Welcome to the Standing Committees of the Academic Senate.
The Academic Senate approves of College policies; determines the goals of the academic programs and approves of all curricular matters including new courses, certificate, and degrees and all changes thereto; and generally oversees all aspects of the College.
The Academic Senate standing committees function to perform many necessary activities of the College. All the committees conduct an oversight of the areas under their charge and forward recommendations for changes to the administration and, at times, proposals for consideration of the entire Senate, including policies that govern the College. Some committees perform absolutely necessary acts such as processing admissions applications, changes in academic status of students, and curricular changes.
Faculty members who have concerns about any aspect of the College may bring them to the attention of the relevant committee for its consideration and possible recommendations for action and changes.
The Bylaws of the Academic Senate (Article VII – Committees) describe the membership and charges for each of the standing committees.
The Steering Committee of the Academic Senate consists of the Chair, Vice-Chair, and Secretary. The Chair of a Standing Committee will be guided by and work with the Steering Committee of the Academic Senate.
The membership of each committee is based on the amount of work of the committee – this is listed on your respective committee website. Once these members (i.e., faculty/HEO and Student Reps) are appointed and identified by the Committee on Committees or SGA, they are entitled full rights as members of the committee. The committee composition is as follows:
A set number of faculty/HEO represented from different departments (there shall not be more than one member representing a department)
Set number of student representation from SGA (Chair of the Committee should post their meeting times on the committee website so that student senators can select which committee meetings they can attend)
Keep in mind that getting student reps to attend meetings may be challenging for two reasons:
Committee changes their meeting time throughout the year and
Interruptions in ratifying student clubs and student Senators delays appointing student senators onto clubs
Ex-officio members without a vote are:
President or Liaison to the President (administrative designee)
Chair of the Academic Steering Committee or Liaison from the Steering Committee (SCD) which is assigned either by the Steering Committee or in collaboration with the CoC
Liaison from the Committee on Committees which is assigned from the Chair of the CoC
New faculty members are elected in the spring to a three-year term.
Committees have other attend its meetings as invited guests. Others who express an interest in attending the committee's meetings are also sent notices of its meetings. Any member of the instructional staff may be present and request permission to speak at a meeting of any Academic Senate committee. [Article VII, Section 2.4.]
In the last year of service on a committee as committee Chair, an attempt should be made to identify another member of the committee who will continue on and is willing to accept the position of chair. If this is accomplished, then during that final year the potential successor should be made aware of all that the chairperson is responsible for doing.
In the event there is no identified potential successor, it is all the more important for the current chair to prepare documents to be turned over to whomever is elected to serve as Chair the following year. It is optimal that conversation occurs between the outgoing and new incoming Chairs and that a transfer of documents takes place at that time. If such a meeting cannot be held then it is very important that the outgoing chair place all such documents for the transition and any other relevant documents in the filing cabinet for the committee in the Academic Senate archive section of the Library. Chairpersons are encouraged not to retain original committee documents in their own office.
“Members of the Academic Senate standing Committees shall function from the date of election until the first day of the Fall Semester following their election. During the changeover period from the April Senate meeting to the first day of the following Fall Semester, the various Committees shall consist of members of both the retiring Committees and the new Committees. A quorum shall consist of a majority of the committee size as of the first day of the Fall Semester. Those who will constitute the new committee shall elect one chairperson before the last day of classes of the semester in which the committee is elected. The new chairperson shall serve beginning the first day of the Fall Semester; the retiring chairperson shall be responsible for the preparation and submission of the annual report as stipulated in Article VII, Section 7b, of these Bylaws.”
“Through its Steering and Standing Committees, the Academic Senate shall have the power to request and receive information appropriate to or necessary for the performance of its duties, from the President and members of the administration, from students and student organizations and from such other sources as may be appropriate. It may address communications to the Board of Trustees by the President in some document whether it be a Chancellor's Report or some other report in which the vote must be recorded. As the policy making body of the College, the Academic Senate shall adopt policies not inconsistent with BOT policies and Bylaws and shall be the voice of the academic community of Queensborough Community College of the City University of New York in all matters which shall appropriately be brought before it:
Extracurricular programs: athletics and cultural, fine and performing arts.
Educational objectives of the College.
The establishment and location of new units of the College.
The periodic review of all departments of the College with the power to recommend to the Board of Trustees the creation, deletion, or restructuring of departments of the College in consultation with the department(s) in question.
The formulation of the policy relating to the admission and retention of students, subject to the guidelines of the Board of Trustees, and curriculum, awarding of College credits, and granting of degrees. In granting of degrees, student members of the Senate shall not vote.
The recommendation of search and evaluation procedures.
And such other areas affecting the welfare of the institution.”
Read the charges set for your specific committee bylaws
The committee serves as an intermediary party between individual departments/offices and the administration. It may arrive at recommendations to the Academic Senate that are impartial and in the best interests of the College as a whole. Although the faculty members are appointed into particular academic departments they do NOT represent those departments at the Committee meetings. This should be made clear by the Chairperson to both the committee members and their respective department chairpersons. Committee members should not be relied upon as sources of information from or conduits to communications to their departments.
There are standing committees of the Academic Senate that have committees of the College (formed by the administration rather than the formed by the Academic Senate) acting in areas related to their charge. Such committees are expected to send a communication to those College committees requesting information such as the following: (See Attachment 1- Request of Information from other Committees)
current membership of the College committee
current charges assigned to the committee
date of the last meeting of the committee
any information the committee cares to share with the standing committee of the Academic Senate that may be helpful to the work of the standing committee.
Refer to “Addendum to the General Committee Guide" which are additional contributions and/or activities specific to each Committee and posted on your respective committee website.
The Committee should seek input from the College community concerning the matters related to its charge. This can be done in a variety of ways including email and other methods of communication. The Committee should seek input from the parties who are involved with or related to matters under its consideration. It may be prudent to invite such parties to attend committee meetings on matters of possible controversy or where faculty, departments, and the administration may not agree.
The President's designee regularly attends committee meetings to address any concerns the Administration has and serve as a liaison between the committee and the administration. The committee may also receive information from other offices, committees, and/or departments on campus to address collaborative work related to the bylaws of the committee.
The committee meets several times each semester in order to accomplish its various charges coming from the Bylaws, Senate actions, and the Steering Committee. The committee operates by general review and consensus.
The committee must prepare an agenda, take minutes of the meetings, and prepare an annual report (See Attachment 2 – Committee Documents & Attachment 4 – Template of Annual Report to the Academic Senate.)
Meetings should follow Robert's Rules of Order that can be accessed at http://www.rulesonline.com/
Documents generated by and received by the committee should be forwarded to others on a timely basis (See Attachment 3 –Distribution List). Therefore all committee meeting dates, agenda, meeting minutes, and documentation for review should be sent to the distribution list. Once approved, documents generated by and received by the committee should be uploaded to the committee web page via the college's CMS (trainings available during the semester).
When the committee votes, even when electing a new Chairperson, members are to vote via closed ballot and submit their ballot to the committee Secretary, who at that time can announce the outcome. The ballots are then put in a dated sealed envelope (with a note as to what the vote was for) and forwarded to the Senate Archivist.
- Senate committees may use electronic voting for Committee resolutions, recommendations or other deliberative matters, as long as the following requirements are fulfilled:
compliance with Robert's Rules of Order, relating to electronic voting in order to provide, at a minimum, simultaneous aural communications between all meeting participants.
compliance with open meeting laws pursuant to New York State v. Perez.
compliance with all other committee meeting regulations provided for under this section. [Article VII, Section 2.5.]
- The public has the right to attend any meeting of committees, subcommittees, and special committees. Any time a quorum of any such committee gathers to discuss business, the meeting must be held in public, subject to the right to convene an executive session under certain limited circumstances. In addition, there must be prior notice of the meeting; the business of the meeting must be recorded in written minutes; and a record must be obtained of the final vote of each member of the committee on all matters on which a vote is formally taken. Non-members must conform to the usual requirements of parliamentary procedure; the Parliamentarian will interpret and enforce the rules, which include that non-members of the body may speak without the permission of the body.
- What new members should do to prepare to work on the Committee:
Read this Guide and familiarize themselves with the pertinent policies and documents
Contact the current Committee Chairperson
Familiarize themselves with the committee's meeting schedule and ask their department chair not to schedule classes for them to teach during the Committee meeting times and if possible during the Academic Senate meeting time too.
Review the committee's web page for prior agendas and minutes
Refer to “Additional Contributions and/or Activities for each Committee” posted on your respective committee website.
- What new members should do to prepare to work on the Committee:
The Committee Chair should become familiar with this General Committee Guide for standing committees.
At the beginning of each academic year, all Senate committee Chairs will receive a guidance email from the Steering Committee. The guidance should be reviewed with the Steering Committee and then reviewed withh your respective committee as a starting point for the new academic year. The guidance is a result from consideration of a number of items including:
Charges for the committee as contained in the Bylaws of the Academic Senate
Specific items referred by an action of the Academic Senate activities consistent with and as a result from:
CUNY Master Plan
QCC Mission Statement
QCC Strategic Plan
Middle States Association Recommendations
Annual report of the committee from the previous year
Items referred by the Senate or one of its Committees
Items requested by the Faculty Executive Committee
Items suggested by the President, Student Government, or Alumni representative to the Academic Senate
Refer to “Addenddum to the General Committee Guide" posted on your respective committee website. Edit this section as needed.
Refer to the next section to propose new policy and/or make revisions to your committee bylaws.
Either form of report (monthly or annual) might contain recommendations that would be made to various units of the college, including other Senate bodies. Committees should send these recommendations directly to the units involved as well as reporting them to the Senate.
Recommendations made to units of the College are to be followed up by the committees who make them, and responses reported in subsequent reports to the Academic Senate. If there is no response or no adequate response, as determined by the committee, the committee may report this to the Academic Senate after consultation with the Steering Committee. The current disposition of each recommendation should be noted in a monthly report and also in a summary of all items in the annual report. See Attachment 4 – Sample Annual Report.
From time to time, the Committee may determine that it is necessary to have the Academic Senate consider a policy for the College. In this case the committee frames a proposal and sends it to the Steering Committee. See Attachment 5 – Sample Policy Statement (policy statement from 2005 can be used as an example), for an example of a policy statement. Actions for the Academic Senate to approve, including policies of the College, are to be so designated in reports sent to the Senate. Such actions, recommendations and policies as are approved by a vote of the Senate are to be followed up by the committees of origination and the Steering Committee. If there is no response or no adequate response, as determined by the Steering Committee, the committee may report this to the Academic Senate for a further discussion of the matter and a determination by the Academic Senate as to the appropriate course of action for the Senate to take on the matter. Of course, at any time, any member of the Senate may request a report on the status of previous Senate resolutions and policies.
Through the process of making and reporting on recommendations, the role of the Academic Senate in governance is effectuated.
As the committee sends its reports and recommendations (see Sample Documents) to the Academic Senate, the Chairperson of the committee should be prepared to present the matter to the Steering Committee and be prepared to answer questions concerning such reports and recommendations.
If the Steering Committee submits a matter to the Academic Senate, the Chairperson of the Committee should arrange with the Steering Committee the manner in which the Committee Chairperson participates in the presentation to the Academic Senate. The Committee Chairperson might make the principle presentation or simply respond to questions. If the Chairperson is in dissent from the matter forwarded from the Committee to the Academic Senate, then the Chairperson might ask to present a dissent, as is the right of any member of the minority faction of the committee. The committee Chairperson should be present to answer questions from the Academic Senate concerning the matters placed before the Academic Senate by the committee. The committee Chairperson might invite other members of the committee or the college faculty or staff to be present at the Academic Senate meeting in order to respond to specific matters. If they are not members of the Academic Senate, either the committee Chairperson requests permission for nonmembers to speak, knowing that they want to do so, at the start of the committee presentation or when nonmembers raise their hands to respond to or question the report, they need to have permission to speak.
It is best for the Chairperson to prepare the way for the Academic Senate to act on whatever measures are being sent to it. The Chairperson should contact the principal parties and apprise them of the matter. If there is opposition to the measure expected, the Chairperson should discuss this with the Steering Committee and those affected.
The committee is respectful of all constituencies of the college community and open to concerns and makes every effort to address issues in a timely manner. Other concerns may be subject to individual committees – please refer to your committee's additional contributions section.
This guide is a live document and should be updated on a continuous basis. The goal of this guide is to provide committee members and committee leaders' guidance on how to conduct committee meetings and how to proceed with committee tasks and projects.
Work on the Standing Committees of the Academic Senate is acknowledged as service. Therefore, all members who are elected to participate on a standing committee of the Academic Senate have additional responsibilities to carry out. If you are unable to participate/attend or follow through with performing tasks given to your committee, it is advisable to resign from the committee by informing the Chair of the Committee on Committees or the Steering Committee of the Academic Senate in writing. We hope that you find the work on the committees of the Academic Senate rewarding and a valuable contribution to shared governance at Queensborough Community College.
Attachment 1 – Sample Request to other committees on campus
QUEENSBOROUGH COMMUNITY COLLEGE
The City University of New York
COMMITTEE ON [NAME]
TO: _________________________, Chair, _________________College Committee
FROM: _________________________, Chair, Committee on _____________________
SUBJECT: Request for Information
I am writing in my capacity as Chairperson of the Committee on ….
The Steering Committee of the Academic Senate has directed us to secure information concerning those areas of the college related to our charge from the Academic Senate. As your committee is related to those areas and as we are charged with making reports and recommendations to the Senate concerning those areas it behooves us to learn about the function and work of your committee. Toward that end we wish to establish communication with you and the members of your committee.
Article III. POWERS OF THE ACADEMIC SENATE Section 1. Through its Steering and Standing Committees, the Academic Senate shall have the power to request and receive information appropriate to or necessary for the performance of its duties, from the President and members of the administration, from students and student organizations and from such other sources as may be appropriate.
Article VIII. The primary function of an Academic Senate committee shall be: to study the subjects referred to it by these bylaws or by the specific action of the Senate; to formulate appropriate policies thereon; and to propose such policies to the Senate for action. Every Academic Senate committee shall maintain a continuing review of College policy in its area.
I am therefore writing to inquire:
- Who are the members of your committee?
- What charges has your committee been assigned?
- When did your committee last meet?
- Do you have any information to share about the activities of your committee that you believe might be helpful to us?
I apologize for any inconvenience these queries may impose, and offer my thanks, on behalf of the Committee on… for your time, trouble, and attention.
Attachment 2 – Committee Documents
An agenda should, as far as possible, be prepared and distributed prior to the meeting. The contents of the meeting agenda should follow the following format:
- Approval of the Agenda
- Approval of the Minutes of the Previous Meeting(s)
- Chair's Report
- Communications from Steering Committee
- Communications with Administration
- Items in Process (or pending)
- Items for Current Agenda
- Old Business
- New Business,
- Set Date, Time, Location for next meeting
Minutes shall be taken at each meeting:
- These should indicate actions taken and/or recommendations made for Academic Senate consideration and for subsequent implementation by the College community.
- They may also include a limited description of the areas discussed.
- Minutes should be sent out to all members on the committee and those present during the meeting (guests) for approval (see Attachment 2 – committee documents).
The contents of the meeting minutes should follow the following format:
- Date, Time and Location of meeting
- Approval of Minutes- if any
- Notation of Chairperson's report
- Report on Actions taken by the Committee
- Setting of the Date, Time, Location of next meeting.
Committees of the Academic Senate send both occasional monthly and annual reports to the Academic Senate. In both forms of reports, there may be contained recommendations being made by the committee. The Academic Senate receives these reports and may decide to discuss items contained therein. These reports should be sent to the committee's distribution list (see Attachment 3- Distribution list) for approval and prior to submission.
All recommendations for action must be reported to the Academic Senate for their consideration/vote.
Any item for consideration by the Academic Senate must be sent to the Steering Committee of the Academic Senate in the form of a monthly report at least 18 days prior to the next scheduled Academic Senate. It would be advisable to have a representative attend the Academic Senate meeting where the recommendation is being discussed/voted upon.
Note: The dates for submission to Steering Committee for placement of an item on the Agenda, and the dates of the Academic Senate Meetings can be found at: Senate Calendar
Annual Report – is considered an official document
Following the Bylaws, it is the responsibility of each standing committees, subcommittees, and special committees of the Academic Senate must make annual reports to the Academic Senate.
The Committee may call upon the assistance of the Steering Committee designee and/or the President's designee in the preparation of that report. The intention behind the preparation and content of the annual reports is the positive goal of having the work of the committees completed. The reports will serve both to inform on what has been done and to make known what might be done to further the work of the committee. These reports will assist the Steering Committee and the Administration in ascertaining what needs attention and where clarification is in order and possibly where more support must be given.
These reports will contain:
- events of the year
- activities in fulfillment of the committee's charges: bylaws, specific annual charges from the Steering Committee
- issues related to the work process of the committee
- description of what might be done to support and further the work of the committee.
See Attachment 4 - Sample Annual Report template
Those who prepare these reports should feel free to indicate what additional resources or forms of assistance might better enable them to complete their work including aid from the Steering Committee and the President's designees. Involving the committee chair and the Steering Committee and the President's designees in the preparation of the annual report should make the basic task of preparing the report more manageable and provide the information needed by the administration and the Steering Committee to assess the needs of the Senate.
It is the responsibly of the current Chairperson of each of the Standing Committees to draft the Committee's Annual Report.
- The report should be reviewed by the entire committee prior to being submission to the Academic Senate.
- The Annual Report is due prior to the September Academic Senate meeting and should be submitted by August 15.
- It is advisable to review the Sample Annual Report template when writing up the annual report. Once the report has been approved by the committee, the report should be uploaded appropriately (i.e., populate the headings of each section from your annual report) onto the annual report section of Cascade. This will streamline all annual reports and allow certain information (i.e., recommendations/self-generated goals, new chair, meeting dates) to be easily identified in the report.
- Once submitted the chair needs to inform the Steering Committee of the Academic Senate so that it can be included in the Senate's agenda.
The report should also be sent electronically to the Senate's archivist.
Attachment 3- Distribution List
Items related to the regular meetings of the Committee (agenda, minutes, memoranda, etc.) should be distributed to:
- Committee members
- President's Designee
- Steering Committee Designee
- Committee on Committees Liaison
- Academic Senate Steering Committee
- Academic Senate Website (email@example.com)
- College Archives (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- others present at the meetings
A special distribution may be necessary:
- When an item under consideration requires the input from individuals/departments, who are not on the general distribution list, these should be notified in advance of the meeting.
Other Materials: annual report, assessment requests etc.:
- Pertinent parties
- College Archives
Copies of materials should be sent to the Academic Senate Steering Committee as they are deemed significant and leading to possible actions by the Academic Senate
Attachment 4- Template for Annual Reports of the Standing Committees of the Academic Senate
Annual reports will be posted on the committee's webpage. Please log in to Cascade, then find your committee area, then click on reports (or ask our Web Director, David Moretti where to find it).
Once you are in the annual reports folder, please complete each section. Below are the subject areas (in bold) you will be filling out as part of your annual report. You may fill out the information on this form and then cut and paste onto the Cascade template.
- Text field here- Alphabetical order by last name (department)/position held in committee
- Text field here- Alphabetical order by last name (department)/position held in committee Include here: Student Representation, Steering Committee Designee, Committee on Committee liaison, President's designee, etc…
Membership Composition Changes
- Text field here.
Committee Meeting Dates
- Text field here – how often met? Do you have a regularly scheduled time?
Narrative summary of committee work
- Include any projects, items acted upon, indicate clearly whether project is completed or in progress, etc…
Assigned Committee work as per Bylaws Charge/Strategic Plan/Middle States Items/ or Actions of the Academic Senate
- Text fields here -copy and paste the charges- clearly indicate next to each charge whether each charge has been completed, is in progress, or has been deferred. Explain partial completion and deferral.
Responses towards Steering Committee Charges
- Text field here - copy and paste SC charges- clearly indicate next to each charge whether each charge has been completed, is in progress, or has been deferred. Explain partial completion and deferral.
Recommendations for Next Academic Year
New Committee Members
- – new elected Chair and Secretary
Committee on __________, Chair
Attachment 5– Sample Senate Proposal
The City University of New York
Academic Senate Committee on Computer Resources
TO: Academic Senate Steering Committee
FROM: Committee on eLearning, __________, Chairperson
SUBJECT: Monthly Report: Two proposals regarding email and the QCC Technology Plan
DATE: Wednesday, November 30th, 2005
Proposal 1. TIGERMAIL
Whereas, there are a number of benefits that come to students from the use of their college supplied email system,
Whereas, there are a number of benefits that come to faculty from the students using the college supplied email system,
Whereas, there are a number of benefits for the college administration that come from the students using the college supplied email system,
Be it resolved that: all students of the College use Tigermail exclusively for school related business and be it further resolved that faculty so inform students of this requirement and attempt to enforce it if they have email communications with their students.
Be it further resolved that faculty be encouraged to use the college email in school business.
Proposal 2. FACULTY EMAIL
Whereas, there are a number of benefits that come to faculty use of the college-supplied email system, Whereas, faculty often continue many of their academic activities after they have retired from teaching,
Be it resolved that: all retired faculty members who worked fulltime be allowed to maintain Queensborough email accounts.
Attachment 6 - Sample Change in Committee's Bylaws
From: ______, Chair, Committee on Bylaws
To: _________, Secretary, Steering Committee of the Academic Senate
Subject: The Committee on Bylaws of the Academic Senate unanimously approved the following resolution on ----DATE ----and now submits this resolutions for consideration to the Academic Senate:
Revision of the Charges of the Committee on the Library
Whereas, the Committee on the Library reports and recommends to the Academic Senate on matters pertaining to the Library of Queensborough Community College.
Whereas, the matters pertaining to the Library of Queensborough Community College that are the purview of the Committee on the Library are not specified in Article VII, Section 24.
Be it resolved that the wording stated in Article VIII, Section 24 be revised to better reflect the work of the Committee on the Library.
Section 24 (The Committee on the Library).
The Committee on the Library shall consist of six (6) members of the instructional staff and one (1) student.
The Committee on Library shall:
1. Report and recommend to the Academic Senate on matters pertaining to the Library of Queensborough Community College.
2. Serve as an advisory group.
Section 24 (The Committee on the Library).
The Committee on the Library shall:
1. Report and recommend to the Academic Senate on matters pertaining to the Library of Queensborough Community College.
Academic Senate Agenda- February 9, 2021- Attachment C
2. Serve as an advisory group to the Library Department, that will:
1. consider and advocate for students’ interests in the use of the library and its resources including (but not limited to) the allocation of space, the rules and regulations of use, and the availability of resources.
2. consider and refer to other administrative offices (e.g., Buildings and Grounds, Academic Affairs) issues related to the function and condition of the library building.
3. consider, make recommendations, and advocate for initiatives that build or improve access to the library’s collections.
4. review the current state of pedagogical technologies in the Library, and make recommendations to the Library staff and Senate regarding the maintenance and upgrade of these technologies.