Office of the Provost

The University of Michigan Faculty Handbook

10.A General Principles

The University of Michigan is a large and complex community, and disputes will inevitably occur. Whether faculty are involved in a dispute or have been asked to provide advice regarding a dispute, they should be aware of the services and programs that are available to assist them.

In most instances, every attempt should be made to resolve disputes informally, with the assistance of one or more of the support services provided by the University to facilitate timely resolution of disputes. Informal resolution implies that both sides of the dispute agree with the final resolution. In general, when a dispute is resolved informally, there are no permanent records or files kept on the matter. Formal resolution of disputes may involve committees of faculty or staff; permanent records are kept; and established procedures for gathering information, as well as for making decisions, may be followed. Members of the University community are expected to participate fully in the resolution of disputes if requested to do so by the parties involved.

The various possibilities offered by the University to help resolve disputes are discussed below. While these options are meant to apply to disputes involving a faculty member and other faculty or staff, the informal procedures are applicable to disputes involving students. For additional information about dispute resolution in situations involving students, see section 8.D.2 “Academic Integrity and Academic Misconduct,” section 8.D.6 “Dispute Resolution/Statement of Student Rights and Responsibilities,” section 8.D.12 "Private Instruction," and Chapter 11, “Sexual Harassment.”

Faculty Handbook: Resolution of Disputes: