For the purpose of these procedures, the eight disciplines in the Division will be grouped as follows: the biological sciences group (consisting of biology and biochemistry/molecular biology), the physical sciences group (consisting of chemistry, geography, geoscience, and physics), and the mathematical sciences group (consisting of mathematics and statistics).
- Executive Committee: comprised of the Division Head, the coordinators of the following disciplines: biological sciences, chemistry, earth and mineral sciences, mathematical sciences, and physics, and the coordinators of the division degree programs (biology, environmental studies, mathematics, and science). The charge to the committee shall be strategic planning with respect to programs, facilities and faculty. In addition, this committee will oversee the elections of the Faculty Affairs, Academic Affairs, and Student Affairs and Oureach committees described below.
- Faculty Affairs Committee: comprised of five members with one representative from each discipline group and two at large members. The charge to the committee includes but is not limited to
- serving as the nomination committee in the division head selection process; in particular, this committee is responsible for all votes of confidence related to selecting and removing the Division Head;
- promoting research, including encouraging the establishment of faculty research programs, providing leadership and resources for proposals for external funding, and forming links among the Divisions of the College for interdisciplinary research programs;
- reviewing and assessing plans concerning the Division budget and facilities as well as related proposals developed by the Division Head and other committees.
- Academic Affairs Committee: comprised of five members with one representative from each discipline group and two at large members. The charge to the committee includes but is not limited to
- monitoring and evaluating the content and academic standards of all courses taught in the division;
- development of new programs in the Division, Divisional support for programs offered by other divisions, and interdisciplinary programs;
- coordinating the development of mutually supporting course content and standards in courses taught by the Division;
- development of standards and mechanisms for advising of students in the Division.
- Student Affairs and Outreach Committee: comprised of five members with one representative from each discipline group, one at large member, and a student representative in the Division appointed by the Student Government Association. This committee may be expanded to include other members as needed. The charge to the committee is:
- to provide a series of lectures of interest to students and faculty in the Division and the general audience at large;
- to oversee undergraduate science organizations;
- to promote career relevant work experiences for undergraduates;
- to address student questions relating to faculty, courses, or other aspects of the academic programs in the Division;
- to coordinate non-credit programs with Continuing Education;
- to promote service to the public by Division faculty, for example, as judges for science and math competitions;
- to disseminate information to prospective students about the programs available at Penn State Altoona as well as the achievements of the faculty and students in the Division;
- to sponsor visits and in-service programs for college bound students in local high schools;
- to work with recruitment and enrollment control groups;
- to provide activities so that collegiality in the division can be enhanced in an informal way.
- Promotion and Tenure Committee—see the document “Promotion and Tenure Peer Review Procedures” of the Division of Mathematics and Natural Sciences for a detailed description of the committee structure and duties of this committee.
The terms of office for committees numbered 2, 3 and 4 shall be for a period of two years. Vacancies in midterm will be filled by appointees of the Division Head. Vacancies at the start of the academic year will be filled using the Committee Selection Process outlined below.
Each committee is expected to keep a formal log of its proceedings as well as an accurate record of the participants in each of its formal meetings.
Committee selection process. First, if there are no continuing members on one or more of the committees in one or more of the discipline groups, then there will be a Division-wide election to secure disciplinary representatives. After the disciplinary representatives are secured, if necessary, there will be a second Division-wide election to secure at-large members.
For the first ballot the Division Head will solicit self-nominations from all eligible faculty in the discipline groups that need representatives added to a committee. The Division Head will then conduct a secret written ballot. All full time faculty in the Division are eligible to vote. The first ballot will group the faculty by committee and by the discipline groups, and each faculty member on the ballot will be included in exactly one of the discipline groups for each committee. Each faculty member who is eligible to vote will vote for one representative from each discipline group for each committee, and the nominees in each discipline group (for each committee) receiving the most votes will be the discipline group representative on the committee. If necessary, the Division Head will then conduct a second secret written ballot for at-large members to bring each committee to five members.
If there is a need for a second ballot, the Division Head shall solicit self-nominations for at- large committee members from all eligible faculty members in the Division, regardless of the faculty members’ disciplines. The Division Head will then conduct a second secret written ballot. All full time faculty in the Division are eligible to vote. The second ballot will list the nominees for each committee without regard to discipline. The nominees with the most votes will be the at-large members on the committees. The Division Head will resolve ties, typically by a tie-break election. Enough at-large members will be elected to bring each committee to five members.
The Division Head must complete the election and appointment of committee members and report the results to the Division by the end of the third week of the Fall Semester. The Executive Committee will oversee the elections and assist in the design and counting of the ballots.
Revised: March 1, 2007