Department Structure of School of Law Faculty

IV-3. Department Structure of School of Law Faculty

A.        The School of Law will be divided into three departments: the Department of Legal Studies, the Department of Clinical Education, and the Department of Lawyering Skills. After consulting with the faculty, the Dean will recommend, and the President will appoint, chairs for each of these departments. The Dean will likely recommend that the Associate Dean be appointed to chair the Department of Legal Studies, the Director of Clinical Education be appointed to chair the Department of Clinical Education, and the Director of Lawyering Skills be appointed to chair the Department of Lawyering Skills.

B.        The fact that the School of Law is organized into departments will be virtually invisible to anyone outside of the law school–or, for that matter, to most people inside of the law school. It will have almost no impact on any of the operations of theSchoolofLaw, except in the areas of appointments and promotions. We will not refer to the departments on our website or in any of our publications. The departmental structure is merely a technical, behind-the-scenes means to achieve our goals in a manner that complies with University policies.

C.        Except as described below or specifically provided otherwise in a University or law school policy, all faculty working in all departments will have the same rights and responsibilities. The law school faculty will meet as a whole, and all faculty will vote on all matters. All committees will be committees of the entireSchool ofLaw (rather than of individual departments), all committees will be appointed by the Dean, and all faculty will be eligible to serve on all committees. All faculty will carry the rank of “Assistant Professor,” “Associate Professor,” “Professor,” or “Clinical Faculty” as appropriate. (“Clinical Faculty” are non tenure-track faculty positions defined in the UST Faculty Handbook, Chapter 2.I.A.1.g.) All faculty will receive contracts on the same form, and all faculty who receive tenure will receive the same tenure to the University. All of the policies of the University andSchool ofLaw will apply to all faculty in all departments, unless specific exceptions are made in the policies themselves.

D.        As to appointments:

  1. Each department will have its own appointments committee, appointed by the head of the department in consultation with the Dean. Each appointments committee may be chaired by the head of the department, although it need not be. The appointments committee of a department may include faculty from other departments in theSchoolofLaw(or, for that matter, from other schools or colleges in the University), and in appropriate casesSchoolofLawstaff. However, the majority of committee members should be from the department in question, absent unusual circumstances (explained further in Policy IV-4).
  2. Each department will develop its own criteria for appointments, in consultation with the Dean and the faculty from the other two departments. For example, the Department of Legal Studies may decide that a record of published scholarship is a necessity and prior practice experience is not, while the Department of Clinical Education may decide precisely the opposite.
  3. Each department’s appointments committee will screen and interview candidates for faculty positions in that department (the “hiring department”). Candidates invited to interview on campus will interview with all available faculty in the hiring department. Candidates should also interview with at least some faculty from the other two departments, to the extent determined by the hiring department’s appointments committee.
  4. Only the votes of faculty in the hiring department will be counted in determining whether a candidate for appointment in that department has sufficient faculty support, under Policy IV-4, Paragraph G-1, to recommend to the Dean that the candidate be appointed. However, before voting on a candidate, the Dean and members of the hiring department should seek input (through discussion and/or votes) on the candidate from faculty in the other two departments who interviewed the candidate or otherwise have knowledge about the candidate. The votes of all departments are merely advisory to the Dean and the University administration. The Dean makes his or her own independent recommendation to the University administration and the final decision is made by the President.
  5. After the President approves an appointment, the Dean, in consultation with the department head, will negotiate with a candidate regarding salary, rank, and other matters.
  6. The processes for appointments are set forth more specifically in Policy IV-4.

E.         Generally speaking, promotions and tenure will be handled similarly to appointments:

  1. Each department will have its own promotions and tenure committee, appointed by the head of the department in consultation with the Dean. Each promotions and tenure committee may be chaired by the head of the department, although it need not be.
  2. Each department will develop its own criteria for promotions and tenure, in consultation with the Dean and the faculty from the other two departments. For example, the Department of Legal Studies may decide to give substantially greater weight to published scholarship than the Department of Lawyering Skills. To be tenured, though, all faculty in all departments will have to demonstrate substantial accomplishment in teaching, scholarship, and service, consistent with University standards.
  3. Only eligible faculty in a department will vote on whether a faculty member in that department should be recommended for promotion and/or tenure. However, before voting on a candidate, eligible faculty in a department should seek input regarding the candidate from (i) faculty within the department who are not eligible to vote on the candidate, and (ii) faculty in the other two departments.

F.         The School of Lawwill pay what is needed to attract strong faculty. If market rates for Legal Studies faculty are higher than those for Clinical Education faculty, or market rates for Clinical Education faculty are higher than those for Lawyering Skills faculty, then the salaries paid by the School of Law will reflect that fact. There is no expectation that an entry-level faculty member in one department will be paid identically to an entry-level faculty member in another department.

G.        Likewise, there may be some differences from department to department in summer research stipends, budgets for student research assistance, and professional development accounts, reflecting the fact that one department may have different expectations for its faculty than another department. In general, theSchoolofLawwill strive to provide all faculty with what they need to be successful.

H.        A faculty member in one department may teach a course in another department, with the consent of the Associate Dean and the relevant department heads. However, no faculty member has a right to demand to teach a course in another department, and no faculty member has a right to demand a full-time appointment in another department. For example, a member of the Lawyering Skills faculty cannot plead “burn out” and insist on being appointed to the Legal Studies or Clinical Education faculty. Likewise, if the entire Department of Clinical Education was abolished, the faculty in that department would have no right to be appointed to another department. Of course, faculty in one department can always apply for an opening in another department and be considered through the regular appointments process.

I.          The Director of Clinical Education and the Director of Lawyering Skills will receive joint appointments to the Department of Legal Studies and to their respective departments.

Adopted by the Law Faculty, July 31, 2002
Amendments Approved by the Law Faculty, August 8, 2002
Placed in catalog, August 12, 2002
Amendments Approved by the Law Faculty, December 5, 2005 and January 23, 2006
Amendments Approved by the Law Faculty, April 30, 2007
Amendments Approved by the Law Faculty, February 7, 2011

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