Policy Portal

Administrative Policy: Academic

Policy on Academic Policies

Policy Number: 3349-AC-200
Effective Date: 05/01/2018
Responsible Department: Office of Vice President for Academic Affairs
Approval Authority: VPAA

A. Purpose

The Division of Academic Affairs is committed to maintaining a well-designed, effective process for developing, disseminating, and reviewing policies and procedures. The Policy on Academic Policies (the “Policy”) is designed to establish a system for the development, approval and oversight of all university policies within the purview of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Academic policies created by the College Dean to address college-specific matters are not governed by this policy.

B. Scope

This Policy is established under the general authority of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the chief academic officer of the University and in accordance with the policy entitled “Establishing University Policies”, 3349-03-80. At any time a conflict occurs between this policy as reflected in documents of a higher authority (e.g. federal law and regulations, state law and rules, University Policy and other accrediting body standards, the policy as outlined in the document of higher authority will prevail. At any time a conflict occurs between a law, regulation, policy of a college, department, accrediting body for the university or college, and the university.  The University’s General Counsel will be consulted to resolve the conflict.

C. Definitions

  1. “Council on Academic Leadership” refers to an advisory council to the President comprised of the deans and vice deans of the colleges. The Council on Academic Leadership reviews and discusses academic issues that cut across all colleges of the University.
  2. “Interim Academic Policy” refers to drafting new policies or revisions that may be requested for expedited review and approval by the VPAA, when it is in the best interest of the University.
  3. “Policy Author” refers to the individual officer who drafts and/or proposes a new academic policy.
  4. “Responsible Department” refers to the college, department or unit responsible for oversight of the policy.
  5. “University Faculty Council” is a body established to promote faculty dialogue, facilitate shared governance, advocate on behalf of faculty, and to assure a faculty voice in academic matters such as appointments, promotions, tenure, the curriculum and to provide a faculty voice in decision-making pertaining to academic matters.
  6. “Vice President for Academic Affairs” or “VPAA” refers to the Chief Academic Officer of the University.

D. Body of the Policy

  1. Development of Academic Policies
    1. The VPAA has the authority to create, implement, enforce and repeal all Academic Policies with the University. To the extent some Academic Policies that address only matters within a specific college, the Dean of that College has authority to implement those Academic Policies that affect the pedagogical activities of the college in which he/she is Dean; those policies are not governed by this policy.
    2. Academic policies are issued at the discretion and subject to the final approval of the VPAA/Dean, in consult with the President. There may be occasion when the President will bring academic policies to the Board of Trustees for information and/or endorsement.
    3. A proposed academic policy falling under the purview of the VPAA is developed following consultation with the VPAA or at the request of the VPAA. It is expected that draft new policies and those recommended for substantial revision or repeal are developed and fully vetted within the appropriate units. Proper vetting includes all stakeholders, especially those impacted by potential resource needs or expenses for which they are responsible.
    4. The VPAA’s review process typically follows these steps:
      1. The Policy Author will forward the draft policy to the VPAA for an internal administrative review including a comment period;
      2. The Office of the VPAA will distribute the policy within the University community for comment, with electronic copies of the draft routed to the University Faculty Council as appropriate;
      3. The Office of the VPAA will distribute the policy to the Council of Academic Leadership for comment;
      4. Consolidated comments regarding the distributed versions will be forwarded to the Policy Author who will revise, as needed/necessary, and submit to the VPAA for final approval; and
      5. When it is in the best interest of the University, draft new policies or revisions may be requested for expedited review and approval by the VPAA as “Interim” academic policy.
  2. Format for Policy and Procedure Statements
    1. although the format is intended to be flexible enough to accommodate a wide variety of policies on many complex issues, certain general guidelines should be followed and the “NEOMED Academic Policy” Template should be used:
      1. Purpose
      2. Scope
      3. Definitions
      4. Body of the Policy
      5. Administrative Procedure
    2. A general numbering system (200 – 399) will be employed for academic policies as determined by the Office of General Counsel. Supporting procedural documents will be numbered with decimals under the primary governing policy (e.g., procedures number 200.01 supports policy 200).
    3. An official policy archive will be maintained by the Office of General Counsel.

E. Dissemination of Approved Academic Policy and Procedure Statements

  1. Following approval of a new or revised policy by the VPAA, notification of the release of the official policy will be made to the academic community in the following manner:
    1. An email announcing approval and release of a new or revised official policy will be sent to the academic community.
    2. An electronic copy of the official policy will be maintained for web page access through the university website.

F. Periodic Review of Policy and Procedure Statements

  1. As part of the development of each policy, the VPAA, will establish a periodic review cycle for each approved policy.
  2. The VPAA will assign a review date and primary reviewer. The responsibility of the primary reviewer is to invite comments or proposed revisions to the policy from members of the University Faculty Council, Council of Academic Leadership, and other relevant stakeholders.
  3. Responsible officers within colleges, departments, or units must ensure the division’s academic policies are up to date and revised when necessary to reflect current practice and/or procedures. Each policy will be reviewed by the responsible department and revised as necessary, but no less than every five years.

University Policies

Office of General Counsel