Academic Leadership Toolkit

Office of Faculty Development and Advancement

Budget Proposals



Each year, the Division of Academic Affairs requests budget proposals from the deans of colleges and directors of independent schools. Deans/directors rely, in turn, on budget requests from department chairs to shape their requests. The timing of request deadlines as well as distribution of funds is dependent on a number of factors, including the legislative calendar, strategic goals of university leadership, and protocols specific to colleges/schools. Generally, chairs should consult with their faculty in the spring in order to be able to respond to deans’ requests in a timely manner. Other, more minor budget proposals that chairs might respond to include requests for minor renovations and ideas for utilizing student technology fees.


  • To build an Academic Affairs budget from the ground-up based on specific requests for faculty lines, support for graduate students, and other department needs.
  • To make those determinations in the context of the University’s Strategic Plan.

Authority and Responsibility:

  • Chairs have the responsibility of including faculty in budget discussions, then determining an appropriate request in light of the department’s contribution to the university strategic goals.
  • Deans weigh these requests from chairs, alongside their own leadership priorities, in that same context.
  • The Provost exercises judgment regarding the final Academic Affairs budget, in consultation with the President.
  • The Provost’s staff coordinates all aspects of the process.

Common Pitfalls:

  • Not keeping budget requests on faculty meeting agendas throughout the year so that when the invitation to submit comes from the Provost’s Office, the unit is unprepared.
  • Sufficient justification is sometimes not provided to help the Provost understand a department’s needs.