Georgetown College

Article I: Preamble and Mission

Georgetown College provides a liberal education for those who will be called to intellectual, moral, and professional leadership, and fosters in them a lifelong commitment to the quest for truth. As a Jesuit college, it draws upon a dynamic tradition of education, characterized by an optimistic Christian humanism committed to contemplation, responsibility, action, and social justice. Accordingly, the College encourages the development of critical and creative powers, respect for tradition and human reason, and an appreciation of life and all its endeavors. It promotes not only the intellectual disciplines but also the search for personal values and convictions that will enable its graduates, throughout their lives, to continue to redefine and mature their thought, and also to continue to pursue the integration of their activities, values, and relations with others. Both for its own sake and to enable excellence in instruction, the College seeks to expand the limits of human knowledge, to deepen our understanding of the individual human being, the social world in which we live, and the natural world that surrounds us, and to explore the practical application of such knowledge and understanding for the improvement of the human condition. The College promotes these goals through the ongoing research, conceptual innovation, and artistic expression of its faculty and students and dissemination of these products to the wider scholarly and human community.

Article II. Office of the Dean

Section 1. The Dean of the College

The dean of Georgetown College is the administrative head of the College and reports to the provost. The dean has the primary responsibility for the general effectiveness of the research and instructional programs of the College and has the obligation to carry out all university policies and the regulations adopted by the College Executive Council in keeping with university policy. The dean’s specific responsibilities include those enumerated in the Georgetown University Faculty Handbook (see Faculty Handbook Article II, Section F (new window)).

Section 2. Georgetown College Leadership

The dean shall have the authority to appoint such vice deans, associate deans, assistant deans, and administrative officers as deemed necessary for the effective administration of the College. The dean may delegate duties and responsibilities to other members of the College leadership. The dean may also convene any ad hoc committees of faculty, staff, and/or students that the dean deems necessary to the administration of the College.

Section 3. Council on Studies (COS)

The Council on Studies oversees all degree-seeking undergraduate students in the College. COS comprises the associate deans, assistant deans, and academic counselors who are directly responsible for ongoing and direct advising of College students. COS monitors the academic progress of all students, assigns remediation or disciplinary action as appropriate at the end of each semester for students experiencing academic difficulty, approves changes to registration status, and adjudicates exceptions where academic policies allow.

Article III. Departments

Section 1. Department Bylaws

Departments are obligated to operate under bylaws that have been duly approved by both the department’s faculty and the dean of the College.

Section 2. Department Chairs

Department chairs are the administrative heads of departments and are responsible for the academic, personnel, and fiscal affairs of their department. Their university duties are more fully described in the Faculty Handbook, article III, section B (new window).

The chair of a department shall be appointed by the president of the university, based on recommendations of the department faculty (or a search committee including department faculty) and the dean of the College. Reappointment to additional term(s) as chair shall be based on the recommendation of the department faculty and the dean of the College.

Section 3. Directors of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies

All departments are required to have a director of undergraduate studies (DUS) and, if appropriate, a director of graduate studies (DGS). The specific responsibilities of these two positions shall be formally articulated by each department; a range of possible DUS duties is outlined in the DUS manual (new window).

Article IV. Non-departmental Programs

Section 1. The Scope of This Article

This article applies to all non-departmental programs that offer an undergraduate major or minor.

Section 2. The Core Faculty of a Program

Every program must have a designated core faculty. The core faculty of a program has primary responsibility for the faculty governance of the program.

Section 3. Program Bylaws

Programs are obligated to operate under bylaws that have been initially approved by the dean of the College and the College Executive Council, or as amended according to the bylaws by the program’s core faculty and the dean of the College.

Section 4. Program Directors

Program directors are the administrative heads of programs and are responsible for the academic, personnel, and fiscal affairs of their program.

The program director shall be appointed by the dean of the College, based on recommendations of the core faculty. Reappointment to additional term(s) as director shall be based on the recommendation of the core faculty and the dean of the College.

The program director serves as the director of undergraduate studies for the program; a range of possible DUS duties is outlined in the DUS manual (new window).

Article V. Standing Committees of Georgetown College

Section 1. College Executive Council (EC)

As the primary academic policy-making body of the College, the Executive Council provides broad vision and leadership. Thus, its membership is not intended to represent specific departments or programs individually, but rather to provide a variety of perspectives. Collectively, the members of the Executive Council will bring to the body the views and experiences of students at all levels, as well as diverse faculty from departments and programs of varying sizes and academic missions. Both the membership outlined below and the dean’s appointment prerogative are meant to facilitate this goal.

Before the first elections held under this constitution, the Executive Council shall adopt an elections resolution specifying the procedures for nomination and election of members of the council, as well as other details as referred to below. This elections resolution must be initially adopted by a two-thirds majority of the Executive Council; amendments or changes to the elections resolution likewise require a two-thirds majority of the council.

  1. Membership. The Executive Council shall consist of 21 voting members as well as up to 4 non-voting members. A majority of the voting members (11 or more, not including the dean) must be tenure-line members of the faculty of the College. The members of the Executive Council shall be apportioned as follows:
    1. Voting members:
      1. The dean (1): the dean of Georgetown College is an ex officio voting member and chair of the EC.
      2. Representatives of the faculty of the College (12), each elected by a defined constituency, as follows:
        1. Eight (8) representatives of College departments, apportioned by disciplinary area: two each from the Humanities, Languages and Linguistics, Human and Social Sciences, and the Quantitative and Natural Sciences. The apportionment of departments into these four disciplinary areas shall be specified by the elections resolution.
        2. Two (2) representatives of the non-departmental programs of the College.
        3. Two (2) representatives of the full-time non-tenure-line faculty of the College.
      3. Student representatives (4), apportioned as follows:
        1. Two (2) full-time undergraduate students appointed by the College Academic Council.
        2. One (1) full-time master’s student and one (1) full-time doctoral student in a graduate program located in the College as specified in the elections resolution.
      4. Representative of the Faculty Senate (1): one member appointed by the Faculty Senate.
      5. Decanal appointments (3): the dean of the College appoints three members of the College full-time faculty each year. In making these appointments, the dean must ensure that 11 voting members of the resulting Executive Council (in addition to the dean) are members of the tenure-line faculty of the College.
    2. Non-voting members: the dean of the College may appoint up to four members of the dean’s office staff (whether faculty or academic-administrative personnel) to serve as ex officio non-voting members of the EC. Such non-voting members serve on an annual basis.
  2. Terms of Office and Term Limits. Members of the Executive Council shall serve terms as follows:
    1. The 12 elected representatives of the College faculty shall serve two-year terms. In the first elections for the EC under this constitution, half of the members elected shall serve one-year terms, as specified in the elections resolution.
      1. Individual term limits: an elected representative of the College faculty is limited to two consecutive two-year terms, after which they may not stand for election for two years.
      2. Term limits by constituency: when any elected member representing the faculty of the College ends their term of service on the Council, the member’s department or program may not nominate anyone to stand in the election to replace them.
      3. The details specifying term limits shall be laid out in the elections resolution.
    2. Student representatives serve one-year terms, and may serve no more than two years total on the EC.
    3. The representative of the Faculty Senate serves a two-year term and may be re-appointed once, after which they may not serve on the EC for two years.
    4. The decanal appointments to the EC serve one-year terms and may serve four consecutive terms, after which they may not serve on the EC for two years.
    5. Non-voting members of the Council serve on an annual basis with no term limits.
  3. Eligibility to Vote and Serve.
    1. Eligibility for representatives of the College faculty:
      1. Full-time members of the faculty of Georgetown College are eligible to serve on the EC only once they have completed three years of full-time service as members of the university faculty.
      2. Only tenure-line members of the faculties of the four departmental disciplinary areas are eligible to vote for and serve as one of the eight representatives of College departments.
      3. Only tenure-line members of the core faculties of the non-departmental programs, along with the directors of such programs, regardless of whether they are tenure-line or full-time non-tenure-line, may vote for and serve as one of the two representatives of the non-departmental programs.
      4. Only full-time non-tenure-line members of the faculty of the College may vote for and serve as one of the two representatives of the full-time non-tenure-line faculty.
    2. Only full-time students (undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral) are eligible to serve as student representatives on the EC.
    3. Only full-time members of the university faculty who have completed three years of full-time service to the university as members of the faculty are eligible to be appointed by the Faculty Senate.
    4. Further details about nomination and election of members of the EC shall be specified in the elections resolution.
  4. Replacement of Members Mid-term.When any elected member of the EC representing a faculty constituency cannot for whatever reason complete their term of service, the dean of the College shall appoint a representative from the same constituency to complete that member’s term. When any other member of the EC cannot complete their term, the body that appointed them shall appoint a replacement to complete the member’s term.
  5. Officers. The officers of the EC shall be the chair, vice chair, and secretary. The dean shall serve as chair. The EC shall elect the vice chair and secretary from among its tenure-line faculty members.
  6. Steering Committee. The steering committee shall consist of the chair, the vice chair, the secretary, one full-time non-tenure-line member of the EC, and one student member of the EC. The full-time non-tenure-line member and the student member shall be elected by all EC members.
  7. Nominations and Elections Committee.The Nominations and Elections Committee shall consist of the vice chair, the secretary, and the full-time non-tenure-line member of the steering committee.
  8. Meetings. The EC shall meet at least once each semester. The specific dates shall be designated by the chair of the EC. Special meetings may be called by the president of the university, the executive vice president for the main campus, or by the chair, or upon the written request of at least six members of the EC. Notice of all meetings of the EC shall be given by the chair at least seven days before the meeting.
  9. Agenda.The steering committee shall meet before each regular meeting of the EC to determine the agenda for the full EC meeting. Any member of the faculty and any student in the College may propose agenda items to the steering committee.
  10. Quorum. A quorum for meetings of the EC shall consist of two-thirds of its members. There shall be no votes by proxy. A simple majority of all members present and voting shall be required to adopt all motions except amendments to this constitution.
  11. Duties of the Secretary. The secretary shall be responsible for the preparation of fair and accurate minutes of each meeting. Minutes shall be subject to approval by the full EC at the next meeting. Copies of the approved minutes shall be maintained in the Office of the Dean and posted electronically on the College website.

Section 2. Undergraduate Academic Assembly (UAA)

The UAA is the largest and most broadly representative College advisory group. The UAA shall be a forum for discussion of issues affecting the College’s undergraduate program.

  1. Membership. The assembly shall consist of all directors of undergraduate studies and directors of non-departmental programs.

  2. Officers. The dean is the chair of the UAA and may designate another member of the UAA or a member of the dean’s staff to preside at meetings.

  3. Meetings. The UAA shall be convened by the dean or the dean’s designee at least once per semester and may communicate more frequently in online fora.

  4. Authority. Concerns and issues raised by the UAA may be directed, as appropriate, to the College Curriculum Committee, College Executive Council, College leadership, and/or department chairs.

Section 3. College Curriculum Committee (CCC)

The College Curriculum Committee advises the dean of the College and the College Executive Council.

  1. Membership. The CCC shall include 10 members of the full-time faculty. The dean shall appoint six members of the CCC, and the executive council shall appoint four members. Members shall serve a two-year term and may serve no more than two consecutive terms. In addition, designees of the dean may serve on the CCC as non-voting ex officio members. The CCC shall be co-chaired by a representative of the dean’s office and a faculty member of the CCC elected by the faculty members of the CCC.
  2. Function. The CCC is charged with building an environment for program and curricular development that reflects Georgetown’s values and liberal arts mission, performing two distinct but related functions:
    1. Reviewing proposed programs (minors, majors, certificates, other initiatives) and other curricular changes that would have bearing on College students and faculty, providing endorsements and advice to the dean and Executive Council.
    2. Proposing principles, standards, and rationales for the base units of the College degree (credits, courses, etc.), with attention to the shape of the curriculum as a whole.

Section 4. Council of Department Chairs (CDC)

The Council of Department Chairs shall be the primary (but not exclusive) venue for the dean, members of the dean’s staff, and the chairs of College departments to deliberate about matters that affect departmental operations and faculty policy. When practical, proposals that affect departmental operations and faculty policy should be discussed and voted on, as appropriate, by the CDC, although such proposals may originate in or be passed on to the Executive Council as needed. Proposals initiated in or passed on to the CDC, if approved, shall then be sent to the College Executive Council for discussion and approval.

The CDC shall serve in an advisory capacity to the dean with respect to matters of College finance, in so far as they affect departmental operations. The dean or designee shall annually present a summary of the College’s budget to the CDC.

  1. Membership. The chair of every department in the College is a member of the CDC and should regularly attend its meetings. If a chair cannot make a meeting of the CDC, they may designate another departmental officer to attend in their place.
  2. The dean of the College is an ex officio voting member and chair of the CDC. The dean may designate another member of the dean’s staff to preside at a meeting in the absence of the dean, but a designee may not vote.
  3. Meetings. The CDC shall meet at least once per semester. Ordinarily, the dean as chair of the CDC sets the agenda of the meetings. In addition, five or more members of the CDC may place items on the agenda. A quorum shall consist of two-thirds of the members of the CDC

Section 5. College Rank and Tenure Committee (CRTC)

The College Rank and Tenure Committee (CRTC) shall (a) provide feedback to departments on tenure and/or promotion dossiers, (b) independently review candidates, and (c) advise the dean of the College on tenure and/or promotion cases and policy. The committee is intended to ensure the rigor and clarity of promotion dossiers across the wide array of College departments, while preserving the strong voice of departments in these processes. The CRTC shall complement the current procedures for consideration of promotion and tenure of College faculty as described in the Faculty Handbook and the university guidelines for tenure and promotion.

  1. Membership. The committee shall be composed of eight (full) professors who are accomplished scholars with expertise that spans the disciplines represented in the College. Four of the CRTC members will be elected by the College Executive Council, through a process decided upon by the EC, and four will be appointed by the dean with the goal of maximizing representation of the disciplines and demographics of the College faculty. No single department shall have more than one representative on the CRTC at any given time. The committee shall nominate a chair for approval by the dean of the College. Committee members will serve two-year terms, with initial appointments of one- and two-year terms to stagger membership. The chair shall serve for one year with the possibility of renewal for a second year. An individual may serve on the committee for no more than two terms in succession and must remain off the committee for at least one term between appointments. The dean and the dean’s designees shall serve as ex officio non-voting members of the CRTC. Designees of the dean may not participate in cases above their faculty rank. All members of the CRTC shall receive training on topics such as admissibility of material, arm’s-length status of evaluators, confidentiality, implicit bias, and recusal policy.
  2. Procedure. The procedure for consideration of promotion and tenure in the dean’s office shall consist of (i) providing feedback on external evaluators and (ii) convening the CRTC to evaluate candidates for tenure and/or promotion:
    1. Providing feedback
      1. The initial list of potential external evaluators shall be formed following UCRT guidelines for selecting external evaluators as implemented in accordance with departmental bylaws. This list shall be conveyed to the Office of the Dean by the chair of the department’s rank and tenure committee along with:
        1. a description of the candidate’s scholarly field or fields, and
        2. a brief biographical sketch of each evaluator and discussion of how the evaluator satisfies the UCRT guidelines, as well as any concerns that might be raised about the evaluator’s credentials or relationship with the candidate.
      2. The dean of the College or the dean’s designees shall examine the list of evaluators for consistency with the UCRT Guidelines regarding the selection of appropriate external evaluators, consult with the chair of the departmental rank and tenure committee and/or the department chair if questions arise, and provide written feedback. This feedback may involve requests to remove or add evaluators. The department will then finalize the list and solicit the letters.
    2. Evaluating dossiers. The CRTC’s involvement in the evaluation of dossiers shall begin after the dossier is sent by the Office of the Provost to the dean of the College for consideration. Each application will be judged according to the standards for tenure and promotion articulated in the Faculty Handbook and the UCRT Guidelines.
      1. Prior to the CRTC meeting, each dossier will be assigned by the CRTC chair to one committee member who will present the dossier to the committee. All committee members are expected to review every dossier.
      2. The CRTC shall invite the department chair (or appropriate designee, as decided on by each department for each case and communicated to the CRTC when the dossier is submitted) to its meeting to answer questions from the CRTC before it deliberates on the case. The role of the department representative is to answer any questions about the dossier, not to advocate for a certain decision on the application. Informed by this meeting and its own internal review, the CRTC may suggest revisions to the materials prepared by the department, but not to any materials provided by the candidate or the external evaluators.
      3. Based on the dossier and any requested feedback from the departmental chair, the CRTC shall thoroughly deliberate the merits of the candidate’s case for promotion and/or tenure in the areas of research, teaching, and service. The CRCT will review the full dossier, including the departmental report and the external letters. In the process, the CRTC will give substantial weight to the expertise in the field reflected in the review(s) done at the departmental level and the external letters, but the CRTC will not give unconditional deference to their recommendations.
      4. Upon completion of this deliberation, a vote shall be taken by the CRTC regarding the candidate’s case using secret ballots, and the chair will announce and record the outcome of the vote. Results of the CRTC vote will be reported to candidates consistent with the relevant provisions of the Faculty Handbook.
      5. Any committee members with an appointment in the home or secondary department of a candidate for tenure or promotion (or with any other condition that raises conflict of interest issues) will recuse themselves from discussion and voting on that candidate.
      6. A summary report of the deliberations will be prepared and then reviewed and approved by the CRTC’s members. That report will be provided to the dean and included in the candidate’s dossier to be evaluated in subsequent steps of the rank and tenure process.
      7. The members of the CRTC and attending department chairs shall not discuss the business of the committee except with the dean of the College and those designated by the dean (see Faculty Handbook, article III, section D, number 6 (new window) for the confidentiality and transparency of the rank and tenure process).
    3. In accordance with university guidelines, the CRTC will review the dossiers of faculty with shared and courtesy joint appointments, but will not review the dossiers of faculty who have an affiliate joint appointment between the College and another school in which the College appointment is secondary.
    4. Consistent with the policy on Expedited Processes for Appointments of Senior Faculty, the CRTC will vote on rank and tenure as well as on the waiver of a full review for any cases in which there is a request for an Expedited Review with Waiver of Requirement for Full Review. The vote of the CRTC will be submitted to the Office of the Provost.
    5. The CRTC will report annually to the College department chairs on (1) the number of cases considered for tenure and/or promotion, (2) the proportion with a positive vote, (3) any general observations about the dossiers, and (4) any procedural issues.
    6. The first two full academic years in which the CRTC is operational will be considered a trial period during which time faculty members are encouraged to provide feedback regarding the merits of these procedures. At the completion of the trial period, the College Executive Council will consider any necessary revisions to the policy and procedures of the CRTC.

Section 6. College Academic Council (CAC)

Composed of four elected representatives from each undergraduate class in the College, the College Academic Council (CAC) advises the Office of the Dean on a wide variety of issues affecting the academic lives of the undergraduate students of Georgetown College. The CAC shall approve its own constitution, subject to approval by the dean.

Article VI. Amendments to the Constitution

Amendments to the constitution shall be considered by the College Executive Council. Amendments may be proposed by any full-time faculty member in Georgetown College. Amendments shall be introduced in written form and discussed at an initial meeting of the EC. Action on the proposed amendment, however, shall take place at a subsequent meeting in order to provide adequate time for discussion and debate. Subject to the presence of a quorum, a two-thirds affirmative vote of those present and voting in the EC shall be necessary for an amendment’s adoption. Amendments to the constitution must be approved in writing by the president and Board of Directors of the university.

Last amended June 4, 2020