Department of Philosophy and Religion By-Laws

Adopted October 6, 2010
Department of Philosophy & Religion By-Laws

I. Definition

The Department of Philosophy & Religion exists as a member of the College of Arts & Sciences at Appalachian State University. While its programs provide majors and minors in both Philosophy and in Religious Studies, the department functions administratively as one unit. Its operations are guided by the Faculty Handbook at Appalachian State University. Other procedural guidelines are provided in these by-laws but do not supersede the Faculty Handbook.

II. Members of the Department

  1. The Department is comprised of all full-time tenured and tenure track faculty appointed by the University, all other faculty working under contract, and staff persons assigned to the department.
  2. The Department shall, when required by the Faculty Handbook and charged by the Dean of Arts & Sciences and/or the Provost of the University, make recommendations regarding its Chair.

III. Standing Committees

  1. Advising Committee
    1. All members of the department retain responsibility for advising students. Tenured and tenure-track members will be assigned a group of advisees.
    2. The Advising Committee works with the departmental staff on all issues related to advising including development of check sheets, maintenance of student records and assuring every student majoring in the department receives an advisor.
    3. Philosophy and Religious Studies will maintain separate advising sub-committees to conduct work directly related to advisement for the major and the minor.
    4. The Advising Committee works with College and University entities on advising issues at the direction of the Departmental Chair.
    5. The Advising Committee recruits faculty for University events where potential students can pose questions related to majors and minors in the department.
  2. Assessment Committee
    1. The Assessment Committee develops and implements procedures for program assessment as directed by the College and University.
    2. The Assessment Committee carries out the on-going work of assessment as outlined by department protocols.
    3. The Assessment Committee periodically evaluates the utility of the assessment procedures and makes changes as appropriate.
    4. Philosophy and Religious Studies will maintain separate assessment sub-committees to conduct work directly related to assessment for the major and the minor.
    5. The Chair of the Department may charge the committee with specific tasks related to assessment.
  3. Curriculum Committee
    1. The Curriculum Committee functions to develop proposals for the addition and deletion of courses to the curriculum or making changes to existing courses as required. 
    2. Philosophy and Religious Studies will maintain separate curriculum sub-committees to conduct work directly related to the course of study for the major and the minor.
    3. The Curriculum Committee must complete all the required paperwork for their proposals and is responsible for taking each one through the established channels.
    4. The Chair of the Department can charge the committee with specific tasks related to the curriculum.
  4. The Departmental Personnel Committee
    1. The Departmental Personnel Committee shall be elected from among eligible members every year according to the procedures outlined by the Faculty Handbook.
    2. The Departmental Personnel Committee assumes responsibility for all departmental personnel matters as designated in the Faculty Handbook.
  5. Honors Committee
    1. The Honors Committee serves as the link between the department and the University Honors Program.
    2. The Honors Committee, in consultation with the Department Chair, develops a regular schedule of course offerings.
    3. The Honors Committee works with students to ensure their successful completion of departmental honors requirements and the submission of the thesis.
    4. The Honors Committee may be charged with other related honors work by the Chair of the Department.
  6. Internship Committee
    1. The Internship Committee assists students in developing their internships for credit.
  7. Library Liaison
    1. The Library liaison works with the faculty of the department and the library to ensure collection development in areas related to the work of the department.
  8. Peer Review Committee
    1. The Peer Review Committee maintains a schedule of peer reviews, notifies faculty of the need to be reviewed, and makes certain all reviews are carried out as needed.
  9. Planning Committee
    1. The Planning Committee undertakes all functions related to the long and short range goals and directions for the department.
    2. The Planning Committee will undertake other activities as directed by the Chair of the Department.
  10. Public Relations Committee
    1. The Public Relations Committee secures representatives for the department and generates appropriate materials for events such as open houses, etc.
    2. The Public Relations Committee publicizes all events in the department to the larger university community.
    3. The Public Relations Committee will undertake other assignments as directed by the Department Chair.
  11. Post-tenure review committee
    1. The post-tenure review committee will be elected annually per University Policy and Procedure.
  12. Scholarship/Paper Contest Committee
    1. The scholarship/paper contest committee will award prizes and scholarships when money is available. The committee will organize the paper contest and publish criteria for any available departmental scholarships.

IV. Other Committees

  1. Other committees and task forces will be established as necessary by the Chair of the Department.
  2. The chair of the department or the chair of any committee may appoint a subcommittee or ad-hoc committee charged with specific tasks.
  3. Faculty Senate representation will be determined by the procedure outlined in the Faculty Handbook with the department EOA overseeing the process.
  4. Search Committees
    1. Search Committees in the Department of Philosophy and Religion shall be appointed by the Chair of the Department;
    2. be comprised of all members of the faculty from the departmental discipline representing the area of the search: i.e. Philosophy position searches will be conducted by a Search Committee made up of the Philosophy faculty; Religious Studies position searches will be conducted by a Search Committee made up of the Religious Studies faculty; joint position searches will be conducted by a Search Committee appointed by the Chair with representatives from both disciplines;
    3. report directly to the Chair of the Department;
    4. otherwise operate according to the guidelines in the Faculty Handbook, IV.4.1. and the guidelines in the Recruitment and Selection Policies and Procedures for Faculty and non-Faculty EPA positions (Policy Manual, Section 601.8).

V. Meetings

  1. Department meetings will take place during the fall and spring semesters regularly on the first Wednesday of each month at 12:00 pm. 
  2. Faculty should be prepared for other committee meetings in the MWF noon timeframe.
  3. Meetings will be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order.

VI. Revision of By-Laws

Departmental By-Laws will be adopted by a majority vote and may be amended by a majority vote. Ordinarily, By Laws will be reviewed and subject to amendment annually.