Search Committees may begin involvement at different phases in the process. If the search committee is involved in the development of the job description they must have a clear view of departmental needs before recruitment materials are prepared. With input from the Department Head/Chair, the committee must determine what will be expected of the faculty member in terms of instruction, research, outreach, service, or any other responsibilities. These could include specific courses to be taught, course load, research expectations, specific outreach activities, advising, departmental service, supervision, administrative responsibilities, etcetera.
The search committee must distinguish between required and desired qualifications. The terminal degree is the minimum educational requirement for tenure-track faculty. If a department where the Ph.D. is the terminal degree (most departments) does not have a policy regarding consideration of ABDs (doctoral candidates with all requirements but the dissertation completed), the search committee must determine whether or not ABDs will be considered for the position. The search committee must also determine the acceptable discipline(s) in which the terminal degree is held.
The search committee may determine that teaching experience or that a specific type of research is required for the position. If the position will include supervisory or administrative responsibilities, the committee may determine that prior experience in one of those areas is also a requirement for the position.
When determining the minimum requirements to be included in recruitment materials, the search committee must remember that all candidates who meet those minimum requirements must be considered for the position, and any candidate who does not meet all of the minimum requirements must be eliminated from consideration for the position. Desired qualifications cannot be used to eliminate candidates from further consideration during the initial review process. Desired qualification can be used to differentiate between otherwise equally qualified candidates in selecting candidates for interview and in choosing the candidate recommended for the position.
The qualifications for the position should not be so broad that few specifics are provided on which to base selection or elimination of candidates nor so restrictive that few will apply or qualify.
It is expected that all recruitment and selection activities will be accomplished in a fair, inclusive and consistent manner.
Last Updated: October 17, 2016