Faculty By-Laws


The Graduate Faculty

Educational policy for the ESGP is made by the graduate faculty in Environmental Science, an interdisciplinary body of professionals in several academic units throughout the university.

The Graduate Studies Committee

Administrative responsibility for academic aspects of the operation of the program rests with the Graduate Studies Committee, which is elected by the graduate faculty and performs its responsibilities as assigned by the Graduate Council and by the graduate faculty in Environmental Science.

The Graduate Studies Committee is comprised of six voting faculty members elected by the graduate faculty, including the chair, one voting graduate student and one alternate graduate student. The alternate graduate student member will only vote if the regular graduate student member is absent.

Faculty members are elected for three year terms with two new members elected each year. Terms begin on June 1. The chair is elected by the committee from among its faculty members, serves for one year, and may be reelected. Election of a chair will take place before July 1.

Elections to replace faculty members whose terms have expired are held during the Spring Semester each year. Early in the semester, the chair will seek nominations from the graduate faculty. A statement must accompany nominations from the nominee that s/he is willing to serve. An electronic ballot will be distributed to all members of the graduate faculty and graduate students within the program who will have a minimum of one week to return their ballots. The two nominees receiving the largest number of votes will be elected. In the case of a tie, a runoff will be conducted.

Openings on the GSC at other times are to be filled by appointment by the director of the ESGP, in consultation with the chair of the GSC. The appointee will complete the term of the vacated position, which will then be filled by a regular election.

Student members are nominated each year by ESGP faculty and/or graduate students. Graduate student members serve one year terms beginning July I and may be reappointed for one additional year. To be eligible for appointment, graduate students must be seeking either the master's or doctoral degree in the ESGP.

A quorum exists when at least five voting members or alternates of the GSC are present.

Duties of the Graduate Studies Committee

In addition to those duties specified in the Graduate School Handbook, the Graduate Studies Committee:

  1. Establishes admission and program policy, standards and procedures;
  2. Screens applications for admission to the master's and doctoral programs, and make final determinations on admission;
  3. Helps to identify and designate graduate advisors for all applicants accepted for admission;
  4. Nominates candidates for fellowships and rank students for appointment to teaching associateships in the ESGP;
  5. Oversees the maintenance of all graduate files and records;
  6. Establishes rules and guidelines for masters and doctoral programs of study;
  7. Receives and files thesis and dissertation plans;
  8. Monitors students’ progress toward their degrees, consult with students and advisors where problems are identified, and make recommendations for dismissal for failure to meet conditions or when "reasonable" progress is not being made;
  9. Responds to graduate student grievances;
  10. Develops standards for graduate faculty membership categories and nominate qualified faculty members to the Graduate School.

Graduate Program Handbook

It is the responsibility of the GSC to compile and maintain a Graduate Program Handbook for the ESGP. This handbook lists rules and practices by which the ESGP is to be managed. From time to time, the GSC will call an open hearing of the graduate faculty and students in the ESGP to discuss revisions to the handbook. Following faculty input, the GSC will circulate an electronic and/or mail ballot on the proposed revisions. Upon a majority vote of those returning ballots, the revised handbook will become effective immediately.

The GSC will update the Graduate Program Handbook to conform to changes in the Graduate School Handbook or other university policies and can make recommendations and additions for the purpose of clarification at any time without consultation with the faculty. A current copy will be kept on file in the ESGP office and is posted on the ESGP web site.



The graduate faculty in the ESGP will carry out the functions outlined in Section XV of the Graduate School Handbook, be responsible for following the guidelines in the ESGP Handbook, and recommend and vote as necessary on substantial changes in the policies, rules, and procedures as listed in this document.

Eligibility for Membership

The graduate faculty in the ESGP includes members of the university graduate faculty, selected according to criteria found in Section XV of the latest Graduate School Handbook, whose skills and educational qualifications could be supportive of the ESGP. Adjunct faculty members must have an appointment as an adjunct graduate faculty member in a non-interdisciplinary graduate program prior to requesting admission to the ESGP faculty. When adjunct faculty members request appointment to ESGP they will only be considered as “Affiliated Scientists” per Section XV on Graduate Faculty Membership in The Graduate School Handbook.

Faculty in the ESGP will be assigned Categories M and P by the GSC in accordance with guidelines in Section 3.4. Faculty members may be nominated for Category P membership in accordance with the current Graduate School policy if they already have a Category P appointment in a non-interdisciplinary graduate program. Graduate faculty in the ESGP will have their appointments reviewed for continuation every three years, according to criteria and procedures in Section 3.7.

A list of current graduate faculty members is maintained in the ESGP office and is available from the chair of the GSC, the director of the ESGP, and on the ESGP web site. This list shall be use to determine the quorum and eligibility to vote at any called meeting of the graduate faculty.

Nomination to Graduate Faculty

Regular members of the university faculty wishing to be appointed to the graduate faculty in the ESGP must submit a formal written request to the director of the ESGP, accompanied by a current vita, a letter of support from the administrative head of their academic unit, and a statement of purpose. This material will be evaluated by the GSC, which will decide on the disposition of the pending appointment. In cases where the nominee is qualified for Category P status, the chair will submit a nomination for Category P status to the Graduate School. In cases where the nominee is qualified for Category M status, the chair will submit a nomination for Category M status to the Graduate School. Affiliated Scientists with adjunct titles, clinical titles, visiting titles and lecturer titles and faculty with less than a 50% appointment are not eligible to be nominated for graduate faculty appointment but may serve in other ways as members of the ESGP faculty.

Qualifications and Privileges for Categories M and P

Some requirements listed here are in addition to those listed in the Graduate School Handbook. Criteria for and privileges associated with appointment in each category are:

Category M:

The faculty member:

  1. Holds a regular tenure-track or regular clinical faculty appointment,
  2. Holds a doctoral degree or equivalent,
  3. Acts as the advisor for master students,
  4. Participates in the governance of graduate education at all levels within the university, and
  5. Serves on doctoral examination committees with the approval of the GSC on a case by case basis.

Faculty members holding Category M appointments will, at three year intervals (Section 3.6), submit a report on their research and graduate education achievements to the chair of the GSC. The committee will review this report. Category M membership will be renewed if the faculty member has maintained an organized, goal driven research program, a record of publications emanating from theses and dissertations, a record of effective mentoring of graduate students, and where possible and appropriate, papers jointly authored with students.

Category P:

The faculty member:

  1. Holds a regular tenure track faculty appointment,
  2. Holds an earned (not honorary) doctoral degree or equivalent,
  3. Is engaged in an active program of research, scholarship, or creative activity, or demonstrates significant promise of establishing such a program,
  4. Acts as the advisor for master and doctoral students,
  5. Participates in the governance of education at all levels within the university, and
  6. Serves as a Graduate Faculty Representative on Candidacy and Final Oral Examinations.

Faculty members holding Category M or P appointments will, at three year intervals, submit a report on their research and graduate education achievements to the chair of the GSC. The committee will review this report (Section 3.7). Continuation of M or P status will be approved by the committee if the evidence clearly demonstrates that the faculty member is maintaining an active research program, a graduate level teaching program, a record of effective advising of doctoral students, a record of refereed publications emanating from thesis and dissertation work including, where appropriate, a record of joint authorship with the students, and a strong record for "mentoring" graduate students. If the record does not meet these criteria, the faculty member will be removed from ESGP Graduate Faculty status and recommendations for such action will be forwarded to the Graduate School.

Auxiliaries or Adjunct and Emeritus Faculty

Adjunct and Auxiliary faculty do not hold regular faculty appointments at the university, although the university may employ them in some other capacity. These faculty may have Category M membership on the graduate faculty in the ESGP. Nomination procedures are listed in Section 3.3. Adjunct faculty members previously approved by The Graduate School for Category M status in ESGP may serve as co advisors with an appropriate member of the regular faculty for Master's or Ph.D. students. They may serve as additional members of a student’s committee. The Graduate School is no longer considering Adjunct faculty members for appointment to the graduate faculty.

Emeritus faculty who held Category M or P appointments at the time of their retirement may only continue to advise graduate students and serve on graduate committees on which they were active at the time of retirement.

Affiliated Scientists

Environmental scientists and other professionals1 from outside Ohio State University may participate in the ESGP. through its Affiliated Scientist Program. Affiliated Scientists appointed directly to ESGP by the GSC may participate in the ESGP seminar program, student recruitment activities, and social events. In addition, directly appointed Affiliated Scientists are eligible to be appointed as additional members of the M.S. and Ph.D. advisory committees of ESGP students, subject to the recommendation of the ESGP Graduate Studies Chair and approval of The Graduate School. They are only permitted to serve as additional to the number required by The Graduate School. The student must petition the GSC and the Graduate School on a case-by-case basis for inclusion of affiliated scientists and those outside of OSU to serve on their committees.

Review of Faculty Members

The GSC will review each faculty member holding Category M or P status every three years to determine their qualification for continuation in their current status (Section 3.4). Such review will be initiated by the chair during the Spring Semester of the third year of appointment and will be completed before the end of the Spring Semester. The faculty member is responsible for providing the committee with appropriate documentation of performance. As a result of the review, faculty members may be continued in a category for an additional three years. (If, however, the committee determines that performance does not meet the standards for continuation in a category, appropriate steps will be taken to reassign the faculty member to an appropriate category or to remove that individual from the Graduate Faculty of the ESGP.)

Affiliated Scientists will have a regular annual review at the beginning of each academic year. A short statement will be requested, relative to the member’s contributions to ESGP.

Special reviews to address grievances or other matters may be initiated by a majority vote of the GSC by a request from five members of the graduate faculty or by the GSC upon request from the director of the ESGP or the Dean of the Graduate School.

Faculty members may request a review of an adverse decision by the GSC and may subsequently appeal to the Dean of the Graduate School.

Graduate Faculty Meetings

Meetings of the graduate faculty will be called from time to time to amend this document and to carry out such business, as may need the faculty's attention. The director of the ESGP will chair meetings of the graduate faculty.

Robert's Rules of Order will prevail. A quorum will be deemed present when at least twenty percent of the graduate faculty is present and voting. When appropriate, the graduate faculty may also conduct its business by e-mail ballot. Graduate student participation in graduate faculty meetings is encouraged.

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