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Academic Policy and Procedures

Academic Personnel manages the development, revision, analysis, and implementation of UC San Diego's academic personnel policies and procedures to carry out the vision of the University's academic leadership, to increase efficiency and compliance, and to limit institutional liability.



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Leave of Absence Information

As per UCSD Policy, faculty are expected to be on campus from the beginning of the Fall Quarter through the end of the Spring Quarter, and may not be absent for any period of time during the academic year without prior permission. Faculty absent from duties without formal approval may be considered as having abandoned their posts.

Please ask your Academic Personnel Coordinator for specific information regarding childbearing, military service, FMLA, government service, etc.

General Information

  • Approval can take up to several months
  • Formal requests should be submitted at least one full quarter in advance of the leave
  • Exceptions to policy may take up to six months for a decision to be made by the UC Office of the President
  • Compensation from all sources may not exceed 100% of UCSD salary and must be approved in advance
  • If you will be traveling, please check our Travel procedures

Absence Up to 10 Service Days

  • Requires advance approval of the Department Chair via e-mail
  • Used to travel to conferences or to make presentations off-campus
  • Requires finding a replacement instructor for course coverage

Change of Work Location (10 to 60 Service Day Absence During Non-Teaching Quarter)

  • Normal duties are performed from a remote location to facilitate conference attendance or research/teaching requirements
  • Official duties will not be reassigned
  • Typically may only occur during a non-teaching quarter
  • Request must be made to the Department Chair in writing and requires divisional approval

Leave Greater than 10 Service Days

  • Requires completion of an Academic Leave of Absence/Sabbatical Form (ALAS) form (prepared by your Academic Personnel Coordinator)
  • Requires approval of the Department Chair, Dean of Social Sciences, and Senior Vice Chancellor
  • Requires the following information e-mailed to your Academic Personnel Coordinator:
    • Start and end dates of leave
    • Purpose of the leave (one-page maximum)
    • Location during the leave
    • Paid or Unpaid
    • If a sabbatical, full or partial?
    • Copy of any invitation received from an outside institution
    • Documentation of any proposed outside compensation
    • Between 11 and 30 Service Days
      • Involves forfeiture of sabbatical credit at a pre-set rate
      • Requires finding a replacement instructor for course coverage
    • Greater Than 30 Service Days (SABBATICAL)
      • Requires a written report of activities within 90 days of return to campus
      • Used for scholarly activities
      • Sabbatical credits accrued at the rate of one credit per service quarter in residence
      • Sabbatical credits expended at the rate of nine credits per 100% quarter on leave (partial sabbatical acceptable)
      • Normal pay and benefits are received (except in some partial sabbatical cases)
      • University service not required for the duration of the leave
      • Sabbatical-in-residence requires fewer sabbatical credits expended
        • Faculty will teach one course that meets at least 3 hours per week
        • A faculty member on sabbatical leave in residence who meets this teaching requirement shall be freed from all other teaching obligations and from all committee and administrative work
    • Greater Than 30 Service Days (LEAVE WITHOUT PAY)
      • Used when receiving outside funding or opting for no UCSD pay for leave duration
      • Requires permission to engage in Category I Activity
      • Benefits implications: faculty who will be accepting payment from an outside source during the leave may elect to continue UCSD benefits by paying for premiums, or may opt to discontinue benefits

Department Self-Governance and University Service

Faculty are expected to willingly volunteer or accept assignments for various committees, commencement representation, and to serve as faculty mentors to incoming faculty as well as graduate students. 

Departmental Administration

When a vacancy exists, the Chancellor (or his/her designee) shall appoint a Department Chair after consultation with the tenured members of the department and with the Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs. The length of service for a Department Chair is flexible, with the normal term being three to five years; however, the maximum length of each term is five years. 

Departmental Committees

Various ad hoc and other committees may be assembled by the Chair, as needed, and are typically assigned prior to Fall quarter. Members serve for the academic year. Some examples of typical committees include:

  • Excellence Committee: assembled in conjunction with periodic academic file reviews to examine and document the effectiveness of a faculty member’s teaching and instructional effectiveness. The committee typically consists of the Vice Chair of Instruction and at least two other tenure-track faculty members. In the case of the review of an Initial Continuing Lecturer appointment file, there will be at least one non-Senate (Unit 18) faculty member on the committee. Committees for review of an LPSOE will also contain an LSOE.
  • Faculty Recruitment Committee: assembled to recruit new faculty members.
  • Graduate Admissions Committee: assembled to process applications and make recommendations for admission to the Graduate Admissions Director.
  • Work Load/Teaching Load Committee (Design Team): assembled to examine the department's faculty teaching loads and to make recommendations and equity advisories to the Chair and administration as to developments in these areas across the profession.

Academic Senate Committees

  • Committee for Academic Policy: assembled to discuss University-wide issues and advise the administration, Chancellor, and Senior Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs on academic personnel actions.
  • Representative Assembly: assembled to discuss and act on various legislative matters. Representatives are elected by the department for up to a two-year period. There must be a one-year break between the terms a faculty member serves as a representative, although a representative may serve as an alternate immediately after the completion of their term.