Types & Levels

Types of Appointment

Regular Graduate Faculty (RGF)

These are University of Hawai`i at Mānoa faculty whose academic appointment is in the same department that houses the graduate program with which their graduate faculty appointment is affiliated. This will be known as the “home” graduate program.  For faculty with split appointments, it is the unit with a graduate program and potentially where the individual’s locus of tenure is assigned. In the case of interdisciplinary graduate programs (e.g., EECB, MB, PhD in Education, and CIS), the RGF may include faculty from a number of graduate programs as well as research units within their respective college (e.g., CDS, CRDG, HIMB, PBRC). The RFG members of each graduate program administer the various aspects of their programs, including student admissions, curriculum structure and academic policies, etc. In addition, they determine the rights (including voting rights) and responsibilities of cooperating, affiliate, and other members of the graduate faculty, as they pertain to the governance of their graduate program. Faculty members who officially change departments and graduate programs within the university lose their RGF status with the former graduate program. They may be nominated as RGF by the second program.

Cooperating Graduate Faculty (CGF)

In addition to serving as RGF in graduate programs housed in their home academic departments, faculty members may also be asked to serve as CGF with graduate programs housed in other academic departments. However, faculty members must first serve as RGF in their home graduate program, if such exist, before serving as CGF in other graduate programs.  Faculty from other University of Hawai`i campuses may serve as CGF for UH Mānoa graduate programs. For R faculty, the first CGF appointment will be known as their "home" graduate program.

Affiliate Graduate Faculty (AGF)

An AGF member possesses a specific expertise or background that may contribute to a student's graduate work but is not faculty employed by UHM or any UH campus. They may only serve as a Level 1 member. Graduate faculty who have resigned from UH may be reappointed as AGF, if appropriate. Affiliate graduate faculty appointments are processed as non-compensated Board of Regents (BOR) appointments using the Payroll Notification Form (PNF) and renewed as appropriate up to 36 months. Renewal is based on satisfactory performance and conduct as determined by the graduate program and Graduate Division.

Emeritus Graduate Faculty (EGF)

UHM faculty appointed as Emeritus faculty by the Board of Regents may continue to serve as a member of the graduate faculty with which they held an appointment prior to their retirement. They may finish their committee work with students who have reached candidacy at the time of their retirement. This also includes finishing work on a committee to which they were approved to serve as the University Representative prior to their retirement.


These may be, but are not limited to post-doctoral fellows, junior researchers, non-faculty researchers or other qualified individuals who are temporary employees of UH Mānoa. Their primary responsibilities tend to be in research, but they may have the expertise to help contribute to a student’s master’s thesis or doctoral research.

Levels of Appointment

All level 3 and 2 graduate faculty appointments are reviewed and evaluated using the Graduate Faculty Standards and Responsibilities – please use as link to https://manoa.hawaii.edu/graduate/content/standards-responsibilities  A review of a program’s level 3 and 2 graduate faculty occurs concurrently with the Program Review process initiated by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.

Level 3 (formerly Full)

Level 3 members may advise and chair master’s and doctoral committees in their home and/or cooperating graduate program, prepare and/or assist in preparing/grading qualifying, comprehensive and final exams, in administration of their home graduate program, serve as university representative, and on the Graduate Council. They may also serve as committee members on any master’s and doctoral committees. Level 3-members who are regular or cooperating graduate faculty may also be nominated to chair graduate programs. Level 3 cooperating graduate faculty from other UH campuses may not serve as a University Representative on thesis and doctoral committees. All level 3 members should also be familiar with the degree requirements of the program with which they have a graduate faculty appointment.

Level 2 (formerly Associate)

Level 2 members may advise and chair Plan A master’s thesis committees in their home and/or cooperating graduate program as well as serve as a member on any other graduate master’s or doctoral committee. They may prepare and grade qualifying, comprehensive and final exams and also participate in the general administration of their home graduate program. L2 graduate faculty may not chair a doctoral committee, serve as the University Representative or as a member of the Graduate Council. All level 2 members should also be familiar with the degree requirements of the program with which they have a graduate faculty appointment..

Level 1

Level 1 members may serve on a thesis or doctoral committee. However, they may not serve as chair or University Representative. The role of a Level 1 member is primarily to contribute expertise with regard to the topics, methods, analyses or other related aspects of students’ research.