Under a policy established by the State Board of Regents, all persons who provide instruction to students attending Regents institutions must demonstrate competence in oral communication (see the University’s Operations Manual, III-13). In the context of this policy, oral communication competence is the ability to communicate appropriately in the language of instruction. The policy applies to all teaching assistants and to all faculty, whether appointed on a tenure-track or non-tenure-track basis. This policy does not apply to persons whose instructional responsibilities do not involve enough direct oral communication with students to provide a basis for meaningful evaluation.
Each faculty member and teaching assistant must be evaluated for oral communication competence by the end of each academic period in which he or she has sufficient direct contact with students to render such evaluation meaningful. New faculty and teaching assistants must also be evaluated at the time of appointment and by the middle of the first semester in which they have direct contact with students. These assessments are part of the evidence of teaching effectiveness in every review of faculty performance. The nature and scope of the evaluation of oral communication competence may vary with the discipline, instructional setting, and material being communicated.