To provide for those occasions when faculty need to arrange additional time to focus on research, the Dean's Office provides the opportunity for course banking. Course banking allows faculty to rearrange teaching assignments over a two- or three-year period, as long as the number of courses taught over that period averages out to the yearly standard teaching load, so that a semester can be scheduled for intensive research. By teaching an extra course in an academic year, faculty can "bank" courses to free time that can be applied later toward research.
As a matter of general principle, Franklin College faculty who schedule additional time for research must remain in residence, keep regular office hours, and meet all University and departmental responsibilities outside the classroom. Faculty who need to conduct research off campus must apply leave of absence, in accordance with College and University leave of absence policies.
Departments and schools should develop course banking policies and submit them for approval to the Dean's Office. They should follow these guidelines:
- Policies must preserve the department's ability to offer a balanced range of courses at all instructional levels. Faculty who bank courses must teach an instructional schedule that helps their department meet this goal. Department heads must approve all course banking plans.
- Only tenured and tenure-track faculty active in research may bank courses.
- Courses may be banked during fall and spring semesters only. Faculty must bank extra courses prior to taking a research-intensive semester. Faculty may not teach more than three courses a semester and may not bank more than one course per academic year.
- Course banking cycles begin with the fall term.
- No more than a quarter of eligible participating faculty in a department may take research-intensive semesters at a time.
- Junior faculty, especially at the assistant professor level, should
receive priority in setting course-banking schedules.
- Department heads must determine when and if research-intensive semesters can be assigned and should track teaching and research assignments so that faculty maintain the standard annual work load.
- On occasion, research-intensive semesters may have to be delayed to allow for a balanced offering of courses.
- Faculty who bank courses must sign a letter, co-signed by the department head, that describes their course banking plan and lists their semester-by-semester teaching plans over the period of the banking proposal. The co-signed letter indicates acceptance of these guidelines. A copy of the letter should be sent to the Dean's Office and should be kept in departmental personnel files.