MINIMAL INSTRUCTIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES

1.   MINIMAL INSTRUCTIONAL RESPONSIBILITIES

Instructors at Stony Brook have teaching responsibilities that involve a broad range of methods. The following list of responsibilities does not define good teaching; it defines only a minimal set of conditions and practices that Stony Brook faculty members and teaching assistants are expected to observe in performing their teaching functions. These updated guidelines have been endorsed by the University Senate May 6, 1996.

I. Classroom and Conference Responsibilities
Instructors must meet their classes regularly and promptly, at times and places scheduled. Classes should be canceled only for the most serious reasons, and students should be given advance notice, if at all possible, of instructors' absences. Instructors must schedule and maintain regular office hours to meet their students' needs, minimally three hours per week, at times to suit the schedules of as many students as possible. Office hours should be announced in class and posted outside instructors' offices and in department offices. Instructors should be available for appointments with students who are unable to meet with them during regularly scheduled office hours. Instructors are responsible for careful supervision and classroom preparation of teaching assistants assigned to their course.

II. Course Definition and Requirements
Instructors must adhere to the Bulletin course descriptions. Prerequisites that are not stated in the Bulletin and Class Schedule may not be imposed. A written syllabus that clearly defines the content, goals, and requirements of each course must be distributed at the beginning of the course, made readily available throughout the Add/Drop period, and kept on file in the department office. The syllabus should include the Provost's Americans with Disabilities Act statement and information about examination dates and times, the policy on make-up exams, office hours, and the basis for the final grade. Instructors must conduct any teaching and course evaluation survey that has been approved by their departments or the College or University Senates. The results of course evaluations should be used in periodic reviews and revision, when appropriate, of the course.

III. Assessment of Student Performance
Homework assignments, examinations and term papers should be evaluated and returned promptly. Written comments, explaining the instructor's criteria for evaluation and giving suggestions for improvement, should be provided. Examinations and term papers submitted at the end of the term should be graded and either returned to students or retained for one semester.  Instructors must observe the Final Examination Schedule that appears in each semester's class schedule booklet. Instructors of courses taught on the semester schedule may not give an exam in class during the last week of the semester in lieu of a final examination. Mid-semester advisory grades must be submitted to the Center for Academic Advising and final grades to the Office of Records by the deadlines announced each semester.

IV. Professional Conduct and Interaction with Students
Instructors must report all suspected occurrences of academic dishonesty to the Academic Judiciary. Instructors should always be aware that in teaching and advising they represent the University. They are bound by the University's sexual harassment policies. Instructors are also bound by University policies that prohibit any consensual relationships with students that might compromise the objectivity and integrity of the teacher-student relationship. Examples include romantic, sexual, or financial relationships. Instructors should strive to maintain the privacy and confidentiality of students' examination, homework, and final grades. In dealing with students, instructors should be polite, helpful, and fair. They should take into account the wide range of cultural factors and physical challenges that can affect learning, and should attempt to help students overcome any disadvantages.