CSCI) again proposed modifying paragraph 1 so it ends with "...unless the faculty member chooses otherwise" instead of "... if it is disadvantageous...." This amendment was approved.

No additional amendments were proposed. Recommendation 3 was then approved by the faculty.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:25.