Carnegie Mellon Engineering




Faculty Policies

All faculty members are governed by university and faculty policies as given in the Carnegie Mellon Faculty Handbook.

Polices specific to College of Engineering are outlined below. Review these policies by using the links to the right.

 

Adjunct Faculty Appointments

Purpose
Adjunct faculty appointments are extended to those individuals who are expected to have sustained collaborative research or other intellectual involvement with the faculty of the department. Their collaboration with the department might include participation in student thesis committees, research projects, and presentation of seminars.

Criteria
Professional accomplishments of candidates for adjunct faculty should be comparable to those holding equivalent academic positions, as judged by the department faculty. Although expectations may be different from those holding academic vs. industrial experiences, criteria should focus on research productivity, educational contributions, and professional standing.

Responsibilities & Privileges

  • Adjunct faculty members may supervise graduate students at the discretion of the department head.

  • Adjunct faculty members may be co-PIs on proposals written from the university.

  • Resources, such as office space, secretary time, may be provided at the discretion of the department head.

  • Attendance at the faculty meetings is only by invitation.

  • Adjunct faculty appointment does not constitute a conventional employment relationship.

  • In any formal representation of the appointment the full and correct title must be used.

 

Appointment Process
The candidate's credentials are reviewed by the faculty of the department and recommended to the College of Engineering Dean.

The term of appointment is up to three years and renewable subject to sustained collaboration.

(policy updated 5/21/2009)

 

Adjunct Faculty and Grade Submittal

Mid-term and final grades determined by the College of Engineering adjunct faculty members and adjunct lecturers shall be submitted to the department head or approved staff member in the relevant department for entry into the electronic grading system. Adjunct faculty members and adjunct lecturers are not permitted to access the electronic grading system directly and enter grades.

(policy created 4/14/2009)

 

Affiliated Faculty Appointments

The purpose of an affiliated faculty appointment in an engineering department is to recognize and facilitate the involvement in the department of faculty members from other departments or units at Carnegie Mellon. This involvement may be in education and/or research. Examples of affiliate faculty involvement in a department include teaching of classes, participation in research projects, and supervision of students.

An affiliated faculty appointment is distinguished from a courtesy faculty appointment by: (1) conferral of full faculty voting rights and privileges in the department making the affiliated appointment; (2) the intent of the department making the affiliated faculty appointment to submit a departmental letter for the affiliated appointee when the appointee is considered for promotion and/or tenure; and (3) the duration of the affiliated faculty appointment is for the duration of the appointment in the primary department.

An affiliated faculty appointment in an engineering department is made to a person who holds a full-time faculty position in another department or unit at Carnegie Mellon. Such an appointment involves no salary from the conferring department (0% appointment). The affiliated faculty appointment is made at the same rank as held by the appointee in their primary department.

The College of Engineering departments establish their own procedures for nomination and approval of affiliated faculty appointments. The faculty member desiring an affiliated faculty appointment in a College of Engineering department should request it in writing and also obtain written approval from the head of his/her primary department. The head of the College of Engineering department making the appointment shall offer such an appointment in writing upon receiving the written request from the faculty member and the letter of approval from the head of the appointee's primary department. The appointment letter should clearly state the rights and privileges offered the faculty member and should also state that the department will write a letter for his/her promotion and/or tenure case which will be part of the faculty member's promotion package.

Copies of the letters requesting and granting a College of Engineering affiliated faculty appointment shall be sent to the College of Engineering Dean, College of Engineering Associate Dean for Graduate and Faculty Affairs, and the head of the appointee's primary department.

(policy created 10/08/2009)

 

Courtesy Faculty Appointments 

The purpose of a courtesy faculty appointment in a College of Engineering department is to recognize and facilitate the involvement in the department of faculty members from other departments or units at Carnegie Mellon. This involvement may be in education and/or research.  Examples of courtesy faculty involvement in a department include teaching of classes, participation in research projects, and supervision of students.

A courtesy faculty appointment in a College of Engineering department is made to a person who holds a full-time faculty position in another department or unit at Carnegie Mellon. Such an appointment involves no salary from the conferring department. The courtesy faculty appointment is made at the same rank as held by the appointee in their primary department.

The College of Engineering departments establish their own procedures for nomination and approval of courtesy faculty appointments. The College of Engineering Dean, College of Engineering Associate Dean for Graduate and Faculty Affairs, and the head of the department or unit in which the appointee is based should be notified when a courtesy appointment is made. Courtesy appointments may be up to three years in duration and can be renewed by the department.

The College of Engineering department where the appointment is made can confer departmental faculty privileges on courtesy appointees as the department desires. These privileges could include attendance at faculty meetings, voting on promotion cases, and representing the department at internal and external meetings.

The head of the College of Engineering department making the courtesy appointment shall offer such an appointment in writing. The appointment letter should state clearly the rights and privileges offered the faculty member. Copies of the appointment letter shall be sent to the College of Engineering Dean, College of Engineering Associate Dean for Graduate and Faculty Affairs, and the head of the appointee’s primary department.

(policy created 10/08/2009)

 

Criteria for The College of Engineering Centers and Institutes

Below are criteria for designation of "centers" in the College of Engineering.

Review of The College of Engineering Centers and Institutes
Review by the Dean and the responsible department heads will typically take place every two years.

Minimum Criteria for The College of Engineering Centers and Institutes

  • Should have at least three tenure-track faculty or principal research faculty significantly involved in the center activities.

  • Should have multi-disciplinary activity, as evidenced by having faculty from two or more academic units.

  • Should maintain an average minimum research volume of $350,000 annually (1998 $ including indirect costs) measured in research or fellowships directly supporting the center activities

 

Start-Up for The College of Engineering Centers and Institutes
New centers and institutes require approval by the Dean. Programs, consortia, and laboratories can be started by departments. A new center will be reviewed two years after initiation and need not meet all the criteria above at its inception, but is expected to make steady progress towards meeting the criteria.

 

Grading Policy

The general grading policy used by the College of Engineering is described on the university grading policy page.  The following are College of Engineering-specific policies for graduate grading.

Project work may be given an S (Satisfactory) grade on a semester-by-semester basis, but a letter grade (A, A-, B+, B, B-, C+, C, C-,D+, D, or R) must be given in the final semester for a multi-semester project. The units with an S grade are counted toward degree requirements but are not included in computing the average grade.

Course work or graduate project units with a grade of C- or lower are not acceptable toward graduate degree requirements.

MS Degree
Most, but not all, College of Engineering MS programs require 96 units. For those that require 96 units, the average grade of 96 units applied to the degree shall be at least B, and the student may choose any 96 units of the first 120 units attempted to compute the grade average. Individual departments and programs may have specific requirements regarding grades in certain courses. For MS programs that require more than 96 units, such as the programs of the Information Networking Institute, the program-specific grading policies and degree requirements apply and should be consulted.

(policy revised 5/21/2009)

 

Senior Faculty Review

Philosophy
Occasional review and reflection is healthy for everyone. On a rotating basis, once every seven years, the engineering college requires each of its senior faculty to formally review his or her recent activities and reflect on plans for the coming years. Faculty benefit by taking time out from hectic schedules to reflect on where they are, where they would like to go, and to consider changes they might wish to make. The college benefits from having a senior faculty that pays systematic attention to strategic long-term issues, and periodically identifies and takes steps to stay intellectually fresh and active. The college administrators (dean and department heads) benefit from a shared understanding of the plans and accomplishments of the senior faculty, and the opportunity to foster excellence within the college through continued faculty development.

Principles

  • All faculty holding a tenured appointment in the engineering college will participate in the process, including administrators.

  • In contrast to the current system of annual reports, which is mainly concerned with cataloging the past year's accomplishments, the periodic peer review process is intended to be formative, in the sense of encouraging career development.

  • Participating faculty members are encouraged to reflect systematically on what they have accomplished, how their goals have evolved, what they would like the goals to be during the coming seven year period, how they plan to pursue those goals, and how the university might assist them in reaching these goals.

  • The process is internal to the college. No outside letters or other advice will be sought unless the faculty member decides that such advice might be useful.

 

Mechanism For Process

  • Faculty participate in the process on the seventh anniversaries of the year they received tenure. If there are significant time constraints, the timing can be adjusted by one year at the request of the faculty member.

  • Participating faculty will prepare a Personal Plan which consists of three parts: a "review," a "commentary," and a "prospectus." The review will consist of at most two pages that summarize what they consider to be their most significant accomplishments in recent years. The commentary will be at most two pages that discuss how they feel about their past activities, summarizing thoughts on what has been working, what is not working as well as they might like, and whether the activities of the past offer an appropriate blueprint for the future. The prospectus will consist of at most three pages and outlines what they would like to accomplish during the coming seven year period with somewhat greater focus on the early years. It should address educational, scholarly and professional plans. It should motivate the choices being made, discuss issues of financial support, and identify any assistance that will be required from the University and from other organizations. A current vitae should be attached.

  • Participating senior faculty should submit their Personal Plans to their Department Head(s) by early February. The Department Head should review the Personal Plan and discuss it with the faculty member before forwarding it to the CIT Dean's Office by mid-to-late February. The Department Head may choose to write a cover memo if appropriate. If such a cover memo is prepared, the faculty member will receive a copy.

  • The Tenured Faculty Planning Review Committee will consist of the Dean, Associate Dean for Graduate and Faculty Affairs, Department Heads, Director of ICES and the College of Engineering Faculty Chair and Chair-Elect. The committee will normally meet in March on mid-semester break. The role of the committee is to review and comment upon the information submitted by each faculty member, and to assist where possible in facilitating the plans and career development of the senior faculty.

  • Based on the deliberations of the Committee, a written commentary for the faculty member will be prepared. The Dean and Department Head(s) will meet with the faculty member before the end of the Spring semester to discuss the Plan and to work to identify any ways in which the Department and the College can facilitate the faculty member's plans for the future.

 

Outcomes from Process

Consistent with the philosophy and principles outlined earlier, the most important outcome from the planning review process is expected to be the value to individual faculty members derived from preparing the Personal Plan.

Feedback in the form of commentary, advice and assistance from the Senior Faculty Planning Review Committee is another principal outcome from this process. This feedback is directed toward career development. Advice may be given with regard to faculty goals, including the means to achieve these ends. While it is not intended that the planning review process result directly in commitments and resources needed to achieve certain goals, the process is intended to facilitate discussions from which a workable strategy may be developed.

Another important outcome of the planning review process is to inform the dean and department heads about the substantive accomplishments, productivity, and plans of the senior faculty. This allows greater recognition of individual faculty members, and is important to the overall strategic planning activities within the College. While the planning review process also provides measures of past faculty performance as a basis for planning, it is the forward-looking career development activities rather than retrospective evaluations that are intended to be served by the outcomes of this process.

(policy created 12/20/99)

 

Leaves of Absence: Personal, Family, Professional, Parental

There are two university policies governing faculty leaves of absence:

College of Engineering faculty members considering a leave of absence should review these policies carefully. For any leave of absence, the faculty member should first consult with his/her department head and prepare the application in collaboration with the department head. For a personal, family, or professional leave of absence, a form available from the Office of the Provost (click on "Faculty Leave of Absence Request Form" in the right column) must be completed and submitted to the College of Engineering Dean by December 31 of the year preceding the academic year in which the leave is desired. For a parental leave of absence, a form must be completed and attached to a memo to the department head and Dean that specifies the semester in which leave is requested and confirms that the criteria governing parental leave of absence (in particular, the primary care giver criterion) are met.

For any leave of absence, the procedure for approval is as follows:

  • application is prepared by the faculty member in collaboration with the department head;
  • the department head transmits the application to the Dean with a memo indicating approval of the application;
  • the Dean reviews the application, prepares a memo to the Provost indicating approval, and transmits the application to the Provost;
  • the Provost reviews the application and sends a letter to the faculty member with the official approval.