Article I. Name

The name of this organization shall be the Valley City State University Faculty Association.

Article II. Purpose

The purpose of the Association shall be to foster a liberal education of high quality that is consistent with the University mission, to make determinations regarding the role and status of the faculty, and to render formal advice to the President of the University on such matters. A key objective underlying the purpose is to increase the power of the faculty in governance and in professional performance. Guiding principles shall be: empowerment of the faculty to initiate action and improve quality; facilitation of responsible faculty initiatives by the administration in a spirit of cooperation based on clear definition of roles; and implementation of initiatives through the governance structure.

Article III. Membership

The Faculty Association voting membership, hereafter referred to as Members, shall consist of all faculty with rank of Instructor, Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor, and any other faculty teaching half-time or more. Non-voting Associate Members shall include all professional-level administrators. Hereafter, Membership shall refer to all those who belong to the Association, including both Members and Associate Members.

Article IV. Meetings

The Association shall have two required meetings, one within thirty days after the beginning of nine month faculty contracts and the second within the forty five days preceding graduation. Additional meetings may be necessitated by Association action or called by the President of the Association, by majority vote of the Faculty Senate, or by petition containing signatures of ten members. The President of the Association will provide notice and agenda of regular meetings to the membership one week prior to regular meetings and forty-eight hours prior to special meetings. Meetings shall be conducted according to Robert's Rules of Order, latest edition. Members present shall constitute a quorum.

Article V. Officers

The elected officers of the organization shall consist of a president, a vice president, and a secretary. The president and vice-president will be elected in odd years and the secretary will be elected in even years. Term of office shall be two years. Election of officers will occur at the April meeting. Term of office begins June 1.  

Section A. President

The president shall preside at meetings of the Association and Faculty Senate and otherwise act as the chief executive officer of the organization; appoint a parliamentarian; and coordinate dissemination of pertinent information to appropriate persons.

The president shall select an initial chair for each of the Association committees which elects its own chair. This chair need not be a member of the committee. The only duty of this initial chair is to call the first meeting of the committee and set the agenda for the organizational meeting.

Section B. Vice-President

The vice president shall preside at meetings in the absence of the president; serve as assistant to the president and carry out duties the president may deem necessary.

Section C. Secretary

The Secretary shall record and file minutes of each meeting of the Association and of the Faculty Senate and distribute copies of said minutes to the Membership within one week after each meeting, file received Association committee minutes, keep a record of membership and activities of the Association, and make provisions for balloting at any and all Association meetings.

Section D. Vacancies

Representatives of the Senate shall nominate at least one candidate for any vacancy occurring during a term of office. Nomination may also be by petition as stipulated in Article VI. The secretary shall circulate a list of all nominees to the membership one week prior to the election which shall be held at the next scheduled Association meeting or by mail ballot.

Article VI. Qualification, Nomination, and Election of Officers

Section A. Qualification

Members of the Association who have held membership two full academic years prior to taking office are eligible to hold elective office.

Section B. Nomination

A nominating committee of at least three academic division representatives serving on the Senate shall be appointed by the Senate and shall nominate at least one candidate for each of the three elected officers on the Faculty Association.

Nomination for elective offices may also be by petition, with signatures of five members of the Association and an affidavit of the nominee's agreement to serve attached. The secretary will prepare and have available nomination petitions. Completed petitions shall be filed with the secretary prior to the elections.

The secretary shall circulate a list of all nominees to the membership one week prior to the election. The secretary shall prepare ballots for the election of officers to be held at a meeting of the Association during the month of April.

Ballots shall include a designated "write in" space for each office. Nominations from the floor shall be received at the time of the elections.

Section C. Election

The election of the President and the Vice President of the Association shall be majority vote of the members voting. If one candidate does not receive a majority of the votes cast, a run-off election between the two candidates receiving the largest and second-largest number of votes shall be held at the same meeting. Election of the Secretary shall be by plurality.

Article VII. Faculty Senate

Section A. Membership

The Faculty Senate shall be composed of the elected officers of the Association, one member elected from each division or school, the representatives to the Council of College Faculties, a non-voting student representative selected by the Student Senate, and the President of the University or his/her representative. Voting members include all elected divisional or school representatives. In the case of a tie vote, the President of the Faculty Senate may break the tie.

Members elected by each division or school shall have one academic year of Faculty Association membership prior to the semester in which they are elected. Each division or school shall submit its list of nominees to the Senate by September 1. Faculty members will be elected by the membership of the Faculty Association at the September Association meeting by ballot vote from the candidates nominated from each division or school.

Terms of office for members elected by each division or school will be two years. An elected term of office is from October 1 to September 30th. Terms shall be staggered. Members from the School of Education and Graduate Studies, Division of Mathematics, Science and Health & Physical Education, and Division of Business and Information Technology and Information Technology shall be elected in even-numbered years; and members from the Division of Communication Arts and Social Science and the Division of Fine Arts will be elected in odd-numbered years. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms. Vacancies among elected members shall be filled for the duration of the vacated term in the same manner, procedure and timing as a regular election, but within 30 days of the announcement of the vacancy.

Section B. Officers

Article VI above describes the process for electing officers and Article V outlines their duties.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities

Regular meetings of the Faculty Senate shall be held monthly during the nine-month academic year. Special meetings may be called by the President of the Association by giving written notice to the members twenty-four hours in advance of such a meeting.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Receiving proposals, suggestions, and information from faculty, staff, administrators and students. With the exception of constitutional amendments, such proposals and suggestions when supported by a unanimous vote will be reported to the Association and the administration as action taken. Non-unanimous votes in support will be placed on the Association’s agenda. Constitutional amendments follow the procedures outlined in Article XVII.
2. Preparing the agenda for the Association meetings which shall include a review of action taken.
3. Appointing members to committees as called for in this constitution or establishing temporary committees as deemed necessary.
4. Receiving reports from the administration on proceedings of the Board of Higher Education or legislative bodies concerning the University and keeping the Association informed regarding pertinent actions by these groups.
5. Expressing and passing on to the Association for consideration opinions and resolutions on any questions relating to Valley City State University.
6. Requesting that directors and other academic officers present summaries as it deems appropriate.


Article VIII. Curriculum Committee

Section A. Membership

Membership on the Curriculum Committee shall consist of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Registrar of the University, the chair of Teacher Education, one member elected from each division and school of the University, and one student nominated by the Student Senate and appointed for one-year terms by the Committee. Elections shall be held at division meetings during the Fall Semester, no later than September 1. Voting members include the elected faculty members only.

Members shall serve two-year terms. The Division of Communication Arts and Social Science, the School of Education and Graduate Studies, and the Division of Business and Information Technology shall elect members in odd-numbered years; the Division of Fine Arts and the Division of Mathematics, Science, and Health & Physical Education shall elect members in even-numbered years. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms. In the event that a member cannot complete a term, that term will be completed by another faculty member from the same unit using the same process of nomination and election.

Section B. Officers

The Committee shall elect its own chair. The chair shall be a faculty member and may serve multiple consecutive terms.

In the absence of a committee-elected chair, a temporary chair will be appointed by the President of the Faculty Association to call an organizational meeting within a period not to exceed three weeks from the initial election of committee members. The members are to elect the permanent chair and determine their methods of procedure at this first meeting.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Continuous evaluating of academic requirements of the University, including the assessment of the general education program of the University, and keeping the faculty informed of current trends.
2. Receiving division and school approved requests for curriculum changes and making recommendations concerning them to the Faculty Senate.

Article IX. The Graduate Council

Section A. Membership and Organization

Membership on the Graduate Council shall include the following voting graduate faculty members: two from the School of Education and Graduate Studies, one from each graduate program concentration, and two from the graduate faculty-at-large. The Administrator of Graduate Studies and Research shall vote only in case of a tie, and prepare the agenda for council meetings. The Vice President for Academic Affairs shall serve as an ex-officio member without the right to vote.

The Graduate Council Chair, in consultation with the Vice President for Academic Affairs, shall appoint all members for the Council except the two graduate faculty-at-large. The Graduate Council chair shall receive nominations from the graduate faculty for the two graduate faculty-at-large members and submit nominations to the Faculty Senate for a vote. These members shall serve two year terms.

In the event that a member cannot complete a term, that term will be filled using the same process of appointment or nomination and election. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms.

Section B. Officers

The Administrator of Graduate Studies and Research shall serve as chair.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities

The Graduate Council derives its powers from the Constitution of the Valley City State University Faculty Association. All matters impacting graduate education will be conducted in accordance with the policies of the Faculty Association constitution and Graduate Council.

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Promoting graduate education at Valley City State University.
2. Recommending addition or termination of graduate courses and graduate program concentrations.
3. Determining standards and policies for selection and evaluation of graduate faculty and graduate instruction.
4. Determining standards and policies for selection, retention, and graduation of graduate students.
5. Acting upon appeal by petition of graduate standards and policies by faculty and students and assuring uniform application of the standards and policies.

Article X. Faculty Advocacy Committee

Section A. Membership

Membership on the Faculty Advocacy Committee shall consist of one member elected from each division and school of the University. Elections shall be held at a division or school meeting during the Fall Semester, no later than September 1. The President of the University, the Vice President of Academic Affairs, the Vice President of Student Affairs and the Vice President for Business Affairs shall serve as ex-officio members. The ex-officio members may not vote.

Members shall serve two-year terms. The School of Education and Graduate Studies, and the Division of Mathematics, Science, and Health & Physical Education, and the Division of Fine Arts shall elect members in odd-numbered years; and the Division of Communication Arts and Social Science and the Division of Business and Information Technology shall elect members in even-numbered years. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms. In the event that a member cannot complete a term, that term will be completed by another faculty member from the same unit using the same process of nomination and election.

Section B. Officers

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

Article XII. Standing Committee on Faculty Rights

Section A. Membership

The Standing Committee on Faculty Rights of Valley City State University shall consist of tenured faculty members, one from each division or school, elected for staggered five-year terms.

The division or school nominees will be elected at the first meeting of the Faculty Association in the fall of the year. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms. In the event that a member cannot complete a term, that term will be completed by another faculty member from the same unit using the same process of nomination and election.

Section B. Officers

The Committee shall elect its own chair for a two year term. The chair shall be a faculty member and may serve multiple consecutive terms.

In the absence of a committee-elected chair, a temporary chair will be appointed by the President of the Faculty Association to call an organizational meeting within a period not to exceed three weeks from the initial election of committee members. The members are to elect the permanent chair and determine their methods of procedure at this first meeting.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Investigating any alleged violation of the Regulation on Academic Freedom, Tenure, and Due Process.
2. Holding and conducting hearings according to governing State Board of Education policies on all matters referred to it under these policies.
3. Holding and conducting meetings in accordance with State Board of Higher Education policy concerning mediation, faculty grievances, hearings and appeals.
4. Performing any other duties and responsibilities as articulated by State Board of Higher Education policies.

Article XIII. Teacher Education Committee

Section A. Membership

The Teacher Education Committee shall consist of one faculty member from each academic division or school, the Chair of Teacher Education, Director of Field Experiences, and Assessment Coordinator. These faculty members shall be chosen by their respective units from faculty members who have professional preparation and experience in Teacher Education. They shall be elected prior to September 1. In addition, two public school teachers, one elementary and one secondary, and one public school administrator shall be members as well as two students enrolled in the VCSU program, with one majoring in Elementary Education and one enrolled in Secondary Education. The Chair of Teacher Education, in consultation with the committee, will select public and student members. All of the aforementioned shall be voting members of the Committee, except the chair, who shall vote only in the case of a tie. Terms consist of two years. Members may serve multiple consecutive terms. In the event any member is unable to complete his or her term, a replacement will be selected according to the processes outlined above.

Section B. Officers

The Chair of Teacher Education shall chair the Teacher Education Committee.

Section C. Responsibilities of the Committee

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Committee activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Assisting the Chair of Teacher Education and the Director of Field Experiences in the administration of admission to Teacher Education and admission to Student Teaching. The Committee shall, by vote, admit, deny admission, or grant provisional admission to Teacher Education. After reviewing student progress the Committee shall vote to admit or deny admission to student teaching.
2. Reviewing curricula changes including the introduction of new courses, adjustments in programs, changes in exiting courses, the addition of programs of study which relate directly to Teacher Education. The Committee shall provide advice and consent to the institutional Curriculum Committee concerning any curricular proposals before that Committee affecting Teacher Education.
3. Periodically reviewing the policies which govern Teacher Education. The Committee shall provide advice and consent to policy changes initiated by institutional committees, or the School of Education and Graduate Studies which directly affect the administration of the Teacher Education program.

Article XIV. Council of College Faculties

The Council of College Faculties is a structure of the North Dakota University System with faculty representation from each campus, representatives serving three year terms. Association Members who have held membership two full academic years prior to taking office are eligible to serve. The VCSU representative shall be nominated and elected in the same manner and timing as the officers of the Association and will become a member of the Senate. Term of membership begins June 1.

The representative or alternate shall attend Council of College Faculties meetings or send a Senate-approved alternate. The representative shall report the actions and concerns of the Senate/Association to the Council and shall report the actions and concerns of the Council to the Senate/Association. The representative shall submit an annual report to the Senate in May, summarizing the activities of the Council.

Article XVI. Constitution Review Committee

Section A. Membership

The committee shall consist of the parliamentarian and two additional faculty members appointed by the Senate. The term of office for the two faculty members will be two years and they may serve multiple consecutive terms.

Section B. Officer.

The parliamentarian shall serve as committee chair unless the committee elects a new chair.

Section C. Duties and Responsibilities.

The Chair will ensure that minutes from meetings are forwarded to the Faculty Association Secretary within two weeks from the date of the last meeting, and submit a summary of committee activities no later than the first Senate meeting of the following year.

Activities shall include, but are not limited to, the following:

1. Preparing amendments to the VCSU Faculty Association Constitution which will be forwarded to the Senate for placement on the Association docket.
2. Reviewing proposed amendments to the VCSU Faculty Association Constitution which will be forwarded to the Senate for placement on the Association docket.

Article XVII. Other Committees

Appointments to the following standing committees shall be made during September. Faculty members shall be appointed by the Faculty Senate and students by the Student Senate. Appointments shall provide for staggered two-year terms. Individuals may be appointed to continuing service on a committee for any number of consecutive terms.

A. Financial Aid Committee

This committee shall consist of the Director of Financial Aid (designated as chair), the Foundation Director, the Director of Enrollment Services, the Vice President for Student Affairs, the Vice President for Business Affairs, two faculty members elected by the Faculty Association for a two year term, and one student appointed by Student Senate. All members vote.

The purpose of the committee shall be: to recommend policies and procedures related to financial aid; to establish scholarship policies and scholarship criteria; and to serve as the hearing body for the appeals of Financial Aid suspension.

B. Diversity Waiver Selection Committee

This committee shall consist of the Vice President for Student Affairs (designated as chair), the Director of International Programs, the Vice President for Academic Affairs or his/her representative, Director of Enrollment Services, the Assistant Financial Aid Director, two faculty members elected by the Faculty Association for two year terms, and one student appointed by Student Senate. All members vote.

The purpose of the committee shall be to establish criteria, review applications, and make selections for Foreign Student Waivers and Cultural Diversity Waivers.

C. Academic and Scholastic Standing Committee

This Committee shall consist of the Registrar of the University, the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Director of Student Academic Services, and two members of the faculty at-large. The Vice President for Academic Affairs will serve as the chair of the committee.

Duties and Responsibilities:
The Committee shall consider petitions and routine matters concerning student academic affairs and advise the Vice President for Academic Affairs in the areas of academic and scholastic standing.

D. Online Standards Committee

This Committee shall consist of the Office of Instructional Design Director, one member elected by each division or school, and two at large members elected by the Association. At least one member of the committee must be from the graduate faculty. The term on the committee will be two years. The Division of Communication Arts and Social Science; the School of Education and Graduate Studies; and the Division of Business and Information Technology shall elect members in odd-numbered years, and the Divisions of Fine Arts; and Mathematics, Science, and Health & Physical Education shall elect members in even-numbered years. A member may be elected to successive terms.
The committee shall organize itself and elect its own chair. The duties of the Online Standards Committee shall include the following:

1. Developing and forwarding online course standards and policy recommendations to the Senate.
2. Advising the Senate and Association on any issue regarding online education.
3. Upon request, providing peer review of online course designs and materials, mentoring, and other activities to facilitate the improvement of online offerings.

E. Additional Committees

The Faculty Association and the Faculty Senate shall have the prerogative to create ad hoc committees when necessary.

Article XVIII. Amendment Procedure

Proposed amendments to the Constitution shall be presented in written form at a regular Association meeting and distributed to the voting membership by the secretary within one week after the meeting. At least thirty days shall elapse between the distribution of proposed changes and the vote, which shall be by written ballot at an Association meeting. The Senate shall set a date for voting, and the secretary shall provide opportunities for absentee voting prior to the meeting. If the proposed amendments are approved by a two-thirds majority of those voting, the Constitution shall be amended, pending approval by the University President and the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education.

Article XIX. Ratification

Ratification of this Constitution shall be by a two-thirds vote of the members of the Association.

Article XIV. Academic Units

The Association shall recognize three types of Academic Units: schools, divisions and departments. Schools and divisions shall have the same standing in regards to representation on committees. A school shall have as its head a dean, while a division shall have as its head a division chair. A department is the sub-division of a division or school approved by that division or school with the consent of the Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Each division and department shall adopt a democratic model for recommending chairs and department heads to the Vice President for Academic Affairs; faculty with continuing appointments shall have the right to evaluate their division chairs and department heads on a regular basis. Deans are appointed by the administration.

BY-LAWS

Amendments to or revisions of the by-laws must be proposed in writing at a regular meeting of the Faculty Association one month prior to voting on the above. The by-laws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of members present at any Faculty Association meeting.

Article I. Other Membership

Membership in the Faculty Association shall include:
Associate membership in the Faculty Association shall include all other faculty and all professional level administrators. Associate members are not eligible to vote.

Article II. Annual Reports of Standing Committees

The Chair of each standing committee shall submit to the Faculty Senate an annual report consisting of a summary of the committee's activities with a due date to be determined by Faculty Senate in the last meeting in May.



Sponsored by: VCSU Faculty Association

Revised: April 24, 2003
Effective: Fall, 2003

Amended: April 18, 2005
Effective: Fall, 2005

Amended: April 11, 2007
Effective: Fall, 2007

Amended: November 9, 2009
Effective: Fall, 2009

Amended: April 2010
Effective: Upon Ratification (April 2010)

Amended: April 2011
Effective: Fall 2011

Amended:  April 2013
Effective:  Fall 2013