Summer Session Policies

A special issue of the Provost’s newsletter On Campus Walk provided an opportunity to express thoughts about the issues of summer session policies and compensation and to see what others were saying. Click here to see the results of that discussion.

On Friday, October 4 from 4:00-5:00 PM in Trinkle Hall, room 106-A, a “Town Hall” forum was held to extend discussion on this topic.  The meeting gave anyone interested an opportunity to have a more thorough conversation on these issues.

The Provost announced the new guidelines for the 2014 summer session in an email sent to all faculty.

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From: “Jonathan Levin (jlevin)” <jlevin@umw.edu>
Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2013 1:24 PM
Subject: Summer Session Policy

Dear Colleagues,

I am pleased to announce that changes to the summer session compensation policy are now posted to the web site at  the Provost’s web site.

You can also get there by going to Provost.umw.edu and selecting the Tab for policies, and scrolling down to policy D.6.5.

Let me offer a word of thanks to everyone who helped me better understand the impact of the various policy decisions that were made last year.  I hope and believe that we have addressed what emerged as the most pressing concern among faculty.  I do want to stress that summer session revenue remains significant to the overall operation of the university, especially given the enrollment and associated revenue challenges I’ve outlined elsewhere.  I have had to weigh the many reasonable suggestions I received over the past several weeks alongside the need to ensure the continuing strength of the financial performance of our summer session programs.

That said, we have been able to address some of the major concerns that were voiced.  Just to highlight the major points embedded in the revised policy document linked above:

  • We will no longer adjust salaries based on the actual revenue generated by the course. If we are running a course, the salary will remain the full contracted salary.
  • The minimum enrollment required to run a class will continue to be 7 students, and the date by which that minimum must be achieved in order to run the course will remain two weeks prior to the start of the summer term.  Exceptions will only rarely be made, on the recommendation of the Dean and approval of the Provost.
  • Notification of  all summer-session course cancellations will be handled by the Registrar’s office.
  • The minimum per-credit salary for full-time faculty will be raised from $1,300 per credit to $1,500 per credit.  Otherwise, apart from the elimination of the salary adjustment based on actual revenue described above, salary policy remains unchanged.  The $2,333 per credit cap introduced last year will remain in place.

As you work with your department chairs and deans in developing potential summer course offerings, I encourage you to look closely as historical enrollments in your area.  Please be aware of past course cancellations, especially when a department or program had more than one course that were ultimately cancelled due to low enrollment.  In some cases, fewer courses on the initially posted list might have enabled one course that was cancelled to run.  Some students, it should be noted, do not shift their enrollment to another course when their first choice is cancelled, but rather decide at that time not to participate in summer session altogether.

Sincerely,

Jonathan Levin
Provost