|Document Title||Department of Visual Art and New Media Handbook|
Spring 2016, rev. March 30, 2018
|Approved by||Department & Dean|
Spring 2016, rev. March 30, 2018
TABLE OF CONTENTS
GOVERNANCE AND DEPARTMENT STRUCTURE
REAPPOINTMENT, CONTINUING APPOINTMENT AND PROMOTION POLICIES
CRITERIA FOR REAPPOINTMENT, CONTINUED APPOINTMENT AND PROMOTION
GOVERNANCE AND DEPARTMENT STRUCTURE
The mission of the Department of Visual Arts and New Media is to provide a balanced, comprehensive undergraduate education within the complex world of artistic disciplines. Our goal is to advance studio practice as well as theoretical and historical studies through the development of creative, practical, and conceptual skills. This encourages student understanding of cultural, philosophical, and historical settings for contemporary art.
The Department of Visual Arts and New Media offers students an opportunity to experience a disciplined program in art within the context of a liberal arts education. Students are challenged to gain knowledge and expertise in visual expression and historical context whether their goal is a professional career, advanced study in the arts, or simply a greater understanding of art and its cultural impact. The curriculum balances contemporary and traditional technologies, issues and practices through a dynamic mix of studios, lectures, and seminars.
Students begin with introductory studies emphasizing visual literacy and basic technical ability with a variety of tools, methods, and materials. Critical thinking and conceptual problem solving are stressed as students gain expertise in creative and communicative expression through written, two- dimensional, three-dimensional, and time-based forms. Philosophical, theoretical, and historical perspectives are considered and investigated throughout the program. Mastery and understanding of the creative process through inquiry, development, evaluation, and presentation allows students to establish a confident methodology as they progress through a carefully planned sequence of courses.
Students learn to address societal, cultural, and individual messages and to consider the implications of aesthetic decisions. Dynamic leadership is provided by the faculty, who are active professionals with diverse backgrounds. The faculty are practicing artists and scholars immersed in projects that enhance their individual fields and invigorate their classroom environments. They carefully guide students to seek depth within their individual disciplines and breadth in their understanding of the creative world.
Whether the goal is a career or advanced study in the visual arts or simply a greater understanding of art and technology’s cultural impact, the curriculum includes a dynamic mix of studios, lectures, and seminars. Our graduates in the Department of Visual Arts and New Media possess a unique set of hybrid skills that provide a critical edge for leadership positions in the competitive and evolving marketplace. Many Visual Arts and New Media graduates have successful careers in corporate and public settings as art directors, working artists and designers, teachers, creative freelancers, and owners of pottery studios, photo studios and design firms. Others work as photographer’s assistants, web designers, gallery directors and curators, and in the special effects industry. Visual Arts and New Media students have also continued their education in graduate programs around the country.
General Governance Structure
The Department of Visual Arts and New Media is administered by a department chair. The chair delegates to various committees, coordinators, and staff members specific responsibilities such as curricular review, recruitment, exhibition and technological concerns. The chair allocates individual budgets for the program areas within the department. The program area faculty either select a budget administrator or collectively agree on expenditures. In areas where there is only one faculty member, that faculty member is automatically the budget administrator for that area. For all other areas of departmental governance, decisions are made by committees with diverse representation or by the department chair with appropriate input from faculty.
Department Chair Duties
The chair serves as a leader and manager of the Department of Visual Arts and New Media. The chair works with faculty and staff to articulate and implement departmental goals and strategies and represent the best interests of the group within the campus community. The chair must also serve as a liaison between the department and the Dean of Visual and Performing Arts, representing the needs and expectations of both to the other. Specific duties and responsibilities of the chair include the following:
The department chair may delegate many of these duties, but it should be understood that he or she is ultimately accountable for all required departmental functions.
Department Chair Appointment Process
The following is the process by which the Department of Visual Arts and New Media will select their department chairperson upon the occasion of that position becoming open. Nothing in this policy shall supersede the Chair Selection Policy approved by the University Senate on Nov. 16, 2016, nor any written policies in the Faculty Handbook or the Policies of the Board of Trustees. The department will comply with all administrative deadlines as specified in the Academic Calendar of Academic Affairs for each academic year.
Nominations and self-nominations for the departmental chair should be presented to the chair of the Department Personnel Committee (DPC) by submitting a current curriculum vita (CV). Only tenured faculty can apply for departmental chair position. The DPC chair will compile the CVs and distribute them to all full-time tenured or tenure-track faculty. If the chair of the DPC is nominated for the department chair position, then the DPC will select another member to serve in the role of DPC chair to oversee this process.
Nominated faculty members for the departmental chair position will present their plans for the future of the department at a meeting of the full-time tenure-track faculty. The chair of the DPC will arrange that meeting. Separate faculty meetings will take place for each nominated faculty member or one faculty meeting can be scheduled to review the departmental chair presentations. The nominated faculty member will also address any questions presented by the faculty members during the meeting. A nominated faculty member cannot attend the faculty meeting where another nominated faculty member is presenting. After the last nominated faculty member has presented his/her position, the nominated faculty members will leave the room and a written vote will take place. Only those faculty who are full-time and are tenured or hold tenure-track positions can attend these meetings and vote. Whenever possible, two members of the DPC will tally the votes and present the totals to the department as a whole. A written memo outlining the vote will be presented to the nominated faculty members.
Recommendation for chair will be determined by a voting majority. The department recommendation for chair will then be forwarded to the Dean of Visual and Performing Arts. After appropriate consultation with the department, the Dean of Visual and Performing Arts will forward the recommendation to the Provost/Vice-President for Academic Affairs. The department chair position is a three-year term. For reappointment of the chair after one term we will refer again to the guidelines listed in this VANM Faculty Handbook. Nothing in this policy shall supersede any written university policies.
Associate Chair Duties
The associate chair serves as an assistant to the department chair of Visual Arts and New Media. The associate chair works with the department chair to implement departmental goals and strategies and represent the best interests of the faculty and students within the campus community. Specific duties and responsibilities of the associate chair include the following:
If an associate chair is not selected, the department chair is responsible for performing the work normally assigned to an associate chair.
Associate Chair Appointment Process
Once the department chair has been appointed, he or she may request approval of an Associate Chair position from the Dean of Visual and Performing Arts. If approved, , nominations will be requested. The departmental chair will meet with each candidate and discuss his or her plans as associate chair. After all the applicants have been interviewed, the chair will give a written notice of his/her decision to the applicants.
The associate chair position is a three-year term. An associate chair may be considered for reappointment but must go through the process again, unless the chair that selected him/her remains in office. The chair can then request the same associate chair or review new applications.
COMPUTER LAB DIRECTORS
The department chair assigns a Lab Director to each computer lab space. The Lab Director is a faculty member who teaches in that facility. All Lab Directors serve on the department’s Technology Committee.
Lab Director Duties
DEPARTMENTAL PERSONNEL COMMITTEE (DPC)
The DPC is responsible for helping the individual in creating the Teaching and Professional
Portfolio (also known as “the dossier”). The committee assists the department chair in the creation of a timeline for the individual applying for reappointment, continued appointment, and/or promotion. The DPC is required to be involved in the peer review process and to aid in the written summary report of the faculty member’s student evaluations for inclusion in the faculty member’s Teaching Portfolio. The DPC is further required to organize a consulting meeting between appropriate faculty members and the department chair to discuss the materials of faculty members applying for reappointment, continued appointment, and/or promotion in accordance with the timeline. See HARP, section III for more on the DPC.
As preparation for classroom observations, the DPC discusses the elements of a successful discipline-specific observation with the faculty member, and these guidelines for peer review will be distributed to all members of the department. Tenure-track faculty members will always
be observed by two individual faculty members during one classroom visit. The two faculty involved in the observation will be tenured faculty in the department (a third faculty member may participate if the junior faculty member has a mentor and requests his/her participation in the observation of the class). In the first year, tenure-track faculty should be prepared to be observed before the first reappointment decision. During a tenure-track faculty member’s second year of teaching at Fredonia, the faculty member is to be observed twice by already tenured faculty. One of the observations will be conducted early in the first semester and the observation report formally submitted before the chair writes the reappointment letter to the third year . Another observation will be done during the second semester to be included in the reappointment to a fourth year (unless that review is waived and then the observation report will be included in the subsequent renewal dossier). After the third and fourth year reappointments, tenure-track faculty will be observed once a year by at least one member of the DPC and the chair of the department until the year after a tenure decision.
The DPC chair presents the faculty member’s materials to the appropriate faculty (appropriate faculty is defined as any tenured full-time faculty member who holds a rank higher than the individual applying for reappointment, continued appointment, and/or promotion). All appropriate faculty have the responsibility to examine carefully all of the material presented
by the individual. The appropriate faculty will meet and consult as the DPC in reaching a decision regarding renewal, continued appointment, and/or promotion. A summary report of this meeting is prepared by the DPC chair and given to the department chair. Upon receipt, the department chair will write an evaluation letter with recommendations to the Dean. A copy of the summary report and chair’s evaluation will be given to the faculty member under review and becomes part of the faculty member’s permanent file in the department office.
REVIEW BY DEPARTMENT CHAIR
The department chair will make his/her letters of recommendation available for review by the DPC upon request.
The Curriculum Committee consists of three members of the Department appointed annually by the department chair. It should include representatives from diverse areas of the Department. The committee is formed by volunteers. The chair of the department selects the chair of the committee from the volunteers.
It is the responsibility of the Curriculum Committee to consider and prepare all departmental curricular action that is submitted for inclusion in the Fredonia Undergraduate and Graduate Catalogs. This committee is also charged with initiating discussions of curricular issues that may not be ready for action, but which may, nevertheless, affect academic programs and resource allocation within the department. Actions and/or issues may be submitted to the committee by department faculty or by the department chair, they may also originate within the Curriculum Committee. The committee is expected to work closely with all appropriate parties including the faculty in programs under consideration and the department chair. The associate chair should be aware of all curricular deadlines posted in the Academic Affairs work calendar.
The following duties are performed by the Committee for each curricular action:
The Recruitment Committee consists of three faculty members that represent a variety of areas in the department. The committee is formed by volunteers. The chair of the department selects the chair of the committee from the volunteers. Additional faculty members may be brought in
by the committee on a volunteer basis for special projects such as a production of a departmental brochure or CD-ROM, additions to the departmental website or facilitating a specialized recruitment workshop.
The Technology Committee consists of all faculty members who also serve as Lab Directors in the department. The committee is formed by volunteers. The chair of the department selects the chair of the committee from the volunteers. The committee’s charge is to track and make recommendations regarding technology within the department. The primary focus of the committee is digital technology.
The Gallery Committee works in consult with the Marion Gallery Director and serves as a faculty advisory board regarding the gallery’s programming, outreach, and exhibition initiatives, including the Department of Visual Arts and New Media Visiting Artists Program lecture series. Committee members review and offer suggestions for future exhibitions and guest speakers with an eye towards presenting a balanced variety of media, subject matter, conceptual and aesthetic approaches by contemporary artists and/or scholars whose work might best enrich the art-going experience of Fredonia’s campus and community members and the western New York region more generally.
24-CREDIT-HOUR REVIEW COMMITTEES
24-Credit-Hour Review committees are made up of all full-time faculty in the Department of Visual Arts and New Media and are responsible for conducting the 24-Credit-Hour Review of all students who have completed 24 credit hours of study in Visual Arts and New Media classes (usually at the end of the sophomore year as well as second semester transfer students). The tally includes credits in Visual Arts and New Media studios, art history, and media theory courses but excludes VAP. The dates for reviews will be determined by the chair and/or associate chair of the department.
The full-time faculty, evenly divided, constitute review committees. Each student will be assigned a room and review committee, which will meet with individual students for approximately thirty minutes. The 24-Credit-Hour Reviews will take place on a Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday prior to Spring Registration. The required teams will be composed of three full-time faculty members. Reviews take place in rotation between RAC 320, 321, 323, 328, 231, 239 and McEwen 106. Each review lasts for a thirty-minute time period (with fifteen-minute breaks in between reviews).
The aim of the 24-Credit-Hour Review is to help each student achieve the goals set forth in the Department Mission Statement and Philosophy. During the review, the committee should question the student about his/her choice of major, discuss degree options, and articulate what the student needs to accomplish to succeed in the department. The committee will complete a review form and rate the student in specific categories using a scoring system from 6 to10 points (with 10 as the high score). Completed review forms will be given to the departmental assistant.
At the completion of the review, the departmental secretary will place a copy of the 24-Credit-Hour Review form in the student’s file, where it will be available for viewing by the student and interested faculty. Students and advisors will discuss the review process during Advisement week. Consultation with the advisor and major-area representatives will determine course selection for the following semester.
BFA REVIEW COMMITTEES
Students wanting to apply for the BFA degree may do so after completing a minimum of 27 credits in Visual Arts and New Media courses. In order to apply for BFA degree status, applicants must have attained at least a 3.0 average in all Visual Art and New Media courses, including Art History, with a 2.0 required for courses taken outside the department to qualify for the BFA Review process. Students with a 3.25 or higher GPA in all Visual Art and New Media courses and 3.0 or higher cumulative GPA and a score of 3.5 or greater during the 24-Credit-Hour Review may be granted acceptance into the BFA program without committee review; however, this is dependent on faculty recommendation and approval from the intended major area. Native Fredonia students cannot apply for BFA status after completing six semesters of Fredonia coursework; transfer students cannot apply after completing 4 semesters of Fredonia coursework. In areas heavily impacted by enrollment, only a limited number of students may be admitted to the BFA program. Students wishing to double major after acceptance into a single major must seek approval from the new major area, which may require a second BFA Review. To complete a double major, students must fulfill the requirements of both degrees without substitution of required courses.
All BFA students are required to participate in Senior Exhibition. Reviews will occur in the fall semester (prior to pre-registration). Students must select a committee of three full-time Visual
Art and New Media faculty to serve as their review panel; one faculty member must represent the major; the remaining two must be from outside the individual major area. Students must contact the chosen faculty members individually to discuss their intention to apply for the BFA well in advance of the scheduled review time frame. The dates for the reviews will be determined by the chair of the department.
The faculty member from the concentration chosen will serve as chair of the review committee and is responsible for checking the student’s folder to verify that a minimum of 27 credits in art have been taken and that the GPA is sufficient. Students are required to submit (at least one week in advance to all members of the review committee and the department secretary) a written statement about their work. The content of this statement should be discussed with the chair of the committee in advance. It should contain a statement explaining why the student wishes to gain BFA status. After consideration/discussion, the committee will complete the BFA Review Evaluation form and return it to the department chair for appropriate processing.
A student whose initial application for the BFA degree is rejected may reapply after one additional semester of study. The student may choose two different faculty members for the second review panel, but must still include the faculty member from the chosen major area.
Course Selection and Registration
Advising at Fredonia is recognized as “Individualized Teaching.” Each student in the department will be assigned a faculty advisor. The advisor is each student's primary source of information on course selection, progress toward a degree, and the exploration of possibilities given each student's unique attributes and abilities. In-coming freshman and transfer students are encouraged to meet their advisors during the first week of classes to become familiar with them and the advising process. Advisors will meet with their advisees during Advising Week (prior to course registration), whenever a student may need to discuss adding or dropping courses, change in majors, or department review procedures. Each student has an advising folder located in the department office. This file contains student transcripts, registration forms, review sheets, high school transcripts, transfer credit approval forms, and advising check sheets. These files are always available for faculty use and will be distributed by the department secretary to each individual advisor during Advising Week.
Faculty may serve as advisors to the departmental Student Organizations: Animation/Illustration Group, Art Forum, AIGA, and Cinema Alternatives. The Student Association creates policy and approves budgets for all student groups.
Departmental Representation to University Committees
Service to the university is required of all members of the faculty. All ranked faculty are expected to participate in service to the committee and governance structures of the university and contribute to routine university functions. Faculty shall, at a minimum, serve on university committees and assume an appropriate share of school duties.
In the first year, all tenure-track faculty will be mentored by the department chair (or Associate chair, if appointed). The chair will assist first-year faculty with understanding the policies and procedures associated with the department and the university tenure and promotion process. The chair will also help to acclimatize recent hires to the Fredonia environment. After the first year, the Personnel Committee will serve in a mentoring capacity. The committee will be involved in the junior faculty member’s tenure and promotion process as an initial reader of his/her tenure and promotion dossier; it will also speak on behalf of the junior faculty during the department’s reappointment and tenure decision meetings. Upon request a junior faculty member may be provided with an individual mentor. Becoming a faculty mentor is voluntary and requires working with the assigned junior faculty member for all of the years leading to the junior faculty member’s tenure decision. Faculty mentors may be asked to participate in classroom observations as well as to identify areas for improvement.
Every two years a faculty exhibition will take place in the Cathy and Jesse Marion Art Gallery. The exhibition serves two purposes: to showcase the talent of the working professionals in the department and to demonstrate to the student body and campus community that the Visual Arts and New Media faculty are working on current issues within their fields, expressing ideas and working through visual problems. The intended audience for the exhibition is the university, local, and regional community, and in particular, the students in the department. It is expected that all of the practicing studio faculty will participate in this exhibition. Junior faculty teaching in the studio areas are required to exhibit as part of their service obligations to the university, department, and students in the Visual Arts and New Media program.
AWARDS OF EXCELLENCE
Awards of Excellence are paper certificates presented to graduating seniors at awards night every semester. Awards are intended to recognize a student’s outstanding accomplishments in a media area. Recipients are selected by faculty. Each faculty member is eligible to select a student(s) that is deserving of this recognition. Areas with more than one faculty member should confer to determine if more than one student should be recognized; however, in some semesters no students might be identified. On occasion multiple students may be awarded in one area, but it is expected that this is an exception rather than routine in order for the certificate to remain meritorious. There is no qualification that the student recognized must be a major in that area, i.e., studio students may be recognized by art history, a graphic design major may be recognized by photography, etc.
ARTS 400: Senior Seminar is a one-credit, graded course. The instructor of record is the Cathy and Jesse Marion Art Gallery Director. All BFA students are required to enroll in ARTS 400 to present an exhibition of their work (although some students may choose another exhibition venue, with departmental approval, for course credit). BA students who have created a significant body of work may enroll in this course, but participation is not a graduation requirement for the BA degree. Any BA student who wants to enroll in Senior Seminar must have faculty approval to register, and their participation may be subject to available space. Faculty may encourage interested senior BA students to consider exhibition opportunities in the Fall semester when enrollment is typically light. Art History majors are not required to participate in ARTS 400.
The Senior Seminar instructor is not involved in assessing the student's individual theme but instead provides guidance through the steps of a professional exhibition process. All students enrolled in ARTS 400 must work with their major area faculty to discuss/determine/evaluate the work exhibited. At the beginning of each semester the ARTS 400 instructor will distribute an exhibition contract/proposal that must be completed by both the faculty “sponsor” and exhibiting student. In this proposal students define what they plan to exhibit and faculty approve. It is understood that what is in the contract is then acceptable for exhibition. Students who deviate from the agreed upon proposal may be withdrawn from the exhibition and/or fail the course as deemed appropriate by the ARTS 400 instructor in consultation with the faculty sponsor. The Gallery Director/ARTS 400 instructor shall keep the faculty informed of student progress and/or problems with the students participating in the exhibition and shall solicit feedback from faculty as to the nature and design of the student exhibits. As early as possible prior to the exhibition opening, a day for faculty review will be scheduled as part of the ARTS 400 curriculum. This review is not intended as a critique session of the work (which should have occurred prior to this review) but an installation evaluation/consultation.
REAPPOINTMENT, CONTINUING APPOINTMENT AND PROMOTION POLICIES
The purpose of this document is to formulate a guide for teaching, research, and service expectations for the Department of Visual Arts and New Media. The Department works within the requirements set forth in the Policies of the Board of Trustees (Articles X and XII), Personnel Policies as printed in the university faculty Handbook on Appointment, Reappointment, and Promotion (HARP), and the current UUP Agreement. Nothing in this document shall be construed to supersede either the Policies of the Board of Trustees or those stipulated in the university faculty HARP.
The mission of the Department of Visual Arts and New Media is to provide a balanced, comprehensive undergraduate education within the complex world of artistic disciplines. In support of this mission, each faculty member of the department is expected to be engaged in three areas that will then be used to evaluate faculty for reappointment and/or continuing appointment and promotion: teaching effectiveness, scholarship, professional and university service. See HARP guidelines, section IV, “Appointment, Reappointment, Review, and Promotion of Tenure-Track Faculty.”
Effective Teaching of students is the most important area in an evaluation; however, the Department of Visual Arts and New Media believes that a faculty member’s effectiveness and growth are directly related to and enhanced by scholarly or creative activity. Therefore, the department expects that each faculty member be involved in scholarly research or creative activity. Service applies to the non-teaching needs of the department and the university, such as committee work, mentoring, and department or university assignments as well as service to students, the community, and/or one’s professional field of endeavor.
The following criteria in the three categories shall apply to evaluations made at all phases of a faculty member’s career in the Department of Visual Arts and New Media at the State University of New York at Fredonia.