By-Laws of the Department of Arabic & 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. The Department Chair serves as chief administrator supervising faculty and curriculum of Small Program Languages housed in the Department, i.e., Turkish, Persian, and Modern Hebrew.
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 DUS is also the coordinator of the undergraduate language program in Arabic, and in this capacity is responsible for coordination and administration of the language testing, including proficiency and placement testing, for the undergraduate and graduate students. The Director of Undergraduate Studies shall be appointed by the Chair from the full-time faculty. The DUS shall serve a term of three years, 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:
communication with the Graduate School
advising graduate students on degree requirements including course work and language requirements
a yearly (spring semester) review of student’s progress in the program, including meeting individually with students
keeping academic records of current students
supervising and coordinating comprehensive exams
supervising the composition of dissertation committees
chairing the graduate studies committee
chairing the graduate admissions committee.
The Director of Graduate Students 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. Other Regular Departmental Officers
– Graduate Teaching Assistant Coordinator and Mentor
– 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.
A. Search Committee
This committee is responsible for advertising and conducting searches for new tenure-line and non-tenure-line faculty. The committee is appointed by the Chair whenever a search is conducted. In searches for a tenure-line faculty, the committee is composed of four tenure-line faculty plus one tenure-line committee member who is external to the Department. In searches for a non-tenure-line faculty, the committee is composed of a total of three members, with at least one of them from among the tenure-line faculty.
B. Graduate Admissions Committee
This committee shall be comprised of the Chair of the Department, the Director of Graduate Studies, and at least one additional tenure-line faculty member appointed by the Chair on an annual basis. The committee is chaired by the Director of Graduate Studies and is responsible for reviewing applications for graduate studies and selecting qualified candidates.
C. Graduate Studies Committee
This committee is chaired by the Director of Graduate Studies and shall comprise at least two additional tenure-line faculty. The committee is responsible for matters concerning the graduate program and the graduate students, and convenes as needed.
D. Undergraduate Curriculum Committee
This committee shall be co-chaired by the Chair of the Department and the Director of Undergraduate Studies, and comprise in addition two full-time faculty members. The committee is responsible for the undergraduate course of studies, and oversees and plans the curriculum for majors and minors in the program.
E. Tenure and Promotion Committee
This committee is comprised of all appropriate tenured faculty and at least one tenured faculty member from another academic department at Georgetown University. The chair of this committee is appointed by the Chair of the Department in consultation with the Dean. The chair of the committee is responsible for mentoring the candidate in the process of gathering the dossier for tenure or promotion, the selection and contact of external evaluators in consultation with the members of the committee. The chair of the committee is responsible for writing the report on the deliberations of the committee and for submitting it to the Dean and the University Committee on Rank and Tenure.
IV. Representation in Governing Bodies
A. Main Campus Executive Faculty
In accordance with the rules set out in the relevant pages of the most recent Faculty Handbook, all full-time faculty have the right to participate in the governance of the University. The selection of members to the Main Campus Executive Faculty shall occur in accordance with its constitution. The representative of the Department to the Main Campus Executive Faculty is appointed by the Department Chair.
B. College Executive Council
The selection of members to the College Executive Council shall occur in accordance with its constitution. The representative of the Department to the College Executive Council is appointed by the Department Chair.
C. College Chairs Meetings (Dean and FLL)
The Department Chair shall represent the Department at the College Chairs meetings with the Dean of the College as well as the meetings of chairs from the Faculty of Languages and Linguistics (FLL).
D. Student Representation
Graduate students of the Department shall every year at the start of the fall semester select from among them a student representative. This student serves as the formal representative of the graduate students vis-à-vis the Department. The student representative is invited to attend the regularly scheduled faculty meetings, though may be asked to leave when discussing sensitive matters. The student representative does not enjoy voting privilege at faculty meetings. In addition, the selected student also represents the graduate students of the Department in the Graduate Student Organization (GSO). All graduate students are members of the GSO.
V. Faculty Meetings
A. Scheduled Meetings
The Department shall hold a minimum of four scheduled meetings per academic year. 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 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 as well as joint appointment faculty 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.
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-third majority of all full-time and joint faculty, including two-thirds of the tenure-line and joint appointment faculty. Final approval of the Department 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.
VII. Merit Review
The merit review procedures are on file in the department.