Office of the Provost

The University of Michigan Faculty Handbook

 

5.A General Principles

At the heart of a great university is an outstanding faculty. Individuals join the faculty through rigorous appointment procedures. Many of the most important aspects of appointment procedures are unit specific (e.g., outlined at the school, college, or departmental level) and may also differ for instructional faculty and other types of faculty, as described in sections 5.B (Criteria for Appointment and Promotion of Instructional Faculty) through 5.E (Librarians, Archivists, and Curators). Nonetheless some general principles are important, including the following:

Openness: Tenured, tenure-track, and certain other faculty positions for which units are seeking appointees must be posted and advertised or—in very special circumstances—a waiver of that posting and advertising must be obtained from the Office of University Human Resources.

Faculty Participation: University-wide faculty committees regularly advise the president and the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs on personnel matters, as do the deans and executive committees of the schools and colleges. Searches to fill open faculty positions are usually conducted by faculty committees. A close working relationship between faculty members and the administration on matters concerning faculty appointments is encouraged.

Diversity: Merely meeting minimum affirmative action requirements is not sufficient to produce equal employment opportunity and a faculty of the highest quality. To achieve the heterogeneous pool of highly qualified, intellectually diverse candidates needed for faculty and academic administrative positions, the University engages in broad searches and vigorous recruiting. Through the Provost’s Faculty Initiatives Program (PFIP), the provost’s office assists the schools, colleges, and other academic units in their efforts to recruit and retain a world-class faculty. See Chapter 2, “Diversity and Nondiscrimination.”

Authority: Offers of employment of any faculty position can be made only by persons authorized by the University in accordance with the Bylaws of the Board of Regents. Typically, each school, college, or other academic unit has specific procedures whereby the governing faculties, executive committees, and deans or directors decide on recommendations for offers of faculty appointments. On the Ann Arbor campus, unit recommendations for the faculty appointments included in the list provided below are forwarded to the provost and executive vice president for academic affairs for recommendation of approval, and then to the president:

  • Professor (with or without tenure),
  • Associate professor (with or without tenure),
  • Clinical professor,
  • Clinical associate professor,
  • Research professor, and
  • Research associate professor.

For research scientists and associate research scientists, recommendations approved by the dean or director and executive committee are forwarded to the vice president for research for approval. At the UM-Dearborn and UM-Flint campuses, appointments are sent by the deans to that campus’ provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs, then to the chancellor, and finally to the president. The Board of Regents approves and appoints members of the instructional faculty with the rank of associate or full professor. Appointments of other members of the instructional faculty are reported to the board (bylaw 5.08).

Faculty Handbook: Appointments: