Governing Documents: Staff
Effective Date:
May 20, 1982
Revised Date:
Review Date:
Approving Body:
Board of Governors
Vice-President (Academic) and Provost
Academic Staff
Applies to:


This policy applies to the appointment of Heads of academic departments. The responsibilities of these administrative officers are defined in the Bylaws of the Board of Governors and their appointments are held at the pleasure of the Board.

Nature of Appointment

Heads of Departments shall be appointed by the Board of Governors on the recommendation of the President. Their appointments shall be for terms of specified duration. The specific length of the term may vary as recommended to suit the circumstances of the appointment. No person appointed under this policy shall serve for a period exceeding seven years unless re-appointed in accordance with the procedures of this policy.

Appointment Procedures

Whenever a Department Head's position is to be filled the Dean shall strike a committee to advise on the appointment of a Head. In considering candidates for the position, the Committee shall automatically consider the incumbent as a candidate for renewal of appointment unless he or she declines to be considered.

1. Composition of the Advisory Committee

The composition of the Committee to advise the Dean on the appointment of a Head of Department shall normally be as follows:

a) The Dean of the Faculty or a delegate of the Dean to Chair the Committee. The Dean, ex officio, shall be a member of the Committee.

b) Four persons elected by, but not necessarily from, the faculty members of the Department.

c) Two students, one of whom, where appropriate, will be a graduate student, the procedure of selection to be made by agreement between the Chair and the appropriate student body.

d) Three persons appointed by the Dean following consultation with the Vice-President (Academic) and Provost.

e) One or two additional persons may be appointed by the Dean to represent professional or other interests.

f) If the person chairing the Committee plus the elected members do not result in a female to male ratio of either 3:2 or 2:3 then at least one of the three persons named by the Dean must be of the sex of the minority.
2. Procedures of the Committee

a) The Dean or the Dean's delegate serving in the chair, or the Dean as an ex-officio member shall not have a vote in the committee.

b) To ensure consistency, all procedures shall follow guidelines approved by the Dean.

c) The proceedings shall be strictly confidential both before and after any recommendations are made or any appointment announced and candidates shall be assured of the fact.

d) If the Committee is unable to complete its deliberations in a satisfactory manner, or if it has breached confidentiality, the Chair shall so notify the Dean who may then disband the Committee and strike a new Committee or determine some other resolution.

3. Report of the Committee

The Committee shall report to the President through the Dean.

Recommendation for Appointment

The President shall recommend to the Board the person to be appointed and the terms and conditions governing the appointment.

Effective Dates

The above policy shall apply to those Heads of Departments whose appointments or reappointments are approved by the Board after May 20, 1982, except that any such Head whose appointment was approved on or before May 20, 1982, the term of which appointment expires after May 20, 1982, may, on the expiry of the said term, elect either to come under the revised policy or to come under the former policy with respect to consideration for reappointment. All subsequent considerations for reappointment shall be governed by the revised policy.

NOTE: In accordance with past policy and practice this policy does not apply to the appointment of Acting Department Heads.