Reviews of College and School Plans of Organization
The University of Maryland Plan of Organization for Shared Governance states that each College or School, department or other academic unit, and the Library (all referred to as "College" throughout these webpages) shall have a Plan of Organization that will govern its operations. These Plans must embody the principles of shared governance and reflect University policy. The University Plan allows amendments to be made at any time, but also requires that these College Plans of Organization be reviewed every ten years.
The University Senate must review and approve any revisions to each College Plan of Organization before a new Plan can go into effect. The Senate Elections, Representation, & Governance (ERG) Committee and Faculty Affairs Committee take responsibility for reviewing Plans of Organization in detail before they are submitted to the full Senate and President for approval.
The following forms and documents are listed here as a guide for Colleges and Schools as they work to revise their Plans of Organization. Click on the links below to download the relevant University policies or the checklists used by the ERG and Faculty Affairs Committees when reviewing Plans. Colleges/Schools may also submit the University Senate Plan of Organization Tracking Form with their revised Plan, if they wish.
- University Senate Plan of Organization Tracking Form
- ERG Committee Best Practices in Shared Governance Checklist
- Faculty Affairs Committee APT Section Checklist for Departmentalized Colleges
- Faculty Affairs Committee APT Section Checklist for Non-Departmentalized Colleges
- University of Maryland Plan of Organization for Shared Governance, Article 11: Plans of Organization of Units
- Appointment-related policies and procedures:
*A complete list of current University policies can be found here.
Senate Review Process
Please review the following information and guidelines as you prepare for a Plan of Organization review.
The University of Maryland Plan of Organization for Shared Governance states that an elected committee within the College must review its Plan of Organization every ten years. The College should revise the Plan according to the procedures outlined in its current Plan of Organization.
The University Plan also states that each College must have a unit-wide assembly that includes faculty, staff, and students in shared governance (this body is referred to as the "College Assembly" throughout this webpage, but the name of the body may vary by College). Before a newly revised Plan of Organization can go into effect, it will need to be approved by this College Assembly, the University Senate, and the President of the University.
University Senate-level Review
The College sends its revised Plan of Organization to the University Senate.
- The Senate recommends that each College submit a draft revised Plan that has not yet been voted on by the College Assembly. Often during the review process, revisions become necessary, and submitting a draft for a preliminary review allows the Senate and the College to work out any revisions. With this approach, Colleges can avoid asking the College Assembly for multiple approval votes on different versions.
- The College sends its revised Plan of Organization to the University Senate.
The Elections, Representation, & Governance (ERG) Committee is charged with reviewing college Plans of Organization. The Faculty Affairs Committee will review the Appointment, Promotions, & Tenure (APT) section of each Plan.
- Please note that colleges may choose to include a brief APT section that refers to a more comprehensive APT policy. In these cases, the College should also submit the separate policy to the Faculty Affairs Committee for review. This policy must be approved with the Plan of Organization.
- The Senate committees welcome dialogue and input at the committee review level and will often welcome representatives from the College to committee meetings to discuss major questions or concerns.
- The Elections, Representation, & Governance (ERG) Committee is charged with reviewing college Plans of Organization. The Faculty Affairs Committee will review the Appointment, Promotions, & Tenure (APT) section of each Plan.
Once the ERG and/or Faculty Affairs Committees have completed their initial review, they will communicate any concerns or requested revisions back to the College.
- Often the committees make suggestions about specific sections of the Plan of Organization and will request revisions. The Colleges are responsible for revising the Plan or, in lieu of revisions, responding to the specific concerns of the committees.
- Once the ERG and/or Faculty Affairs Committees have completed their initial review, they will communicate any concerns or requested revisions back to the College.
Senate Committee Approval:
- After all revisions are made and the Plan is found to be in compliance with University policy and best practices of shared governance, the ERG and Faculty Affairs Committees will vote to approve the Plan of Organization and APT Section contingent on final approval of the College Assembly.
- Once the Plan has been approved by the two committees, the College Assembly will need to vote on the final revised Plan of Organization. This vote should take place in accordance with the procedures outlined in the College's current Plan of Organization.
- The revised Plan of Organization must be reviewed by the Senate Executive Committee (SEC), and subsequently approved by the full University Senate.
- Each College Plan of Organization must be approved by the President of the University following approval by the University Senate. The Senate will transmit the approved Plan to the President and inform the College when the Plan has been officially approved.
To initiate a Senate-level review, please email your revised Plan of Organization to the Senate Office for review to firstname.lastname@example.org at any time. For guidance on the Plan review process, please contact one of the individuals listed below:
Senate Executive Secretary and Director
Elections, Representation, & Governance Committee
Chair of Elections, Representation, & Governance Committee
Faculty Affairs Committee
Chair of Faculty Affairs Committee