Faculty bylaws

Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. program

November 5, 2018

These Bylaws govern the operations of the Interdisciplinary Social Psychology Ph.D. Program (hereafter, the Program). These Bylaws shall be in force upon approval by a two-thirds majority of the Program Core faculty members in a written secret ballot. The vote shall be valid only if at least a simple majority of all eligible Core faculty members cast a vote. After approval, the Bylaws shall be in force when approved by the Dean of the Graduate School and the President of University of Nevada, Reno. A copy of the current and official Bylaws of the Program shall be deposited with the Graduate School and the Faculty Senate of the University.

  • I. Amendments to the Bylaws

    I. Amendments to the Bylaws

    Amendments to these Bylaws may be proposed by any voting Core Program faculty member and shall be in force upon approval by a two-thirds majority of those Core Program faculty voting in a written secret ballot. The vote shall be valid only if at least a simple majority of votes is cast, and after approval by the Dean of the Graduate School and the President of the University.

  • II. Statement of general policy

    II. Statement of general policy

    The Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program in Social Psychology is committed to the discovery and understanding of personal and social processes and structures. It is organized as a selective program with areas of emphasis in social psychology that build on a foundation of exceptionally strong theoretical and methodological training. Areas of substantive focus will reflect a selection of faculty interests and strengths and thus may shift over time. 

    Among the major objectives of the Program are: the scholarly contribution to the body of knowledge of the scientific community and society; the attraction, retention, and development of high quality students; the fitting placement of graduates. Timely student progress through the program of instruction; judicious advisement of graduate students, and the socialization of students as responsible and productive members of the scientific, academic or professional communities, constitute a set of procedural objectives of the Program. In addition, the Program seeks to attract and retain top quality faculty, as reflected in their scholarship, funding, recognition, or promise. The program is committed to the search for outside research funding. Faculty FTE reside entirely in the home departments of the faculty. However, role statements of individual faculty may formally dedicate a share of their effort to the Program.

     

    With respect to instruction, the Program will promote exceptional knowledge and scholarship, capitalizing on the special interdisciplinary precepts of the Program and on the areas of faculty specialization. The Program also fosters a variety of international connections to enrich the educational experience of its students and faculty. The Program is designed to prepare its students for careers in academia, government agencies, nonprofit organizations and private industry. The Program is a rigorous one, and students can vary considerably in their preparation for its demands. Therefore, it is essential that effort be invested in their selection, guidance, and encouragement.

    Research and scholarship by faculty and students constitute another important set of Program objectives. The Program will stimulate and promote scholarly research by faculty and graduate students, including significant participation in the preparation of research grants. The interdisciplinary nature of the Program creates a special scholarly perspective, and provides an expanded range of funding and publishing opportunities. 

    Program faculty and students participate in a variety of outreach activities. The Program will seek collaborative relationships with government agencies and private industry wherein its methodologically skilled students can provide needed services in return for internship experience and support. This programmatic development is consistent with a long history of applied research in social psychology. 

    The Program is committed to diversity and fairness in terms race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender orientation, (dis)ability and religion. The inclusion of students from a variety of racial, ethnic, and gender groups will facilitate an awareness of the importance of culture and cultural differences in the social construction of reality, which is a basic tenet of social psychology.

    The Program is committed to make available a variety of resources to its students and faculty. Among these resources are a computer lab, experimental software, graduate student office space, psychophysiological equipment, and financial support for conference travel. The Program coordinates with other units to capitalize on available expertise. Many areas of traditional social psychology are essential to the Program. Areas of specialization by the Program faculty include, but are not limited to:

    • social psychology and health,
    • social psychology and law/justice,
    • personal and social relationships, and
    • social psychology and organizational behavior.

    Areas of specialization offer special opportunities to students for research but will vary as a function of faculty interests and specialties.

  • III. Administrative structure

    III. Administrative structure

    1. The Program consists of all faculty and students.
    2. The Director of the Program reports to the Dean of the Graduate School.
    3. One member of the Program faculty serves as Assessment Coordinator who is responsible for obtaining information about student progress once a year.
  • IV. Personnel

    IV. Personnel

    1. The faculty of the Program shall consist of those University faculty who are members of the Program at the time of the adoption of these Bylaws. Members include both Core faculty and Affiliate faculty.

      1. Core faculty. Core faculty include tenure-track and tenured faculty members at the University. Only Core faculty members are eligible to vote.

      2. Affiliate faculty. Affiliate faculty include (i) non-tenure track faculty members at the University; (ii) administrative faculty members at the University; (iii) scholars external to the University who have earned a Ph.D. in a relevant field, and who have been granted Adjunct faculty status by the University, and (iv) faculty members who were previously Core faculty, but whose status changed to Affiliate faculty. Affiliate faculty are not eligible to vote.

    2. All new faculty members of the Program (both Core faculty and Affiliate faculty) must be approved by a simple majority of all Core faculty eligible to vote.

      1. Graduate faculty status. Faculty members at the University who wish to apply to become a member of the Program faculty must be granted Graduate faculty status prior to their application to the Program. In the case of new faculty members (a) who are not tenure-track faculty at the University, and (b) who have not yet been granted Graduate faculty status within the University, a successful vote will result in such a recommendation to the Dean of the Graduate School and the Provost. A new faculty member is not considered Program faculty until he or she has been granted Graduate faculty status.

      2. Selection of candidates for Program faculty status. Consideration as Program faculty shall be based upon a faculty member’s capability to contribute to graduate education through: i) compatibility with substance and aims of the program; ii) ability to teach and advise graduate students; and iii) demonstrated research competence.

    3. Guidelines for faculty appointment to the program:

      1. Teaching and research in some aspect or component of social psychology at a level compatible with the Program.
      2. Current scholarly activity suitable to work with Ph.D. students.
      3. Ability and willingness to participate in the collaborative model of the Program at a level that corresponds to the type of Program faculty status (Core or Affiliate faculty) for which a person is being considered.

    4. Guidelines, expectations, and responsibilities for Core faculty and Affiliate faculty:


      Core faculty:

      1. Availability to serve as academic advisor to graduate students within the Program.
      2. Willingness to chair and availability to be a member of dissertation committees.
      3. Availability and active interest in directing on a regular basis one or more students in supervised research.
      4. Commitment to providing assistance in the placement of students subsequent to their graduation.
      5. Availability to attend faculty meetings.
      6. Availability to take minutes at the faculty meetings.
      7. Support of program events, such as invited speaker events, brown bags and social events.
      8. Availability to give at least one lecture per semester in the first-year Core courses.
      9. Providing assistance in funding graduate students.
      10. Availability to contribute to the administration of the Program by serving on committees within the Program, or by taking over the task of Assessment Coordinator.


      Affiliate
      faculty:

      1. Availability and active interest in directing on a regular basis one or more students in supervised research.
      2. Willingness to co-chair (alongside a Core faculty member) and availability to be a member of dissertation committees.
      3. Availability to give at least one lecture per semester in a first-year Core course.
      4. Providing assistance in funding graduate students.
      5. Availability to contribute to the administration of the Program by serving on committees within the Program, or by taking over the task of Assessment Coordinator.


      These criteria should be considered as a whole, rather than individually or in isolation.

    5. Graduate student representative. At the beginning of the Fall semester the Social Psychology Club, the association of all of the Program’s graduate students, will elect one person to represent formally their interests in the Program to the Program faculty. This graduate student representative shall be beyond the first year in the Program and will be expected to participate in Program faculty meetings except when student performance or personnel issues are under consideration.

    6. External Affiliate faculty. All Affiliate faculty members may participate in teaching, research and service activities of the program. In order for scholars who are external to the University (e.g., who are in government, industry, private practice, or who are faculty members at another academic institution) to able to serve as Affiliate faculty members, they must be granted Affiliate faculty status in accordance with policies and procedures established by the University of Nevada, Reno. Further, they must be granted Graduate faculty status in accordance with policies and procedures established by the University of Nevada, Reno.

    7. Reversal and change of program faculty status. The functioning on the Program is dependent on the contributions of all its faculty members. If a Core faculty member or Affiliate faculty member does not meet expectations within the Program, their status as Program faculty may be revoked.

      1. Inactivity. Status as Core faculty may be revoked due to inactivity. “Inactivity” refers to a failure to engage in any of the activities/ responsibilities 8-10 as outlined above in section D for Core faculty members. “Inactivity” includes a faculty member formally accepting responsibilities, but then not executing them. Any involuntary reversal of faculty status based on inactivity shall not occur prior to two (2) years of inactivity within the program.

        If a Core faculty member is inactive for one (1) year, the Director shall consult with the Core faculty member to inquire about their continued involvement in the Program. If the faculty member is no longer interested and agrees to be removed, their status as Core faculty shall be terminated. If the faculty member is unable to hold the responsibilities required of Core faculty members of the program, the faculty member may elect to change his or her status to Affiliate faculty member.

        In case of inactivity for one (1) year, if the Core faculty member does not respond to repeated inquiries from the Director about their continued involvement, the faculty member’s status as Core faculty member will be terminated after the end of a second year of inactivity. If the faculty member states during the second year of inactivity that they are interested in maintaining their status, yet remain inactive, the faculty member’s status as Core faculty member will be terminated after the end of the second year of inactivity. In exceptional situations (e.g., when a faculty member’s inactivity is caused by circumstances outside of the faculty member’s control) the Program faculty might decide to extend the faculty members status by simple majority vote at its meeting.

      2. Ethical and policy violations. Faculty who engage in gross ethical violations, repeated violations of program policy, or who willfully undermine the success of the Program and its students may be subject to reversal of their status as Program faculty. Charges made against any faculty members require thorough consideration and a vote by the Program faculty at a faculty meeting. In order for any faculty member to lose his or her status as Program faculty, at least half of all eligible faculty members of the Program must agree.

      3. Voluntary Change of Status. Core faculty may opt to change their own status to Affiliate faculty. If required (e.g., when leaving the University), the Director will seek Adjunct faculty status for the faculty member. Program faculty may choose to resign at any time.

      4. Reversal and change of program faculty status. The functioning on the Program is dependent on the contributions of all its faculty members. If a Core faculty member or Affiliate faculty member does not meet expectations within the Program, their status as Program faculty may be revoked.

      5. Reversal upon leaving the University. Faculty members leaving the University shall lose their status as Program faculty unless they have requested continued status as Affiliate faculty. Loss of Program faculty status does not affect any temporary status as Graduate faculty which faculty may hold following their leaving the University.
  • V. Duties of the Program Director

    V. Duties of the Program Director

    The Director of the Program shall be elected for a three-year term by Program Faculty subject to approval by the Dean of the Graduate School.

    1. The Director shall be the chief spokesperson in the conduct of business on behalf of the Program.
    2. The Director is expected to consider and promote the programs, projects, and policies of the Program. Special attention should be given to recruitment of high-quality students.
    3. The Director shall consult with the Program faculty in the development of budgets and fund allocations. At least once per academic year, the Director shall discuss the Program’s budget with the faculty.
    4. The Director shall assist continuing and incoming graduate students with securing funding.
    5. Administrative matters shall be the responsibility of the Director unless he or she arranges to delegate such matters. Matters which change policy or establish new policy shall be submitted at a regular meeting for faculty vote or recommendation prior to implementation.
    6. With regard to faculty members whose role statement commits part of their effort to the Program, the Director shall evaluate faculty performance annually with respect to their participation in the Program. These evaluations will be transmitted to respective departments to become part of the faculty member’s annual evaluation. The Director shall be responsible for the coordination of faculty evaluation with home departments. Upon request of the faculty member, department chairs, directors or deans, the Director shall generate evaluations for Core faculty members whose role statement does not commit part of their effort to the Program.
    7. The Director shall appoint such ad hoc committees as necessary to facilitate the functioning of the Graduate Program. All committee participation shall be voluntary.
    8. The Director shall maintain in good order the records of all present and former students registered in the Program.
    9. The Director shall assume responsibility for class schedules, including coordinating and negotiating with other departments as necessary.
    10. The Director shall maintain in good order a record of all transactions occurring at meetings of the Program.
    11. In the Director’s absence, a faculty member designated by the Director shall serve as Acting Director. The Director will notify the Dean of the Graduate School in a timely manner. In case the Director is incapacitated, the Dean of the Graduate School will appoint an Acting Director from among the Program’s Core faculty.
    12. An evaluation of the administrative performance of the Director shall be conducted annually. This may either occurs based on procedures adopted by the Program, or by procedures used by the Graduate School.
  • VI. Meetings of the faculty

    VI. Meetings of the faculty

    1. Regular meetings. A minimum of two meetings per semester shall be held with additional meetings as required. Meetings are scheduled by the Director in a way as to avoid conflicts for Core faculty members.
    2. Rules of order. Robert's Rules of Order shall apply to all meetings of the faculty.
    3. Meeting minutes. Action minutes, summarizing motions and outcomes, shall be compiled by the Chair and distributed to each Program member within two weeks of that meeting.
    4. Voting members. All Core faculty members of the Program shall each have one vote in any matter put before the Program.
    5. Non-voting members. Affiliate faculty and the graduate student representative shall be non-voting Program members.
    6. Voting quorum. A voting quorum shall consist of a simple majority of the Program’s Core faculty members. Presence at the meeting is required. A Core faculty member may be either physically present or virtually present, that is, with the help of electronic means. For a Core faulty member to be present, it is critical that they are able to participate in any discussion taking place at the meeting in real time. All Core faculty members present, whether physically present or virtually present, are counted toward the quorum.
    7. Voting by proxy. Faculty members who are unable to be present at a faculty meeting may give their proxy vote to a colleague from among the Core Proxy votes are not being counted toward the quorum.
    8. Voting method. All personnel matters requiring a vote, including, but not limited to new faculty approval, faculty removal or student appeals, shall make use of a secret ballot. All non-personnel matters may be decided by voice vote, by show of hands, or by secret ballot.
  • VII. Standing committees

    VII. Standing committees

    1. The Program shall have the following standing committees:
      1. The Admissions Committee shall consist of four (4) faculty members and one (1) student representative, all appointed by the Director. The Admissions Committee is chaired by the Director or his or her designee. The student representative shall be a student who is expected to graduate at the end of the semester during which admissions which decisions are made. The Admissions Committee shall review all student applicants and make recommendations to the Director regarding admissions and, if applicable, any conditions associated with admission.
      2. The Qualifying Exam Committee shall consist of three (3) faculty members appointed by the Director. The committee is chaired by one of the faculty members. The Qualifying Exam Committee shall generate a qualifying exam to be administered to all students eligible to sit the exam.
      3. The Founders’ Awards Committee shall consist of three (3) faculty members and one (1) student representative, all appointed by the Director. The student representative shall be a winner or a runner up from the previous award year. The committee is chaired by one of the faculty members. The Founders’ Awards Committee shall review all submissions to the Founders’ Awards and select a winner and a runner-up (if appropriate) for each category.
      4. The Advisory Committee consists of three (3) senior faculty members, each with experience in administration at the University. The faculty members are appointed by the Director. There is no committee chair. The Advisory Committee shall counsel the Director on matters related to the Program whenever the Director requires it.
      5. Other committees will be established as voted by the Program faculty.
  • VIII. Program Compliance

    VIII. Program Compliance

    Admission, progression, and graduation requirements for students in the Program shall conform to the regulations of the Graduate School as presented in the General Catalog of the University and as further stipulated by the Program. These regulations shall be described in a Student Handbook and presented to all new students at the beginning of their first semester.