Graduate Studies

Graduate Faculty

Full Membership

The Graduate Faculty is composed of all faculty members in tenure leading positions, including pre-tenured faculty, who are automatically appointed as Graduate Faculty at the time of hire. Faculty members in non-tenure leading positions--including professors of practice, research professors and adjunct faculty--may be nominated for appointment to the Graduate Faculty. Full membership status lasts for the duration of the faculty member’s appointment with the University.

The Graduate Faculty may teach graduate courses, serve on final examining committees, serve on supervisory committees, and chair supervisory committees for both masters and doctoral students. The Graduate Faculty may vote on any matter presented to the Graduate Faculty, including the election of the University’s Graduate Council. They may also hold any elected office in the Graduate College. Graduate Faculty have the additional responsibility of voting on certain nominations of Graduate Faculty in their department, school or interdepartmental area program.

Procedure for Nominating Graduate Faculty

Faculty members in non-tenure leading positions may be nominated for membership to the Graduate Faculty. Nominees must meet the following criteria:

  1. Hold the rank of senior lecturer, assistant professor (including practice, research and adjunct faculty) or above;
  2. Hold the terminal degree normally accepted for academic employment in the discipline or its clear equivalent as determined by the Graduate Committee of the nominee’s department, school or interdepartmental area;
  3. Be actively involved in scholarly activity and/or graduate teaching as part of his or her regular duties; and
  4. Have demonstrated clear evidence of continuing scholarly activity at the national level and potential in the discipline, beyond teaching.

Using the nomination form for graduate faculty, and assuming all criteria are met, the Graduate Faculty in the relevant department will vote on the nomination. A two-thirds majority of the Graduate Faculty must support the nomination. Submit the following to the UNL Dean of Graduate Education: (1) The nomination form with signatures and (2) a letter from the graduate committee chair explaining the reasons for supporting the nomination. After campus-level review, the nomination is forwarded to the Provost and Dean of the Graduate College (for the NU system), who will either approve or defer the nomination. If approved, the Provost/Dean formally appoints the faculty member to the Graduate Faculty.

SOURCE:  Graduate College Policy Handbook (revised, June 2018)

Graduate Faculty Associates

Provisional Status

Graduate Faculty “Associates” are non-tenure track faculty who are nominated and appointed to serve in a limited capacity as Graduate Faculty. The provisional status is granted for a limited term not to exceed a period of four years from the start of the individual’s faculty appointment. Provisional status is not renewable after the term expires. Faculty who have provisional status can be nominated for full Graduate Faculty membership at any time.

Graduate Faculty Associates may teach graduate courses, direct master's theses, serve on or chair master's degree examining committees, and serve on doctoral supervisory committees. Associates may not chair or co-chair doctoral supervisory committees. Associates do not have a vote on the Graduate Faculty, nor can they hold any elected office in the Graduate College.

Procedure for Nominating Associates

Faculty members in non-tenure leading positions may be nominated for provisional membership to the Graduate Faculty. Nominations must meet the following criteria:

  1. Nominee shall have the terminal degree and the rank of assistant professor (including practice, research and adjunct faculty) or above;
  2. Nomination is submitted during the first four years of the individual’s faculty appointment.

Using the nomination form for associates, the nominee must be supported by a majority of the departmental or interdepartmental graduate committee. The nomination form must have the signatures of the graduate committee chair and the department chair/head. Submit the following to the UNL Dean of Graduate Education: (1) The nomination form with signatures and (2) the nominee’s curriculum vitae. If approved, the Dean formally appoints the nominee to provisional membership, indicating the end date of the appointment.

SOURCES:  Graduate College Policy Handbook (revised, June 2018); Graduate Council Minutes (September 24, 1996)

Graduate Faculty Emeriti

Upon recommendation of the departmental, school or interdepartmental graduate committee, retired Graduate Faculty who have been appointed to emeritus status may retain the rights and privileges associated with their Graduate Faculty status. These rights and privileges include permission to teach graduate courses, to serve as members of graduate programs, or to co-chair the supervisory committees of doctoral students with a resident Graduate Faculty member.

Procedure for Recommending Graduate Faculty Emeriti

Using the recommendation form for emeriti, an emeritus faculty member can be reappointed annually to the Graduate Faculty by recommendation of the department graduate committee. The recommendation form must have the signatures of the graduate committee chair and the department chair/head. Submit the form to the Dean of Graduate Education. If approved, the Dean formally appoints the emeritus faculty member to a one year term on the Graduate Faculty.

SOURCE:  Graduate College Policy Handbook (revised, June 2018)

Graduate Lecturers

A staff member who does not qualify for Graduate Faculty status may be recommended as a lecturer for a graduate level course. The lecturer appointment is valid only for the semester for which it is approved.

Procedure for Requesting Graduate Lecturers

Eligible staff members must hold the terminal degree normally accepted for employment in the discipline OR have achieved some extraordinary accomplishments as determined by the graduate committee of the recommending department.

Using the request form for graduate lecturers, the recommendation must be endorsed by both the departmental graduate committee and the department chair/head. Submit the following to the Dean of Graduate Education for approval: (1) The nomination form with signatures and (2) the nominee’s curriculum vitae.

SOURCE:  Graduate Council Minutes (September 8, 1982)

Special Committee Members

Students may request the appointment of a faculty member from another institution outside the University of Nebraska system to serve on their supervisory committee. These external “special” members must hold a terminal degree appropriate to the discipline and have academic accomplishments comparable to the criteria for Graduate Faculty. Special Members are appointed as voting members of the supervisory committee and must be willing to participate in the student’s doctoral program in a manner consistent with this role. The Special Member may serve as one of the two appointed readers; but may not serve as committee chair, co-chair, or outside representative.

Procedure for Requesting Special Committee Members

Special Members are appointed on an individual student committee basis; a separate nomination must be submitted for each supervisory committee on which a Special Member intends to serve. In addition, only one Special Member may serve on each supervisory committee, and the committee must include a minimum of four members of the Graduate Faculty.

Using the request form for special members, the nomination must be endorsed by both the supervisory committee chair and the departmental graduate committee chair. Submit the following to the Dean of Graduate Education for approval: (1) The nomination form with signatures and (2) the nominee’s curriculum vitae.

SOURCE:  Graduate Council Minutes (September 28, 1995; February 12, 2009)