PPM 1-17, Selection and Evaluation of Academic Deans

Responsible Office: Academic Affairs

1.0     PURPOSE

This policy describes the process for selection and evaluation of academic deans.


      2.1 PPM 1-4, Administrative Organization
      2.2 PPM 1-5A, Officers of the University
      2.3 PPM 1-16, Academic Deans


An academic dean shall be the administrative officer of a given college and is appointed by the president in consultation with the provost and with the approval of the Board of Trustees. Conditions of appointment shall include the following: (1) the dean does not hold tenure in the administrative position (PPM 9-9), (2) the dean is appointed for a term of not more than four years and (3) the dean may be reappointed after evaluation as outlined below.


4.1 In the event of a vacancy, or in the creation of a new position of dean of an academic college, a screening committee shall be formed by the provost. The committee shall include the following:

4.1.1 One tenured faculty representative elected from each department within the appropriate college (two tenured faculty representatives if the college is comprised of three or fewer departments). In the event there are no tenured faculty members in a department or program, that department or program would be allowed to be represented by a non-tenured faculty member with the highest rank in the department.

4.1.2 One administrative representative appointed by the president or by their designee.

4.1.3 One tenured faculty or administrative member from outside the college to be chosen by the other committee members.

4.1.4 One student member to be appointed by the WSUSA president.

4.1.5  One dean appointed by the provost after consultation with the deans.

4.1.6  One staff member appointed by the provost after consultation with the Staff Advisory Council chair.

4.2 In the event of a vacancy in the position of dean in an academic college organized by academic programs rather than by academic departments, a screening committee shall be formed by the provost. The committee shall include the following:

4.2.1 One tenured faculty representative from each authorized program administered by a program director within the appropriate college.

4.2.2 Other committee members as stipulated in sections 4.1.2, 4.1.3, 4.1.5, and 4.1.6.

4.3 In the event of a vacancy in the position of dean of Continuing Education, a screening committee shall be formed by the provost. The committee shall include the following:

4.3.1 One elected representative from each of the administrative units of Continuing Education.

4.3.2 One tenured faculty member from each academic college appointed by the dean of that college.

4.3.3 One administrative representative appointed by the president or his designee.

4.3.4 Other committee members as stipulated in sections 4.1.5 and 4.1.6.


5.1 The screening committee shall do the following:

5.1.1  Elect its chair.

5.1.2  Allow each member to vote, including the chair.

5.1.3  Establish its working procedures.

5.1.4  Review the current job description for the dean's position and recommend additions and/or modification to the provost for approval.

5.1.5  Assure appropriate advertising.

5.1.6  Adhere to University equal opportunity guidelines.

5.1.7  Evaluate, screen and normally recommend a minimum of three candidates for final selection. In exceptional cases, the committee may submit fewer than three candidates after consultation with the provost.

5.2  The president shall appoint the dean in consultation with the provost and with the approval of the Board of Trustees.

5.3  Should an applicant from outside the campus be selected as the final candidate for the position of dean, the credentials of that candidate must be reviewed by the department/program in which the candidate desires faculty rank, and by the College Ranking Tenure Evaluation Committee if the candidate is being considered for appointment to associate or full professor. The candidate must receive positive recommendations from these evaluative bodies before rank may be awarded. The rank recommended will normally be included in the employment offer. The appointee may be granted academic tenure but only after undergoing the process of faculty tenure review as outlined in the Policy and Procedures Manual.

5.4  In the event a new academic deanship is created, the new dean shall be screened, selected and appointed according to the procedures outlined above. If the circumstances and organizational structure involving the new deanship preclude a literal following of these procedures in such areas as elected representatives to the screening committee or delineation and review of job description, the spirit of the above procedures will nevertheless be followed and the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate will be consulted in whatever alterations may be necessary in adapting this policy to a new or unique situation.


6.1  The provost will conduct periodic evaluations of academic deans.  These periodic evaluations will include an interim review during the second year of the appointment (or latest reappointment), and a formal reappointment evaluation by the end of the term of service.  More frequent reviews may be conducted at the discretion of the provost.  Prior to the interim review and reappointment evaluations, deans will submit a status report about the college for public examination.  The interim assessment and reappointment evaluation will include, but not be limited to, a formal survey of all faculty and staff serving under the dean's leadership, and input from all pertinent constituencies of the dean, both internal and external. The reviews are intended to provide feedback to academic deans and their administrative superiors on a regular and formal basis.

6.2  Dean's Leadership and Management Evaluation Survey

The basic survey instrument is a document generated by the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate Appointment, Promotion, Academic Freedom, and Tenure Committee will be responsible for maintaining the document, with any edits approve by the full Faculty Senate. Additions to the basic survey, addressing unique college needs, will be submitted to that college's faculty for approval.

6.3  Administration of the Dean's Evaluation Survey

By the end of the dean's second full year of service, the instrument will be administered that year and every two years thereafter.  Each full-time faculty and staff member will be notified by the provost's office to complete the dean's evaluation survey.  Faculty and staff shall have a maximum of 10 working days to complete the evaluation survey.

6.4  Interpretation of the Dean's Evaluation Survey

The biennial survey data will be interpreted the year in which the dean is evaluated. An advisory committee for each dean consisting of that college's rank and tenure committee, at least one department chair from the same college, and another dean to be chosen by the provost will be formed to interpret the survey data and assist the provost in the interim assessment and formal reappointment evaluation. A copy of the compiled survey results from each year will be held in the provost's office until they are needed by the committees. Deans may have access to annual evaluations as desired. A dean may request the opportunity of discussing the evaluation data with the committee prior to its final report.

6.5  Distribution of Evaluation Data

A summary of compiled data, faculty/staff comments and the advisory committee report will be provided to the dean and the provost.


Appointment of an associate and/or assistant dean shall follow the policy as outlined above for deans, except that the screening committee shall include representation from each department with the dean as ex-officio. The recommended candidates shall be sent to the dean. The dean will recommend one or more candidates from those approved and send the names forward for approval to the provost.

The filling of "acting" positions for appointment of associate or assistant dean may be made by the dean without the formal review process. "Acting" positions must be authorized by the provost for no more than a one-year term.


Associate and assistant deans will be evaluated in the same manner as deans, except that the dean of the college will conduct the evaluation and the committee will be limited to the college's rank and tenure committee.

Revision History

Creation Date: 4-20-77

Amended: 5-7-13, 3-16-21