Marywood University Policy & Procedure Information

Academic Workload

Policy Statement

Every faculty member shares in the institutional obligation to extend academic services to students.  The appropriate workload and the proportions of time allocated to formal classroom teaching, to student advising and other teaching (e.g., direction of theses, professional contributions and dissertations), to research, and to administration can vary according to individual circumstances; however, it is not the prerogative of a faculty member unilaterally to deselect certain workload activities.

Administration reserves the right to assign teaching load.  The normal teaching load for full-time tenure-track faculty members is equivalent to 21 semester hours of credit (4/3), unless an alternative teaching load has been determined. For other full-time faculty, i.e., those with contract appointments without tenure, the expectation is ordinarily 24 semester hours of credit (4/4). However, departments with the approval of their dean or director and the Provost, may determine fair equivalents in workloads for those faculty members with activities and assignments that do not fit the conventional classroom lecture pattern, e.g., those who supervise or teach in labs, studios, private music lessons, oversee field experience, internships, student teaching, student clinical practica, or distance learning. Teaching assignments are made by the department chairperson or administrator.

In addition, full-time, tenure and tenure track faculty members are obligated to carry out scholarship/creative activity and service responsibilities as delineated in the University's policies.  After a period of three years, an absence of scholarship/creative activity on the part of a tenured faculty member may result in an increase to a 24 semester hours of credit (4/4) teaching load. Should the Provost wish to increase a tenured faculty person's teaching load based upon an absence of productivity in scholarship and creative activity, such will be done in consultation with the faculty person, the department chair, the relevant dean and in accordance with department criteria for scholarship and creative activity.

Administrative reductions in teaching load are granted in writing at the time of appointment. They are reviewed at the time of reappointment. Some examples of such reductions are department chair, head of a comparable administrative unit, or coordinator of a special program. Moreover, special one-time only reductions in workload may be available in exceptional circumstances.

Faculty members must be available in their offices for their advisees and other students for a minimum of five hours per week. These office hours must be posted for the convenience of students, and the department chairperson or administrator must be notified of the hours so scheduled. Chairpersons and other faculty members with reductions for administrative or other purposes must schedule additional hours to cover these responsibilities. The office hours of department heads are to be sent to the appropriate deans.

Since faculty members are expected to engage in academic advisement, it is incumbent upon them to be knowledgeable about requirements as stated in the University catalogs.

Overload Teaching. In exceptional cases, and in order to meet emergency situations, the administration may ask a full-time faculty member to teach a course or courses in excess of the normal schedule. In such cases, extra remuneration will be given according to the prevailing salary schedule.

Contracting in Other Units. The University conducts colleges/schools and many grant/contract projects. Therefore, faculty members may have the opportunity to teach, do research, or other work in a unit other than the one in which they were originally hired. When an invitation is received to work in another department, a faculty member must receive the approval of his or her department head, Dean, and final approval of the Provost before agreeing to the work.

Teaching Summer School Courses. Faculty members who are available for summer school teaching should inform the appropriate department head or academic dean. Faculty members on nine-month contracts will be reimbursed according to the prevailing salary scale for part-time/overload teaching.

Related Policies

Related Committees


07/01/89 - Reaffirmed with publication of Faculty Manual
03/05/93 - Revision approved by the President as recommended by Policy Committee of the College
07/01/03 - Editorial changes made to reflect academic restructuring
12/10/10 - Revision of Core Responsibility of Faculty and Additional Contracted Work Policy for Faculty, approved by the President of the University as recommended by the Policy Committee of the University