Course Buyout Policy

The Division permits full‐time faculty to reduce their teaching load by buying out up to two courses annually.

Revised August 2015

The Division permits full‐time faculty to reduce their teaching load by buying out up to two courses annually. This two-course limit is reduced annually on a one-to-one basis by any course releases that a faculty member receives during that academic year (e.g., course releases for service as chair, vice chair, etc.). There are two types of buyouts:

1. Internal buyouts are those funded from other campus departments or units to facilitate that department’s or unit’s activities. The cost of an internal buyout is instructor replacement funding only (salary and benefits). For example, the Davis Humanities Institute buys out a course for faculty receiving a Faculty Research Fellowship. Buyouts using the funds of endowed chairs will also be considered internal. All internal buyouts must be approved by the Dean.

2. External buyouts are those funded from extramural funding sources. The cost of an external buyout is 1/9th of the faculty member's nine month annual salary and benefits per course buyout.

The policy for buyouts is as follows:

1. Any buyout must fit within departmental curricular needs and requires the department chair's approval.
2. The maximum number of combined buyouts and course releases is two per year for full-time faculty.
3. Internal buyouts must be submitted in writing to and approved by the Dean or Associate Dean – Undergraduate Academic Programs.
4. The faculty member must use extramural funding to pay for external buyouts.
5. The cost of an external buyout per course is 1/9th of the faculty member's nine-month annual salary and benefits.
6. Requests for course buyouts by faculty whose appointment is less than full-time will be addressed on an individual basis.

The campus and the division expect all faculty members to make meaningful, ongoing contributions to undergraduate education. Therefore, in cases where a faculty member has bought out one or two courses in an academic year, that individual should be assigned at least one course during that year with undergraduate teaching that significantly contributes to the major (e.g., required course) and/or represent significant service (e.g., large survey courses). We recognize that special circumstances may emerge; exceptions to policy require the approval of the chair, the associate dean, and the dean.

The salary savings accrued from external course buyouts will be used 1) to fund replacement lecturers for the courses the faculty member is buying out and 2) to contribute towards the Budgetary Savings Target that has been permanently assigned to the division. The campus anticipates that departments will have academic salary savings each year and expects a sizeable amount of funds to be returned as part of the overall campus budget model. The division's annual target is $774,500, which is normally funded from faculty salary savings created by course buyouts and unpaid leaves.