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AA/PPS 04.01.04 - Dean and Chair Hiring

Dean and Chair Hiring

AA/PPS No. 04.01.04 (7.01)
Issue No. 1
Effective Date: 12/14/2016
Next Review Date: 5/01/2017 (ONY)
Sr. Reviewer: Provost


    1. Texas State University is committed to hiring well-qualified faculty members who will serve as college deans or department chairs/school directors and will take the necessary steps to ensure that applicant pools are diverse.

    2. This Policy and Procedure Statement (PPS) outlines the process that is followed to secure, with the resources available, the services of the best qualified persons for dean and chair/director vacancies and to support an effective faculty governance system.

    3. Deans and chairs/directors are administrative officers of the University and selection is ultimately the responsibility of the President. The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs shares this responsibility. Because the quality of one academic program inevitably impacts the quality of others, the general faculty and especially faculty in affected colleges, departments, and schools also have a legitimate interest in the selection of deans and chairs/directors.

    4. The university’s recruitment of faculty hires is processed through Applicant Tracking System (ATS) in PeopleAdmin. This fully automated system includes email notifications, routing, approvals, and document retention. The system allows for the review and evaluation of applications from any device with internet access.


    1. Although the appointment of a chair/director is the prerogative of the President, as a part of Texas State’s policy to encourage the professional development of faculty members, the University selects chairs/directors from current Texas State faculty whenever practical.

      1. When a dean knows of a pending vacancy for a chair/director, the dean and the Provost will discuss the current profile of the department to determine whether circumstances warrant a national search. Factors that should be considered in this discussion include, but are not limited to: (1) the need for additional faculty in the department, (2) the likelihood of identifying one or more strong internal candidates in the department, and (3) the impact that limiting the search to internal candidates will have on opportunities for attracting persons with diverse experiences and/or backgrounds into chair/director positions.

      2. If the decision is made to review internal candidates before conducting a national search, the dean will initiate a process to determine whether one or more acceptable internal candidate(s) exist(s) among the current faculty. The dean will notify members of the department of the pending vacancy and will invite individuals to apply for the chair/director position or to nominate internal candidates for the position by a specified deadline. The dean will then consult with any individuals who have been nominated to confirm their willingness to be considered.

      3. The dean will prepare an explanatory memorandum and a ballot listing faculty members who have applied or agreed to be considered. This memorandum and ballot will be distributed to all tenured and tenure-track faculty members in the department along with a request to rate each candidate as either a "strong", an “acceptable” or an “unacceptable” candidate for chair/director. The ballots should include a date by which they are to be returned to the college dean.

      4. The dean will tabulate the ballots received. Any faculty member who is rated “strong” or “acceptable” by at least two-thirds of those voting will be considered to be acceptable to the department.

      5. The dean and the Provost will review the list of candidates deemed acceptable to the department. If one or more of those candidates is, in the preliminary judgment of the dean and the Provost, an outstanding candidate for the position, interviews with the tenured and tenure-track faculty, the dean, the Provost, and the President may be scheduled to consider the candidate(s). Other interviews may be scheduled at the discretion of the dean (for chair/director searches), the Provost, and the President.

      6. At any point in the process outlined above, the dean and the Provost may decide to open the search at a national level to both internal and external candidates.

      7. While normal practice is described above, nothing in these paragraphs shall be construed to prevent the dean, the Provost, and the President from appointing an interim chair/director or a chair/director by other procedures if such an action is, in their professional judgment, in the best interest of the University.


    1. The appointment of a college dean is the prerogative of the President. Texas State’s normal policy is to conduct a national search for a dean. However, if a current faculty member is, in the judgment of the Provost and the President, an acceptable candidate for the position, or if the financial situation dictates that an outside candidate cannot be sought, the Provost will seek the advice of the college council and others as may be appropriate. The Provost and the President will then determine whether a national search will be initiated or whether an internal candidate will be appointed. If a national search is conducted, there will be no prejudice for inside or outside candidates.

    1. Texas State is committed to recruiting and retaining a diverse and distinguished body of administrators. We define ‘diversity’ broadly to include such factors as geographic backgrounds, ages, genders, educational backgrounds, employment experiences, language abilities, economic backgrounds, cultures, and special skills and talent. We also believe that race and ethnicity are socially significant characteristics and that there will be occasions when a person’s experiences will be affected by his or her race or ethnicity. The terms ‘race’ and ‘ethnicity’ are not limited and include persons from all races and ethnic backgrounds. We will consider race or ethnicity as merely one factor in our overall efforts to diversify our administration, to be applied in limited circumstances only when the experiences of race or ethnicity contribute significantly to a diversity of ideas. Guidelines for recruiting and hiring a diverse faculty are found in Guidelines for Recruiting and Hiring a Diverse Faculty.

    2. Texas State is also committed to assuring that all candidates for administrative positions are afforded an equal opportunity for consideration and to full compliance with Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 as amended, Civil Rights Act of 1991, Executive Order 11246 and its amendments, Equal Pay Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Section 503 of the Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Vietnam Era Readjustment Act of 1974, Military Veterans’ Full Employment Act, Chapter 657, Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, The Americans with Disabilities Act and The Texas State University System policies for maintaining and reporting of employees.

  5. COSTS

    1. The Provost and dean will arrange a means to defray costs associated with correspondence, advertising, and interviews. Ordinarily these costs must be borne by the department or college conducting the search. In the case of extreme financial hardship, supplementary funds may be requested for costs over and above those associated with a normal faculty search.

    1. In the case of a dean search, the search committee will usually include one faculty member from each department and one or more chair/director in the college. In addition, the committee will normally include one or two outside deans and a chair/director.

    2. In the case of a chair/director search, the majority of the search committee will be from the affected department when the size of the department permits. In addition, the committee will normally include at least one member of the faculty or a chair/director of an outside department and one outside college dean or associate dean.

    3. The composition of each search committee must be diverse. To ensure diversity on a search committee, the dean may go outside the department or college for committee members. Departments will explain how the recommended search committee membership ensures diversity in a memorandum to the Provost.

    4. The search committee will be recommended to the President by the Provost. Upon the President’s approval, the search committee and its chair are officially appointed. Following official appointment of the search committee, the Faculty Records Office schedules the first meeting at a time when the Provost, the dean (for chair/director searches), and the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access can meet with the committee. The Faculty Records Office will reserve a meeting place and notify the committee members of the time and place of the meeting.


    1. During the first two meetings, the following should be accomplished:

      1. Appoint or elect an administrative assistant to assist in the preparation of materials and correspondence;

      2. Draft a tentative schedule which permits conclusion of the search by April 15 or earlier if appointment is to be made for the fall semester or by November 15 or earlier if appointment is to be made for the spring semester. Search committees should begin the process as early as possible to ensure a large pool of candidates;

      3. Develop the position description;

      4. Define the items required for a complete application; and

      5. Construct a matrix to be used to compare each candidate’s qualifications to those stated in the position description. Each stipulated qualification must be represented and, if the committee determines that it is necessary and appropriate, the scores applied to each qualification may be weighted.


    1. To create a posting for a chair/director position, the request is initiated at the dean’s level through the on-line system.

    2. To create a posting for a dean position, the request is initiated in the Faculty Records Office through the on-line system.

    3. The faculty posting is subject to approval by the dean, the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access, and the Provost. Advertisements should not be placed without appropriate approvals.


    1. The committee chair is responsible for submitting advertisements to appropriate media. The ads should allow approximately 60 days between first publication and closing or review date of the position.

    2. To ensure applicant pools are diverse, advertising is placed:

      1. in one or more of the following:

        1. Chronicle of Higher Education;

        2. Diverse Issues in Higher Education;

        3. Hispanic Outlook;

        4. Austin and San Antonio newspapers;

        5. colleges and universities with primarily black, Hispanic, or female enrollment and with graduate programs in the discipline;

        6. persons identified in the Committee on Institutional Cooperation (CIC) Directory available through their website; and

        7. Recruitment Links (pdf/word) provides additional recruiting links to help foster diversity.

      2. Additionally, advertising should be conducted through one of the following:

        1. professional journals, newsletters or publications;

        2. university placement services;

        3. high school districts; or

        4. direct mailing to appropriate graduate departments.

      3. Committee and department members should be encouraged to inform outstanding candidates of the availability of the position, i.e., through professional meetings and conferences.

      4. All positions that may result in the hiring of a non-resident alien must be advertised in a national print medium (i.e., Chronicle of Higher Education).

    3. Once approved, the posting number will be assigned by the on-line faculty applicant tracking system.

    4. The Faculty Records Office will post the position on the following sites: Inside Higher Ed and the Texas Workforce Commission. In addition, each fall an annual block advertisement for tenure-track and clinical professor positions are placed in the Chronicle of Higher Education and Hispanic Outlook. Deadline for submission to Faculty Records is early August.


    1. Each member of the committee, working independently, reviews and rates the applicants. The committee chair will ask members to make comments about each applicant’s qualifications.

    2. Prior to selecting candidates for interview, the search committee chair will consult with Equity and Access to determine if there are any veterans in the pool.

    3. Through a series of meetings, the list of applicants is narrowed down to the top three or four candidates to be interviewed.

    4. It is the responsibility of the search committee to verify the academic credentials for each candidate selected for interview.

    5. The committee chair emphasizes that confidentiality must be maintained with respect to specific candidates; however, reports may be shared relative to the number of candidates, progress of the committee and general quality of the pool.


    1. The committee chair is responsible for ranking applicants in the on-line system.

    2. Once ranked, approvals for interviews are completed outside the on-line system. The search committee chair prepares a memorandum that includes the list of applicants being considered for interview, ranked alternates (if applicable), and the hiring matrix.

    3. Approvals for dean interviews are routed to the Associate Provost via the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access.

    4. Approvals for chair/director interviews are routed to the Associate Provost via the dean, the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access.

    5. Each reviewer will have access in the PeopleAdmin system to review the applications.

    6. The committee may be required, based upon the recommendation of the dean, the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access, the Provost, or the President to interview additional applicants.


    1. With the concurrence of the dean, the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access, the Provost, and the President, interviews are scheduled (See [Sample Agenda for Interview Visit]( Agenda for Interview.doc)).

    2. In a dean search, the schedule should include meetings with the following:

      1. the President;

      2. the Provost (two meetings are scheduled, one early in the candidate’s visit and another as an exit interview);

      3. the Academic Deans;

      4. the current Dean of the College;

      5. the college council;

      6. the search committee;

      7. faculty within and outside the school (informal meetings); and

      8. other groups, as appropriate.

    3. In a chair search, the schedule should include meetings with the following:

      1. the President;

      2. the Provost;

      3. the Dean of the College;

      4. the Dean of the Graduate College;

      5. the search committee;

      6. the college council;

      7. faculty within and outside the college (informal meetings);

      8. selected departmental students at the undergraduate and graduate levels;

      9. other department chairs/directors; and

      10. other groups, as appropriate.

    4. One hour is scheduled for a public presentation and the committee chair introduces the candidate.

    5. In a dean search, the committee chair sends a copy of the candidates’ schedule to each dean, each department in the college, and the Provost Office.

    6. In a chair/director search, the committee chair sends a copy of the candidates’ schedule to each chair in the college, the dean, each faculty member in the department, and to those outside the department and college who are to meet with the candidate.

    7. The committee arranges for moving the candidate from one scheduled event to the next and for hosts/hostesses at lunches and dinners. The cost of the candidate’s lunches and dinners will be reimbursed by the University.

    8. The candidate must be informed that only the President has the authority to issue contracts.


    1. The committee should seek either formal or informal input from the college council, department faculty, and students prior to the committee’s meeting to discuss the candidate’s qualifications.

    2. Following the interviews, the committee chair prepares a ballot and convenes the committee. The qualifications of the candidates are discussed, and committee members rank their choices on a ballot as either “acceptable” or “unacceptable.”

    3. Confidential reference checks are made via telephone or personal contact. Care should be taken to assure consistency in the information sought.

    4. A memorandum summarizing the results of this ballot and outlining the major forwarded to the Provost via the dean (for a chair/director search). After consultation with the President, a chair/director or dean is selected.

    5. If none of the candidates are acceptable to the committee, a memorandum stating that fact as well as a recommendation for future action (additional candidates from the remaining pool who should be interviewed or reopening of the search) is prepared instead. The memorandum is forwarded to the Provost via the dean (for a chair/director search) and the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access.

    6. In a dean search, the final selection is made by the President in consultation with the Provost. The Provost makes the offer to the candidate. In a chair/director search, the final selection is made by the President in consultation with the Provost and the dean. The dean makes the offer to the candidate. If a position is offered and accepted by the candidate, the remaining candidates who were interviewed are notified by the search committee.


    1. In the event a search does not produce a qualified candidate or a candidate who accepts the offer, the search is closed.

    1. The department will submit the hiring proposal, via the Chief Diversity Officer and Director of Equity and Access to the Faculty Records Office through the on-line system.

    2. The Faculty Records Office will prepare a contract for signature after receipt of all required documents. Any special conditions of employment are subject to final approval of the Provost, the President, the Chancellor and Board of Regents’ of The Texas State University System.

    3. Following approval and signature by the Provost and President, the contract is mailed by the Faculty Records Office to the candidate unless directed otherwise. The contract is subject to the stated deadline for acceptance. Upon receipt of the approved contract, the Faculty Records Office will send a copy of the signed contract to the department, with a copy to the dean.


    1. In the case of a chair/director, the dean will, or in the case of an academic dean, the Provost will counsel the newly hired employee regarding expectations and responsibilities.

    2. The chair/director or dean should schedule a visit to the Human Resources Office as soon as possible for employee benefits enrollment. In addition, new chairs/directors and deans are required to attend New Faculty Orientation prior to the beginning of the academic semester.


    1. Reviewers of this PPS include the following:

      Position Date
      Provost May 1 ONY

    This PPS has been approved by the following individuals in their official capacities and represents Texas State Academic Affairs policy and procedure from the date of this document until superseded.

    Provost; senior reviewer of this PPS