MSU Faculty Handbook Appendix A
Faculty Handbook Amendment Procedures
University administration (UA) means the President and university administrators responsible
for the immediate direction, management and control of the university.
Faculty Senate (FS) means the governance body of the faculty of Montana State University.
Under the governance authority of the Board of Regents, the Faculty Senate, as part of shared
governance, considers policies and procedures and standards for faculty, oversees the curricula,
evaluates the academic programs, and serves to enhance communication between and among
MSU faculty, university administration, and students.
Provost means the Chief Academic Officer of the university.
Joint working group means an ad hoc committee comprised of faculty and administrators
the purpose of developing, reviewing or refining proposals for amendment of the Faculty
Joint Academic Governance Steering Committee (JAGS) means the committee made up of
Faculty Senate Leadership, the Provost and other representative of UA.
Dean’s Council (DC) means the official university council whose mission is to provide
leadership for the academic enterprise of the university.
These procedures govern the adoption and amendment of the Faculty Handbook.
300.00 Joint Academic Governance Steering Committee (JAGS)
The Joint Academic Governance Steering Committee will be composed of representatives
the University Administration (UA) and Faculty Senate (FS). Membership includes the Provost
and Faculty Senate Chair and each will appoint two other members to serve with them.
University Legal Counsel and a representative of Human Resources will serve as staff to the
400.00 Faculty Handbook
Policies pertaining directly and uniquely to tenure and tenure track faculty employment
and responsibilities will be collected in a Faculty Handbook. The Handbook will be maintained
in electronic format and will be posted and made available on the appropriate university
Unless specified otherwise within a policy, policies posted in the Faculty Handbook
previous policies and collective bargaining agreements including the 2013 Interim Faculty
Personnel Policies, the 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement for Tenure and Tenure Track
Faculty, and all previous MSU Faculty Handbooks.
Policies will conform to the standard template for university policies and include
effective date and a date for review/updating.
500.00 Proposal and Amendment Procedures
Proposals for new provisions and/or amendments to provisions of the Faculty Handbook
be proposed by the Faculty Senate (FS) or by University Administration (UA). One or more
faculty members may request either body to propose new provisions and/or amendment of the
Proposals should be submitted in concept form to the Joint Academic Governance Steering
The JAGS will conduct preliminary evaluations of proposals and establish a review
pathway of action for each proposal, which may include: (1) Further development of the
proposal by a joint working group or the Faculty Affairs Committee (if the proposal involves
substantial revisions to an existing policy or if the JAGS anticipates significant changes to the
submitted proposal), or (2) Recommend the proposal be sent to the FS and Deans Council (DC)
for its review and evaluation. This option may include minor editing by the JAGS, or 3)
Recommend the proposal be sent back to the originating body with specific requests for
All proposals will be reviewed by FS and DC before final adoption by UA. The FS and
make recommendations to UA.
510.00 Review by Faculty Senate
For a proposal submitted to the FS for review during the academic year, the FS will
text of the proposal and brief justification available to the general faculty through appropriate
public posting within 15 days of receipt and at least 7 days before voting will occur. The
timeline for proposals submitted during the summer will start at the beginning of the fall academic term, unless emergent circumstances requires action in which case the Faculty
Senate leadership may act on behalf of the Faculty Senate.
If FS recommends the proposal, the recommendation is forwarded to the provost within
If the FS rejects the proposal or offers amendments to the proposal, the FS will notify the
provost of the outcome and provide a written explanation for the rejection or amendment
within 7 days.
The period of consideration and review will not exceed 60 days. At the end of 60 days,
will make a final determination on the proposal.
520.00 Review by Dean’s Council
For a proposal submitted to DC for review, the provost will make the text of the proposal
brief justification available to the DC membership through appropriate public posting within 15
days of receipt and at least 7 days before consideration of the proposal.
530.00 Campus Comment
For any recommendation by the DC, there will be a campus comment period of no less
days before making a recommendation to the Provost. If DC recommends the proposal, the
proposal is forwarded to the provost. If the DC recommends rejecting or amending the
proposal, the DC will provide the reasons for rejection or amendment to the provost within 7
days. The period of consideration and review will not exceed 60 days. At the end of 60 days,
the UA will make a determination on the proposal.
540.00 Resolution of Conflicts
If the recommendations are not consistent between DC and FS, the matter will be forwarded
the JAGS for resolution. Within 15 days after the provost has received recommendations from
the FS and the DC, the JAGS will review the recommendations, obtain additional information as
deemed necessary and make a final recommendation for the proposal. If the differences
cannot be resolved by the JAGS, the UA will make a final determination on the proposal. If the
UA overturns the FS recommendation on the proposal, it will state the reasons in writing to the
If the FS, DC, UA or JAGS fail to agree or disagree within 60 days of receipt of the
recommendation, the UA will make a determination on the proposal.
Notice of the final outcome of this process containing the final text of the proposals,
statement that the proposals have been rejected by the UA, will be publicly posted by the UA in
the same manner as provided above for proposed amendments.
Unless specified otherwise, reference to days in this policy are calendar days. Deadlines
specified in this process may be extended for good cause upon the agreement of FS, DC and
700.00 Interim Policies
In some circumstances it will be necessary for the UA to adopt interim policies. The
strive to obtain input from the FS and the DC before adopting an interim policy; however, in
some circumstances it may be necessary for the UA to adopt an interim policy without
dissemination and review. The status of the interim policy will be temporary until it is reviewed
and approved using the process described herein. Any interim policy adopted by UA will be
presented to FS and DC as soon as practicable and within six months after adoption unless
delayed for good cause.
The authority to adopt proposals for inclusion in the Faculty Handbook is limited
that are within the delegated authority from the Board of Regents and the application of state
and federal laws and regulations. The UA is responsible for assuring that the Office of the
Commissioner of Higher Education and the Board of Regents are kept apprised of the proposals
for provisions in the Faculty Handbook.
900.00 Order of Precedence
Federal and state laws or regulations, Board of Regents policies, and University policies
precedence over policies and procedures in the Handbook.
Adoption or amendments to existing policies may be made by the UA as necessitated
changes or revisions to federal and state laws or regulations, or Board of Regents policies. Any
policies adopted under this provision will be communicated to the FS.