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Guidelines for Sabbaticals and Other Leaves of Absence

It is difficult to apply a precise outline to every area of study, but this document should give you a general sense of the information that should be included in this type of request.

1. A request for a Sabbatical or Academic Leave of Absence must be submitted in conformance with the schedule provided each year by the VP for Academic Affairs. A request for other Leaves of Absence must be submitted with sufficient notice (see Faculty Handbook IV. B.1. a. and b.).

2. According to the Faculty Handbook, “Sabbatical leaves are granted only for clearly defined purposes.” When preparing your proposal, consider that few, if any, members of the Committee will be familiar with your area(s) of study. Proposals should include sufficient detail for non-experts to clearly understand the scope and purpose of the proposed work.

For a Sabbatical Leave of Absence, please provide a description of the proposed project, including:

a. The program of study and/or research
· Explain why you are pursuing this particular area of study.
· Provide a concise, but specific, description of the project you propose to complete.
· Describe the conclusions you expect to draw from your work.

 b. Relationship of the study to long range goals including publication, new course development, creative presentation, etc. Be as specific as possible.
· Will this study result in the publication of articles in scholarly journals and/or a book?
· Have publishers indicated any interest to date?
· Will it result in the production of a creative work?
· Will it result in new or revised courses?
· How much progress is anticipated during the period of the sabbatical?

c. Contribution of study to personal development as scholar and teacher.
· How will this research contribute to the areas in which you teach?
· Describe any other ways in which you expect this project to benefit your scholarly growth or professional development.

d. Location(s) where study will be conducted

e. Importance of the project in relation to the mission of the Department, School, or College

f. Selected bibliography – some examples of work to be examined (if applicable).

g. Information pertaining to any plans to receive or obtain outside funding.

3. All requests for sabbaticals or leaves must be submitted on a flash drive as PDF files and all of the originals in a three ring binder (no pagination necessary).  Please organize files within Tabs:
· Tab 1: Table of Contents
· Tab 2: Cover letter to VPAA
· Tab 3: PDR/CV
· Tab 4: Application
· Tab 5: Department Head’s Letter (This letter should reflect the departmental discussion and subsequent vote and should outline the department’s comprehensive plan for all sabbatical or leave coverage for the year. Please see the President’s comments below.)
· Tab 6: Dean’s Letter
· Tab 7: Supporting materials you believe the Committee needs to make an informed decision about your proposal
· Tab 8: List of Ancillary Materials 

Any supplemental materials that are scannable should also be saved on this flash drive. Name each file in this format: “Tab ___ - Name - Type of Application-Title of Section” for example, “Tab 1 - Kayla Snow – Tenure Application – Table of Contents.” Each application must have a Table of Contents and organize section under tabs. *One large PDF will not be accepted. Submit the flash drive and binder to the VPAA in the Office of Academic Affairs.  

4. A formal presentation to the faculty member’s department with a copy to the Dean and the Vice President for Academic Affairs will be expected by the end of the semester following the sabbatical.

PLEASE NOTE THAT YOUR OFFICE SPACE MAY NOT BE GUARANTEED FOR THE PERIOD OF YOUR SABBATICAL. Your Department Head/Dean must arrange for the accommodation of your sabbatical replacement.

The President has provided the following comments regarding sabbaticals:

A sabbatical leave is a time to promote professional growth, enhance teaching effectiveness and strengthen academic programs. It provides the faculty and the College with the opportunity to do so through study, research, and writing. However, there are some issues surrounding a sabbatical which the Faculty Handbook does not explicitly address: the total number of sabbaticals granted throughout the college and within a department, the timing of sabbaticals within a department, and the quality of the proposal. A large number of sabbaticals in the same semester may weaken the quality of course offerings, student advisement, and faculty involvement in college activities. Such a large number also can raise quality issues within a department or School that could have adverse effects on classroom effectiveness. Granting contemporaneous sabbaticals to two professors from the same department raises similar issues.

The needs of the College are such that generally faculty, departments and deans should carefully consider the timing of sabbaticals and the impact on academic programs. I would like the department heads and deans to consider and to recommend how best to replace faculty on sabbaticals – there is no single best strategy. All attempts should be made to schedule multiple sabbaticals in different semesters. Advisees will need to be reassigned and both course offerings and staffing of courses should be carefully considered. Quality replacement faculty could be found in adjuncts or visiting appointments. Adjuncts might allow a department to offer special courses, but visiting, full-time replacements might be more appropriate in a department which already has a significant number of adjuncts.

Finally, the faculty should note that the Board of Trustees ultimately ratifies requests for sabbatical leaves of absence.

(Reviewed, revised and accepted by the Committee on Faculty Status 2/19/09; updated re use of electronic media 8/16/11)

(Revised 7/31/12, Language Revised 9/11/13)