By-Laws of the Department of Arabic & Islamic Studies
Microsoft Word – AIS Departmental By-laws Revised December 2020 .docx
By-Laws of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies Academic Mission Statement
The Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies aims to combine a thorough understanding of the Arabic language with scholarly research in the literary, linguistic and intellectual traditions of the Arab and Islamic world of the classical and modern eras. The Department offers an undergraduate major in Arabic and graduate programs at the M.A. and Ph.D. level in Arabic and Islamic Studies with concentrations in Arabic Literature, Arabic Linguistics, and Islamic Studies.
I. Faculty Academic Ranks
Faculty academic ranks within the Department are defined in accordance with those outlined in the relevant pages in the most recent Faculty Handbook (http://facultyhandbook.georgetown.edu/).
II. Departmental Administration
A. Department Chair
In accordance with the regulations outlined in the relevant pages of the most recent Faculty Handbook, the Chair of the Department shall be recommended to the Dean of the College, the Provost, and the President in the following manner: The recommendation of the Chair of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies is the result of a deliberate process and vote of all full-time faculty, every three years. Nominees for chair have to be from among the tenure-line faculty of the department. Unless otherwise arranged, the Department Chair serves in this capacity during the summer. The President ordinarily appoints the Chair for a term of three years. The President may offer reappointment based on the recommendation of the full-time faculty members, the Dean of the College, and the University Provost. This appointment should not exceed two three-year terms. The responsibilities of the Chair shall include those enumerated in the relevant pages of the most recent Faculty Handbook
B. Director of Undergraduate Studies
The Director of Undergraduate Studies (DUS) fulfills the function of supervising and coordinating the academic undergraduate program of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies. This includes coordinating academic advising of Arabic majors, minors, and other students taking courses in the undergraduate program of the Department The Director of Undergraduate Studies shall be appointed by the Chair from the full-time faculty. The DUS shall serve a term of two, and is subject to reappointment.
C. Director of Graduate Studies
The Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) fulfills the function of supervising and coordinating the academic graduate program of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies. This includes the following:
The DGS is responsible for advising graduate students on degree requirements, including coursework and language requirements; conducting an annual review (in the spring semester) of each student’s progress in the program, including meeting individually with each graduate student.
Further, the DGS coordinates the MA exams and PhD comprehensive examinations and supervises the composition of PhD committees.
The DGS is also responsible for maintaining the academic records of current students and for communication between AIS and the Graduate School.
The Director of Graduate Studies shall be appointed by the Chair from among the full-time tenure-line faculty of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies (including faculty who hold joint appointments with other departments). The DGS shall serve a term of two years, and is subject to reappointment.
D. Director of Arabic Studies
The DAS serves as supervisor and coordinator of the undergraduate language program in Arabic and in this capacity is responsible for overseeing the quality and coherence of the Arabic language sequence curriculum, including instructor (NTL, TA, Adjuncts, Teaching Associates) observation, evaluation, and training.
The DAS is further responsible for coordinating with the NTL faculty who are in charge of administering Arabic language testing, including proficiency and placement testing, for undergraduate and graduate students.
The DAS serves as coordinator and contact person for Study Abroad. This office includes advising, communicating, with students, investigating sites, and representing the Department on the CASA administering board.
The Director of Arabic Studies (DAS) shall be appointed by the Chair from among the full-time tenure-line faculty of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies (including faculty who hold joint appointments with other departments). The DAS shall serve a term of two years, and is subject to reappointment.
E. Graduate Student Representative
The Graduate Student Representative serves as a channel of communication between the AIS graduate student body and the faculty. This consists primarily of participation in AIS Full Faculty Meetings, but also of communicating graduate student concerns as needed with the Chair, DGS, etc. Conversely, the Chair, DGS, etc., may communicate concerns to graduate students via the GSR.
The AIS Graduate Student Representative (GSR) shall be elected annually by and from among the full-time AIS graduate students to serve for one academic year, and is subject to reelection. The AIS Graduate Student organization may appoint a replacement if the GSR cannot attend a faculty meeting.
E. Departmental Executive Committee
The Arabic and Islamic Studies Executive Committee (AIS EXCO) shall be composed of the current Chair, the DUS, DGS, DAS and and NTL Representative to be elected annually by all full- time AIS non-tenure-line faculty. The purpose of the AIS EXCO is to serve as an ad hoc advisory committee to the chair and to voice approval or disapproval on minor departmental matters that do not require a regular T-L or full faculty vote.
F. AIS stipendiary positions, such as Exam Coordinator, Summer Study Abroad Director, and other
Such positions as may be advisable in the future, will be appointed as follows:
The chair will announce the opening to the AIS Full-Time Faculty asking for expressions of interest. The chair, in consultation with the AIS EXCO, will make the appointment from the list of candidates. Criteria to be considered are qualifications and fair distribution of AIS
opportunities. Such appointments will be for a term of one year with the possibility of renewal. All procedures must be in accord with NTL faculty policies.
IV. Faculty Meetings
A. Scheduled Meetings
The Department shall hold a minimum of four scheduled meetings per academic year. These shall be of two types: a Tenure-Line Faculty Meeting to deal with matters that concern T-L faculty only (tenure and promotion, graduate curriculum, etc.); and Full Faculty Meetings, for all full-time and joint tenure-line faculty, all full-time non-tenure-line faculty and the GSR, to deal with issues that fall under the purview of the full faculty. The first scheduled meeting shall take place in the first month of the beginning of classes in the fall semester. A schedule of meetings shall be distributed to all full-time faculty members and the AIS Graduate Student Representative no later than the date of the first scheduled meeting of the academic year. Additional faculty meetings will be convened by the Chair as needed.
B. Special Meetings
Special meetings of the faculty may be convened as needed, either at the Chair’s initiative or by the request of faculty members to the Chair. Meetings pertaining to language coordination, curriculum committee, admission committee, and other such standing committees may also be summoned by the respective officer of the Department.
C. Attendance and Voting
It is a duty of all full-time faculty including joint appointment faculty and the AIS Graduate Student Representative to participate in scheduled department meetings. Absences should be explained in advance to the Chair. Faculty members on sabbatical or official leave are welcome to attend meetings if they choose, but are otherwise considered excused.
A quorum shall comprise the presence of two-thirds of the tenure-line faculty; tenure-line faculty on sabbatical or leave who do not attend meetings shall not be considered part of the quorum. Tenure-line and joint faculty shall enjoy voting privileges at all meetings in accordance with the most recent Guidelines on Joint Appointments. Full-time non-tenure-line faculty members may vote on curricular matters that affect them directly, as well as on departmental
committees of which they are members. Absentee votes are admissible for full-time and joint faculty members unable to attend the meeting when the voted-upon matter has been discussed prior to the meeting, or when the absentee is able to participate in the discussion via acceptable tele-communication. Except for adoption of and changes to the Department By- Laws, a simple majority vote shall prevail.
The GSR has no voting rights, but is expected to report on Graduate Student concerns, report back to them on the AIS faculty meetings, etc. The Chair will excuse the GSR from parts of the faculty meeting deemed inappropriate for non-faculty.
All full-time faculty are eligible to vote on the ratification and amendment of departmental By- Laws. Ratification and amendment of the Department By-Laws require a two-thirds majority of all full-time and joint faculty, including two-thirds of the tenure-line full-time and joint appointment faculty. Final approval of the By-Laws rests with the Dean of the College.
VI. Tenure and Promotion
The Department shall be governed by the rules and policies regarding tenure and promotion contained in the relevant pages of the most recent Faculty Handbook and in the GU approved version of the Standards of Excellence for Tenure-Line Faculty in AIS.
VII. Merit Review
The merit review procedures, including the composition and appointment of the committees, are on file in the department.
VIII. Standing Committees, Ad Hoc Committees, AIS Representatives
Standing Committees (other than AIS EXCO) on an annual basis, Ad Hoc Committees on an ad hoc basis, and AIS Representatives to College and University Committees on an annual basis, shall be appointed by the Chair, in accordance with rules on file with AIS and with GU requirements.