IV. The Faculty Organization

V. University Policies, Guidelines and Resolutions

Go to:
University Policies included in the Faculty Handbook
Faculty Policies included in the Faculty Handbook
Carnegie Mellon University General Policies Web Site.
Carnegie Mellon University Faculty and Research Policies Web Site.

University Policies

Alcohol and Drug Policies

Carnegie Mellon Bylaws Article X, Indemnification of Trustees and Officers

Computing Policy

Conflict of Interest/Commitment Policy

EEO Policy/Affirmative Action

Examinations Policy

Intellectual Property Policy

Parking Policy

Policy Against Sexual Harassment

Policy for Handling Alleged Misconduct in Research

Policy on AIDS (in the Carnegie Mellon environment)

Policy on Cheating and Plagerism

Policy on Membership Dues for Professional Organizations

Policy on Restricted Research

Policy on Smoking

Policy on Privacy of Faculty Offices

Property Management Policies and Procedures

Public Art Policy

Separation of Individual's and Institution's Interests

Statement of Assurance

Statement of Individual Responsibilities in Shared Computing Environments

Temporary Closing of the University

Travel Expense Reimbursement Policy

University Policy on Free Speech and Assembly and Controversial Speakers

Carnegie Mellon University Purchasing Policy

Faculty Policies

Appointment and Tenure Policy       Please see Faculty Titles Decision

Carnegie Mellon Bylaws Article IX, Statement of Policy on Professional Protection Regarding Faculty Members

Faculty Retirement

Guidelines for Excellence in Teaching

Policy on Consulting

Policy on Emeritus Faculty

Policy on Faculty Leaves (personal, family, professional)

Policy on Faculty Parental Leaves

Policy on Librarian and Archivist Appointments

Policy on Public Service Leaves

Policy on Research Faculty Appointments       Please see Faculty Titles Decision

Policy on the Lecturer Track Appointments       Please see Faculty Titles Decision

Policy to Provide Retirement Options for Tenured Faculty

Research Support at Carnegie Mellon (normal teaching load)

Resolution Concerning Faculty Participation in Planning Major Changes in a Department, School or College

Special Faculty Appointments

Special Service Payments for Internal Consulting

University Professor


University Professor

University Professors
Subsection of the Appointment and Tenure Policy

University Professor
Adopted July 22, 1991


The rank of university professor is conferred on faculty members with exceptional national or international distinction, as evidenced by election to the Academies in the faculty member's fields or equivalent recognition for scholarly work or creative performance. The rank of university professor is intended to recognize professional achievement as well as breadth of interest and competence. The title of university professor may carry a departmental or discipline designation.


Nominations to the rank of university professor may be initiated by the president, provost, deans or three university professors. The title is conferred by the president upon the favorable recommendation of a majority of the university professors and the advice of the provost and deans.

An initial appointment to the rank of university professor may follow the above procedure concurrently with the normal procedure for appointment to the rank of full professor.

Activities and Responsibilities
Revised by the University Professors and Adopted by the Faculty Senate February 8, 2000

The main contribution of university Professors to the university community comes about through the exercise of normal academic responsibilities. In addition, university professors are encouraged to engage in activities that enhance the entire university, to foster interdisciplinary teaching and research activities, and to offer or arrange for special seminars open to all students at the university.

Committees of a small number of university professors are appointed from time to time for various purposes including:
- Propose recipients for the Dickson Prize.
- Advise the president and the provost about issues affecting the entire university.
- Assess nominations for the position of university professor.

In addition, three or more university professors may propose setting up an ad hoc committee, whose members will normally come from the group which proposes it, to study and report on some aspect of the university. After preliminary approval by a majority of the university professors, the committee may begin its work and ultimately prepare a report, which will be circulated among the university professors for formal consideration. Such a report can be released as one approved by the university Professors provided two-thirds (not counting emeriti) are in favor of doing so.

University professors can, within reasonable limits, choose what they want to teach, and are not limited to teaching courses in the department(s) with which they are associated. The provost budgets some funds to assist a department in case a university professor's teaching a special course or a course outside the department has a serious impact on the department's ability to meet its teaching obligations.

University professors are also free to carry out their research and other scholarly activities in any appropriate unit of the university.

Research Support at Carnegie Mellon University
(normal teaching load)

Adopted February 11, 1976

It is important at this time to clarify the sources for funding research at this university, so that both faculty members and outside agencies will recognize the nature and extent of the university's commitment to this effort. Most faculty members at Carnegie Mellon engage in both teaching and research, in varying proportions. To an extent generally unrealized, the university has been supporting much of their research with internal funds. Therefore, it is also important to make clear the basis upon which the university commits its own funds to the support of faculty research.

The university has always assumed that a faculty member not currently engaged in supported research (by either outside agencies or the university itself) should be engaged full time in teaching. The normal teaching load has for a long time been defined, in the university's account process, as equivalent to 12 hours spent in classroom instruction plus 24 hours spent in work related to classes taught (preparation, work with students, grading) for a total of 36 hours (for full professors 9 hours instruction plus 18 hours of related work for a total of 27 hours), except for certain types of classes, for example, those which are being offered in the College of Fine Arts, where more contact hours with students are necessary for the training and education in the disciplines. In addition, faculty members have been expected to perform a customary amount of other activities such as advising students, serving on committees and participating in professional activities or public service.

Recognizing the importance of research, the university, to the extent possible, will continue to provide some support for research. But in the present period of financial difficulties, it may become necessary for the university to be more selective in its internal support of research. One reason why the university is feeling an additional pinch in its revenues at this time is that many outside funding agencies, noting that universities are financing research time of their faculties, have begun to reduce their support of faculty salaries in research projects. These agencies generally remain willing to provide support for summer salaries, but have been increasingly reluctant to fund any portion of the academic year salaries of faculty members engaged in research. This growing practice is already burdensome, and may become ruinous to universities which currently have their resources fully committed to existing teaching and research. Thus it is crucial that those preparing budgets for research grants request support of appropriate fractions of faculty salaries if project work is to be carried on by those faculty members during the academic year.

Resolution Concerning Faculty Participation in Planning Major Changes in a Department, School or College

Adopted April 6, 1978

In order for a university to accomplish its major goals of education and scholarship it must be a dynamic organization. It must be prepared for change both to maintain teaching and research of a high quality and to move into new areas of knowledge. It is important that the organization provide procedures for change appropriate to attain these goals within an academic community.

The administration of Carnegie Mellon University has responsibility for an organization whose objectives are quite diverse. The faculty by its nature has knowledge and skills which can help ensure the wisdom of major decisions. Thus, it is of the greatest importance for the faculty to participate in reaching major decisions which affect their activities and responsibilities. A model in which administrators arrive at and implement decisions without adequate consultation with faculty members is not satisfactory. Although the process of open discussion and communication is more difficult and time-consuming, it leads to decisions based on broader information than might be available to administrators and to those with whom they selectively choose to consult.

This does not suggest that every decision be by vote of the faculty. However, the communication associated with the democratic process is a necessary part of a first-rate university. Therefore, prior to the announcement and implementation of a proposed major change in a department, school, or college, it is the policy of the university to have thorough faculty discussion of the change and to ensure opportunity for all faculty members to communicate their views.

Guidelines for Excellence in Teaching

Organization Announcement No. 300
Date: January 21, 1982

Good teaching which leads to good learning is critically important to Carnegie Mellon University. Students have a right to receive the best teaching possible from our faculty. The Educational Affairs Council of the Faculty Senate developed a set of guide-lines defining some of the characteristics of a responsible teacher. These guidelines were approved by the Faculty Senate on April 2, 1981. Obviously, being a good teacher involves many personal elements for which it is not practical to define guidelines. Good teaching in the final analysis always rests on the skills and integrity of individual faculty members. The freedom of faculty members in defining, structuring, and executing the educational process is a necessary and healthy aspect of the university atmosphere.

The guidelines below, if followed where appropriate, should significantly aid faculty members to attain an acceptable level of responsible teaching at the university. We obviously want more than might be inferred from the guidelines below. Good teaching requires imagination, knowledge, enthusiasm, dedication, a desire to excel, and much effort. The university also has provisions for helping faculty members who wish to improve their teaching.

With a full understanding of possible limitations, these guidelines become part of the Faculty Handbook. Both new and experienced faculty members will find the material helpful and should follow it as closely as appropriate to achieve excellence in teaching:

  1. definition, at the beginning of each course, of course content, objectives, requirements, and basis for grading.
  2. awareness of the needs and details of departmental curricula, and incorporation of such needs in the design and execution of individual courses.
  3. planning of educationally meaningful in-class and out-of-class activities.
  4. awareness of and sensitivity to the special needs and concerns of individual students.
  5. evaluation of student progress and translation into meaningful final grades as well as mid-semester grades, when required, for each student in each course, reported before deadlines set by the registrar.
  6. meeting all regularly scheduled classes, with procurement of a qualified substitute or re-scheduling to be done in responsible manner, only when necessary, and in conformity with departmental policy.
  7. provision for out-of-class access time for conferences with individual students, through establishment of regular office hours and/or availability for appointments.
  8. adoption of necessary precautions to prevent plagiarism and cheating, and dealing with offenders according to the procedures described in the University Policy Statement on Cheating and Plagiarism.
  9. administration of final examination, except in courses for which such an examination is clearly inappropriate.
  10. administration of course evaluations, or some other suitable substitute student evaluation with publicly available results, in each course.
  11. conscientious supervision of associates, teaching assistants, and graders involved in any course for which the faculty member has primary or supervisory responsibility.

Faculty Retirement

Normal retirement for a member of the faculty is age 65; however, effective January 1, 1994, no mandatory retirement age exists.

VI. Faculty Benefits

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