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HSS Curriculum Committee

Click here for reports from the Curriculum Committee.

Click here for Instructions on submitting your proposal: HSS Curriculum Committee Proposal Instructions

The current Curriculum Committee chair is Dr. Aimee Stahl, Assistant Professor of Psychology


TCNJ School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Curriculum Committee Charge

August 30, 2011; revised January 13, 2015; revised November 17, 2017

The charge of the Curriculum Committee of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences is to review and approve proposals for new courses and programs to be offered in our School and, when necessary and appropriate, to return to departments proposals that are not ready for review or cannot be approved in their present form. The HSS Curriculum Committee also considers proposals to substantially revise existing courses and programs offered in our School. Lastly, the HSS Curriculum Committee works with the Liberal Learning Program Council to review several Liberal Learning Designations:

  • Literary, Visual and Performing Arts
  • Worldviews and Ways of Knowing
  • Behavioral, Social or Cultural Perspectives
  • Social Change in Historical Perspective
  • Gender
  • Race & Ethnicity

The Chair of the HSS Curriculum Committee and the Dean (or Dean’s representative) may approve insignificant revisions to existing courses and programs without full committee review. Faculty unsure of the nature of the proposed change to a course or program should consult with the Dean and the Chair of the HSS Curriculum Committee to ascertain whether the revision is deemed sufficiently substantive to warrant committee review.

The HSS Curriculum Committee is asked to consider these proposals with recognition of the faculty expertise of the department that has submitted them for the Committee’s consideration. The Committee has one hour per month to review all proposals and will focus its attention on how the proposed course or program fits into the School’s curriculum and fulfills some aspect of the School’s mission or meets Liberal Learning goals, as appropriate, trusting the judgment of colleagues in the respective department to verify that the proposed course or program fits into the Department’s curriculum and fulfills the Department’s mission. The committee will also ensure that any submitted course syllabus adheres to current syllabus policies (e.g., documenting use of the fourth hour, including departmental and/or school-wide learning outcomes) and that the workload is commensurate with level and type of the course. After reviewing each course or program proposal, the Committee will render one of the following decisions:

  1. Approve (as is)
  2. Approve with recommendations (in which case the department is encouraged to consider these recommendations but is not required to implement them)
  3. Approve contingent on changes as indicated (changes must be made and documented before course can be entered into course inventory or before the Dean will submit the proposal to the College-wide Committee on Academic Programs)
  4. Not approved, with indication of the nature of the Committee’s concerns
  5. Returned as incomplete or lacking one or more departmental sponsorship(s); proposal cannot be considered until completed

The Committee meets on the second Wednesday of every month of the academic year, from September through April, from 1:30 to 3:00 pm. Additional meetings may be scheduled for early December and early May if deemed necessary by the Committee’s chair.

All electronic proposals must be received by the Dean’s Office at least two weeks prior to the meeting at which they will be discussed. Course and program proposals will be added to the agenda in the order in which they are received in the Dean’s Office; given the short length of the Committee’s meeting, it is possible that not every proposal submitted two weeks before the deadline will be on the agenda for that given meeting. The HSS Curriculum Committee will consider only those proposals that have been approved by the relevant sponsoring department(s); proposals lacking departmental sponsorship cannot be considered. Incomplete proposals, similarly, cannot be considered.

The committee consists of six faculty members, elected to staggered 3-year terms, with 3 from the Humanities (defined as English, History, Philosophy/Religion/Classical Studies, World Languages, and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies) and 3 from the Social Sciences (defined as African-American Studies, Criminology, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology and Anthropology), as well as two students, if appointed by the Student Government, one majoring in the Humanities and one majoring in the Social Sciences, for 1-year terms, and one staff member from the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. All these members of the Curriculum Committee have voting rights. In addition, the Associate Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences sits on the committee ex officio, without a vote.

In any given year if one of the elected faculty members is unable to serve for a semester or for the year due to sabbatical or leave of any kind, the Department that constitutes the academic home of the given faculty member is expected to send a substitute faculty member for the duration of the sabbatical or leave.

Elections for the Curriculum Committee are held annually in the Spring semester for a 3-year term that begins the following fall semester. Candidates are asked to self-nominate in response to the call for such nominations issued by the Dean’s Office. The Council of Chairs reviews all the nominations and assembles a ballot for election by the full-time members of the faculty in April.

The Chair of the Curriculum Committee is elected from among the faculty on the committee who have served on the Committee for at least one year, and preferably two years. Whenever possible the Chair will serve in that capacity for an entire academic year. The Chair is responsible to:

Work with the Dean’s Office to establish the agenda for each meeting

  1. Lead the review (discussion) of proposals
  2. Orient new committee members to the charge and activities of the committee
  3. Work with the Dean’s Office to maintain HSS Curriculum Committee Information (records)
  4. Consult with the Dean and Associate Dean as necessary
  5. Communicate with those sponsoring proposals about the Committee’s decision
  6. Announce the approval of new courses to the HSS faculty listserv
  7. Create a summary of the committee’s activities (e.g., courses/programs approved, revisions pending) at the end of each semester, to be posted on the HSS website.
  8. Work with the Dean’s Office to set up the listserv of committee members and support the recruiting of new members of the Committee and a Committee Chair for the coming year.