The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee (AF&T) is responsible for all matters of policy related to academic freedom and faculty tenure, including Board of Regents Policy: Faculty Tenure. The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee reports to the Faculty Senate and does not deal with individual disputes.

2021-22 Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee Leadership

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Meeting Schedule

2021-22 Meeting Schedule

The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee meets Fridays from 10 a.m. - noon, unless otherwise noted. University Senate Governance committees will continue meeting via Zoom during fall semester 2021. Meeting modality for spring semester 2022 will be revisited closer to the end of the 2021 calendar year.

DATE TIME LOCATION
September 24, 2021 10 a.m. - noon Online Via Zoom
October 22, 2021 10 a.m. - noon Online Via Zoom
November 19, 2021 10 a.m. - noon Online Via Zoom
January 28, 2022 10 a.m. - noon TBD
February 25, 2022 10 a.m. - noon TBD
March 25, 2022 10 a.m. - noon TBD
April 22, 2022 10 a.m. - noon TBD
May 27, 2022-Tentative 10 a.m. - noon TBD

Committee members will be automatically added to a Google Calendar invite for these meetings at the beginning of the 2021-22 academic year. 

Committee Charge

Faculty Senate Bylaws, Article IV., Section 5

A. ACADEMIC FREEDOM AND TENURE COMMITTEE

The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee is responsible for all matters of policy related to academic freedom and faculty tenure, including the Regents' policy, "Faculty Tenure." The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee reports to the Faculty Senate and does not deal with individual disputes. 

Membership

The Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee shall be composed of:

  • at least 7 faculty members (including at least 5 who are tenured and at least one from a system campus), 
  • 2 academic professional members whose responsibilities are primarily teaching or research,
  • 1 postdoctoral fellow/associate,
  • 2 graduate students, and
  • ex officio representation as specified by vote of the Faculty Senate.

Faculty, academic professionals, and students shall be appointed by the Committee on Committees. The postdoctoral fellow/associate shall be appointed by the Postdoctoral Association. The academic professional, postdoctoral fellow/associate, and graduate student members may not vote on any issue related to faculty tenure; the decision about whether a matter relates to tenure shall be determined by the chair. The chair of the committee shall be a tenured faculty member.

Duties and Responsibilities

a. To review periodically the University’s policies on academic freedom, its underlying principles, and the tenure regulations.

b. To review periodically the tenure-and-promotion system for faculty appointments, and any related policies, and make recommendations to the Faculty Senate and to the appropriate senior academic administrators.

c. To review proposals from any source for amendment of the Regents Policy on Faculty Tenure and report its views to the Faculty Senate within the time limits provided by the Regents' Policy.

d. To review annually the use of contract and non-faculty instructional appointments in all departments and colleges, and make recommendations to the Faculty Senate and the appropriate senior academic administrators.

e. To provide Interpretations of the tenure policies in accordance with the Regents' Policy.

f. To monitor the post-tenure review process.

g. To review and monitor issues of academic freedom arising in, pertinent to, or affecting the University of Minnesota.

h. To promote understanding of the concepts and exercise of academic freedom across the University.

i. To advise senior academic administrators concerning issues of academic freedom, and of academic tenure and rank. 

j. To make recommendations it deems appropriate to the Faculty Consultative Committee or other committees of the Faculty Senate.

(updated: 7/19/16)