This policy establishes the procedures and responsibilities for certifying faculty credentials according to accreditation requirements and best practices.
The credentialing process for all faculty, regardless of rank or status, will follow procedures established by all relevant Delta State University policies, the Delta State University Office of Human Resources, IHL, state and federal laws, and principles and guidelines of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
In all cases, Delta State University “employs competent faculty members who are well qualified to accomplish the mission and goals of the institution. When hiring faculty to teach courses, the University gives primary consideration to the highest degree earned. The University also considers competence, effectiveness , and capacity, including, as appropriate, undergraduate and graduate degrees, related work experiences in the field, professional licensure and certifications, honors and awards, continuous documented excellence in teaching, and other demonstrated competencies and achievements that contribute to effective teaching and student learning outcomes. For all cases, the institution is responsible for justifying and documenting the qualifications of its faculty” (SACSCOC Comprehensive Standard 3.7.1).
Delta State uses the following descriptions from the SACSCOC Faculty Credentials Guidelines as the minimum requirements for each faculty hire:
“(a) Faculty teaching general education courses at the undergraduate level: doctorate or master’s degree in the teaching discipline or master’s degree with a concentration in the teaching discipline (a minimum of 18 graduate semester hours in the teaching discipline).” [Delta State further clarifies this guideline to include: Faculty with a doctorate or master’s degree, upon completion of 18 graduate semester hours in a related field, may receive approval through the Certification of Credentials process to teach in that related field.]
“(d) Faculty teaching baccalaureate courses: doctorate or master’s degree in the teaching discipline or master’s degree with a concentration in the teaching discipline (minimum of 18 graduate semester hours in the teaching discipline).” [Delta State further clarifies this guideline to include: Faculty with a doctorate or master’s degree, upon completion of 18 graduate semester hours in a related field, may receive approval through the Certification of Credentials process to teach in that related field.]
“(e) Faculty teaching graduate and post-baccalaureate course work: earned doctorate/terminal degree in the teaching discipline or a related discipline.”
In extraordinary cases, faculty appointments may be approved for persons not presenting the minimum academic qualifications if such persons have demonstrated outstanding professional or creative accomplishments. Such credentials will be presented as part of the Faculty Credentials process as described on the Faculty Certification of Credentials form.
The Office of Academic Affairs will inform the hiring department of the status of the credentials file. The credentials file will be kept in the faculty member’s permanent file.
For every faculty member to be assigned graduate coursework, the department chair will request approval from the Delta State University Graduate Council, which will review the credentials information in the Office of Academic Affairs.
The approval process for a faculty hire is to be completed before the beginning of the semester of hire.
Responsible Office and/or the Policy Owner: Office of Academic Affairs
- Faculty Certification of Credentials Form
- IHL Bylaws and Policies, 404.01
- SACSCOC Comprehensive Standard 3.7.1
- SACSCOC Faculty Credentials guidelines
Policy Effective Date: July 7, 2014
Academic Council 06/26/2014