Faculty Handbook: Academic Responsibilities of Faculty
The work of the university faculty in teaching, research and creative activity, administration, and service is professional in character and does not, therefore, conform to an exact pattern such as the eight-hour day or the forty-hour week. However, so that there may be consistency, equity, and some basis for judgment of workloads and assignments and for comparison with other institutions and state agencies, the standards summarized here will be used. The basic element of faculty work assignments is a work unit, which is based on the contact and preparation time for one class hour (50 minutes) per week for a semester or an equivalent amount of time for other kinds of scheduled activity. Included for each of these work units is the classroom contact time, the time for class preparation, grading, office hours and other work with students outside class. A minimum of twelve work units per semester constitutes the typical work assignment of a full-time faculty member. However, individual work units will vary considerably in nature (if not, theoretically, in number). Work assignments typically include assigned teaching and advising, research/scholarly/creative activities, and service or administration, in varying proportions.
Faculty members are typically expected, as part of their university service as full-time faculty members, not only to teach, to take part in research/scholarly and/or creative endeavors, and to perform academically related and public service, but also to take part in advising students and prospective students, serving on committees, and maintaining currency in their teaching and research disciplines through professional development activities. Faculty are also responsible for maintaining program currency, viability, and quality. Such activities are considered a normal part of the duties of full-time faculty, along with those activities directly linked to a particular class, and constitute a necessary part of such a work assignment. However, work units may be earned for work done beyond the minimum in any of these areas, as well as for instruction and administration. Work units are only earned for assigned responsibilities, not for work and activities undertaken at the initiative of the faculty member. A position on the staff of the university is considered to be a full-time undertaking unless it is specifically designated as part-time, and each person is expected to perform adequately the duties assigned to him or her. Any departure from a work schedule normal for the tasks assigned should receive approval from the appropriate department head and dean in advance.
Faculty members assigned to teach classes are responsible for determining that the content of their classes is appropriate to each course, as officially described in the catalog (or proposing changes to the description through the campus process), and achieves the coverage indicated by that description. Faculty members are responsible for confining classroom discussion to subjects related to the topics of concern in the course and for conducting the class so as to facilitate learning for all students, consistent with good teaching practices. They are also responsible for choosing appropriate texts and other teaching materials in a timely way. They are responsible for holding the classes and giving final exams at the times and places approved for them, except as changes are authorized by the appropriate department head and dean. They are responsible for providing reasonable accommodation to students with documented disabilities, consistent with policies and procedures of the Center for Educational Access (CEA, telephone 5-3104; http://cea.uark.edu). Faculty members are expected to provide a syllabus for each course they teach to inform students of the learning objectives for the course, the course coverage/topics, the required texts and materials, how the final grade will be determined, the policy on making up work, requirements for class attendance, and how the students may contact the teacher. It is also the responsibility of the faculty member to include in the course syllabus and class web site instructions on how students can learn prior to class time whether a class is canceled because of weather conditions or for other reasons. See http://provost.uark.edu/policies/185810.php.
Faculty members who develop or teach courses off campus through global campus, online instruction and/or courses with some or all of the course activity conducted outside the U.S.A. are required to comply with all the university policies applying to such activity. Sources of information for regulation and policy include the Academic Policy Series, the Office of Study Abroad, and the Global Campus.
Faculty members are responsible for maintaining in the classroom and laboratory an environment appropriate to academic endeavor and complying with the university statement on discrimination, adopted in 1983 and amended in the Fall of 1991: The University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, does not condone discriminatory treatment of students or staff on the basis of age, disability, ethnic origin, marital or parental status, race, religious commitment, sex, sexual orientation or veteran’s status in any of the activities conducted upon this campus. Members of the faculty are requested to be sensitive to this issue when, for example, presenting lecture material, assigning seating within the classroom, selecting groups for laboratory experiments, and assigning student work. The university faculty, administration, and staff are committed to providing an equal educational opportunity to all students.