Information for Chairpersons

Department Meetings and Minutes

Department chairpersons are responsible for running department meetings. Every department should have a scheduled monthly meeting to conduct business. It is vitally important to run an efficient and productive departmental meeting.

Suggestions for running and effective meeting:

  • Send out announcements in advance.

  • Have a written agenda. You should include all major issues (apart from personnel matters) confronting the department or College, e.g., curricular revisions, requests for faculty lines, or grade inflation. You may want to combine some recurring topics, e.g., curriculum.
  • Assign major tasks to committees that can discuss the issues and bring proposals to the department for discussion and a decision.
  • Follow a system that promotes exchanges by different faculty and does not permit a handful of faculty to dominate the discussion.
  • Create an atmosphere in which faculty feel free to air their views, including junior faculty.
  • Do not leave issues open indefinitely.

The department chairpersons are responsible for providing electronic copies of the minutes of department meetings to those on the following list:

  • President of the University - through the 
  • Provost
  • Vice President and Senior Associate Provost
  • Vice President and Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs
  • Vice President and Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs
  • Vice President and Associate Provost for Internationalization
  • Dean, Graduate School
  • I.A. O'Shaughnessy Dean. College of Arts and Letters

Departmental minutes are important records. Minutes should reflect accurately the issues, arguments, and the conclusions that the faculty reach. Minutes should not include discussion of particular candidates for faculty positions or any confidential personnel issues.