2.0 General Guidelines

2.1 Faculty Competencies and Responsibilities

2.1.1 Areas of Competence/Responsibility
A member of a Department of Instruction must perform competently in the areas of Teaching, Scholarship/Creative Activity/ Research, Service, and American Sign Language/classroom communication and demonstrate Professional Integrity.

2.1.2   Scope of Faculty Competence/Responsibility

2.1.2.1 Teaching

Teaching competence includes both expertise in the faculty member's field and the ability to impart knowledge deriving from that field to Gallaudet students. A competent teacher must possess the ability to communicate course content clearly and effectively; he/she must also be available to the students individually, responsive to their academic needs, and flexible enough to adapt curriculum and methodology to those needs. [Effective communication as intended by this heading is separate from and in addition to proficiency in American Sign Language as outlined in Section 2.1.2.4.

2.1.2.2  Scholarship/Creative Activity/Research

Competence in this area means that a Department member is expected to continue to grow in his/her field or departmentally determined allied field, and contribute to and remain aware of developments within it. Evidence of such growth and contribution may include a variety of creative and artistic endeavors, traditional scholarship and research, presentations at workshops or meetings of professional societies, advanced study, origination and administration of grants, authoring of textbooks, workbooks, software, classroom materials, and so on.

2.1.2.3  Service

The educational process is not limited to the classroom; competence as a Department and faculty member therefore requires service in one form or another. According to the individual's interests and skills, contributions of service may be made to the student body (e.g., academic advising, sponsoring of student activities, etc.), the academic Department (service on committees, coordination of multisection courses, etc.), the School, the University (library liaison, faculty committees, public relations activities, outreach, etc.), the community, and professional organizations.
In addition, a faculty member is expected to participate responsibly in Department, School and University activities.

2.1.2.4 American Sign Language and Classroom Discourse

Faculty competency in this area includes American Sign Language (ASL) and classroom discourse. Classroom discourse addresses ASL grammar, communication techniques, and ensuring a visually optimal environment. Classroom discourse also includes students' comprehension of the instructor, and the instructor's comprehension of the students. Competency in ASL and in classroom discourse are necessary for faculty to perform satisfactorily at Gallaudet University. A person may be appointed without any familiarity with ASL, but the appointment should not be continued without evidence of competence or demonstrated progress in this area, to reach an ASL proficiency, no matter what degree of teaching, scholarly competence, or service he or she may otherwise exhibit. 

2.1.2.5 Professional Integrity

This area bears upon professional ethics, comportment in an academic environment, and interactions with members of the Gallaudet community. A faculty member must meet all professional obligations with integrity and in an ethical manner.

2.2  Policy Concerning Bilingualism

Gallaudet University is a bilingual, diverse, multicultural institution of higher education that ensures the intellectual and professional advancement of deaf and hard of hearing individuals through American Sign Language and English. Gallaudet University's mission as a unique educational institution is inextricably bound to the need for direct, accessible communication among students and faculty. To that end, all members of the University Faculty are committed to promoting bilingual communication. The University is committed to providing training and resources, as needed, to support all members of the Faculty in developing the necessary language skills.

2.2.1  Strategies for the Assessment and Development of Faculty ASL Skills 

The Faculty Senate has formed and monitored a series of ad hoc  committees whose responsibility is the development of a positive and supportive, yet rigorous approach to raising standards of ASL proficiency and communication competency. The desired outcomes of this policy are excellence in classroom communication, full participation by members in all aspects of campus life, and continued and ongoing growth of faculty members' ASL proficiency and competence. The committees are charged with two primary responsibilities: 1) To plan for the establishment of effective training opportunities that are designed to enable learners to achieve proficiency at the levels needed to attain full participation in all aspects of university life; and 2) to plan for a multiple measures approach to assessment that is well-designed, explicit, valid, reliable, and evidence-based.