Class Assignment Guidelines

While the class scheduling process is complex, the Department of English is committed to making the process transparent while balancing what is required to deliver the optimum final schedule of classes for our students.

  1. The Annual Schedule of Classes in the Department of English is developed by teaching area conveners and program directors in collaboration with the Chair, Administrative Manager and Department Scheduler.
  2. A draft Tenure-Track Faculty Teaching Inventory is established for an upcoming academic year based on the N-1 policy (see below) adjusted if necessary as plans evolve and considering contingencies.  College Teaching Inventories will be established in the future for Associated Faculty as well as GTAs.
  3. Tenure-Track Faculty members complete an annual “Faculty Scheduling Form” in the autumn to reconcile with templates completed by area conveners for accuracy.  Preferences are expressed in the “Faculty Scheduling Form.”   Preferences are taken into account and are advisory to the Chair.
  4. Faculty are placed first in term schedules based on area convener’s directions and at the discretion and by approval of the Chair; the Director of Graduate Studies coordinates graduate class offerings and area conveners make graduate class teaching assignments; the Director of the Creative Writing program determines the creative writing schedule and related teaching assignments.
  5. Tenure-Track Faculty-taught classes, graduate and upper-division, are scheduled to balance offerings. Days and meetings times are coordinated with other units, as needed.  All other classes are scheduled based on enrollment projections operating on a growth model. The line-item schedule with meeting days and times for all classes offered is reviewed by the Chair, the Administrative Manager, Program Directors, the Undergraduate Program Manager, Undergraduate Advisers, and others on an ad hoc basis.
  6. On approval, the schedule is input into SIS based on access and deadlines determined by the Office of the University Registrar (OUR).
  7. The Graduate Student roster, maintained in the Graduate Studies Office, is refreshed to take into account administrative and research commitments as well as Fellowships which preclude teaching that year or any upcoming term within the upcoming academic year (Writing Program Assistants, DMP Assistants, etc. Year-long and term Fellowships).
  8. All Graduate Students complete a “Graduate Student Scheduling Form” each autumn and spring term (including those who have alternate appointments, are on Fellowship, leave or planned leave) for the purpose of reconciling responses with the student roster and to ensure accuracy in determining staffing resources.  It is essential to know who needs a teaching assignment to fulfill the requirements of the Graduate Associate Appointment Document.
  9. Summer teaching is based on seniority, expertise, and availability.  Generally, all summer teaching is done by students who have successfully completed the ABD and MFA students heading into 3rd year and is limited to one class.  Summer assignments are typically assigned in addition to autumn and spring assignments and are paid at the lecturer rate as determined by the Arts and Humanities.
  10. For both autumn and spring terms, GTAs in good standing who may teach courses other than 1110.01 are assigned based on seniority, rank, area of expertise, availability, preferences expressed in the scheduling form at the discretion of the Chair, and needs for building strong teaching portfolios for the job market.
  • Priority may be given to graduate students entering their final term of funding.
  • Teaching assignments will be rotated to ensure equity in opportunities for teaching experiences.  GTAs should express their highest preferences in the “Graduate Student Scheduling Form”.
  • To teach 2000-level courses other than 2367, GTAs must have completed at least one appropriate 8903.  Such students will work with assigned course directors and those teaching a course for the first time will be observed by the course director and a report filed in the graduate studies office (for more details regarding course direction, visit the following link:
  1. The first teaching assignment for all Graduate Teaching Associates is 1110.01. These assignments are made next, taking into account their class schedules.
  2. GTA recitation leaders for large lectures are assigned early based on established criteria (ABD status, field of study, completion of one or more iterations of 8903).  Students can expect to serve as a recitation leader for a large lecture as a first 2000-level teaching experience upon successful completion of the candidacy exam.  Tenure-Track Faculty are course directors for the large-lecture courses (English 2201, 2202, 2263, 2290, and 2291).
  3. GTAs or Associated Faculty teaching special sections of courses are assigned next, as assigned by program or course directors (e.g. on-line versions of 1110.01, 2367 hybrid, disability, and gaming sections, 1109, 1110.03, professional writing courses like 3304 and 3305 to allow time for training, etc.).
  4. Associated Faculty on a 3-year appointment are scheduled next, based on need, availability of budget, expertise and preferences.  They complete an annual “Associated Faculty Scheduling Form” in the spring.  Preferences expressed in the “Associated Faculty Scheduling Form” are taken into account and are advisory to the Chair.  Associated Faculty members are assigned teaching aligned with the terms of their appointments (see note below regarding principles for assignments).
  5. Associated Faculty on a 1-year appointment are then scheduled based on need, availability of budget, expertise and preferences.  They complete an annual “Associated Faculty Scheduling Form” in the spring.   Preferences expressed in the “Associated Faculty Scheduling Form” are taken into account and are advisory to the Chair.  Associated Faculty members are assigned teaching aligned with the terms of their appointment (see note below regarding principles for assignments).
  6. A draft schedule is considered to be in process until assignments are finalized, double-checked, communicated, and confirmed.  Principles underlying the process for all include:  a humane and reasonable weekly and daily schedule.  Sometimes a 4- or 5-day schedule is necessary for Associated Faculty, although the scheduler strives to avoid a 4- or 5-day schedule for any instructor.
  7. All teaching assignments are contingent upon minimum enrollment limits as determined by the College of Arts and Sciences, the availability of budget and are subject to change at the Chair’s discretion.
  8. Study Abroad: Tenure-track faculty interested in teaching a study abroad course have three options: Global May (which is pitched to freshmen, non-honors students), Literary Locations (mostly English majors), and Literature and Culture of London (mostly English majors). Faculty who want to teach one of these courses should sign up with the Study Abroad Coordinator in English, currently Sean O’Sullivan. The schedule to teach these courses is set up for several years out, but it’s best to get your name on the list as soon as you know you would like to teach a course. The Study Abroad Coordinator will consult with the chair about scheduling a faculty member to one of these courses in any given year.
  9. Teaching Outside the Department: Unless a tenure-track faculty member has a joint appointment or contract to teach in another department, those who are interested in teaching a course in another department or interdisciplinary program should check first with the area convener (as part of the regular scheduling process that happens every Fall) and the chair. The convener and the chair will consult with the undergraduate and graduate directors, the department scheduler, and the fiscal manager to make sure that all teaching needs in the area and department can be covered if the faculty member teaches a course outside the department. Approval of such requests will thus depend not only on the department’s ability to meet our own scheduling needs but also on our budget.

The N-1 Policy

Each Tenure-Track Faculty member will be asked to reserve one course for Departmental assignment from his or her expected course load. This is not so much a change from earlier years as a reinforcement of established ideal practice.  Tenure-Track Faculty members with a four-course load should assign three courses through their area groups, Tenure-Track Faculty members with a three-course load should assign two courses through their area groups, and so on. The basic rule is N-1, where N is the number of courses in your expected Department of English course load, and N-1 is the number of courses assigned through the area conveners.  For faculty planning to apply for an FPL or SA, you should expect to teach your full load at the undergraduate level for the purposes of the scheduling assignment process. It is easier to remove undergraduate courses from a schedule than to add them.  For faculty currently on administrative course reduction, plan on that reduction continuing unless you know your term is ending and have talked to the chair about rotating out of the position. You should not sign up for a graduate course if you expect to take a two-semester FPL in the year when you would be assigned the course.

The extra course will be assigned according to Departmental needs.  In other words, it could be a writing course (e.g., 1110, 2367), a methods course (e.g., 3398), a lower-level course, or another course in the Department as needed.  This approach will allow our methods courses (especially 3398) to be taught principally by faculty.  It will also create more possibilities for our 8903 training to take place in lower-level courses.  Finally, we must continue to be responsive to the importance of placing tenure-track faculty in our introductory courses in order to connect faculty to students early in their enrollment at Ohio State as one way of encouraging  more of them to major in English or minor in one of the minors we administer.  This is not to suggest that Associated Faculty and GTAs don’t help with this recruitment—they clearly do and are some of our very best teachers and advocates. The point is that Tenure-Track faculty also need to be doing some of this work at the lower levels.