SUBJECT: Regular Sabbatical

POLICY #: ACAD105A

AUTHORIZED BY: Associate Dean for Academic Affairs date 8/30/95

APPROVED BY: Dean of the University date 8/30/95

 

Sabbatical leave is intended to allow regular faculty members relief from normal duties in order to pursue significant projects designed to improve their capabilities as teachers and researchers and hence to increase their future contributions to the mission of the University. It is designed to permit a faculty member to achieve educational goals which could be reached, if at all, only over an extended period of time if pursued under the demands of regular University duties.

Commitment: USC Sumter will support at least one sabbatical each academic year, if at least one sabbatical proposal deemed worthy of such support and submitted in accordance with this policy is received for that year. The Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, the Budget Director, and the Budget Planning Committee will insure that reasonable funds to support a sabbatical be included in each year's academic budget request.

Definition: A regular sabbatical is release time from all regular responsibilities during a Fall and/or Spring 16 week semester. Normally a sabbatical will mean either one full 16 week semester of leave at full salary, or a Fall and Spring semester leave at half salary. During the sabbatical period, the faculty member is not expected to teach any classes, hold any office hours, nor serve on any committees. He or she will be expected to improve his or her academic, research, or teaching understanding, although not necessarily in absolute alignment with his or her usual work. The sabbatical experience should tie in with the mission of USC Sumter.

Eligibility: All tenured faculty who are not within one year of retirement are eligible. Normally, awards will be made to faculty who have at least six or more years' service at USC Sumter. Any faculty member who receives a sabbatical will be expected to serve at least one year at USC Sumter after the end of the sabbatical.

Application Process: Requests for sabbaticals should be submitted to the faculty member's Division Chair. The Division Chair will forward the request to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. The Associate Dean will seek the advice of the Faculty Rights and Responsibilities Committee before making his or her recommendation to the Dean. A request for sabbatical leave must be approved by the Dean, the Vice Provost and Executive Dean for Regional Campuses and Continuing Education, the Provost, and the President of the University.

It is important that the Division Chair be aware of applications for sabbaticals from his or her division. No Division Chair, however, will be permitted to veto a faculty member's application because the Division Chair has concerns about staffing courses in the faculty member's absence.

Staffing: Upon approving an application for sabbatical, the Dean of the University will notify the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and the relevant Division Chair, who will devise a plan for accommodating the absence of the applicant should the application be approved by the President. The plan will include provisions for covering, cancelling, or postponing courses originally intended to be taught by the applicant, and will contain provisions for funding any additional expenses occasioned by the sabbatical. Where these expenses cannot be funded through normal operating budgets, the plan may recommend that the Dean request funding from the USC Educational Foundation - Sumter Partnership or other specified source.

Deadlines: Applications for sabbaticals to begin during a Fall or Spring semester must be received by the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs no later than August 15 of the preceding academic year.

After seeking the advice of the Faculty Rights and Responsibilities Committee, the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs will recommend approval or disapproval of applications to the Dean of the University not later than September 30 of the academic year preceding the academic year in which the sabbatical will begin.

The Dean of the University will submit his/her recommendation to the Vice Provost and Executive Dean for Regional Campuses and Continuing Education in accordance with instructions from that office. Should those instructions require an earlier submission than procedure established by this policy will allow, deadlines established by this policy will be altered to accommodate them.

The faculty member will be notified whether the sabbatical will occur as soon as the President of the University notifies the campus of his or her approval or disapproval.

Application Contents: The application should include the following:

1. A description of expected activities.

2. A chronology for expected activities.

3. A statement of the benefits of the sabbatical to the faculty member.

4. A statement of the benefits of the sabbatical to USC Sumter, with specific reference to the mission of the campus.

5. If the faculty member requests support for costs other than the faculty member's own salary, a statement of those projected costs should be included.

Outcome: A written report on the results of the sabbatical will be submitted to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs no later than one month after completion of the sabbatical. During the first Fall/Spring semester following the sabbatical, the participating faculty member will be expected to give a seminar to the faculty on the results of the sabbatical.

Faculty Renewal Activities in General: Faculty interested in sabbaticals are encouraged to discuss their plans with the Division Chair as early as possible. Some activities that faculty may wish to work on can be supported through release time short of a sabbatical, through the Faculty Exchange Program, or through a Summer Sabbatical. Participation in any of these other renewal activities will not affect a faculty member's eligibility for a regular sabbatical.