Faculty Credentialing Policy

It is the policy of the University to ensure that all instructors of record (IOR) including full and part-time tenure and tenure-track faculty, fixed-term track faculty, and graduate teaching assistants are qualified to accomplish the mission and goals of the institution and that they possess the academic training and professional experience to teach in an academic setting and meet the requirements of our accrediting body, The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), and state of Texas agencies.

This policy applies to all IOR’s, including university staff assigned as IOR’s either as dual employment or as part of their staff appointment, and academic administrators. See HOP 2.02 - Faculty Appointments and Titles for the list of all official UTSA faculty titles with faculty qualification requirements specific to each title.

SACSCOC Guidelines

The SACSCOC requires that institutions justify and document the qualifications of their faculty members in order to be accredited. UTSA uses the SACSCOC Faculty Credentials guidelines to help define its faculty qualifications.

(The following information was adapted from the SACSCOC website.)

SACSCOC usually accepts common collegiate practice in recognizing an academic discipline, concentration, and/or field of study.  Examples include history, mathematics, chemistry, English, sociology, finance, accounting, marketing, and management.  For faculty teaching in these areas, it is expected that we provide information that justifies and documents each faculty member’s qualifications relevant to the specific courses they are assigned to teach. For faculty teaching interdisciplinary courses, it is expected that we provide information that justifies and documents the faculty member’s qualifications relevant to the disciplines that are components of the course. 

This process is different than credentialing faculty for hire at UTSA.  When credentialing faculty members for the SACSCOC faculty roster, it may be obvious that only one of the faculty member’s degrees needs to be cited in order to justify his/her qualifications to teach a specific course.  In other cases, it will be necessary to list two or more degrees and to list the specific course titles and number of semester hours in those degrees relevant to the courses assigned. 

It may also be necessary to indicate additional qualifications such as diplomas or certificates earned (with discipline indicated); related work or professional experience; licensure and certifications; continuous documented excellence in teaching; honors and awards; scholarly publications and presented papers; and other demonstrated competencies and achievements that contribute to effective teaching and student learning outcomes.  Indicate the dates for these additional qualifications and clearly describe the relationship between these qualifications and the course content and/or expected outcomes of the courses assigned to the faculty member. 

Digital Measures

At UTSA, Digital Measures is the official record system for faculty credentialing. Faculty educational and credentialing information in DM is used to generate a SACSCOC faculty roster when needed for reaffirmation reviews and substantive change approvals.

Official Transcripts

Official transcript(s) (i.e. bearing the official seal of the school and the Registrar’s signature) from the institution conferring the degree(s) must be on file prior to employment approval. Transcript(s) must show the name of the degree(s) conferred and date the degree(s) was conferred. Transcripts must show all coursework taken. All international transcripts must be recorded in English or officially translated to English. International transcripts should be certified, translated, and evaluated by an outside agency that is a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) or an equivalent agency approved by the hiring department.

Responsibility of Instructors of Record

An instructor of record (IOR) refers to the individual designated by the academic department/school as responsible for a course, including development of its content, assignments, and grades. The IOR is the primary instructor assigned to each course section in Banner.

It is the responsibility of the IOR to provide the University with all of the documentation needed to verify their credentials. This includes, but is not limited to, a résumé/curriculum vitae, official transcripts (indicating terminal degree or other appropriate transcripts addressed to department staff or Department Chair/School Director), appropriate licenses or certifications, and the verification of work related to teaching experience (as needed). These documents will be reviewed for authenticity by the Department Chair/School Director.

New IORs must provide an official transcript, official transcript translations and evaluations (if applicable), and all other required documentation upon hiring. The cost to obtain official transcripts (including necessary translations and evaluations of foreign transcripts) and copies of licenses and certifications is borne by the IOR, unless otherwise agreed to be covered by the hiring department. It is the responsibility of the IOR teaching in disciplines that require licensure and/or certification to acquire and maintain those credentials. The University may periodically request updated documents from the IOR.

Submittal of official transcript methods:

  • Electronically: Request your school to send your official transcript to your UTSA department’s email address.
  • Mail: Request institution to mail an official, sealed transcript to:
    The University of Texas at San Antonio
    Attn: _____, Department of _____
    One UTSA Circle
    San Antonio, TX 78249
  • In Person: Bring your official, sealed copy of your transcript to your department office during regular business hours.

IORs who have completed all requirements for the doctorate except the dissertation must provide an official transcript with proof of their terminal degree upon conferral.

It is also the responsibility of the IOR to keep his or her résumé/curriculum vitae updated in Digital Measures.

Responsibility of Department Chairs/School Directors and Department Administrative Staff

Prior to the start of the IOR’s assignment at the University, the Department Chair/School Director examines the prospective IOR’s credentials to verify that he or she meets the requirements of the position by verifying transcripts (including necessary translations and evaluations of foreign transcripts, if applicable), work and/or teaching experience (if applicable), résumé /curriculum vitae, and any licenses /certifications (if applicable).

In addition, the Department Chair/ School Director is responsible for ensuring that department staff upload the IOR’s official transcripts and degree information to the Faculty Education screen in Digital Measures and that official transcripts are forwarded to the Provost’s Office (tenure and tenure-track faculty) or kept in the department office (fixed-term track faculty and graduate teaching assistants).

The Department Chair/School Director is also responsible for ensuring that the department IOR’s keep their résumé/curriculum vitae updated in Digital Measures.

Department Chairs/School Directors and department administrative staff also serve as the point-of-contact between the IOR’s and the Office of Continuous Improvement and Accreditation. They work with IOR’s to assure that any missing credentials or documentation are provided by the required deadlines. Department Chairs/School Directors and department administrative staff are also required to take the following online course:

UTSA Online Course

  • AM0563 is a short, required online course designed for new department chairs and department administrative staff responsible for hiring and assigning faculty to courses. This course provides important credentialing guidelines (including UTSA's transcript policy), timelines, and instructions for properly documenting credentials in Digital Measures (UTSA’s faculty information database). To take the course, log in to MyTraining, select “Business Processes” from the Course Categories, select “Online Courses,” and then click on AM0563. This course can also be used as a refresher for anyone that assists with faculty hiring and credentialing

Responsibility of Continuous Improvement and Accreditation

Continuous Improvement and Accreditation (CI&A) is an academic support division for the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs that leads institutional accreditation activities. As part of this role, CI&A is responsible for the verification of all IOR credentials in compliance with SACSCOC requirements. This includes:

  • Auditing faculty credentials each semester;
  • Notifying Department Chairs/School Directors and their administrative staff of any missing credentials;
  • Ensuring all IOR transcripts and any other necessary credentials are uploaded to Digital Measures in a timely fashion; and
  • Maintaining the list of courses each IOR is qualified to teach.

Exceptions

In the case that an IOR has requested an official transcript or translation well in advance of the deadline and has not received it, a receipt may be submitted until official documents arrive. Other exceptions may be made in the case that an IOR is hired after the start of classes. All exceptions are handled on a case by case basis and must have department approval.

UTSA Graduate Students

IOR’s who are currently attending UTSA as graduate students and received their undergraduate degree from UTSA may submit an unofficial transcript.

Questions

For questions regarding faculty qualification requirements or transcripts, please contact Lorrie Smith, Director for Accreditation and Process Improvement, via email at lorrie.smith@utsa.edu or on Teams.