Here are the answers to frequently asked questions about faculty compensation for chairing thesis and dissertation committees.

Who is eligible for compensation for chairing theses/dissertations?

Any current faculty member who is named committee chair on an approved Research Topic Approval Form and whose student has completed the required number of thesis/dissertation credits is eligible for compensation, pending faculty workload verification.

What triggers eligibility for compensation?

Eligibility to be considered for compensation is triggered by the student doing two things:

  1. the student must complete the required number of thesis/dissertation credits (this number is set by the department), and
  2. the student must have an approved RTAF (including IRB or IACUC approval, if needed) on file in the School of Graduate Studies and Research.

The student does not need to graduate in order for the chair to be evaluated for compensation eligibility. If the student is dismissed or officially exits the program, but has an RTAF on file and has completed the required number of thesis/dissertation credits at the time of their dismissal or exit, the chair can be eligible for compensation (pending workload verification) even if the RTAF is pending approval.

How do I know for which students' committee chairpersonship I'm being compensated (or should be compensated)?

Records of all approved RTAFs are maintained in Banner and, at a designated point each semester, a report is run to determine which students have also completed the required number of thesis/dissertation credits. The faculty chair's workload (instructional credits) is also evaluated, and earned t/d chair workload hours will only be paid as overload provided the faculty member's workload meets the conditions outlined in Articles 23 and 25 of the CBA pertaining to overload compensation. Specific questions about this report should be directed to the Office of the Provost. Additionally, each faculty member is encouraged to keep a record of the students they've supervised and their progress.

Faculty should feel free to contact the SGSR at any time if they have questions or if they identify any discrepancies.

How much will I be compensated?

As described in the CBA [Article 23, Section 1(d)(2)]: Supervision of one (1) master's thesis shall be equated with one-third (1/3) of a workload hour. Supervision of one (1) doctoral dissertation shall be equated with one (1) graduate workload hour. The rate of payment for this workload hour is the faculty's overload rate at the time he/she became eligible for compensation as described above. Faculty workload must be verified before any overload payment can be issued.

When will I be compensated?

Spring and summer t/d chair workload hours will be applied to the faculty member's fall workload. Fall t/d chair workload hours will be applied to spring workload. Overload payments (if any) are processed with the regular overload calendar (payments in October and March).

May I bank my hours to use as release time?

No. The July 1, 2015, to June 30, 2018, CBA removed the provision for banking of hours earned for the supervision of theses and dissertations. Banking is no longer permissible.

Who do I contact if I have any questions?

Cindy Smeltzer (, Elizabeth Poje Hawk (, and Laura Slebodnick (