Appointment of Academic Administrators (AAA Policy)
- Related Documents: Appointment of Academic Administrators Procedures (AAA Procedures); Rights and Obligations of Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) Comittee Members, Conflict of Interest Policy
- Owner: Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs
- Approver: Board of Governors
- Approval Dates: 1994, 1999, 2017
This Appointment of Academic Administrators Policy (“Policy”), which rests on the bedrock of collegial governance, provides a process for the appointment and re-appointment of Academic Administrators that is transparent and accountable.
The Policy establishes the guidelines for the formation and functioning of Committees related to the appointment of the academic administrative leadership of the University. It also establishes the guidelines for the term of appointment, intra-term assessment, and reappointment of Academic Administrators.
II. Scope and Application
This Policy applies to the appointment of individuals to Academic Administrator Positions. Appointments for clinical academic administrator positions that fall in the
School of Medicine are covered by the Appointments of Clinical Academic Administrators Policy.
This Policy does not apply to the Interim appointment of individuals to an Academic Administrator Position, which are made on the recommendation of the appropriate senior administrator, after consultation with the appropriate constituency.
As the academic structure of the University changes and new types of Academic Administrator Positions are created, the President, in consultation with the Provost and Vice-President, Academic may alter the scope of this Policy.
a. “Academic Administrator Position” means the following positions within the University, with the exception of any such positions that fall in the School of Medicine:
● Provost and Vice-President Academic;
● Vice-President Research and Innovation;
● Vice-Provost, Academic;
● Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs;
● Associate Vice-President, Research;
● Associate Deans;
● Dean of Libraries; and
● Associate Dean of Libraries.
b. “Chair” means the chair of a Committee.
c. “Committee” means a Review Committee or Search Committee.
d. “Committee Member” means an individual who is either elected or appointed to a Committee including the Chair.
e. “Conflict of Interest” means a real or perceived situation when an individual’s personal interests interfere or could interfere with the independent judgment required by the individual in order to perform their duties and responsibilities in the best interest of the University. Conflicts of Interest may be financial, or may be personal such as where an individual has acted as an academic supervisor of a candidate or where an individual has collaborated with the candidate on a
research project or business venture; however, these supervisory and collaborative relationships do not automatically constitute a conflict of interest.
f. “Equity Advocate” means a Committee Member, who is selected or elected by the other Committee Members to be responsible for ensuring that the Committee adheres to the University’s equity, diversity, and inclusion values
g. “Incumbent” means the current holder of an Academic Administrator Position. An individual who is appointed on an Interim basis to an Academic Administrator Position is not considered an Incumbent.
h. “Interim” means an appointment for a transition period that will normally not exceed one year.
i. “Procedures” means the procedures to this Appointment of Academic Administrators Policy as may be instituted by the University from time to time.
j. “Review Committee '' means a Committee that is struck with the mandate of undertaking a review of an Incumbent with respect to recommendation regarding
re-appointment for a second term.
k. “Search Committee” means a Committee that is struck with the mandate of recruiting a new candidate to an Academic Administrator Position.
l. “Student” means an individual registered in a program or course of study at the University leading to a degree, diploma or certificate of the University, who is in good standing.
m. “University” means Toronto Metropolitan University.
1. All search processes for Academic Administrative Positions should reflect best practices in recruitment and reflect the University’s commitment to equity,
diversity and inclusion, and access to education and employment.
2. All recommendations for a candidate’s appointment or re-appointment to an Academic Administrative Position must be made by a Committee duly constituted in accordance with the Procedures, and must be approved by the President or the President’s designate prior to an offer of appointment or re-appointment being extended to the selected candidate. The Provost and Vice-President Academic’s appointment or re-appointment must also be approved by the Board of Governors.
3. In making a recommendation for a candidate’s appointment to an Academic Administrative Position, a Search Committee will seek to identify and appoint the most suitable individual for the Academic Administrative Position. Such recommendation shall be based on evidence of demonstrated abilities and excellent performance of duties by the candidate, while also considering a candidate’s future potential for the Academic Administrative Position.
4. The University is committed to promoting equity, diversity and inclusion within its community; and to providing leadership opportunities for people from historically under-represented and marginalized communities and groups. Equity, diversity and inclusion in education and employment and respect for Indigenous perspectives are core values of the University. Committee Members shall, in all their deliberations, consider issues of equity, diversity and inclusion and each Committee shall identify or nominate an Equity Advocate.
5. All Committees shall be constituted in accordance with the Procedures, and in accordance with generally accepted principles of collegial governance.
6. Each Committee shall be comprised of a majority of elected Committee Members, and shall normally include at least one Student Committee Member
whose program of studies falls within the responsibilities of the Academic Administrator Position in question.
7. In undertaking their duties, all Committee Members have a duty and obligation to act in the best interests of the University, including complying with the principles and processes articulated in this Policy and acting in a fair, equitable, objective, professional, respectful, civil, non-discriminatory, non-harassing, and confidential manner. All Committee Members will act in accordance with University policies including, but not limited to policies on Employment Equity, Workplace Civility and Respect, Discrimination and Harassment Prevention, Conflict of Interest, and Accommodation for Persons with Disabilities.
8. To serve as a Committee Member, an individual must agree to be bound by the rights and responsibilities set out in the Rights and Obligations of Toronto
Metropolitan University Committee Members form.
9. A Committee Member who has or believes they have a Conflict of Interest shall declare the Conflict of Interest to the Chair of the Committee as soon as possible, and pending discussion and determination by the committee, shall refrain from taking part in any discussion or decision related to the matter, or withdraw from the meeting at which the matter is being discussed if required to do so by the Committee.
10.Committee Members and others involved in the review and search processes will have access to confidential material, and are therefore bound by the requirements of confidentiality necessary for the proper functioning of such a Committee and the protection of the interests of the Incumbent and candidates.
a. In the course of Committee work, Committee Members may become aware of plans, opinions and employment experiences provided in confidence by individual candidates. Confidential reference comments about candidates will also be received. This information should only be shared or discussed with other Committee Members.
b. The Committee process should respect the confidence of the candidates and the identity of candidates should not be disclosed save as necessary
for the decision-making process.
c. In the course of Committee deliberations, Committee Members will become aware of the perceptions, assessments and views of the other Committee Members concerning candidates being assessed. These exchanges are provided in confidence and should only be shared or
discussed with other Committee Members; all Committee Members have an obligation to make every effort to respect the dignity and integrity of
their colleagues and to sustain a climate in which colleagues are able to function as responsible members of the academic community.
11. On issues related to process, and interpretation of this Policy and Procedures Committees Members may consult with the Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs, unless the search is for the Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs. Committee Members may consult with the relevant union/association and Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs on issues related to interpretation of collective agreements.
12.If a Committee Member observes inappropriate behavior or activity that contravenes a collective agreement or policy relevant to the Committee's mandate, this Committee Member should avail themself of the consultation process described in the paragraph above.
13.The primary purpose of performance evaluation is to maintain and increase the effectiveness of academic administration through feedback on administrative
performance and, where appropriate, recommendations for improvement.
14.An annual performance assessment will be conducted by the academic administrator's supervisor. The annual performance assessment is a confidential
document. It is to be completed by May 31 of each year.
15.In the second or third year of the five-year term, there will be a full and detailed intra-term assessment of each Academic Administrative Positions covered by this Policy.
16.The intra-term assessment will be informed by confidential input from appropriate and knowledgeable people in the University community as determined by the Academic Administrative Position’s supervisor. In the case of the assessment of Deans and Associate Deans of Faculties, this will include at minimum the canvassing of the tenured faculty members in the relevant Faculty. In the case of the Dean of Libraries and Associate Dean of Libraries, this will include at
minimum the canvassing of the career-status librarians.
17.The supervisor may seek similar broad input to assist in the assessment at any time in the five-year term.
18.The Incumbent being reviewed has the right to obtain a copy and respond in writing to the confidential annual performance assessments, intra-term
assessment or any other assessments. The Incumbent will be provided with a summary of the input but under no circumstances will the names of those who
provided input be identified.
Term of Appointments
19.The term of an appointment of an individual to an Academic Administrator Position may not exceed five years. An Incumbent may be renewed for a second consecutive term not to exceed five years on the recommendation of the Chair of the Review Committee, and the approval of the President. Incumbents are
restricted to two consecutive terms. A second consecutive term includes two, five-year terms interrupted by a leave or an Interim appointment.
20.In special circumstances, on the recommendation of the appropriate senior administrator, the length of appointment (either the first or second term) of an
Incumbent may be extended for one additional year.
V. Roles and Responsibilities
● As provided in the Toronto Metropolitan University Act, and in the University’s general by-laws, the Board of Governors has delegated its authority to the President with respect to the appointment of individuals to Academic Administrator Positions, with the exception of the appointment of the Provost and Vice-President Academic.
● Recommendation to the Board of Governors of appointment of Provost and
2. Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs (VPFA)
● Consultation with Chairs and Committee Members on issues related to the process of review and search Committees, except in the review/search for
the Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs. In the case of a review/search for the Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs issues related to process of review and search Committees will be directed to the Provost and Vice-President, Academic.
● Oversight for Committee development and formation, including oversight of elections and the appointment of non-elected Committee Members, and
ensuring that the Committee identifies an Equity Advocate.
● Responsible for principles and processes outlined in the AAA Procedures including creation and maintenance of a Committee environment that is
collegial, respectful and accessible, and where all Committee Members comply with University policies.
● Considerations of institutional values in particular equity, diversity and inclusion as described in the Academic Plan, during Committee formation
and Committee administration.
● Participation in Committee discussions on an equal basis as a non-voting
4. Committee Members
● Complying with the principles, rules and procedures of this policy.
● Reading, signing and abiding by the Rights and Obligations of Toronto Metropolitan University Committee Members document.
● Reading documents put before the Committee, listening with an open mind to diverse viewpoints for and against particular candidates, and respectfully engaging in Committee interviews, Committee discussions and decision-making.
● Respecting the rights of Committee Members to have different opinions and making different judgments, and raising difficult questions in a respectful
manner and in an atmosphere of collegiality and mutual respect, without fear of reprisal.
This Policy falls under the jurisdiction of the Vice-Provost, Faculty Affairs who is responsible for the interpretation and application of this Policy, and the creation
of such Procedures and guidelines as necessary or desirable to give effect to this Policy.
VII. Policy Review
In accordance with the University’s Administrative Policies Framework Policies and Procedures, this policy will be reviewed on a regular basis at the discretion of
the Board of Governors, normally every five years or sooner. Such review will involve formal consultation with the University community, including but not
limited to the Toronto Metropolitan Faculty Association and its members, and CUPE Local 3904.