Skip to main content
Northwestern University

Policy on Course Banking

Weinberg College permits course banking administered in the department with the following restrictions:

  1. The proposed banking must not infringe on the department’s ability to staff the courses it needs to offer. Indeed, normally the primary motive should be to meet departmental curricular need. The department chair must approve the banking which should normally include the intended academic year in which the faculty member will have a light load.
  2. At most one course reduction from a faculty member's bank can be used in any academic year without permission of Weinberg College's Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs. Likewise, at most one course can be banked in any academic year.  Note also that a quarter in which a faculty member has no teaching obligation is not a leave quarter and both service and presence on campus are required. This proposal is independent of our policy on leave banking. 
  3. As with course buyouts we do not allow the use of a banked course to reduce a faculty member's annual teaching obligation to zero.
  4. Banked courses are non-transferable and  have no cash value. There can be no compensation for any accumulation at the time a faculty member resigns or retires.
  5. Normally banked courses should be redeemed in the same department or program in which they are taught. For example, if a faculty member teaches  an overload in a program of which he/she is an affiliate, then it should not normally be redeemed by a course reduction in his/her home department.

We require the department chair or his/her designate to inform the Dean's Office annually of the balance of banked courses. This balance should include course reductions offered in hiring or retention letters and deficits incurred, e.g., by the cancellation of underenrolled courses. This information should be included in the department's teaching allocation report sent to the Dean's Office each year.

Back to top