Employment Policies

I. Faculty Employment Process
II. Faculty Loading and Scheduling
III. Instructional Deans
IV. Teaching Contracts
V. Extra Compensation-Overload and Outside Employment for Full-time Faculty
VI. Adjunct Faculty
VII. English Proficiency
VIII. Academic Responsibilities

I. Faculty Employment Process

A. Full-Time Faculty

The process for hiring full-time faculty members is consistent with TBR policy. The hiring process, including affirmative action data and necessary forms, is described fully in the Nashville State Affirmative Action Plan.

The process for hiring a full-time faculty member includes a faculty search committee working with the Academic Dean or campus Director. Deans must approve the academic credentials for all candidates being considered. The President must approve the hiring of any full-time faculty member.

B. Adjunct Faculty

Deans and Directors have primary responsibility for hiring, evaluating, and scheduling adjunct faculty. Deans and Directors maintain a pool of adjunct faculty prospects from which to hire. Deans must approve the academic credentials for all candidates being considered. The pool is enhanced and updated prior to each fall and spring semester by Human Resources through advertisements in local newspapers and the NSCC website, and by the Dean and Director through review of resumes and applications. Adjunct applications must be held for a minimum of two years from date of receipt.

II. Faculty Loading and Scheduling

The normal work week for full-time Nashville State faculty and staff as state employees is 37.5 hours per week, including a minimum of 30 hours of scheduled activities on campus for teaching faculty. These activities include classroom teaching, student advising, work with student organizations/activities, committee service, assisting colleagues, program audit and reviews, curriculum development and revision, course preparation, participation in professional development activities, assistance with student registration and orientation, research, attendance at student services events, community service, and other activities designated by the Dean/Directors. Faculty advisors are expected to meet with their identified student advisees on a periodic basis during the semester and to be available to students in registering for classes and for degree and career planning. Faculty are also expected to assume responsibilities that further the success and retention of their student advisees and enrolled students. Curriculum development and revision includes courses or programs offered via traditional as well as non-traditional delivery systems. Teaching responsibilities may include assignments on or off campus in the daytime, evenings, or on weekends during the academic year. Summer teaching is neither expected, required, nor guaranteed. A normal faculty schedule consists of five days. Faculty teaching one or more classes after six p.m. (with at least three night class/lab hours per week) may request a four-day schedule. Such requests may be granted by the Dean or campus Director.

Office hours should be scheduled on campus at times that would be beneficial to students. As a general rule they must include a minimum of two hours per day for five days a week, with exceptions being approved by the division Dean or campus Director. Academic year contracts generally begin mid-August and end mid-May. Specific dates are set by the President.

Faculty teaching loads and office hours are developed by faculty, approved by Deans or Directors, and forwarded to the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Each semester the Division Deans and Directors file for approval with the Vice President for Academic Affairs a Teaching Load Profile (TLP) on all faculty. The TLP consists of the semester and year, the names of all instructors (both full- and part-time) with courses and sections taught, the number of students in each section and the Student Credit Hours (SCH) generated for each section. "Distributed Credit" refers to the number of credit hours assigned to a particular type of section based on the method of teaching (lecture, lab, practicum, studio, clinical) by the Curriculum Committee.

SCH (for a section) = Number of Students x Distributed Credit

Any faculty member who has one or more low enrollment courses in a given term may be assigned more than thirty credit hours per academic year to compensate for the low enrollment course(s) without being paid for an overload, or classes may be combined to produce appropriate student enrollments.

The number of faculty positions allocated to a program is primarily a function of the SCH produced in an academic year. It is a goal of Academic Affairs at NSCC for the average SCH generated by faculty per semester to equal 325, although the actual number may vary by program, campus, and/or semester.

Academic Year Workload:

Credit Hours (CH) = Average 30 TLC per academic year
Low Productivity = Below 650 SCH (excluding overload SCH) per academic year
High Productivity = Over 900 SCH (excluding overload SCH) per academic year

Nashville State’s policy on faculty loading reflects that of the Tennessee Board of Regents (5:01:00:00). Faculty are compensated for a normal teaching load of 30 credit hours per academic term, with an attempt made to equalize terms; however, the teaching load may vary each semester depending on circumstances. Any additional teaching assignments may fall under the terms of Section VI, A. Extra Compensation for Full-Time Faculty. Teaching load credits (TLC) may be calculated as the average of the course credit hours and the course contact hours. All overloads must be documented and justified by Deans or campus Directors and have the prior approval of the Vice President for Academic Affairs. Should it be impossible for a faculty member's load to be held within the maximum teaching load, overload will be paid no later than the spring term for hours above the maximum. Requests for released time for faculty should be requested by Deans/Directors and approved by the Vice President for Academic Affairs and President in advance of the assignment; exceptions to this policy may be made based on approved circumstances.

For information on summer teaching load and summer compensation, please refer to TBR Policy 5:02:04:10.

A. Guidelines for Faculty Scheduling

1. Objectives of Scheduling Guidelines
2. Faculty Scheduling Guidelines
3. Dean and Director Scheduling Guidelines
4. Scheduling Process
5. Faculty Schedules and Student Communication

Diversity within the college demands flexibility in scheduling be developed and maintained. There are varieties of division, campus, and program structures, courses with different formats and requirements, unknown number of teaching styles, individual orientations to teaching as well as various methods of delivery of academic course material. Faculty schedules should reflect this diversity as well as consideration of the needs of the college and the instructional areas.

General guidelines rather than one-size-fits-all rules best serve the goals of teaching and helping students enrolled in all classes regardless of method of delivery.  This necessarily assumes professionalism on the part of the faculty in meeting student needs, division, campus, and instructional objectives, and the mission of the college.

  1. Objectives of Scheduling Guidelines
    Recognizing student needs, faculty preferences, academic program requirements and academic division standards, Deans and Directors should have flexibility and latitude when developing semester schedules for faculty in order to accomplish these prioritized objectives:
    1. Classes must be offered at times and in a sequence that allows students to enroll in the courses that are included in the recommended schedules provided by programs. Classes must be scheduled consistent with guidelines prescribed by the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
    2. Faculty schedules should be constructed to provide students with access to faculty members during the times that students are most likely to seek assistance. Faculty and Deans/Directors working together will ensure that each program area has sufficient means for providing academic assistance to students.
    3. Faculty schedules should provide for a reasonable work experience for faculty members.
  2. Faculty Scheduling Guidelines
    1. All faculty members have the same job description and should perform the same essential job functions.
    2. All full-time faculty members will return to campus on the dates specified by the President prior to the start of the fall and spring semesters. Faculty members will serve an average of 7.5 hours per day on campus during these days. Door schedules for those days must be submitted to Deans/Directors in advance and posted on office doors.
    3. All full-time faculty work 37.5 hours per week.
    4. A full-time teaching load consists of 15 teaching load credits (TLC) each semester or 30 TLC during the academic year.
    5. All full-time faculty members are required to provide door schedules containing a minimum of 30 campus hours per week. Faculty members typically have a five-day work week, and some hours may be scheduled on weekends. Office hours must clearly be labeled and identified.
    6. Full-time faculty schedules must include teaching load credits and office hours for a total of 30 hours per week.
    7. A hybrid course is classified as an online course. Depending on the needs of the division, college and students, full-time faculty may or may not be assigned online classes every semester. The objective is to have adjunct faculty teaching many of the College’s online classes. Faculty may teach one 3-hour online (including RODP) course per semester at the discretion of the Dean/Director, but there is no guarantee that they will. Faculty members may, with justification and prior approval of the VPAA, teach more than 3 credit hours of online if the course carries 4 or 5 hours and/or more online classes are required for a full-load assignment. In addition, faculty are limited to up to six total credit hours of online (including RODP) and released time per year, unless more credit hours are justified and approved by the VPAA and President. Released time must be justified and requested using the Released Time and Special Assignment Request form (found in the Academic Affairs Public Folder in Outlook). No more than 6 TLC of a faculty member’s total workload of 30 credits should be in online (including RODP) classes per academic year. Programs designed to be online will be handled on an individual basis. In summer, faculty are limited to one online class.
    8. Faculty members receiving extra compensation for an overload must schedule additional class hours and office hours above the 30. As stated in the NSCC Faculty Extra Compensation/Overload and Outside Employment Policy dated 3/31/06, “Additional office hours of ½ hour per TLC plus class contact hours must be added to scheduled time and included in the faculty member’s door schedule.”
    9. Faculty must meet on-campus classes at the appointed time and location.
    10. Faculty members teaching online courses must include their online class hours and office location on the door schedule. These hours are held in a faculty member’s office and may be during evening and weekend hours. The faculty member is normally expected to spend the total number of designated hours on tasks related to teaching the online courses, helping their students, and answering their students’ questions.
    11. Office hours must be held on campus. For faculty teaching day, night, or on several campuses, office hours should approximate the various course assignments to be available to all their students. Deans and Directors should avoid assigning a faculty member to multiple campuses on the same day.
    12. Faculty members must attend scheduled college, division, program, and committee meetings unless they conflict with a scheduled class.
  3. Dean and Director Scheduling Guidelines
    1. Faculty teaching loads may include online, day, and evening classes and on-and off-campus classes as the needs of the College dictate. Deans and Directors may modify the faculty teaching assignments to meet program, campus, and division needs.
    2. It may be necessary for Deans and Directors to adjust on-campus time to meet division or campus needs.
  4. Scheduling Process
    Faculty will work with the Dean or Director when creating door schedules. The suggested process is as follows:
    1. Faculty construct drafts of door schedules, get them approved by their Deans or Directors, and post them on their office doors and online in their courses by the first day of classes.
    2. The Dean or Director reviews the schedules to make sure that program areas have sufficient representation during times when students will likely require assistance. Posted office hours are intended to provide regularly scheduled hours during which faculty shall be available to students. Faculty may be asked to be available outside of posted office hours, as needed, to assist students and participate in college and/or division needs.
    3. If changes need to be made, the Dean or Director will forward the suggested changes to the faculty member, preferably before the first day of classes.
    4. Revised door schedules will be returned to the Dean or Director for final approval in a timely manner.
    5. The Dean or Director will submit final approved door schedules to the office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs by the end of the first week of classes.
  5. Faculty Schedules and Student Communication
    1. A typical faculty door schedule consists of 30 hours per week and would include: a teaching load of 15 TLC per semester and 15 office hours reasonably distributed throughout the faculty member’s schedule. Faculty who teach courses with more contact hours than credit hours will schedule proportionally fewer office hours (in the absence of an overload or released time). For example, a biology faculty who teaches three courses with 18 total contact hours will schedule only 12 office hours for a total of 30 campus hours. Office hours for faculty who teach 7-week courses must total 30 hours (in the absence of overload and/or released time) throughout.
    2. Faculty will post semester schedules, including class time, lab time, office hours, and released time, on office doors and in D2L shells by the first day of classes. Scheduled time blocks must not be less than thirty minutes.
    3. Faculty teaching on-ground and online classes must respond to students’ emails within 24 hours during normal business hours Monday through Friday. Faculty must communicate to students via the course syllabus and other appropriate methods how they interpret normal business hours as well as when and how quickly they will respond to emails during evenings and weekends.
    4. Faculty must communicate their office hours and contact information to both on-campus and online students via the course syllabus and other appropriate methods. Faculty who teach online classes must communicate their availability to teach, answer questions, and/or see students in their offices during their online class time via their course syllabus.
    5. Faculty members who teach online courses must schedule office hours to be available to students at a variety of times, which may include evenings.
    6. One office hour must be held per week for each non-overload course teaching load credit, unless contact hours exceed credit hours for courses taught. One-half of an office hour must be held per week for each overload course teaching load credit. One-and- a- half office hours per course teaching load credit must be held per week during a 10-week summer semester and office hours must reasonably be distributed over a minimum of three days if faculty teach more than one class and/or three credit hours.
    7. Two and one-half released time hours must be held per week for each teaching load credit of released time. (3.75 hours per week should be held during a 10-week summer semester for each teaching load credit of released time.)
    8. During final exam week, full-time faculty members must be on campus for a minimum of 20 hours, which include scheduled exam times. Door schedules for final exam week must be submitted for approval to the Dean/Director at the start of the last week of regularly scheduled classes. Approved door schedules must be posted on the faculty office door and in all D2L shells by the last day of regularly scheduled classes. If a course does not lend itself to a final exam then the faculty member must use the scheduled exam time as office hours. Up to four hours of the 20 may be used for scheduled class final review sessions at the discretion of the faculty member.

III. Instructional Deans

Deans in the instructional units are full-time administrators who fulfill leadership and administrative responsibilities for several academic areas.

A. Selection of Deans

Using an affirmative action search process, Deans are appointed by the President and TBR.

B. Duties/Job Description

A job description outlining general responsibilities and functional duties of Deans in the instructional branch is available in the Human Resources Public Folder in Outlook.

C. Administrative Performance Appraisal

Deans receive an administrative evaluation of performance during fall semester so that there are opportunities for improvement and time to initiate changes before the start of spring semester.

The administrative performance appraisal of Deans will focus specifically on the administrative component and include the following:

  • Administrative Evaluation
  • Self-Evaluation
  • Faculty Input

The VPAA and Director of Human Resources will establish and maintain an effective and timely evaluation schedule within the constraints of calendar and resource limitations.

IV. Teaching Contracts

Typically, full-time faculty teaching contracts at Nashville State are for one academic year. Within the constraints of program needs and budgets, every effort is made to accommodate summer preferences of academic-year faculty. The recommended summer teaching load for full-time faculty generally does not exceed 6 TLC. Summer teaching is neither expected, required, nor guaranteed. Each academic year, guidelines will be communicated regarding maximum summer loads and faculty eligibility. The pay rate is 1/32 of the annual salary per TLC taught. Full-time faculty who teach in the summer are expected to carry on all normal academic year activities during the summer term—teaching, curriculum development, professional development, academic advising, committee service, etc. Because the summer time is shorter, the required number of hours on campus per week will be greater than during the fall or spring terms.

Calculation of Total Campus Time Required for Teaching Loads

Section(s) Required time on campus, clock hours (in-class + office)
1.0 TLC 30 hours per term
1.5 TLC 45 hours per term
2.0 TLC 60 hours per term
3.0 TLC 90 hours per term
4.0 TLC 120 hours per term
5.0 TLC 150 hours per term
6.0 TLC 180 hours per term
7.0 TLC 210 hours per term
8.0 TLC 240 hours per term
9.0 TLC 270 hours per term
10.0 TLC 300 hours per term
15.0 TLC 450 hours per term

To determine the required number of hours on campus or at an official work site, divide the total number of required on-campus clock hours by the number of weeks in the term: divide by 15 for fall, divide by 15 for spring, and divide by 5, 7, or 10 for summer. (For example, a full-time faculty member teaching 6 TLC in a 5-week term will be required to be on campus 36 hours per week for 5 weeks to meet the 180-hour requirement.)

Adjunct faculty contracts typically cover a one-semester or summer term period.

V. Extra Compensation/Overload and Outside Employment for Full-time Faculty

TBR policy on Outside Employment and Extra Compensation (5:01:05:00) states that “full-time employment with the Tennessee Board of Regents demands an individual’s full-time professional expertise, commitment, and energies, and the assigned teaching load of a TBR faculty member constitutes a full-time assignment.” However, the policy notes that overload assignments may be necessary under certain conditions. The purpose of this policy is to define, in broad terms, the conditions under which extra compensation for an overload assignment for a faculty member can be approved.

Overload assignments will be based on the needs of the college, which Deans and Directors assess on a semester-by-semester basis. Balancing course offerings in terms of on-campus/distance, day/evening, and full-time/adjunct instruction should be considered in making decisions about overload assignments. Faculty members should not teach an overload on a recurring basis. Full-time faculty members may be asked at the last minute to teach an overload section of a course they normally teach based on student demand for the course.

Prior to accepting an overload assignment or outside employment, the faculty or staff member shall notify appropriate supervisors and the Vice President for Academic Affairs of the nature of the employment/assignment and the expected commitment of time. Requests for released time that are predictable must be approved prior to the beginning of the semester in which the time will be given. Both released time and outside employment require approval by the President. Approval for outside employment must be requested from the president using the NSCC Outside Employment and Extra Assignment Request Form (PDF), annually or by semester, and must have the approval of the Dean/Director and the Vice President of Academic Affairs. Faculty and staff must complete a new form before entering into a new business or activity. Forms must be updated annually.

Exceptions to this may be recommended by the appropriate Dean or Director. Approvals must be consistent with TBR policies and guidelines and with state law. TCA 49-5-410 limits full-time faculty members to teaching no more than two credit courses per semester for extra pay in an institution of higher education. TCA 49-5-410 also limits faculty to 15 clock hours per week or 400 clock hours per nine-month period for extra pay.

Overload teaching assignments must be:

  • Voluntary on the part of the faculty member;
  • Performed entirely outside of, and in addition to, normal working assignments and responsibilities with extra on-campus hours included in the faculty member’s schedule;
  • Paid at the appropriate rate; and
  • Approved by the appropriate supervisor at the division level.

See Human Resources section, IV, 2 and TBR Policies 5:02:04:10 and 1:02:03:10.

Independent Study Courses: Courses that do not lend themselves to traditional classroom or laboratory methods but must be taught in an individual, tutorial, consultative manner are credited to the faculty member on the basis of 0.2 TLC for each student.

Allied Health: Because the various programs in Allied Health are so different from traditional courses in non-career disciplines, there is no single formula that fairly or realistically relates time in the class or numbers of students to a teaching load. At the present time, the most reasonable teaching load for a full-time Allied Health faculty member is simply a 37.5 work week. A formula that represents this load would be:

1 TLC in an Allied Health discipline= 2.5 clock hours, so
15 TLCs in an Allied Health discipline= 37.5 clock hours per week

Virtually all Allied Health faculty schedules might be a combination of this formula together with the “traditional” formula, if there are any traditional lecture and/or lab sections in the program. The Teaching Load for a full-time Allied Health faculty member would, nevertheless, be a minimum of 37.5 hours per week, as for all other full-time faculty.

Music: Although some music instruction is conducted in a traditional classroom setting, most music faculty have at least part of their professional responsibility devoted to the teaching of individual students in private half-hour or hour-long sessions; therefore, their teaching loads would be calculated by using a combination of the “traditional” formula and the “private instruction” formula.

1 TLC = 3 half-hour private lessons
15 TLCs = 45 half-hour private lessons

VI. Adjunct Faculty

Adjunct faculty members are paid by the teaching load credit according to the chart below. Students must have access to adjunct faculty members, but this access can be provided right before and after class and/or by phone or email. Adjunct faculty members are not required to hold scheduled office hours. Adjunct faculty members are expected to meet all classes promptly as scheduled. In the case of unanticipated absences, instructors must notify the Dean or Director as applicable. Any absenteeism may be reflected in the amount of pay. Adjunct faculty contracts must be acknowledged through myNSCC by the first day of class of each semester or term.

Adjunct salaries are based on the instructor’s qualifications and experience.

Category 1:Credentials determined by the appropriate Academic Dean in accordance with SACS-COC requirements
$540 per TLC
Category 2:Successful completion of 12 TLCs at NSCC
$550 per TLC
Category 3:Successful completion of 21 TLCs at NSCC
$570 per TLC
Category 4:Successful completion of 30 TLCs at NSCC
$590 per TLC
Category 5:Adjunct Lecturer – See below

Adjunct Lecturer

The Adjunct Lecturer is a special category of adjunct faculty member whose responsibilities exceed those of adjunct faculty. Academic credentials for all adjunct lecturers are determined by the Academic Dean in accordance with SACS-COC requirements. Justification of the need for an adjunct lecturer must be provided. An adjunct lecturer is compensated at the rate of $670 per teaching load credit and is required to hold one-half (0.5) scheduled office hour for each teaching load credit weekly. For a 3-TLC course, the adjunct lecturer should schedule 1.5 office hours. Office hours are in addition to classroom instructional time. Office hours are to be listed on the contract and a door schedule submitted. Summer hours are calculated at 0.75/TLC.

The adjunct lecturer may have scheduled responsibilities in the Learning Center, as assigned by the Dean or Director.

VII. English Proficiency

Nashville State recognizes the ability to communicate effectively as an essential skill for the successful performance of all academic personnel. In accordance with the Tennessee Board of Regents Policy (5:02:01:03), Nashville State has developed this policy to ensure that all faculty at Nashville State are proficient in oral and written English.

Each candidate for a teaching position at Nashville State shall demonstrate an ability to speak English clearly, an ability to understand spoken English, and an ability to communicate effectively in an academic environment. This proficiency can be demonstrated in various ways, but an oral presentation is included in the interview process for all full-time faculty. The evaluation of oral communication skills will be one outcome of this required presentation. Written proficiency can be demonstrated through the application process, including the resume and letter of application. Additional material written by the applicant may be requested.

The Dean/Director shall ensure that faculty members have the ability to communicate effectively with students in English in all recommendations for hiring or tenuring faculty members. These criteria are used strictly as a measure of the candidate’s ability to communicate effectively as an instructor and shall not be utilized arbitrarily to disqualify applicants of certain nationalities. Difficulties in this area for existing faculty members shall be noted as part of the personnel evaluation process and incorporated into the faculty member’s individual faculty development plan. Nashville State shall establish procedures for providing assistance and improving the spoken English competency of currently employed teaching personnel who are identified as needing such assistance.

VIII. Academic Responsibilities

A. Faculty Absences
B. Commencement
C. Online Classes
D. Class Schedules
E. Classroom Discipline
F. Course Syllabus
G. Grading Policy, Reporting, and Record-keeping
H. Attendance Reporting and Record-keeping
I. Class Period
J. Evaluation of Student Performance
K. Student Examinations
L. Textbooks, Workbooks, and Lab Manuals
M. Enrollment of Relatives
N. Class Size
O. Foods and Drinks in Classrooms and Labs
P. Required Training and Other Commitments
Q. Early Alert

A. Faculty Absences

Absence due to unexpected illness
Absence due to a planned medical situation
Planned absence that is not medical
Absence due to Inclement Weather
Absence for an off-campus professional development activity

The major goals of the procedure for handling faculty absences during scheduled days on campus are to minimize any negative impact on students and to adhere to TBR and campus policies. Faculty “absence” applies to all scheduled hours in the overall context of a 37.5 hour work week (see Employment Policies, Section 11, P.A-11).

The faculty member is responsible for developing a plan (using Make-up Plan for Missed Class form in the Academic Affairs Public Folder in Outlook), to make up for course content missed during an absence. The supervisor must approve this plan and keep the form on file. The only exception to this is the unexpected long-term illness or disability of a faculty member, when pre-planning is not possible. It is permissible to hold class with a substitute instructor, although this is not always appropriate. The substitute must be qualified based on SACS-COC/NSCC standards and agreeable to both the faculty member and supervisor. It is often appropriate for another faculty member in the same area to cover a class for a colleague rather than to hire a substitute.

It is the faculty member’s responsibility to work with the supervisor to make appropriate arrangements. Plans must be approved prior to the absence whenever possible.

Absence due to unexpected illness
  1. Faculty should contact the division as directed by the Dean/Director and, as appropriate, place an assignment in the course shell. Ideally, someone will meet the class rather than leave a note on the door.
  2. Upon return to work, the faculty member must report sick leave for 7.5 hours for a full day of absence as required by TBR policy (Guideline P-062). For a partial day, faculty should take leave for the number of scheduled hours actually missed, up to a maximum of 7.5 hours. Faculty absent or unable to work for any reason that is covered by the TBR Sick Leave policy (e.g., illness, medical appointments, family illness) must take sick leave or leave without pay.
  3. Arrangements to cover a class do not mitigate the fact that the faculty member was away from his or her work assignment due to an illness and sick leave must be taken.
Absence due to a planned medical situation

Faculty are expected to make every effort to schedule appointments and elective procedures in such a way as to minimize the impact on teaching schedules. Faculty are also encouraged to continue to assist their colleagues on an as-needed basis with short-term class coverage as appropriate. When a planned medical situation must be scheduled at a time that conflicts with the teaching schedule, the faculty member should:

  1. Inform the dean/director as directed by him/her. Timely notification must be made, normally at least two weeks in advance of the planned absence from class.
  2. A make-up plan using the Make-up Plan for Missed Class form (Make-up Plan for Missed Class form) must be sent to the supervisor for all missed classes. This plan must be approved by the supervisor. Typically, the college will provide a contract for a paid substitute only if the equivalent of a week of instruction must be covered. The use of paid substitutes is at the discretion of the Dean or Director.
  3. Faculty will report sick leave upon return to work. For absences of more than 3 days, the supervisor must notify Human Resources. HR will send the required Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) paperwork to the faculty member.
Planned absence that is not medical

Although academic-year faculty members do not accrue annual leave, there may be instances when family or personal affairs require an absence during scheduled work hours.

  1. Faculty must obtain advance approval from their supervisor for such an absence. The supervisor’s approval will be based on the duration of and the reason for the absence. Such absences should be rare and supervisors will not approve repeated or habitual requests. Hours must be made up within the same pay period as the absence with the approval of the supervisor.
  2. If the supervisor does not approve the make-up plan for the absence, the faculty member may request leave without pay. Leave without pay is not guaranteed and requires prior approval of the supervisor. Non-medical leave is almost never approved during the periods just prior to fall and spring semester class start-ups.
  3. Absences of this nature require that all missed class time be made up or that a substitute be hired for the missed class. When a substitute is needed to teach a class, the following applies:
    1. If the faculty member is being compensated during the absence, then the individual faculty member is responsible for arranging for the substitute.
    2. If the faculty member is not being compensated during the absence (on leave without pay), then the college pays the substitute.
  4. If faculty are absent for a full day for an approved absence, they will need to make up 7.5 hours. If they work part of their scheduled hours, they must make up the hours missed.
Absence due to Inclement Weather

Unless all classes at a specific site are cancelled by the VPAA or site Director, faculty are expected to hold classes as scheduled unless it is physically impossible for them to travel safely to the teaching site. Faculty must contact and consult with the Dean/Director and/or division secretary in advance of a weather-related class cancellation. Faculty should contact someone on campus if they cannot make it to campus, following division procedures. Faculty should place assignments in course shells and request that a note be posted on the classroom door.

It is the responsibility of the faculty member who cancels a class to notify all students in that class, using the tools available to him/her. Required notification channels are:

  1. Posted notice in the D2L shell for the course
  2. Syllabus instructions telling students how to access course cancellation information
  3. Class cancellation information on office voicemail
  4. Email notices to all class enrollees

If an individual faculty member cancels his or her class when the college has not cancelled classes, the faculty member must notify students at the earliest possible opportunity but no later than at least two hours before the class begins if at all possible. In this case, faculty members must submit a plan to make up for missed material to the Dean or Director. The Dean or Director can require that the make-up plan include face-to-face sessions for students. These sessions will typically be required when a class has missed several meetings. The face-to-face sessions must be scheduled at times convenient for all students in the class.

If the college cancels all classes at a site due to inclement weather, faculty members must submit a plan to make up for missed material to their Dean or Director. This plan should be submitted within a week of the college cancellation. The Dean or Director can require that the make-up plan include face-to-face sessions for students. These sessions will typically be required when a class has missed several meetings. The face-to-face sessions must be scheduled at times convenient for all students in the class.

Absence for an off-campus professional development activity
  1. Complete the Request for Travel Approval Form and submit it for the supervisor’s approval. Forms are in the Finance and Administration public folders under Travel in Outlook.
  2. If a stipend is involved for the activity, a plan must be submitted to make up all scheduled hours missed or take leave without pay. Hours must be made up within the same pay period as the absence. Plans must be approved by the supervisor in advance.
  3. Absences of this nature require that all missed class time be made up or a substitute be provided for those classes. When a substitute is needed to teach a class, the following applies:
    1. If the faculty member is being compensated during the absence, then the individual faculty member is responsible for arranging for the substitute.
    2. If the faculty member is not being compensated during the absence (on leave without pay), then the college pays the substitute.
  4. A travel claim form must be submitted if reimbursement from the college has been approved.

NSCC is open even if classes are canceled and employees other than faculty must report to work, take annual leave, or use compensatory time. When the college is closed, employees other than faculty do not report to work and do not need to take annual leave or use compensatory time. As a rule, NSCC will be closed only if the Governor closes all state government offices in Nashville. Only the President has the authority to close the college. In the case of a college closure, the President will notify appropriate personnel and the media and other employees will be notified as appropriate. During wintry weather, faculty and students must use their own judgment in deciding whether to travel to campus.

B. Commencement

Faculty members are expected to attend all commencement exercises. Academic caps, gowns, and hoods are required. Faculty members are provided with rental academic regalia if they do not own their own. The bookstore orders rental regalia for faculty, advising faculty about the cost for rental and when orders are due.

C. Online Classes

Regular updates and changes to online or hybrid courses must be made by the faculty developer/maintainer and kept in the Master Course. All semester sections are copied and taught from the updated Master Course each semester the course is offered. Faculty must not change and/or delete course content, modules, grading criteria, and/or assessments. Faculty may, however, add their own non-graded materials (handouts, PowerPoints, examples, exercises, discussions, etc.) to enhance the course. Faculty may also select different topics on assigned papers and/or select different articles for reading assignments. Course instructors must assure that the course material is current and up-to-date. Therefore, broken links and/or any other problems must immediately be reported to the course developer/maintainer. If changes are desired and/or required to items within the course, the instructor must first contact the course developer/maintainer for approval. However, course instructors should personalize the instructor message, instructor contact information, and homepage contact information. It is the responsibility of the course instructor to teach the course as it is presented with same outcomes, goals, outlines, content, module learning objectives, reading and assessment activities, and grading criteria/scheme. Also, all assignments must be graded and feedback must be provided to students in a timely manner, usually within one week. Regular communication with students is the key and News, Email, Discussion tools, etc. must be used to facilitate such interactions.

D. Class Schedules

Deans and Directors are responsible for formulating the college's class schedule and ensuring its effectiveness and efficiency. Other divisions provide additional information concerning registration and other matters.

E. Classroom Discipline

Each instructor is responsible for maintaining appropriate classroom discipline. All students are expected to adhere to the Student Conduct Policy (PDF) in the Nashville State Student Policy Handbook. The instructor has the authority to dismiss from a class or laboratory any student who violates these standards. Steps for appropriate due process are described in the Student Policy Handbook.

F. Course Syllabus

The Dean is responsible for maintaining the official updated course syllabus for each course offered in the division. Each instructor is expected to provide students with access to a copy of the course syllabus at the first class meeting and to post the syllabus (accessible and in HTML format) in D2L prior to the first class meeting. Master Syllabi are located in the course descriptions in the NSCC Catalog.

Syllabi should include items 1–7 below.

  1. Course description—Use catalog description plus other instructor details.
  2. Goals and outcomes:
    1. General education goals and outcomes.
    2. Other goals and outcomes established by the division and available in the division office.
  3. Course assessment techniques:
    1. Assessment of general education goals/outcomes.
    2. Assessment of other goals/outcomes.
  4. Instructor grading and attendance policies (based on college policies identified in the catalog).
  5. ADA statement.
  6. Topical outline (and/or dated schedule of readings and assignments).
  7. Other syllabus information:
    1. Instructor name, campus office, phone number, and email.
    2. Textbook(s) for the course; special projects/assignments.
    3. Assignment descriptions; information on tests, exams, essays, etc.
    4. Make-up procedures for missed assignments and work.

Copies of course syllabi for each course should be placed on file in the division office or director’s office.

Master course syllabus templates must be used in all classes to ensure that required information is available to students.

G. Grading Policy, Reporting, and Record-keeping

The grading system used by Nashville State Community College is described in the college catalog. Faculty are required to enter their final grades for the semester using myNSCC. Instructors must maintain, either electronically or on paper, detailed grade books. Grade books must include records of attendance throughout the semester, all grades earned in the class, and all grades identified by assignment (e.g., test, homework, paper). Adjunct and non-returning faculty members must provide the office of the division Dean or site Director with a paper copy and/or electronic file of class grades by the due date for final grades for that semester/term. Deans/Directors may also ask full-time, continuing faculty members to turn in their final grades. Class grade records must be maintained for a minimum period of one year from the end of the class.

H. Attendance Reporting and Record-keeping

During the first two weeks of classes each semester, faculty members are required to confirm that each student on the class roll has attended/participated in at least one session during this part of the term. This verification is entered into myNSCC. The Financial Aid Office will specify a deadline for this reporting. Faculty will receive an email from the Office of Financial Aid requesting the entry of the attendance/participation status for every student on the class roll. Every faculty must formulate a reasonable attendance and tardiness policy and communicate it with their students via the course syllabus. Faculty shall emphasize to all students the importance of prompt and regular class attendance. The instructor must continue to keep records of attendance for each class meeting of the semester. At the end of the semester faculty will be required to enter the last date of attendance for all students who did not successfully complete the class due to not attending/participating.

I. Class Period

All classes (including summer term, intersession, and special compressed terms) must meet the provisions of approximately 750 minutes of classroom instruction per semester hour of credit. All faculty are thus expected to adhere to the meeting times and locations published in the semester class schedules. Some courses are scheduled in three or more hour blocks. These block courses typically have one fifteen-minute break incorporated into the schedule. Instructors may not eliminate the break in order to dismiss class early.

J. Evaluation of Student Performance

Faculty are encouraged to use a variety of means to evaluate student performance. The types of evaluations used and the frequency with which they are scheduled must provide sufficient feedback to the students during the semester to allow them to periodically assess their progress in the course. All class evaluations should be graded and returned to students within one week from the date the work/assignments were received. For planning and evaluation purposes, the College may request that faculty gather information from students. Surveys and other requests should be completed as indicated by the instructions provided.

K. Student Examinations

It is the responsibility of each instructor to develop and/or select quizzes, tests and exams for a course in accordance with the general policy established by the Division. Final examinations must follow the published final exam schedule. Any change must be approved by the Dean/Director. Instructors not holding a final exam must have the prior approval of the Dean/Director and must utilize the scheduled final exam period to provide students with an alternate learning experience.

L. Textbooks, Workbooks, and Lab Manuals

Faculty, in concert with Deans, have responsibility for selecting textbooks, workbooks, and laboratory manuals for each course. Selected textbooks and materials should be re-used as long as is appropriate in order to enable students to buy used textbooks and other reusable materials. When a new edition of a textbook or materials is published, a division may wish or need to make a change, as the Bookstore may be unable to stock the old edition. The decision to change a textbook or other instructional material in a course must be approved by the appropriate Dean. A change of instructional materials that necessitates a new order by the bookstore should be made as early as possible during the last year of use of the existing textbook. All sections of a course must have a common text(s) except in special circumstances approved by the Dean and Vice President for Academic Affairs. The full-time faculty teaching the course or a committee selected from those faculty by the division Dean will review possible textbooks/ancillary materials and recommend new selections. In disciplines with no full-time faculty, the division Dean, in consultation with the adjunct faculty teaching the course, will select the textbooks/ancillary materials. Cost to students will be an important factor in the selection of textbooks and ancillary materials. In general, the lowest cost alternative that meets the instructional needs and quality standards of the course will be selected. Ancillary materials will be required only if essential to meeting the student learning objectives of the course. Bundled materials will be considered only if the ancillary materials bundled with the textbooks are essential to the course and/or they deliver cost savings to the students.
NOTE: Bundled materials may prevent students from selling books back, and require students to buy new books or pay more for a used book plus the bundled materials than for a new book. See Appendix 16 for NSCC’s Textbook Policy (Reference TBR Policy No. 2:07:00:00).

M. Enrollment of Relatives

No relatives shall be enrolled in a section of a course taught by the related faculty member. For purposes of this policy, relative means a parent, in-law, child, spouse, sibling, grandchild, aunt, uncle, first cousin, or other individual who resides in the same household. Any exception to this policy must be approved by the Dean/Director and Vice President for Academic Affairs.

N. Class Size

Class sizes are different according to the nature of the subject and/or size of the teaching facility. The maximum enrollment for a class will be determined by the Vice President for Academic Affairs with input from Deans/Directors.

O. Foods and Drinks in Classrooms and Labs

Due to housekeeping, safety, and sanitary concerns, food and/or drinks are not to be taken into classrooms and labs. Faculty are to observe and enforce this regulation.

P. Required Training and Other Commitments

Faculty members must complete TBR, Nashville State, and other required training in a timely manner. Often, employment-related training will be conducted through the Office of Human Resources or Online Learning; some trainings are required annually as determined by the VPAA. Faculty members teaching courses with special designs and/or delivery methods may need to complete trainings before being cleared to teach courses using these methods or designs. Completion of required trainings will be considered as part of faculty members’ evaluations by their supervisors.

Q. Early Alert

Faculty members must communicate to students the importance of regular attendance. After the first absence of a student during the first six weeks of the course, the instructor is encouraged to contact the student before the next class period to impress upon the student the importance of attending class. After the second absence of the first six weeks of the course, the instructor will initiate Early Alert procedures with Student Services. Every attempt must be made to assist and retain students to successfully complete the class. Students should be encouraged to speak with the instructor and/or a Financial Aid advisor before withdrawing from a course.