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Dean's Advisory Committee (DAC)

The College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Advisory Committee serves as a liaison between CAS Faculty and the Dean. The committee advises the Dean on issues and concerns of interest to faculty, including issues ranging from college academic and budgetary policy to social justice on campus. Composed of faculty members from across the College of Arts and Sciences, the DAC has recently worked collaboratively with faculty on a variety of topics, including governance, communication and transparency, promotion and salary, research/teaching/service, work-life balance, the university's role in responding to global refugee crises, and the College's role in improving racial and other forms of equity and inclusion at AU.

To establish open communication with faculty and to gather feedback on important issues, the DAC regularly organizes informal coffee sessions, hosts Town Hall meetings with the Dean, and conducts surveys. Based on this feedback, the DAC pursues relevant work and makes recommendations to the Dean and the College. Past committees have researched and generated reports on topics relating to salary compression, salary and gender equity, merit, faculty satisfaction and decision-making power, budget transparency at the department level, grade inflation, and bureaucratic efficiency. The 2016/17 DAC is currently considering embarking on work related to race and hiring practices, racism on campus, AU's response to climate change and refugees crises, CAS advising, classroom and space concerns, and graduate student labor rights, among other issues. 

The DAC is always interested in hearing faculty input about our work and priorities. We encourage faculty to attend our coffee sessions and town halls and to send ideas and comments via our Anonymous Feedback Form (on SurveyMonkey) or by email to Thank you in advance. We look forward to working together!


Term Faculty Task Force

The Term Faculty Task Force was formed in March 2012 by the Dean's Advisory Council. The original aims of the task force were to acknowledge, study, and reflect on topics of concern to the College's term faculty with the goal of offering recommendations to the College. To that end, the task force used and analyzed interviews, surveys, university and College demographic data, scholarship, and analysis compiled by outside experts to create a report, circulated to faculty and administration, on the state of College term faculty. Additionally, the Term Faculty Task Force chair and vice chair began to serve as standing members on the Dean’s Advisory Committee. 

The ongoing charge of the task force includes exploring and studying the issues of greatest concern to term faculty and communicating this work to the faculty and administration. Examples of this work include conducting a survey of term faculty on service and governance, with results reported in writing and discussed in an open forum for faculty, as well as hosting forums on term faculty reappointment, multi-year contracts, and promotion. Reflecting the commitment of American University to career academic positions for term faculty, the Term Faculty Task Force advocates for the inclusion of Term Faculty in all academic life and promotes the professional development of Term Faculty in the College.

Ralph Sonenshine (Economics), (Chair)
Edward Comstock (Literature), (Vice Chair)
Christopher Tudge (Biology), (Past Chair)
Núria Vilanova (World Languages & Cultures), (Past Chair)
Glenn Moomau (Literature) (Emeritus)
Lauren Weis (Philosophy and Religion)
Maria Gomez (Psychology)
Martyn Oliver (Philosophy and Religion)
Chris Mitchell (Mathematics)
Sherburne Laughlin (Performing Arts)
Caron Martinez (Literature)
Meg Bentley (Biology)
Ludy Grandas (World Languages & Cultures)

DAC Members

David Vine, Chair (Anthropology)
Ed Comstock (Literature)
Stefano Costanzi (Chemistry)
Jolynn Gardner (Public Health)
Kate Haulman (History)
Juliana Martinez (World Languages and Culture)
Nancy Snider (Performing Arts)
Ralph Sonenshine (Economics)

Task Forces

Budget Transparency at the Department Level

Salary Compression

Salary and Gender Equity

Term Faculty