College of Arts and Sciences
Constitution, College of Arts and Sciences, Faculty Council
Through mutual agreement of the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences, the following Constitution represents a statement of agreement and operating procedures.
Article I - Functions of the Council
The Council shall serve as an advisory body to the Dean and as a means by which the views of the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences may be determined and communicated to the administration of the College and the University. It shall serve as an agency through which the faculty may participate in the formulation of basic College Policy.
The Chief responsibility of the Council is academic: it provides leadership to the College in its efforts to achieve the general goals of the University. To this end the Council shall:
- Establish the goals and define the functions of the College in order to provide for all students, regardless of educational objectives, the intellectual discipline, academic programs and cultural experiences for both the breadth and depth of knowledge usually identified with cultured individuals.
- Be responsible for developing and improving the curricula leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science.
- Engage in a continuous evaluation of programs and recommend the creation of new units of instruction in order to enrich the quality of education in all areas of the Liberal Arts and Sciences.
The Council in conjunction with the Dean shall represent the interest of the College and its faculty in all matters requiring the approval or sanction of other University bodies, the President of the University and the Board of Trustees of Western Illinois University.
The Council shall assist the Dean in seeking means to provide facilities, equipment, and resources necessary to fulfill the academic goals of the college.
The Council shall elect faculty members to serve on search committees for the Dean and Associate /Assistant Deans of the College.
The actions and recommendations of the Council shall be forwarded to the Dean of the College by written communication. The Dean shall approve, reject, or return proposals for specific recommendation.
Section A. Qualification for Membership
Members of the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences who hold the rank of instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, and professor are eligible for membership, with the exception of department chairs and members whose contract assignment does not include eligibility for tenure, and with the further qualification that they must have been of the faculty of the College of Arts and Sciences for at least one year.
Section B. Representation
- Each department of the College of Arts and Sciences shall be represented by one member or alternate elected by his/her department.
- The Student Council of the College of Arts and Sciences shall be represented by one member selected by said Council with full and equal voting rights.
- The Dean and Associate/Assistant Deans of the College of Arts and Sciences shall be ex officio non-voting members of the council.
Section C. Duties of Members
- The members of the Council have as their primary duty to promote the welfare of the College as defined in Article I.
- The members of the Council are accountable to their respective departments and shall present the views of their departmental colleagues to the Council and its committees.
- The Council chair, with the Executive Committee and the Dean, shall prepare and distribute an agenda for each meeting.
Section D. Term of Office
- The term of office shall be three years for the faculty members of the Council.
- No member shall succeed himself/herself, unless he/she has not served a full term.
- The term of office for members of the first Council elected under this constitution shall be one, two, or three years as determined by lot.
- In case of the resignation of a member, his/her replacement shall serve the remainder of the resigning member's term.
Section E. Officers
- The Council shall have three officers--a chair, a vice-chair, and a secretary. They shall be elected from the Council.
- The secretary shall be responsible for the accurate taking and distribution of the minutes of the Council's meetings.
Article III - Elections
Section A. Voting rights of the faculty
Members of the full-time faculty who hold the rank of instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, and professor are qualified to vote in departmental elections for Council representatives.
Section B. Schedule of elections
- Department elections for departmental representative shall be held in April for a term of office beginning the following August.
- In case of a vacancy, the department in which the vacancy occurs shall elect another representative to fill the unexpired term.
Section C. Certification of Election
The chair of the department shall certify in writing the names of elected representatives to the chair of the Executive Committee of the Council.
Article IV - Council Meetings
Section A. Regular Meetings
Meetings shall be held at least once each month during the regular academic year. Meetings may be called during the summer term. A quorum shall be a majority of the members.
Section B. Special Meetings
Special meetings may be called at any time by the Dean, by the chair of the Council, by the chair of the Executive Committee, or at the written request of one-third of the members of the Council.
Section C. Notice of Meetings
- Notice of regular meetings shall be given one week in advance of the meeting, in writing, to each member of the Council. The notice shall contain the agenda of the meeting.
- Notice of special meetings shall be given at least two days in advance of the special meetings, in writing, to each member of the Council.
Section D. Minutes
Minutes of the meetings shall be distributed to members and alternates of the Council, to the departments of the College and to the Central Administration. Departmental offices shall keep a set of minutes on file and make them easily accessible to members of the department.
Article V - Committees
Section A. Ad hoc Committees
The Council shall be empowered to create such ad hoc committees as it deems necessary.
Section B. Membership
- Committee assignments shall be made on an annual basis. No member shall serve more than three consecutive years on a single committee.
- In case of the resignation of the member, his/her replacement shall serve for the remainder of the resigning member's term.
- The Dean and Associate/Assistant Deans shall be ex officio non-voting members of all committees and sub-committees.
Section C. Conduct of Committees
- Each committee shall determine its own meeting requirements.
- The Dean may call any committee or sub-committee to meet to advise him/her. In such cases, the Dean must attempt to contact all committee or sub-committee members.
- Any two members of a committee constitute an advisory quorum.
- Advisory decisions which affect policies, or set precedents within the College of Arts and Sciences shall be reported for review at the next regular meeting of the Council.
Section D. Committee Chairman
A convening chair shall be appointed by the Council Chair for each committee and sub-committee, and at the first regular meeting, the committee shall elect its regular chair.
Section E. Standing Committees
- Curriculum Committee
- Three faculty members elected by and from the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council for a two-year term, each representing one of the following areas: Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Social Sciences, Humanities.
- One student member elected by and from the Arts and Sciences Student Council for a one-year term.
- Three faculty members selected at large by the Council from recommendations of the Executive Committee, or from nominations presented by Council members for a two-year term. One faculty member shall be appointed from each of the following areas: Natural Sciences and Mathematics, Social Sciences, Humanities.
- To receive proposals from the departments within the College, and to recommend endorsement (by the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council or the Dean, as appropriate) of those proposals which seem likely to promote the academic mission of the College.
- To recommend approval (by the full Council or the Dean, as appropriate) of course changes proposed by the departments and to insure that these courses are in reasonable harmony with courses offered by other departments.
- To receive recommendations from any faculty member in the College and refer matters to appropriate sub-committees.
- To receive recommendations or appeals from students and advise the Dean on matters of student academic affairs.
- Executive Committee
- The membership of the Executive Committee will be the Chair of the standing committees and the officers of the Council.
- To interpret the Constitution and Bylaws of the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council.
- To study proposals to amend the Constitution and Bylaws of the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council.
- To assist the Dean in recommending the agenda for meetings and the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council.
- To recommend appointments for committee membership to the Council.
- To advise the Dean in the administration of College affairs that require immediate attention (such action to be reported to the Arts and Sciences Faculty Council at the next regularly scheduled meeting of the Council).
- To conduct College-wide elections and referendums.
Article VI - Referendum
Any action of the Councils shall be the subject to referendum upon presentation of a petition for referendum by ten percent (10%) of the faculty as defined in Article III, Section A.
A petition for referendum shall be presented to the chair of the Executive committee. Upon receipt of a valid petition, the Executive Committee shall conduct the referendum by mail ballot within ten days of receipt of the petition.
The Council shall be governed by the results of the referendum.
Article VII - Amendments
Amendments to this Constitution may be presented in writing by any member of the faculty as defined in Article III, Section A. The Council shall act on the proposed amendment at the next regular meeting following the one at which the amendment was presented. If the proposed amendment is approved by a two-thirds majority of the Council, it shall be submitted to the Faculty of the council for ratification within thirty days. Voting shall be by mail ballot. An affirmative vote of a majority of the faculty voting, as defined in Article III, Section A, shall constitute ratification of the amendment provided that a majority of the faculty voted.
Article VIII - Parliamentary Authority
Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall be the parliamentary authority for the meeting of the council and its Committees.
Article IX - Implementation
This Constitution shall be in effect upon approval of the faculty (as defined in Article III, Section A) who cast a vote in three-fourths of the departments.
May 4, 1983
Revised February, 1999
Edited for style August, 2000