Faculty Governance

Bylaws for Conflict Resolution

approved by CR faculty 5 February 2020 |  approved by CLAS/OAA 14 September 2020

Table of Contents

Vision Statement

To provide a state-of-the-art education in the field of conflict prevention, resolution, and transformation that is relevant, effective, and collaborative in local and global peacebuilding for the 21st century.


Conflict Resolution is committed to the principle of shared governance. This commitment is based on the recognition that the collective good of the University requires mutual support of and respect for, the differential roles and responsibilities of faculty, students, and administrators at multiple levels throughout the decision-making process.  While definitions of roles are provided in various departments, such as the Faculty Governance Guide, the faculty members in Conflict Resolution endeavor to govern based on the spirit of accommodation among colleagues in a common enterprise. We are committed to delivering on our vision statement within a model of shared governance.

These Bylaws are consistent with, but superseded by, current institution-wide policy documents including, but not limited to, the Constitution of the Portland State University Faculty, the Faculty Governance Guide, the Policies and Procedures for the Evaluation of Faculty for Tenure, Promotion, and Merit Increases, and current collective bargaining agreements with the American Association of University Professors (PSU-AAUP) and the Portland State University Faculty Association Union (PSUFA), and the Graduate Employees Union of Portland State University (GEU). See Collective Bargaining at PSU..

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Article I. Name

Conflict Resolution is the official name of an instructional unit in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Portland State University.

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Article II. Purpose

A. Conflict Resolution (CR) aligns with Portland State University's mission to "serve and sustain a vibrant urban region through our creativity, collective knowledge, and expertise. We are dedicated to collaborative learning, innovative research, sustainability, and community engagement. We educate a diverse community of lifelong learners. Our research and teaching have global impact" (2017-18 Bulletin).

CR was originally developed to be relevant to our metropolitan area. Our program emerged from needs expressed in community meetings for more refined conflict resolution skills based on research in the field, as well as for improved program dispute system design and evaluation. We serve students from the metropolitan, regional, national, and international areas by providing conflict resolution capacity-building and professional competencies. Conflict Resolution courses, credentials, and degrees are developed in order to provide community as well as scholarly assets to the university.

Our primary goal is to provide the highest quality education for students. Our courses offer the latest and most comprehensive methods, practices, theories, and insights concerning peace-building processes and conflict resolution techniques, perspectives, and strategies. Our objectives are to help our students achieve and maintain professional careers in peace advocacy and conflict resolution practice, and to commit themselves to promoting peace and conflict resolution locally and throughout the world.  All of our faculty are scholar-practitioners, serving nationally and internationally as professional peace advocates and/or conflict resolution specialists. In this way, we stay intimately linked to the working world of peace-building and conflict resolution.

B. The faculty has primary responsibility for such fundamental areas as curriculum, subject matter, and methods of instruction, research, faculty review and promotion, and those aspects of student life that relate to the education process.

C. Authority of University Policies and College Bylaws supersedes that of the program.

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Article III.  Membership

A. The CR faculty shall be comprised as follows:

i. Tenure track. Appointed (.50 FTE or higher) Assistant, Associate, and Full Professors with or working towards indefinite tenure at PSU.

ii. Non-tenure track (NTT). Faculty with instructional and/or research duties and a minimum of .50 FTE in CR.

iii. Adjunct. Part-time (<.50 FTE) instructional faculty. Includes a variety of academic titles (e.g., Adjunct Assistant Professor, Adjunct Instructor, Adjunct Senior Instructor, Adjunct Research Assistant, and Adjunct Research Associate).

iv. Emeritus. Retired faculty, tenure-related or non-tenure-track, who are granted emeritus status following CR's established procedures. May also be teaching part-time (<.50 FTE) as adjunct.

v. Affiliated. Faculty with university appointments outside of CR who are in active relationship with our work, individually nominated and acknowledged by vote of the faculty.

vi. Authorized volunteers. Authorized volunteers hold PSU Affiliated Service contracts, typically at the request of a Tenure track or NTT faculty member, approved by the Program Director, and registered through Human Resources. 

B. Voting

i. Tenure track and NTT faculty in CR are considered voting faculty or faculty with full voting rights.

ii. Adjunct, Emeritus, and Affiliated faculty are not voting members of the CR faculty, nor are authorized volunteers.

iii. Voting by proxy is permitted when the absence of a voting faculty member at at particular meeting is unavoidable. Proxy votes should be conveyed in writing (electronic or hard copy) to the Director within 24 hours before the meeting.

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Article IV. Officers

Conflict Resolution has three officers, the Director, the Graduate Program Coordinator, and the Undergraduate Program Coordinator. 

A. Program Director

i. Eligibility. Only tenured faculty members in CR as eligible to serve as the Program Director.

ii. Term of Service. The voting faculty shall elect a Program Director every three years by April 15 of the current Director's third year in office.

iii. Vacancy. A special election managed by an Ad hoc Elections Committee will be held should the position become vacant during the course of a sitting Director's three-year term. The incoming Director will begin a new three-year term.

iv. Delegation of role. The Director may delegate their responsibilities in the event of a short-term absence by appointing an Acting Director. In extraordinary cases and/or when faculty cannot convene for a timely election, the College Dean may appoint an Acting Director or Interim Director for no more than one Academic Year.

v. Transition date. The date of transition to the incoming Director will be September 1 or the first business day thereafter.

vi. Term limit. A faculty member may serve a maximum of three consecutive terms as Program Director, following the election process detailed below.

B. Election and Removal of Director

i. During winter term prior to the expiration of the current Program Director's three-year term, an Ad hoc Elections Committee will be appointed by the Current Director, will elect their own chair, and will solicit nominations for Director, including self-nominations. Members of the Elections Committee may also be candidates for consideration for Program Director.

ii. The Ad hoc Elections Committee chair will confirm that all nominations are willing to serve and distribute the list of consenting nominees to the CR voting faculty ten business days prior to the election.

iii. The vote, managed by the Ad hoc Elections Committee, shall be by secret ballot, with the nominee with the most votes winning the election. In the event of a tie for most votes, a separate vote will be held by secret ballot, where the two candidates with a tie vote will be voted on again.

iv. The election must be before April 15.

v. The Ad hoc Elections Committee chair will forward the results of the election to the Dean of the College. Other procedures of notification specified in the current PSU Faculty Governance Guide will be followed, until the appointment is approved at all levels of administration.

vi. The Program Director may be removed at any time by at least a two-thirds majority of the votes cast by the voting faculty in CR and only with the approval of the Dean. The vote may be called by any three voting faculty members and the process managed through an Ad hoc committee formed by the faculty.

C. Director Responsibilities

i. Leadership. The Director shall avail themselves of the PSU Department Chair Handbook

ii. Budget. The Director develops budget requests in consultation with the Dean and is responsible for managing the Program budget.

iii. Recruitment and Hires. The Director coordinates the recruitment and hiring of new Program faculty members and recommends appointments to the Dean.

iv. Promotion and Tenure. The Director recommends to the Dean all personnel changes, including salary, tenure, promotion, and rank.

v. Schedule. The Director, with input from the faculty, is responsible for determining faculty teaching assignments and the arrangement of teaching schedules. This includes the hiring of adjunct faculty.

vi. Enrollment. The Director is expected to monitor enrollment and work to meet enrollment goals. 

vii. Student Advising. The Director supports student advising for the Program with input from the Undergraduate and Graduate Program Coordinators and the Pathways Coordinator.

viii. Curriculum. The Director coordinates curricular and degree proposals developed within CR and its curriculum committee for approval by the Dean and OAA procedures.

ix. Office Management. The Director is responsible for the hiring and supervision of administrative support personnel, monitors all fiscal activity, and oversees matters of equipment and supplies involved in running the office. 

x. Representation with Dean and University. The Director represents, or appoints alternatives to represent, CR in meetings and committees organized by the Dean and the broader University.

xi. Faculty Meetings. The Director schedules and chairs CR faculty meetings, drafts, the agenda, and insures the taking of minutes and the recording of voting outcomes (typically done by the Office Coordinator).

xii. Reports. The Director prepares and submits reports about CR activities as requested by the Dean or other administrators.

xiii. Committee Assignments. Early in fall term, the Director will seek input and make appointments to the Program's committees.

xiv. Student and Faculty Concerns. The Director, following applicable University policy, hears, mediates, and refers as appropriate concerns and complaints involving students, faculty, staff, GAs, and adjuncts, and maintains records of these interactions.

D. Graduate Program Coordinator

The position of Graduate Program Coordinator is appointed annually by the Director and comes with one course release per academic year of service. The Coordinator position has responsibilities touching administration, student success, and program advancement as follows:

i. Administration

a. Chairs the admissions committee

b. Oversees assignment of advisors to entering graduate students

c. Serves on curriculum committee

d. Point person for assessment of learning outcomes

e. Reports quarterly to the CR faculty about all of the above

ii. Student Success

a. Responsible for planning and running a new student orientation each fall

b. Generally, teach CR 530 (graduate colloquium)

c. Activity monitor Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) for each cohort

d. Keep updated central Progress Files on each graduate student (i.e., SAP)

e. Keep the Graduate Handbook up to date

f. Assist the Director in identifying student funding opportunities for travel, research, conferences, etc.

g. Hire and/or assign graders and leads the development of GA- and TA-ships

iii. Program Advancement

a. Develops ideas to market the MA/MS and certificate programs

b. Monitor and develop the certificate program, including the tracking of alums/graduates

c. Develop and support a graduate student club or organization

d. Develop a community outreach plan

e. Serve as point of contact for prospective students interested in the Program 

f. Remain in regular contact with PSU Graduate School as to rules, regulations, best practices, etc.

g. Assist the Director and Program Coordinator with identifying content for the website, social media, and newsletters touching the graduate program.

h. Coordinate the development of partnerships in support of the Graduate Program, notably touching practicum or other applied community-based connections

i. Oversee an annual symposium or other culminating event for Graduate Students

E. Undergraduate Program Coordinator

The position of Undergraduate Program Coordinator is appointed annually by the Director and comes with one course release per academic year of service. The Coordinator position has responsibilities touching administration, student success, and program advancement as follows;

i. Administration

a. Responds to all requests from Director, Program Coordinator, students, and administrators, including the Pathways advisor

b. Serves on the curriculum committee

c. Point person for assessment of learning outcomes

d. Reviews course scheduling by year and by term to assure degree-seekers have adequate offerings

ii. Student Success

a. Manage plans for undergraduate student orientation

b. Monitor enrollment and overall state of BA/MS and minors

c. Suggest ideas for marketing, fundraising, and related matters

d. Present an annual report to the faculty as a whole regarding the program's performance, needs, etc.

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Article V. Performance Evaluation

The Conflict Resolution Program maintains its own Guidelines on Performance Reviews, Promotion and Tenure as a separate document. These Bylaws address Promotion and Tenure Committee (PT) composition, selection process, and duties.

A. Committee Composition

i. Tenured faculty members from CR are eligible and expected to serve on the PT committee. Non-tenure track faculty are also eligible to serve.

ii.  Since the Program Director will draft an independent evaluation of the CR faculty member being considered for promotion and/or tenure, he/she will not serve as a member of this committee.

iii. The PT committee should consist of at least three members. In the event that fewer than three members from CR are eligible and willing to serve, the Program Director will consult with the Dean's Office in order to select a tenured faculty member from another department or school within CLAS>

iv. Evaluations performed for Non-tenure track faculty members must include on the review committee another non-tenure track faculty member from CR. If necessary and in consultation with the other unit head, a NTT faculty member from another Department, School, or College will be appointed by the Director to satisfy this requirement.

B. Committee Selection Process

i. Early in fall term, the Program Director will appoint PT committee members

ii. The Program Director will appoint the Chair of the PT committee

iii. If a PT committee member is scheduled to be reviewed for promotion, merit increase, or annual review, the Chair of the committee will recuse the candidate from the deliberations and decision-making regarding his/her own case. The chair will request a replacement appointment from the Director, and it one is not available in CR, draw from tenured faculty in another Department or School within CLAS.

C. Student Input

i. In tenure and promotion decisions, the PT committee must solicit student input into the evaluation process, notably regarding teaching

ii. Student participants on the PT committee do not have voting rights

iii. Candidates for promotion and tenure will nominate three potential undergraduate or graduate students to serve (students cannot be currently enrolled in a course taught by the candidate).

iv. The PT committee will select one of the students nominated by the candidate and ask that person to submit a written assessment of the candidate's teaching record, typically based on a review of course evaluations and syllabi.

v. The student feedback will be summarized in the final PT committee report.

D. Duties

CR's Promotion and Tenure committee is responsible for conducting evaluations of Tenured, Tenure-track, Non-tenure Track and Emeritus faculty as detailed in the Program's Guidelines for Performance Reviews, Promotion & Tenure. The committee also appoints the third member for the Post Tenure Review Committee. Evaluation includes the following types of reviews:

i. annual reviews of Tenure-track and Non-tenure track faculty

ii. Third-year reviews for Tenure-track faculty

iii. Tenure and promotion reviews for Tenure-track faculty

iv. Promotion from Associate Professor to Professor

v. Awarding of continuous appointments to NTT faculty (i.e. Milestone reviews)

vi. Promotion from Instructor to Senior Instructor I

vii. Promotion from Senior Instructor to Senior Instructor II

viii. Promotion from Senior Instructor II to Assistant Professor. This promotion is only available to faculty hired before 9/16/2014 (see Appendix IV of University P&T Guidelines

ix. Promotion to Emeritus status

x. Post-tenure review for tenured faculty

xi. Post-continuous appointment review for NTT instructional faculty

xii. Merit-based pay increases

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Article VI. Meetings

Meetings of the CR faculty will be held during the 9-month academic calendar on a schedule determined by the Program Director, but no less than three times per academic term. Decisions about the Graduate and Undergraduate Programs in CR will be held in abeyance from June 16 to September 16 of each year. 

A. Attendance and Notice

i. CR's Tenure track and Non-tenure track faculty are expected to regularly attend faculty meetings either in person or by using appropriate technology, unless excused by the Program Director.

ii. CR's other faculty members are welcome to attend meetings on a voluntary basis

iii. In the event of a request, approved by the Director, for the attendance of an Adjunct faculty member at a specific meeting, the Adjunct faculty member will be compensated for their time.

iv. Under Oregon Public Meetings Laws, all university meetings are open to the public, unless personnel issues are being discussed.

B. Agenda and Minutes

i. The agenda for faculty meetings will be prepared by the Director or their designate with input from faculty and distributed no less than two days in advance of a meeting. Minutes will be made available after each session.

ii. Minutes will include all decisions made by vote, as well as any other documentation of the Program's deliberations that faculty members ask to be included in the written record. 

iii. The Program Coordinator takes the minutes, including the recording of all votes, and makes them available to the Director for circulation within two business days.

C. Mechanics and Procedures

i. Special meetings of the faculty may be called with one week's notice by the Program Director or by two other members of CR's voting faculty. 

ii. Quorum will be defined as follows: (a) for personnel-related issues two-thirds of the Program's faculty eligible to vote will constitute a quorum, and (b) for all other issues a quorum will be a simple majority of the eligible voting faculty.

iii. Rules of Procedure. In order to insure that faculty meetings are inclusive and equitable, a spirit of consensus should be cultivated throughout.  In general, procedures will follow Roberts Rules of Order. With the exceptions noted in other Articles, matters requiring an official vote during a CR faculty meeting will be considered passed if endorsed by a simple majority of voting faculty members. 

iv. Voting methodology. Typically a show of hands (or equivalent marker), or a written/electronic ballot (for proxy votes. A confidential (paper) ballot may be used if a motion to do so is made, seconded, and approved by a show of hands vote. Abstentions do not count as a vote case.

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Article VII. Advisory Groups

Advisory Groups shall have a defined purpose, designated Standing or Ad hoc, with procedures for member selection and terms of service. At this juncture, CR does not have any advisory groups.

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Article VIII.  Committees

CR has two types of committees, Standing and Ad hoc. Standing committees will each have a least three members and conduct the bulk of routine business regarding the curriculum, evaluation of faculty performance, and student admissions. Ad hoc committees will have at least two and no more than four members and generally take up more intermittent tasks, like searches, or other assignments that might come from the university, like assessment, etc. In keeping with the terms of the AAUP-CBA, Non-tenure track faculty should expect to devote no more than 10% of their FTE to service unless otherwise specified in their letters of appointment.

A. Standing committees

i. Promotion and Tenure. Conducts reviews of all tenure-related faculty .50 FTE and above and makes recommendations to the Director as described in Article 5 of the Bylaws, consistent with CR's Guidelines for Performance Reviews, Promotion, and Tenure.

ii. Curriculum. In accordance with PSU's Curricular Procedures and Policies, reviews and recommends course and program changes, considers proposals from (or for) UNST; reviews other teaching and learning collaborations (like certificates) proposed to or within the Program. Proofreads tear sheet and curriculum materials on CR Program web pages. 

iii. Admissions. Reviews and evaluates applicants for the Graduate Certificates and for the Maters's program. 

iv. All final decisions on matters considered and recommended by the standing committees will be made at the faculty meeting, except those from the Promotion and Tenure Committee. 

v. Standing Committee membership. Open to Tenure-track and Non-tenure track faculty.

vi. Terms of Service. Appointments to standing committees are typically for one year, but renewals of these appointments can be beneficial for committee continuity.

vii. Student participation. Graduate and undergraduate students may be invited to sit on a Standing Committee, so that faculty members can be mindful of student perspectives. However, students are not voting members on these committees. 

viii. Committee Chair selection. The Director appoints standing committee members. Standing committee chairs are elected from its members, with the exception of the PT committee, whose chair is appointed by the Director.

ix. Vacancies will be filled by appointment by the Program Director.

x. Procedural operations. Decisions must have a two-thirds quorum, except for the PT committee, which must include all members. Minutes must be taken, with all decisions and pertinent information recorded, and made available to all Tenure-track and Non-tenure track faculty within a reasonable timeframe following the meetings.

xi. Responsibilities. Standing committee decisions should be forwarded to the Director within two business days of meetings.

B. Ad hoc Committees

i. Marketing, Assessment, Search, Governance, Elections, or others as needed

ii. Purpose: Any search, or governance change or significant policy matter should involve an Ad hoc committee to assure that tenure-track and non-tenure track faculty members retain their overarching responsibilities and authority.

iii. Committee membership. Tenure-track or Non-tenure track faculty members will be appointed to Ad hoc committees.

iv. Committee Chair selection: The Director appoints Ad hoc committee chairs are elected from its members.

v. Procedural operations. Minutes must be taken, with all decisions and pertinent information recorded, and made available to all Tenure-track and Non-tenure track faculty within a reasonable timeframe following the meetings.

vi. Responsibilities. Ad hoc committee decisions should be forwarded to the Program Director within two business days of meetings.

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Article IX Professional Development

A. AAUP-represented Faculty Individual Professional Development Accounts (IPDA)

i. IPDAs are maintained and funded by the university as part of the PSU-AAUP CBA. The university specifies that: 'the use of IPDA funds is subject to the pre-approval of the members' supervisor and to all applicable University policies and procedures regarding the appropriate use and documentation of university expenditures. Example of such use could include but are not limited to: travel for the presentation of scholarly work, conference fees and travel, professional organization fees, professional licensure or certification requirements, acquisitions of specialized equipment (such as laboratory or art supplies), tuition and/or fees, subscriptions and books, submission fees, and relevant training and continuing education purposes."

ii. In addition to the above-named expenses, CR supports travel for or relevant to research (archival, collaboration, data collection, or other research need), special software, research materials or fees in direct support of professional development whenever financially possible.

iii. As per university policy, personnel costs are not covered by IPDAs. Purchase of a computer is not consistent with the intent of the IPDA language as stated in Article 19, sec. 3 of the PSU-AAUP CBA. Software purchase may be appropriate.

iv. Full-time faculty members on sabbatical will have their IPDA accounts funded at 1.0 FTE.

B. Adjunct Faculty Education Fund, Staff Fee Privilege, and Professional Development Fund

i. Adjuncts qualify for a Faculty Education Fund and a Professional Development Fund per the provisions of the PSUFA CBA, Article 12.2. Completed application materials are due to the Department Chair 1 week prior to the Union's deadline for receipt of the application.

ii. All Union deadlines and electronic application forms can be found on the PSUFA website under the resources tab.

iii. All Adjuncts teaching 8 credits or more in a given quarter are eligible to receive the Staff Fee Privileges available to full-time faculty during that quarter.  

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Article X. Outside Employment & Conflict of Interest Disclosure

No engagement shall be accepted by CR faculty which will involve a conflict of interest as prohibited by applicable state law or University regulations. Faculty members with appointments at 1.0 FTE own an overriding professional allegiance to the University, and they must be alert to the possibility that outside obligations, financial interests, or employment can affect their decisions as members of the University community. In situations where outside obligations have the potential for conflict with the faculty member's University responsibilities, the Faculty member will disclose the situation to the Director and request approval of the engagement. Faculty must complete and file a Request for Approval for Outside Employment, available on the PSU Human Resources website.

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Article XI. Ratification, Distribution and Amendment of Bylaws

A. Changes or amendments

i. Amendments to these Bylaws can be proposed by any voting faculty member in CR

ii. To be scheduled for a vote, the proposed change(s) must be presented in writing (via email or hard copy) to ALL members of CR's voting faculty at least five business days prior to the date on which the vote is to be recorded. Efforts taken to communicate with voting faculty members who are away from the office, on sabbatical, etc., should be documented.

iii. Proposed amendments will only be adopted if they are endorsed by at least two-thirds majority of votes cast by CR's voting faculty.  Voting faculty members can submit a 'minority report' to the Director that becomes part of the official records detailing amendments.

iv. Amendments to CR's other governing documents (like the Guidelines for Performance Reviews, Promotion & Tenure and student handbooks) will follow the process detailed above (Article XI, A i-iii) and follow the OAA notification and approval process stated below.

v. Modifications of these Bylaws require notification to and approval by OAA. Notice of intent to modify a policy or procedure must be provided prior to adoption. Changes to Bylaws and all other governance documents do not become effective until approved by OAA.

B. Access

i. Each faculty member shall be provided a written copy of these Bylaws and they shall be available in their current state in the CR office at all times.

ii. All governance documents for Conflict Resolution shall be posted online at www.pdx.edu/conflict-resolution.


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