The contracts of Graduate Teaching Associates are renewed by the Chair of the Department upon the recommendation of the faculty. The faculty recommendation results from an annual review, usually carried out in the spring semester, of both the teaching and the academic record of all GTAs. Prior to the review, students must submit the Annual Evaluation of Student progress form to their Advisors. Subsequent to the review, academic Advisors meet with their advisees to discuss the outcome of the review and to inform them of any specific suggestions for improvement that may have emerged from the review.
Graduate Teaching Associates may expect to be reappointed provided that:
- they are in good standing in the Graduate School (i.e., their Cumulative Point Hour Ratio (CPHR) is 3.0 or better;
- they are making satisfactory progress toward their degree, which is defined, among other ways, as meeting the various deadlines outlined earlier in the descriptions of the M.A. and Ph.D. programs;
- their teaching performance has been satisfactory;
- course enrollments and the departmental budget permit such reappointment.
N.B.: A student whose graduate CPHR falls below 3.0 after 9 graduate credit hours have been completed is placed on probation by the Dean of the Graduate School. Once this is raised to 3.0 or better, the student is removed from probation and placed in good standing in the Graduate School. Provided that the student is in good standing and teaching evaluations are satisfactory, the appointment as a GTA can be continued; if a student is not in good standing, the appointment becomes null and void.
Letters of reappointment are normally sent in May. Acceptance or rejection by the candidate must be received in written form by the Chair of the Department no later than two weeks after receipt of the offer. The letter of acceptance is considered binding upon the individual and cannot be rescinded without the approval of the Chair.
Associates who are not reappointed will be so informed in writing by the Chair of the Department, who will state the reasons for non-reappointment. Among other possible reasons is the Associate’s acceptance of outside employment without prior consultation with his/her Advisor. (See section XI.7. Outside Employment.) If the Associate wishes to appeal the non-reappointment, the appeal must be put in writing, and it must be received by the Chair within two weeks of the date of the non-reappointment notice. If the appeal is denied by the Chair, grievance proceedings may then be initiated according to the guidelines given in Section XI.6.
It is the responsibility of the Chair of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese to ensure that the quality of teaching in the Department is maintained at a high level. Upon receiving evidence that termination of a GTA’s appointment is called for, the Chair shall carefully investigate the situation and, if the evidence gathered from all interested parties is sound and substantial, shall terminate the Associateship. GTA appointments may be terminated prior to the end of the appointment period only with the written approval of the Graduate School. A GTA appointment is terminated prior to the end of the appointment period for any of the following reasons:
- the GA is no longer enrolled in the Graduate School
- the GA is registered for fewer than the number of credit hours required for a GA appointment or fewer than three credit hours for a doctoral student who has passed the candidacy examination
- performance as a GA is determined to be unsatisfactory by the employing unit
- the GA graduates
- the appointing unit has insufficient funds
- unsatisfactory academic performance.
A GTA whose appointment is terminated will receive notification of the termination in the form a letter from the Chair, stating the reasons for the termination. If the Associate wishes to appeal the termination, the appeal must be put in writing, and it must be received by the Chair within two weeks of the date of the notice of termination. If the appeal is denied by the Chair, grievance proceedings may then be initiated according to the guidelines given in section XI.6.
Graduate Associates should report grievances related to their appointment directly to the Chair of the Department. If the Chair cannot resolve them to the satisfaction of the Associate, they may be remanded to the Graduate Studies Committee or to an ad hoc committee appointed by the Chair. If a resolution cannot be obtained through departmental procedures, the established procedures of the Graduate School will apply (see Appendix D of the Graduate Student Handbook for more detailed information).