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University of Washington
Slavic Languages and Literatures

  1. The duties, responsibilities and powers vested by the Board of Regents, the University of Washington, and by the College of Arts and Sciences in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures will be exercised by the faculty of the department as a whole, by the Chair appointed by the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and by standing and ad hoc committees appointed by the Chair. 

  2. Faculty meetings are of three types: ordinary meetings, open to the public in accordance with the Open Public Meetings Act (RCW Chapter 42.30); executive sessions to discuss sensitive business (from which non-voting members are excluded); and meetings to discuss personnel matters. 

  3. Actions concerning new appointments, reappointments, promotion, and tenure shall be taken by the eligible voting members of the faculty. This shall be done upon request by the Chair in the case of reappointments of Lecturers, Affiliates, and Adjuncts, and upon recommendation by an ad hoc committee appointed by the Chair in the case of new appointments, reappointments of Assistant Professors, promotions, and tenure cases. Faculty are not eligible to vote during the time they are on leave of absence. Faculty on 40% appointments are eligible to vote, but not in the quarter(s) when they are not teaching.

  4. Voting members of the department are those members of the departmental faculty who hold a position of Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant Professor, and full-time Lecturer, including Senior and Principal Lecturer. For personnel decisions, eligible voting members of the faculty are those of higher rank than the faculty in question, as specified at All voting members of the faculty vote for new appointments.

  5. Merit: The faculty activity reports and the faculty conferences with chair provide important documentation in the evaluation of each faculty member's contributions. Student and collegial teaching evaluations must also be part of an individual's cumulative record. The Chair summarizes each faculty member’s contributions to research, teaching, and service. Faculty of higher rank then vote and assign each individual the score of exceptional merit, merit, low merit or no merit.

  6. Ordinary meetings of the departmental faculty shall be called by the Chair at least twice every quarter during the regular academic year. The Chair may call extraordinary meetings when circumstances warrant. The policy delegating authority to the Chair with regard to part-time hiring must be approved by a faculty vote each year, per university regulations.

  7. The Chair shall represent the voting members of the faculty and take action in matters concerning a) temporary, short-term, and visiting appointments and b) students’ grievances.

  8. Any faculty member who receives a formal offer of a position at another institution, or who is under consideration for a position at another institution, and who wishes the University of Washington to respond, shall inform the Chair of the terms of the offer or interest, and request that the department and the university consider a response. The department recommends that this information be put in writing, in the form of a letter from the faculty member to the Chair.

    Upon receiving such information, the Chair shall consult with members of the faculty who are superior in rank to the person in question. In some cases the Chair, in consultation with those superior in rank, may decide to involve the entire faculty in reaching a decision as to whether to request a retention offer from the College of Arts and Sciences. The faculty senior to the person in question vote on whether the department should request a retention offer from the college. If the faculty member is a full professor, other full professors in the department vote.

    If the department approves the request for a retention offer, the Chair, with the assistance of senior faculty, shall prepare relevant materials for College review: a vita, the last three years of student teaching evaluations and peer teaching reviews, and a letter from the Chair outlining the case for the candidate, taking into account the criteria listed by the College of Arts and Sciences, including the issue of the impact the faculty member's departure would have on departmental offerings and students.

  9. The Standing Committees of the department are:

    • The Graduate Admissions/TAship Committee. This committee is responsible for evaluating applications to the department’s graduate program and ranking applicants for TA appointments. It is chaired by the Graduate Program Coordinator and includes two other faculty members.

      Members of the committee evaluate and rank applications and meet in person in order to arrive at a consensus ranking, which they forward to the Chair and the First-Year Russian Coordinator. The committee also recommends applicants for the Titus Ellison Fellowship and other fellowships and scholarships.

    • The Vadim Pahn Scholarship Committee. This committee evaluates and ranks applicants for the scholarship which provides support for the study of Russian language during the summer quarter.

    • Slavic Excellence Prizes Committee. This committee evaluates course papers and awards a prize each for the best paper written by an undergraduate and a graduate student to be presented during the Slavic Department’s Convocation.

    • The Scholarship Committee. The committee meets in early winter quarter to consider if there are candidates for college and university-wide scholarships and awards. The committee communicates their findings to the faculty who then decide whether to proceed with the nomination(s).

    The Chair of the department appoints members of the Standing Committees at the beginning of each academic year.

  10. Faculty nominate students for Outstanding Undergraduate and Graduate Student Prizes in May and vote on the awards by email or during a faculty meeting. The awards are presented during the Slavic Department’s Convocation.

  11. When the Chair deems it necessary, he/she may appoint an ad hoc committee to advise him/her on any particular subject.

  12. These by-laws and any amendments to them will take effect when they have been ratified by a simple majority of the voting faculty.