About Titles and Ranks

At Mason, the way we use titles is complex.

  • People have official titles with HR.
  • Official HR titles may bear only a passing resemblance, if that, to the title they use on the job.
  • There is no official system which stores the definitive titles people use.
  • People may have different roles in different contexts and may use different titles when acting out those roles.
  • Faculty and staff may have a role for a particular degree program, and have a title in that role which differs from their title in their organization.
  • Faculty ranks act in a similar way to titles and are often referred to as titles. They are not titles.

For instance, a person might be an Associate Professor who is the Director of Undergraduate Programs for a department and the Director of a BA within that department while also serving as Director of an interdisciplinary minor which does not technically reside within the person's department. They may also have a special appointment as an endowed chair and, in another role, serve as director of the newly-established Center for Egregious Abuse of Titles, and, in line with that center's mission, have a title not of "Director" but of "High Lama of the Most Supreme Titleage."

In CHSSWeb, that person would have a faculty rank of Associate Professor, officially imported from Banner and updating automatically when that title is updated in Banner. They would have the title Director of Undergraduate Programs on their department site, the title of Director on the site for their interdisciplinary minor (if it has its own site), the title of Director on the BA and again on the interdisciplinary minor, and the High Lama title on the web site for their center. And, finally, they would have a custom title proclaiming their status as an endowed chair.

How do we manage all of those titles? Well...

Titles and Faculty Ranks in CHSSWeb

CHSSWeb displays three kinds of titles.

  • Site titles: Titles for people who have roles in the organization represented by the site.
    • Chair, Department of Modern and Classical Languages
    • Director of Graduate Programs, Department of English
    • Office Manager, Global Affairs Program
  • Program titles: Titles for people who have roles on academic programs (i.e. degrees, minors, and certificates).
    • Director, BA in Communication
    • Director, MFA in Creative Writing
  • Custom Titles, such as named chairs. These titles appear on the person's bio on every site with which they are associated.
    • Robinson Professor
    • Mathy Professor of Art History

Titles should not be confused with faculty ranks, which are imported from Banner and are not assigned via the site title tools.

See the web pages to the left for more information about titles. See also the information about faculty ranks.