Pfeiffer University recognizes the importance of the evaluation process in ensuring educational and instructional quality. Evaluation is a crucial part of our ongoing accreditation processes and contributes to continuous improvement.
Adjunct Faculty Evaluation Process
- New adjunct instructors will be evaluated during the first teaching assignment and once every academic year thereafter while meeting or exceeding expectations.
- The supervisor completes the evaluation in conjunction with a classroom visit and/or review of the online course.
- The supervisor includes student evaluations and summary comments in his/her evaluation of the adjunct faculty member.
- The supervisor reviews the evaluation with the adjunct faculty member either in person or through live, electronic communication.
- The signed evaluation is submitted to the respective Dean for review and signature (unless the Dean is serving as the evaluator).
- The signed evaluation form will be submitted electronically to the Office of Human Resources.
If an adjunct faculty member falls below expectations, the evaluator is expected to discuss the concerns and provide guidance for improvement strategies. This will be documented in the summary area on the evaluation form. Another evaluation will take place with the next teaching assignment. An adjunct faculty member who has two (2) evaluations that fall below expectations and who is not demonstrating improvement may be eliminated from the teaching pool.
Approved by Deans’ Council, October 28, 2021.
Pfeiffer University defines an adjunct professor as a professor who is hired on a temporary or contractual basis each semester. This person is not considered a full-time employee, and as such is not entitled to any benefits that the University may offer its full-time faculty. These employees may teach in the traditional seated classroom format, a hybrid format, or totally online through the University’s Learning Management System.
Adjunct professors are limited to no more than 9 semester hours of work per semester or 18 semester hours per academic year. These hours usually will translate to three semester-long courses, although in some situations, courses that also offer lab hours count as a 4-semester hour courses. In that case, since the adjunct is limited to no more than 9 semester hours, the adjunct would be eligible to teach one 4-hour course and one regular three-hour course, or two 4-hour courses per term, not to exceed 18 semester hours per academic year.
Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by the Provost.
Approved by Deans’ Council, December 9, 2021
Pfeiffer University recognizes the value of information provided by students, employees, and others in assessing the institution’s performance. This process is for the purpose of addressing significant violations of the institution’s standards, policies and procedures and is not a forum for addressing grievances. Pfeiffer has established grievance procedures for students and employees and expects individuals to attempt to resolve grievance issues through procedures established according to the situation.
The complaint process is noted and should be followed accordingly. In all cases, prior to initiating a formal complaint, there should be an attempt to resolve the situation with the appropriate individual or department. Process and procedures are noted below.
The procedure for filing a complaint includes:
- Review the Pfeiffer University Complaint Policy.
- Look at Pfeiffer University Complaint Procedures.
- Email the complaint form to the appropriate area:
From the date the formal complaint is received, each area will have ten (10) working days to work with all parties to achieve a solution.
If the resolution presented is not agreed to, each area will, within ten (10) working days after receipt of the formal complaint, conduct an investigation of the unresolved complaint.
Within twenty (20) working days after receipt of the formal complaint, the appropriate area will inform the individual and all other parties of his/her decision in writing. The following actions may be recommended:
- Offer a resolution to the complaint.
- Dismiss the complaint.
- Take appropriate action.
If a complaint cannot be resolved through the institution’s grievance procedures, students may file a complaint with The University of North Carolina System Office. Please review the Student Complaint Policy (PDF), print and complete the Student Complaint Form(PDF) and submit the complaint to:
The University of North Carolina System Office
c/o Student Complaints
910 Raleigh Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2688
Email: [email protected]
If an issue cannot be resolved internally, the student may file a complaint with his/her state.
In compliance with the new regulations, an institution offering distance education must provide enrolled and prospective students with contact information for filing complaints with its accrediting agency and with the appropriate state agency for handling complaints in the student’s state. While Pfeiffer University strives to provide the highest quality educational opportunities available, conflicts may arise. We aim to resolve any grievances, complaints, and concerns in an expeditious, fair, and amicable manner. If an issue cannot be solved by Pfeiffer University’s internal processes, you may choose to file a complaint with your state of residence. Contact Information for the Individual States.
Distance Learning Students
Students who are residents of states outside of North Carolina enrolled in distance learning programs, should first follow Pfeiffer University’s Public Complaint policy for resolution of grievances. Complaints regarding student grades or student conduct violations are governed entirely by institutional policy and the law of the state of North Carolina.
If a distance learning student is not satisfied with the outcomes of the Pfeiffer University Public Complaint procedures, the complaint (except for complaints about grades or student conduct violations) may be appealed within two years of the incident about which the complaint is made. Complaints are to be submitted to the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority (NCSEAA), using the complaint form listed here: http://www.saranc.org/docs/SARA-NC-ComplaintForm.pdf
A detailed description of the complaint process toward NCSEAA can be found here: http://www.saranc.org/Complaint.html
Pfeiffer University has been designated by the U.S. Department of State as a sponsor of exchange visitor programs.
Pfeiffer University is committed to hiring qualified faculty members to facilitate instruction in all of its educational programs in service to the Institution’s mission.
Minimum Qualifications for a Faculty Member
Qualified faculty members are identified primarily by their academic credentials, but other factors including, but not limited to, equivalent, tested experience and external certification/licensure are considered in determining whether a faculty member is qualified.
Using Academic Credentials to Qualify Faculty
- Faculty will have an academic degree in the discipline, or subfield of the discipline, in which they teach, and/or for which they develop curricula, with coursework at least one level above that of the courses being taught or developed.
- An academic subfield refers to a component of the discipline in which the instruction is delivered.
- They key consideration is whether a degree in the field or a focus in the specialization held by a faculty member appropriately matches the courses, including general education courses, the faculty member would teach in accordance with the conventions of the academic field.
- If a faculty member holds a master’s degree or higher in a discipline or subfield other than that in which s/he is teaching, the faculty member is expected to have completed a minimum of eighteen (18) graduate credit hours in the discipline or subfield in which s/he teaches.
- Faculty teaching and supervising scholarly activity in graduate programs have the terminal degree and have a record of research scholarship, or achievement appropriate for the graduate program.
- Faculty who are not the instructor of record have at least the same level of degree as the course being taught. In such cases, the instructor of record has the qualifications outlines in A or B and has regular interactions with the faculty members who are not the lead instructors in the course. The instructor of record is responsible for final assessment of the students in the course, including assigning grades.
Using Equivalent, Tested Experience and External Certification/Licensure to Qualify Faculty
- For faculty teaching baccalaureate level courses:
- The faculty member will have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in the discipline or subfield, AND a minimum of three (3) years of tested experience (breadth and depth of experience outside the classroom in real-world situations relevant to the discipline in which the faculty member would be teaching) in a related discipline to the courses; OR
- The faculty member will have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in any discipline, AND a nationally recognized credential (certification, license, etc.) for the discipline or subfield OR are recognized by their peers for distinguished professional accomplishments, AND a minimum of three (3) years of tested experience in a related discipline to the courses.
- For faculty teaching master’s level courses:
- The faculty member will have a minimum of a master’s degree in any discipline, AND a nationally-recognized credential (certification, license, etc.) for the discipline or subfield, OR are recognized by their peers for distinguished professional accomplishments, AND a minimum of three (3) years of tested experience in a related discipline to the courses; OR
- In certain circumstances, a faculty member may teach a master’s level course with a bachelor’s degree if s/he is recognized by his/her peers for distinguished professional accomplishments, AND is considered an expert in the content covered in the course.
Individual program-specific accreditors may have credentialing requirements that exceed what is required in this policy.
Exceptions to any of the qualifications outlines in the sections above must be approved in writing by the Provost’s Office.
Ensuring Hiring of Qualified Faculty
- All faculty position postings or solicitations must include requirements consistent with the Minimum Qualifications for a Faculty Member.
- All candidate pools will be initially screened by the search committee chair or hiring manager for Minimum Qualifications for a Faculty Member.
- A current resume or curriculum vita, along with official academic transcripts or other documents verifying credentials, must be submitted prior to the hire for all faculty positions. Records of the resume/curriculum vita and academic credentials will be kept by the Human Resources Office for all faculty hires. It is the responsibility of the appropriate Dean’s Office to ensure that these documents are collected and submitted to the Human Resources Office.
- Current faculty members not holding proper credentialing to teach their assigned course(s) will be offered the opportunity to develop an Academic Development Plan (ADP). Specific assistance rendered to faculty members subject to an ADP will be determined on an individual basis. These plans will be developed by the faculty member and department chair/program director and approved by the respective Dean as well as the Provost. These plans will include a mutually agreed upon timeline for meeting the established faculty credential requirements for the academic courses they teach. ADPs are expected to be completed within three (3) years.
- A “Faculty Certification of Credentials” form must be completed by the appropriate Dean’s Office and approved by the Provost’s Office for each new hire. These forms, once approved, will be submitted to the Human Resources Office.
Ensuring Staffing of Courses with Qualified Faculty
- Documentation of faculty credentials is reviewed periodically. Minimally, faculty credentials will be reviewed whenever the faculty member is up for promotion.
- Each semester, the department chair/program director will review assignments prior to submission to the Dean’s Office to ensure that courses are staffed by faculty with appropriate qualifications.
- The Dean’s Office will perform a final review of assignments each semester to ensure that courses are appropriately staffed.
- The Office of the Provost will periodically audit course staffing to ensure compliance.
Approved by Deans’ Council: January 20, 2022
Pfeiffer University further complies with the provisions of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974, as amended. This act, as it applies to higher learning, ensures that students have access to certain records that pertain to them and that unauthorized persons do not have access to such records. A copy of the act and the university’s policy regarding Student Educational Records and Information is available upon request at the Office of the Dean of Student Development.
Students enrolled in Pfeiffer University are expected to abide by an academic code of conduct that includes honesty and integrity in all matters related to the pursuit of formal and informal education encouraged and promoted by Pfeiffer University.
Students will be informed in writing of the consequence of violations of the code of conduct. Consequences may include suspension or dismissal from the program.
Decisions to suspend or dismiss may be appealed in writing within 72 hours to the Academic Affairs Committee. The appeal is based upon a review of the written record. Students are notified in writing of the decision of the Academic Affairs Committee.
Violations of the Honor Code
All cases involving the following behaviors are considered violations of the Honor Code:
(Further detail is available under Academic Policies and Procedures in the student handbook.)
- Cheating in any form in academic matters, defined as willful participation in the unauthorized exchange or use of information while working on an examination or project designed to evaluate individual performance.
- Plagiarism, the appropriation and passing off as one’s writings or ideas of another.
- Attempting to cheat or plagiarize.
- Failure to report observed violations.
- Lying, stealing, or other conduct violations about academic issues and situations.
Note: The Honor Code is understood to apply to all academic requirements of the university, including assessment testing, internships, entrance examinations and classroom instruction.
The following student responsibilities apply to all Pfeiffer University students:
- You must demonstrate adherence to the Honor Code by signing the Honor Pledge. The statement “I have neither given nor received unauthorized help” may be required on all work submitted for academic credit. If a faculty member requires the statement in writing, he/she may refuse to extend credit for work on which it does not appear. On work where the written statement is not required, faculty members still assume the student’s compliance with the Honor Code.
- To report violations of the Honor Code. (Any student who witnesses a violation of the Academic Honor Code as defined and does not report the violation, will be subject to action under the Honor Code.)
- To appear at hearings when charged with a violation or asked to appear as a witness.
- To respond fully and truthfully to legitimate questions or requests for information concerning Honor Code matters.
Pfeiffer University is authorized under federal law to enroll nonimmigrant alien students.
The following is Pfeiffer University’s nondiscrimination policy:
Pfeiffer University is committed to upholding the principles outlined in Title IX, which states “No person in the United States shall, by sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any educational program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”
Pfeiffer University employs individuals and admits students of any race, color, or national origin to all rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to the student at the university. It does not discriminate by race, color or national origin in administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other university-administered programs.
Furthermore, Pfeiffer University Trustees have determined that students not be denied admission, rights, privileges, programs or activities by religion, veteran status, sex, sexual orientation or ethnic origin; nor will the university discriminate by religion, veteran status, sex, sexual orientation or ethnic origin.
Pfeiffer University does not discriminate against employees, students or applicants who are handicapped. This policy is in keeping with Section 504, The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended.
Age Discrimination Act
Pfeiffer University does not discriminate against students or applicants by age. This policy is in keeping with the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and with the EEOC Age Discrimination Act.
Pfeiffer University has established a fair and equitable refund policy in accordance with the requirements of the university’s accrediting agency. This policy pertains to all students who cease attendance in all classes, either through withdrawal or without notification. It is always the student’s responsibility to withdraw from unwanted courses. Withdrawal forms are available at my.pfeiffer and the Office of the Registrar, Administration Building, Room 206.
Substantive change is a significant modification or expansion of the nature and scope of an institution accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Under federal regulations, substantive change includes:
- Any change in the established mission or objectives of the institution.
- Any change in legal status, form of control, or ownership of the institution.
- The addition of courses or programs that represent a significant departure, either in content or method of delivery, from those that were offered when the institution was last evaluated.
- The addition of courses or programs of study at a degree or credential level different from that which is included in the institution’s current accreditation or reaffirmation.
- A change from clock hours to credit hours.
- A substantial increase in the number of clock or credit hours awarded for successful completion of a program.
- The establishment of an additional location geographically apart from the main campus at which the institution offers at least 50 percent of an educational program.
- The establishment of a branch campus.
- Closing a program, off-campus site, branch campus or institution.
- Entering into a collaborative academic arrangement such as a dual degree program or a joint degree program with another institution.
- Acquiring another institution or a program or location of another institution
- Adding a permanent location at a site where the institution is conducting a teach-out program for a closed institution.
- Entering into a contract by which an entity not eligible for Title IV funding offers 25% or more of one or more of the accredited institution’s programs.
The Substantive Change Policy of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) is updated frequently. Faculty and administrators should refer to the policy on the SACSCOC website for the most recent interpretation of what constitutes a substantive change.
Before initiating any modifications/additions/deletions in academic programming that would constitute a substantive change, the faculty member or administrator initiating the change must notify the Provost’s office in writing as soon as such a change is considered. If the current SACSCOC Institutional Accreditation Liaison (IAL) is not the Provost, the IAL and Provost will work to reach consensus whether the proposal constitutes a substantive change. The Provost’s Office will communicate to all relevant stakeholders regarding the status of the proposal with instructions about the next appropriate action.
The Provost will represent the IAL on President’s Cabinet and will report any proposed substantive change in a timely way.
Most substantive changes that occur at Pfeiffer will be curriculum proposals. The Provost’s Office will ensure that the curriculum proposal form contains a required area for the faculty member making the proposal to indicate whether it constitutes a substantive change. During the approval process, at the stage of the dean’s review, the dean will consult with the IAL regarding any proposal where substantive change is an issue. Even if the faculty member has not indicated on the proposal form that it constitutes a substantive change, the dean should refer any proposal to the IAL for review where a substantive change may be concerned.
There are many categories of substantive change which are not necessarily related to the curriculum approval process: delivering a degree program (new or existing) in an unapproved mode of delivery, offering programs at a level higher or lower than currently approved, offering a program (new or existing) in a new location, entering into a collaborative academic agreement, closing a program, etc. Any modification that might result in a substantive change should be put on the President’s Cabinet meeting agenda by the administrator responsible for it. During the deliberation, the IAL will be consulted regarding whether the proposal is a substantive change.
In both situations, the IAL will make a recommendation to the Provost. The Provost will review each proposal to determine whether it should be considered a substantive change and therefore need to go through the notification and/or approval processes for SACSCOC and any program-specific accreditors. In the event of a dispute as to whether a proposed change is considered substantive in nature, final review of the proposed change will be the responsibility of the Provost.
This requirement is intended to ensure compliance with external accreditation requirements, including those of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACSCOC) and any relevant program-specific accrediting agency.
Depending on the scope of the initiative, a lengthy lead time is necessary to meet accreditation standards of notification and approval before the change can be implemented. The person initiating the substantive change should submit the proposal at least six months prior to the intended implementation.
Effective Date: 10/25/2021, Superseding version formerly in Faculty Handbook.