Academic Senate Principles Regarding Academic Reorganization

Reference Number: S92-178
Senate Approval Date: Wednesday, January 01, 1992

Academic Senate Principles Regarding Academic Reorganization

Academic Senate Policy S92-178

At its meeting of May 12, 1992, the Academic Senate unanimously approved the

following principles regarding academic reorganization:

Although recent discussions of reorganizing the academic units of San Francisco

State University have been prompted by the California state budget crisis, the

Academic Senate believes that any such reorganization should be considered and

adopted--if accepted by the faculty--in the context of how best to serve the

mission of the University and strengthen the intellectual/academic activities

of the University community. Examination of curricular and organizational structures

can, at its best, be intellectually stimulating and creative--something that

in healthy organizations is an ongoing and regenerative process.

The Academic Senate further believes that budgetary concerns do not in and

of themselves comprise sufficient reason to alter the organization of the schools/programs

on this campus, and that any organizational change of this kind must be considered

within the framework of principles and processes to be articulated prior to

any actual planning process. Thus, timelines for consideration and implementation

of any proposed reorganization should both be realistic and be jointly agreed

upon by faculty and administrative leadership.

It follows that those discussions should be guided by these principles:


Should the President, Vice President for Academic Affairs, or any other

person(s) believe that such a reorganization is appropriate, s/he shall

advise faculty leadership concurrent with notifying the Council of Academic

Deans so that the process will from the outset include faculty and administrative



Organizational planning shall provide opportunities for broad participation

of the entire academic community, including faculty, students, staff,

and administration.


Organizational planning shall include a careful examination of all pertinent

factors, including but not limited to human, curricular, and budgetary

considerations, alternative organizational structures, and the ethos of

this campus.


Organizational development shall emphasize middle and long-range planning

rather than crisis-driven responses.


The consideration of alternatives shall include a full analysis of the

potential benefits and the potential costs of each alternative including

any hidden costs, such as the possibility that attempts to streamline

may have the unintended effect of generating increases in administrative



The perspectives and preferences of department and program faculty about

where they might be located in any proposed academic structure shall be

the primary consideration in any proposal for organizational change.


Any proposal for organizational change regarding the structure of major

academic units (Colleges, Schools within Colleges, or departments within

Schools) shall evolve from the organizational planning process and shall

be approved by the faculty through a referendum designed (including the

appropriate electorate) and conducted by the Academic Senate.


As any organizational changes affecting alignment of departments and

programs within Schools and Colleges, or of the Schools and Colleges themselves,

necessarily result in ancillary changes (e.g., review of policy relating

to HRTP, membership of the Academic Senate, its standing committees, and

other all-University committees, etc.), these changes shall be part of

the planning and implementation process so that they can be effected concurrent

with the larger changes implied by University reorganization.