Senate Bill No.:  0405-03

UNIVERSITY SENATE

UNIVERSITY AT ALBANY

STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW YORK

Introduced by:              Undergraduate Academic Council

Date:                            October 4, 2004

REVISION OF SENATE CHARTER CONCERNING UAC MEMBERSHIP

IT IS HEREBY PROPOSED THAT THE FOLLOWING BE ADOPTED:

1. That the Charter of the University Senate be amended as follows:

Section S.X.313 [UAC membership] “At least six eight but not more than eight ten Teaching Faculty, at least three of whom must be senators, representing a variety of disciplines and campus locations.”

Section S.X.314 [UAC membership] “At least two three but not more than three four Professional Faculty, one of whom must be a senator.”

Section S.X.3.10.7.3 [General Education Assessment Subcommittee of the General Education Committee of UAC] “The Chair of the Subcommittee shall be a member of the Teaching Faculty who is also a member of the Council General Education Committee.”

Rationale:

The Senate Charter currently specifies that UAC have at least six and not more than eight members of the Teaching Faculty (3 of them senators). However, the Charter also specifies that a minimum of seven members of the Teaching Faculty be members of committees of the Council—Admissions and Academic Standing at least 2, Curriculum and Honors at least 1, General Education at least 3, and Interdisciplinary Studies at least 1. In addition, the Committee on Academic Standing Appellate Subcommittee need have no Teaching Faculty from UAC, but the chair must be a member of CAAS. Moreover, the Chair of the General Education Assessment Subcommittee must be a member of the Teaching Faculty and is required to be a member of UAC but is not required to be a member of the parent General Education Committee; unless the individual serves on the Council and the committee and its subcommittee, this is an eighth required slot for UAC Teaching Faculty.

For the past several years, the UAC generally meets weekly, and several of its subcommittees also meet with great frequency or meet for extended sessions. The UAC believes the current Senate Charter provides an insufficient number of Teaching Faculty given the Charter’s mandates for membership minima on the committees and given the workload demands that face the Council each year.

The UAC also notes that this lack of flexibility prevents committees from having more than the minimum number of UAC Teaching Faculty specified. Looked at another way, it provides little flexibility in apportioning UAC Teaching Faculty members to the committees in which they are most interested.

The UAC therefore requests that the number of Teaching Faculty on the Council be increased from the current “six to eight” to “eight to ten.” Because each year the UAC has far more volunteers from Professional members of the Faculty than can be accepted, the UAC also requests that the number of Professional Faculty on the Council be increased concomitantly from the current “two to three” to “three to four.”

Finally, given the extensive joint membership of Teaching Faculty on the UAC and the General Education Committee, there seems no need for the Chair of the General Education Assessment Subcommittee to be a member of UAC, but there are many practical reasons for that person to be a member of the General Education Committee. The UAC believes the requirement that the Chair of this subcommittee also be “a member of the Council” was an error, left over from an initial proposal that the Subcommittee be a standing committee of the Assessment Council.

Since the UAC already has received several new pieces of business, it requests that this problem be addressed quickly, to enable the Council to finalize the membership of its committees.