North Carolina State University
SACS Compliance Certification
August 15, 2003

Comprehensive Standards: Educational Programs 3.7.5 (governance)
The institution publishes policies on the responsibility and authority of faculty in academic and governance matters.

North Carolina State University is in compliance with this standard.

Faculty members play an essential leadership role in the evolution of academic policies and the general improvement of educational programs at NC State University.   This includes both on-campus and distance education programs.  The forms of participation of the faculty in academic affairs and related matters are clearly set forth and published in the Faculty Handbook.  In particular, Section V: Faculty Governance covers the general faculty bylaws, Faculty Senate bylaws, college-level committees and university-level committees.

Governance at NC State University consists of the governing and advisory groups on which faculty serve.  The primary structure for faculty governance is the Faculty Senate.  The entire voting faculty, by college constituencies, is involved in electing this body, which, along with its committees and the university standing committees, plays an active role in advising the chancellor, provost and other administrators on all matters involving academic affairs and other topics of interest or concern to the faculty.

The faculty senate participates in university governance in three ways:

  • Consultative: discuss with or provide information to any administrator with authority and responsibility for decisions.
  • Advisory: recommend policies to administrators who are authorized to make a decision.
  • Shared Responsibility: make policy recommendations to the chancellor, provost and vice chancellors.  If the faculty senate and the administrator disagree then they must confer to resolve the differences.  Any failure to resolve must be addressed by the chancellor and communicated in writing.

The faculty senate committees are Executive Committee, Academic Policy, Governance, Personnel Policy, and Resources and Environment. The Executive Committee meets regularly with the chancellor and provost to advise them on day-to-day issues. 

The chair and vice chair of the faculty represent the faculty on the University Council, which has the broadest representation of any advisory body on campus and is the principal university body where an advisory vote is taken prior to institutional decisions related to major issues of policy, regulations, programs, and institutional structure.  In addition, the chair represents the faculty on the Academic and Administrative Coordinating Group, which advises the chancellor on internal matters.

Another major source of faculty involvement is the 25 university standing committees.  The university standing committees are advisory to the administration and are appointed by the chancellor at the start of each academic year. 

The Committee on Committees provides the chancellor with recommendations concerning the composition and charge for each committee, its chair, and its faculty, staff, and student members. This committee is comprised of the provost, senior vice provost, past faculty chair, present faculty chair, chair-elect of the faculty, and the vice chancellor for student affairs; invited participants include the student body president, student senate president, chair of the staff senate, and the chair-elect of the staff senate. Their recommendations are partly based on voluntary expressed preferences, on a general principle of rotation, and, whenever appropriate, on representation by academic colleges or special constituencies. At the end of each year, each committee submits an annual report to the provost.

One of the faculty members on each university standing committee is also a liaison to the faculty senate.  Faculty senate, staff senate, and student government each recommend members of their constituency to the Committee on Committees, which passes the recommendations on to the chancellor. 

Committees with membership not appointed through the Committee on Committees process are designated as other university committees.  Other university committees may be appointed annually.  The charge of these committees is defined by the appropriate administrative office.  An example of this type of committee is the Classroom Environment Committee, which consists of faculty, students, and appropriate staff related to facilities and technology. 

Whenever there is a need for recommendations or resolutions of specific academic issues, the chancellor or provost may form an Ad Hoc Committee or Task Force.  Usually, these groups have a more narrow focus than a typical committee and are given a limited amount of time to complete their reports; moreover, these groups often consist of faculty members with special expertise in the issue or problem being considered.  One such task force was the Non-Tenure Track Faculty Task Force, which was formed in fall 2002.  


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