Academic Program Councils

Purpose and Membership

There are two academic program councils: (1) the Graduate Program Council with responsibility for overseeing the curriculum of the College’s master’s and doctoral programs; (2) the Undergraduate Program Council with responsibility for overseeing the curriculum of the College’s baccalaureate degree program(s).
The membership of each of the two academic program councils is comprised of a chair appointed by the Dean and four members elected from the faculty of the College. The associate dean or other Dean’s designee with academic programs responsibility serves as an ex officio, non voting member of each council.

Appointment of Academic Program Council Chairs

The chairs of the academic program councils are appointed by the Dean and serve for a three-year term. Prior to the appointment of a chair, the Dean will send a memorandum to the faculty inviting them to nominate themselves or other members of the faculty for the position. The Dean may also ask individual faculty members to make themselves available for appointment. The Dean will submit a proposed appointment for review and recommendation by the Executive Committee and Faculty Affairs Committee.

The conditions of appointment of the academic program council chair are recommended to the Dean by the head of the faculty member’s academic unit and the associate dean or other Dean’s designee with academic programs responsibility for approval prior to the start of the three year term of appointment.

Election of Academic Program Council Members

Both academic program councils have four members elected from the faculty of the College. The program council chair nominates, in consultation with the associate dean or other Dean’s designee with academic programs responsibility, candidates for any open council membership positions to serve three year terms. Given the willingness of the candidates to serve, these nominations are reviewed and recommended by the Executive Committee and Faculty Affairs Committee before standing election.

At the start of this nomination process, an announcement of open council positions will be distributed to all faculty, soliciting their interest in the positions.

Nominations from the floor of the faculty meeting at which the council members are elected will also be entertained, as long as the nominee agrees to having his or her name placed in nomination.

The terms of the council members will be staggered to provide continuity. The same procedures will be used to fill the unexpired term of an elected member who resigns from a council.

Responsibilities of Academic Program Councils and Council Chairs

In essence, the academic program councils and the chairs serve as the planning and research arm of the office of the Dean and the faculty of the College with respect to all matters pertaining to academic programs. The broad agenda of each program council will be determined, on an annual basis, by the council and the associate dean or other Dean’s designee with academic programs responsibilities after soliciting input from the College’s faculty.

The responsibilities of the academic program councils shall include the following:

Develop consistent academic goals which consider the independent and interrelated missions of the university, the college, and the academic units within the focus of the strategic plan of the college. Implement a process for review, evaluation, and recommendation of academic proposals from any of the above units which may affect the academic goals of the college. Proposals from academic units will originate with a curriculum committee in the academic unit and be approved by the faculty of the academic unit.

Develop and evaluate policies dealing with academic issues within the college on topics such as: admission criteria, graduation criteria, probation and suspension, and other academic standards. All new policies or changes in policies of this type require review and legislative approval by the faculty.

Monitor the on-going process of assessment of degree programs through reports provided by the associate dean or other Dean’s designee with academic programs responsibility.

Develop and implement criteria and procedures for monitoring and reviewing solicited and unsolicited petitions for additions, deletions, or revisions of programs of study, academic unit majors, courses, and degree requirements within academic units for which degree credit is granted.

Create any required ad hoc committees (in accordance with Section VII) to study specific issues related to academic programs and policies within the jurisdiction of the program council, and to authorize research activities for internal support consistent with the implementation of any of the above issues. The recommendations of the ad hoc committees and the results of the research efforts will be reported to the appropriate program council for its consideration in deliberation of issues.

Respond appropriately to any requests or charges received from the faculty or the Dean.

Forward all recommendations through the associate dean or other Dean’s designee with responsibility for academic programs to the Dean for formal review and legislative approval by the faculty as specified in Section I.C of these bylaws.

Prepare minutes of each meeting and distribute them to the Executive Committee and the Faculty Affairs Committee.

Committees and Groups Pertaining to Academic Programs Not Incorporated in the College Bylaws

There may be one or more groups of faculty associated with the operations of the College’s academic programs at any point in time which are not formally constituted as standing committees of the College. One example is the departmental doctoral coordinators with the Director of Doctoral Programs serving as chair of the group. The policies and procedures under which such groups operate are spelled out in documents outside of these bylaws, which are incorporated in the RCB Policies and Procedures Manual and the College’s Graduate Bulletin.