Faculty Handbook

Administrative Review

Last updated: 10/19/2001


This policy was issued by the Office of the Provost on April 24, 1991 and revised on October 19, 2001.

Faculty and academic staff members covered by the Faculty Grievance Policy (see FGP Section 1.1) have the opportunity to have personnel concerns reviewed at their request by MSU's academic administrators.  The administrative review procedure is an informal process providing such an avenue for faculty/academic staff to request an independent assessment from their department chairperson/school director, dean, and Office of the Provost on such personnel matters as salary status, reappointment, promotion and tenure.  This procedure is not intended to supersede informal discussion between the faculty/academic staff member and the department chairperson/school director in resolving these issues.  The administrative review process may involve consideration and possible redress of substantive issues (changes in salary, promotion and tenure status, etc.) at department, school and dean levels.  The Office of the Provost considers matters of process only, i.e., whether appropriate or applicable procedures have been followed, etc.  (Possible redress available is to direct an additional substantive review in the department, school, or college.)

Utilization of the administrative review procedure does not preclude a faculty/academic staff member from pursuing a grievance filed on a timely basis regarding the same matter under the Faculty Grievance Policy.  If a grievance is filed, it will be held in abeyance pending completion of the administrative review.  However, the administrative review process could not be invoked in cases where a complaint is filed with a court.  Requests for an administrative review should be handled in a timely manner.

The administrative review process is initiated by a letter of request from the faculty/academic staff member to the dean of the applicable college; an information copy is also sent to the Associate Provost and Associate Vice President for Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs.  This letter should be accompanied by materials in support of request.  The dean transmits these materials to the relevant department chairperson/school director  for  review in accordance with usual unit standards, criteria and procedures.   On  conclusion  of this review, which should be based on usual peer review advisory procedures, a written response should be  sent  by  the  department  chairperson/school  director  to  the  faculty/academic  staff  member.   If  the faculty/academic  staff  member  is  not  satisfied  with  this  response,  an  appeal  can  be  made to the dean for an additional review of the record, which should include an assessment of the original record, the unit's response and rationale, and any commentary the faculty/academic staff member wishes to provide with respect to the unit's response.

On matters of substance, the dean's determination is final.  However, if the faculty/academic staff member is not satisfied with the dean's response and the concerns address procedural matters, a request for additional review can be made to the Office of the Provost (Associate Provost and Associate Vice President for Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs).  In such cases, the Office of the Provost will review all materials and documents initially provided as well as responses from the unit and the college and any commentary from the faculty/academic staff member regarding the review in the unit and college.  The Office of the Provost then makes a final determination on procedural matters based on its review of the procedural record.  As noted above, final responses by either the Office of the Dean or the Office of the Provost do not preclude pursuing a grievance under the Faculty Grievance Policy.

Time Limits:  Responses by the relevant administrator to the original request or for an appeal should be provided within thirty (30) calendar days, excluding the period May 16 through August 15 if the requirement for usual peer review advisory procedures cannot be met.  The administrator may extend the response deadline up to an additional thirty (30) calendar days at her/his discretion.  The administrator will notify the faculty/academic staff member whenever this right to extend the response deadline is invoked, with a copy to the dean and/or the Associate Provost/Associate Vice President for Faculty and Academic Staff Affairs.  Responses by chairpersons, directors and deans must be appealed by the faculty/academic staff member within thirty (30) calendars days following receipt of response(s).  Failure to appeal means that the matter is concluded on the basis of the last response under the Administrative Review Procedure.

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