The University of Arizona

Senate Functions


1.            To recommend curricula and degrees for approval. While matters pertaining to courses, major and minor requirements, the kinds of degrees and requirements for each will originate in the various colleges, the final formulation to be recommended to the Board of Regents shall be determined by the Faculty Senate.
            Recommendations for new, changed, or deleted courses and programs come to the Faculty Senate from the Undergraduate and/or Graduate Councils through the Senate Executive Committee. The sequence of approvals required for academic courses, programs, or units is set out in Appendix II. However, a topic may occasionally come before the Faculty Senate out of sequence due to the vagaries of meeting dates of the various bodies.
2.            To formulate and/or recommend approval for policies stated in official University catalogs. 
            All academic policies stated in the catalogs require Faculty Senate approval. Most policy proposals come to the Senate ExecutiveCommittee upon recommendation of the Undergraduate and/or Graduate Councils. 
3.            To establish committees to assist in carrying out functions assigned to the Faculty Senate by the Constitution and Bylaws of the General Faculty.
            Standing committees are specified in the Constitution and Bylaws, and currently consist of the Senate Executive Committee, the Academic Personnel Policy Committee, the Research Policy Committee, and the Student Affairs Policy Committee. (See Bylaws VIII.4, Faculty Senate Standing Committees, for committee composition and function.) If no standing committee has jurisdiction over a concern, the Faculty Senate or its Executive Committee may establish an ad hoc committee to consider the issue.
4.            To maintain communication and liaison with the President of the University, administrators, faculty, staff, and students.
            Reports from the President and Provost have a regular place on the agenda for each meeting of the Senate. Vice Presidents, Deans, and students, in addition to faculty, are represented in the Senate membership.
5.            To recommend policy concerning academic conduct of students.
            Concerns of the Associated Students of The University of Arizona (ASUA) and the Graduate and Professional Student Council (GPSC) are frequently presented by Faculty Senate student members.
6.            To recommend policies concerning promotion, tenure, continuing status, sabbatical leaves, and other leaves of absence.
            In addition to being the legislative body of the General Faculty, the Faculty Senate also acts as an advisory body to the President and the University administration. Given the importance of personnel policies to the General Faculty, responsibility for review is shared by the University administration and the Faculty Senate. (See also Bylaws VIII.4b, regarding the specific responsibilities of the Senate's Academic Personnel Policy Committee.)
7.            To act upon nominations for recipients of honorary degrees, which may be proposed by one or more of the College Faculties.
            The University's Honorary Degree Policy calls for nominations to be submitted to the Senate at its March meeting, in executive session. After Faculty Senate approval, the proposals are transmitted through the President to the Board of Regents.
8.            To make recommendations relative to general University policies and procedures.
            Recommendations may be made on any matter that concerns the General Faculty or affects students or staff. This provision does not mean that the Faculty Senate has the sole right to make decisions that bind the University. Rather, it affirms that Senators have a responsibility to address themselves to the University's general policies and procedures in this public forum. 
9.            To discharge responsibilities assigned by the Constitution and Bylaws of the General Faculty.
            Committees including the Faculty Senate's Academic Personnel Policy Committee and the Constitution and Bylaws Committee are responsible for considering and proposing changes to the Constitution and Bylaws. Proposed changes are processed as outlined in the General Faculty Constitution. As a body, the Faculty Senate is responsible for electing the elected members of the Executive Committee, the General Faculty representative to the Intercollegiate Athletics Committee, two Senate representatives to the Shared Governance Review Committee, two Senate representatives to the Senate Committee on Budget and Strategic Planning, the Senate representative to the Grievance Clearinghouse Committee, members of the Committee on Conciliation, the Committee on Ethics and Commitment, nominees for membership on the University Hearing Board. Elections ordinarily occur at the May meeting.
10.          To act upon matters brought for consideration in accordance with the Constitution and Bylaws of the General Faculty and existing University policy. 
            As the legislative body charged to represent the General Faculty, the Senate is required to take actions on behalf of the faculty with respect to functions identified within the Constitution. Such items usually come to the Senate from its standing committees, the Undergraduate or Graduate Councils, student government, Senate members, or from individuals within the University community. All Senate actions are subject to challenge by the General Faculty (Constitution I, and VII.1). If left unchallenged, Senate actions are considered to express the will of the General Faculty.
11.          To execute such other functions as are consistent with the Constitution and Bylaws of the General Faculty.
            In addition to the above ten listed items, the Senate has responsibility for dealing with other items which affect the welfare of the University and which are consistent with the general responsibilities identified for the General Faculty in the Constitution (Const. I). Such items are often precipitated by changing circumstances and may be brought to the Senate's attention by any part of the University community. 
Detailed information regarding Senate composition, officers, standing committees, and meetings can be found in the Constitution and Bylaws of The General Faculty of The University of Arizona.
June 2010