Faculty as Professionals: Responsibilities, Standards and Ethics

Professional Standards
Educational Policies Committee

This paper revisits the issue of faculty ethics, beginning with a statement of the principles previously adopted by the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges, and reaffirming that previous commitment.

Recommendations to Local Senates

Local academic senates should:

  1. Adopt a statement of ethical principles, such as the AAUP statement or the Academic Senate's expanded AAUP statement that reflects the expected professional behavior of faculty.
  2. Periodically review and strengthen college policies and practices that foster ethical communities of practice and that support the generation and maintenance of professional excellence, including fair and effective hiring practices, effective and rigorous peer evaluation and tenure review policies, faculty mentoring programs and other support structures.

Local academic senates might:

  1. Consider inviting a guest speaker or speakers to join in the continuing discourse on the importance of maintaining high professional standards among faculty.
  2. Incorporate consideration of ethical dilemmas and professional responsibilities into ongoing professional development programs.
  3. Consider adoption of a procedure, responsive to the local climate, to address perceived breaches of ethical responsibilities. In doing so, senates would:
    • Work closely with their bargaining unit and with relevant administrators to delineate areas of appropriate authority; and to consider, where appropriate, inclusion in the collective bargaining agreement;
    • Stipulate clear processes for redress and appeal; and,
    • Take extraordinary care not to create a climate that is hostile to academic freedom and faculty creativity.
Publication file