Established 1826 — Oldest College Newspaper West of the Alleghenies

University Senate votes to modify cap on teaching, clinical professors, lecturers

<p>The caps on the amount of teaching, clinical professors and lecturers within each division have been altered.</p><p><br/></p>

The caps on the amount of teaching, clinical professors and lecturers within each division have been altered.

University Senate approved a resolution to modify the cap on the number of teaching, clinical professors and lecturers (TCPLs) across all academic divisions at its meeting on Jan. 27.

Currently, the Miami University Policy and Information Manual (MUPIM) section 7.11 states that “Lecturers and Teaching faculty may not exceed 25 percent of the total number of full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty.” The new resolution discards this university-wide cap in favor of different caps for each academic division. The new caps are:

  • College of Arts and Science (CAS): 25.0 percent

  • College of Creative Arts (CCA): 25.0 percent

  • College of Education, Health and Society (EHS): 35.0 percent

  • College of Engineering and Computing (CEC): 25.0 percent

  • Farmer School of Business (FSB): 25.0 percent

  • College of Liberal Arts and Applied Science (CLAAS): 30.0 percent

The revision also features a clause requiring senate approval to change these caps. This section wasn’t originally included, and many senators were concerned divisional deans could change the established caps without consulting faculty.

Scott Kenworthy, associate professor of comparative religion, discussed the possibility of divisions raising the TCPL caps because TCPL faculty are much less expensive to hire than tenure/tenure track faculty.

“There’s been many cases where a department asks for tenure/tenure track ... but was told ‘no, we don’t have the money for that, but you can have a TCPL,’” Kenworthy said. “These people have exactly the same training as I do and teach the same range of courses, but they get paid less to teach more and have no job security.”

Cathy Wagner, president of Miami’s American Association of University Professors advocacy chapter, spoke at the outset of the meeting. She encouraged senators to further amend the policy so that faculty — not just deans — have a say in departmental composition.

“If this resolution passes, faculty will no longer have real input into faculty composition decisions,” Wagner said. “The question for you is whether this is what you want.”

Despite the issues raised by several people, other senators disagreed with their concerns and wanted to vote on the resolution as it stood.

Chip Hahn, associate clinical professor of speech pathology and audiology, eventually requested senate wrap-up discussions and vote. 

“We can circle the airport for days; eventually the fuel’s gonna be burned, and we’re gonna crash,” Hahn said. “We keep doing the same thing over and over and expect a different outcome.”

Thomas Poetter, chair and professor of educational leadership, requested an amendment to the resolution mandating senate to approve any changes to the caps.

Enjoy what you're reading?
Signup for our newsletter

The amendment was added, and senate passed the resolution with two nays and three abstentions. It will now be sent to the Board of Trustees for final approval.