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3.2.9 Faculty/staff appointment

The institution defines and publishes policies regarding appointment and employment of faculty and staff. (Faculty/staff appointment)

Judgment of Compliance

Sam Houston State University clearly defines policies regarding appointment and employment of faculty and staff and publishes these policies on the University website [1] [2].

The policies regarding appointment and employment of faculty and staff at Sam Houston State University are aligned with The Texas State University System (TSUS) Rules and Regulations [3] [4]. The University is committed to equal opportunity regarding appointment and employment of faculty and staff as outlined in The Texas State University System’s Affirmative Action Plan [5]. “It is the policy of the Board of Regents of The Texas State University System and its Components, to provide equal opportunity in employment for all persons in accordance with their individual job-related qualifications and without illegal consideration of race, creed, color, sex, religion, age, national origin, or disability. Equal employment opportunities shall include all personnel transactions of recruitment, employment, training, upgrading, promotion, demotion, termination, and salary” [6].

All TSUS policies are available online at The Texas State University System website, and SHSU policies are available via the SHSU homepage ( Policies relating to faculty positions are available from the Academic Affairs homepage, whereas policies and practices relating to the employment of staff can be found on the Human Resources homepage [7] [8].

Sam Houston State University differentiates between tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty positions. Among the non-tenure track positions, the University distinguishes between clinical faculty, visiting professors, and graduate assistants. Separate policies exist for each of these categories [9] [10] [11] [12] [13].

The Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Sam Houston State University is responsible for the policies and procedures regarding appointment for faculty. All employment policies can be accessed online through the Academic Policy Manual [1] and the Faculty Handbook [14]. All faculty members must possess prerequisite skills to be hired.

The process for filling a tenure-track position begins with the allocation of a new position by the President or the reallocation of an existing position by the Provost. For new positions the Budget Committee ensures adequate funding is available. Once the position is approved by the President, a Personnel Requisition form, which includes the job description and job requirements, is filed with the Department of Human Resources [15]. Except in cases of emergencies, the position is then advertised for a minimum of 45 days. The selection committee is instructed to include in the job advertisement the qualifications that will be used to make the final decision. The Provost insures AA/EEO compliance by comparing the candidate with qualifications listed in the job description [9].

In cases of emergencies, the University is allowed to hire faculty on an interim basis. Such positions may result from the sudden loss of faculty (e.g., via death or termination) or unexpected growth in student enrollment. With the Provost’s approval, the position only needs to be advertised for five days. Dependent upon the needs of the department, contracts for interim faculty can be offered for either one semester or one academic year. Departments must follow all of the other procedures used in hiring tenure-track faculty, and all faculty must meet the same standards of competence as do tenure-track faculty [9].

In special situations, the University may opt to grant a one-year teaching position to a visiting scholar to enhance the undergraduate, graduate, research, and professional programs of the University [12]. In a similar fashion, a department may wish to advertise for and hire a clinical professor [11]. The clinical professor should possess the same qualifications as the tenure-track faculty member but is hired based on professional expertise. Although both the temporary and clinical faculty members receive one-year contracts, the clinical faculty member is hired with the expectation that the contract will be renewed annually per departmental needs. Although both positions require a recommendation by the Dean and approval by the Provost, the clinical faculty member must also be endorsed by a majority of the tenured/tenure-track faculty in the department.

To support graduate students in the various departments, the University also employs a number of graduate students. To be eligible for a graduate assistantship, the graduate student must have met all requirements for admission to graduate studies and must remain in good standing. To be assigned as instructor of record, the graduate student must have earned at least 18 graduate semester hours in their teaching area [13]. All potential faculty members are screened by the departmental chair and Dean to insure proficiency in English [16].

Based on the feedback from the search committee, the departmental chair makes a recommendation to the dean. With the Dean’s approval, a letter offering employment is sent to the candidate. The Dean notifies the candidate that they will be receiving an official job offer from the President and requests that the candidate submit a letter of acceptance. The candidate is also requested to complete the personnel file (e.g., transcripts). The Department of Human Resources also requests information from the candidate for the file. Once a letter of acceptance is received from the candidate, Texas state law demands the candidate receive an official contract within sixty days [17].

The Sam Houston State University Human Resources Department establishes policies and procedures and aids in the hiring process for administrative, professional, secretarial/clerical, technical/para-professional, skilled craft, and service/maintenance staff. The University makes public all job openings for which outside applicants are to be considered. This requires the posting of vacancies for five days on the Human Resources Department website, the Texas Workforce Commission website, and other applicable medium [18].

Similar to the hiring of faculty, the hiring process of staff begins with a Personnel Requisition Form, which stipulates the job description and requirements. A representative from Human Resources reviews all job applications to determine which applicants meet or exceed the minimum requirements for the position. All qualified applications are then forwarded to the hiring supervisor. Candidates are interviewed, and the hiring supervisor selects the best qualified candidate and makes an offer.

Supporting Documentation
Documentation Reference
Document Title
[1] Academic Policy Manual, Faculty Section, Webpage
[2] Administrative Policies and Procedures, Webpage
[3] The Texas State University System, Rules and Regulations, Chapter V, Section 4.1
[4] The Texas State University System, Rules and Regulations, Chapter V, Section 5.1
[5] Finance and Operations Human Resource Policy ER-4 - Affirmative Action Plan, SHSU
[6] The Texas State University System, Rules and Regulations, Chapter V, Section 2.11
[7] Academic Affairs, Division of, Webpage
[8] Human Resources Policy Webpage
[9] Academic Policy Statement 800114 - Academic Instructional Staffing
[10] Academic Policy Statement 890301 – Employment of Non-Tenure Track Faculty
[11] Academic Policy Statement 041020 - Appointment of Clinical Faculty Members
[12] Academic Policy Statement 911106 - Appointment of Visiting Scholars
[13] Academic Policy Statement 890303 - Employment of Graduate Assistants
[14] Faculty Handbook, SHSU
[15] Human Resources Personnel Requisition Form
[16] Academic Policy Statement 871214 - English Language Proficiency for Instructional Personnel
[17] House Bill 1127 (77R)
[18] Human Resources Policy E-1 - Staffing of Non-Faculty Positions

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Sam Houston State University
Huntsville, TX 77341
(936) 294-1111