AAUP Recommendations for Academic Self Defense

AAUP Indiana State University Chapter
AAUP Indiana Conference
AAUP National Website


ISU FACULTY OMBUDSPERSON provides free support and guidance for faculty regarding workplace questions, concerns, or disputes.  This includes confidentially discussing issues, providing information about University, and helping faculty identify a best course of action in their specific situation. The ombudsperson remains neutral and impartial.

CONTACT AAUP OFFICERS FOR ASSISTANCE AAUP officers can help you by finding a faculty member to provide counsel and attend meetings with you according to ISU policies and applicable laws. AAUP recommends you take a friendly and knowledgeable (silent) witness to meetings where you might be disciplined.  

BECOME AN AAUP OFFICER AT INDIANA STATE UNIVERSITY At the institutional level, the officers of the AAUP ISU chapter confer and interpret AAUP principles and policies to local situations, investigates alleged AAUP principle infractions, provides counsel and support to individuals facing disciplinary action, and issues statements of AAUP judgments. Become a part of that decision-making.


JOIN AAUP AND ATTEND AAUP MEETINGS: Attend AAUP local, state, and national meetings, conferences, and webinars for education on issues relevant to academic freedom and shared governance. You can learn how others have dealt with past issues.

READ YOUR DEPARTMENT AND COLLEGE BYLAWS, POLICIES, AND PROCEDURES: Many conflicts and misunderstandings can be resolved by following existing policies and procedures. Many employees are unfamiliar with their own policies and procedures. And if the policy does not reflect best practice or even current practice, the university should fix it.

READ YOUR UNIVERSITY HANDBOOK: Universities collect their policies and procedures into a space, often a handbook or manual. Familiarize yourself with the rules of the handbook. This is tantamount to learning the “laws” of the university. AAUP has found that many university employees and administrators do not know their own policies and procedures and may violate them due to ignorance. Knowing the policies allows you to point out mistakes, errors, and violations, when necessary.

READ THE AAUP REDBOOK: Affectionately known as the “AAUP Redbook,” AAUP Policy Documents & Reports is a collection of official policy documents organized into categorical sections with explanatory introductions. Its purpose is to inform college or university policies. The Redbook justifies faculty status associated with academic freedom and tenure.

American Association of University Professors. (2015). Policy documents & reports (11 ed.). Washington, D.C.: Johns Hopkins University Press. (“The Redbook”)
Available at ISU Library Reference Collection LB2334 .A54 2015 and unlimited access as an e-book at

American Association of University Professors. (2015). Contingent Appointments and the Academic Profession (p. 170-209 of the Redbook)

Association of College & Research Libraries. (2013). Joint statement on faculty status of college and university librarians. (p. 210 of the Redbook)

READ AAUP REPORTS & PUBLICATIONS: AAUP publishes Academe, the Journal of Academic Freedom, and the Bulletin of the AAUP. These include official statements by AAUP and also commentary and interpretations of AAUP officers and members. Reports & Publications are linked from

AAUP SUMMER INSTITUTE: This conference provides education and training to be an advocate for AAUP principles, collective bargaining, and higher education.