Bylaws of the Faculty Senate of Utah Valley University


Date Ratified: April 18, 2017

1. Specific Guidelines for the 2017-2018 Academic Year

The standard term of service for all university committees is 3 years. Some committee members, including chairs, may have begun service with the expectation of 5 years. The 5-year term of service will be recognized, however the 3-year term of service is the standard going forward.

2. Process for Ratification, Approval, of Amendments to Faculty Senate Bylaws

1. The Bylaws shall be ratified by the Faculty Senate before the end of the Academic year during the month of April of each year.

2. Faculty Senate Bylaws ratified by the Faculty Senate during April are in effect for the following academic year.

3. Changes to the Bylaws must be approved in Senate meetings by a two-thirds majority vote of the Senators present.

4. The Faculty Senate Bylaws ratification process should follow the Debate Calendar process within Faculty Senate.

3. Changes for the Faculty Senate Constitution in the Future

1. The use of Memo of Understanding (MOU) needs to be removed from policy as UVU cannot create MOU’s with itself. (See in Faculty Senate Constitution).

2. Clarify language about the election of Faculty Senators serving on the Executive Committee and their length of service.

3. The Constitution states that the Curriculum Chair serves for 1-year. It is desired that the Curriculum Chair serve for at a minimum 3-years. If a Faculty Senator is elected to serve as the Curriculum Chair they should serve for 3 years even if their term of service as a Faculty Senator comes to an end. The Curriculum Chair should serve out the remainder of their term, even though they are not an elected senator.

4. Duties & Functions of Faculty Senate Executive Officers

1. President

1. The President fulfills the responsibilities listed in the Faculty Senate Constitution,

2. The President serves on the following committees, Boards, and attends the following meetings;

a. President's Council

b. President’s Executive Leadership Council (PELC)

c. Academic Affairs Council (AAC)

d. University Benefits Committee

e. University Planning Advisory Council (UPAC)

f. Attends meetings of the Board of Trustees

g. Ex-officio member of the PACE Board.

3. The President will function as the Chair of the Faculty Senate.

4. The Senate President serves as a member of other committees or executive bodies as assigned or invited by appropriate authority.

5. The Senate President is the budget director for Senate funds.

6. The Faculty Senate President votes when there is a tied vote on any matter within the Faculty Senate.

7. Is responsible for distributing service certificates and writing letters of service for senators rotating off the Senate at the end of each academic year.

2. Vice President

1. Serves concurrently with the President during two years of their term.

2. Functions as the Vice Chair of the Senate.

3. Serves as a member of other committees or executive bodies as assigned or invited by appropriate authority.

4. In the event the Senate President cannot complete his/her term, the Vice President will succeed immediately to President of the Senate and preside at Senate proceedings. The Vice President will serve out the remaining term the President was elected to fulfill.

5. The Vice President is a voting member of the Faculty Senate representing the issues of all faculty and does not represent their Department.

6. The Vice President is not a President Elect.

7. If the Vice President becomes President an election for a new Vice President may take place, if the transition takes place relatively early in the 2-year term.

3. Chairs of the Faculty Senate Standing Committees

1. Service and Elections (S&E) Standing Committee

1. Attends Faculty Senate Executive Committee and Faculty Senate meetings as designated where they promote faculty service and involvement as an important part of UVU.

2. Manages the list of faculty names serving on Senate committees as well as the faculty member's term lengths.

3. Prompts S&E committee members to hold elections in their College/School to fill vacancies as they arise and advises those committee members in the elections they hold.

4. One member elected by and from each college/school and a chair elected by and from the Faculty Senate.

5. Maintain a current list of Faculty Senators and their terms.

6. Monitors the activities of Senate Ad Hoc committees and Senate participation in other campus activities as reported by Chairs and attendance documents recorded by Faculty Senate Secretary.

7. Seeks nominations for and conducts elections as needed for Faculty Senate President, Vice President, Parliamentarian, and chairs of standing committees.

8. Monitor presence of Faculty Senate members in Senate meetings through making an annual report to Faculty Senate Executive Committee regarding the presence of faculty at Faculty Senate meetings.

2. Retention, Tenure and Promotion, and Appeals Standing Committee

1. Assist with organizing, scheduling, and conducting committees to hear tenure appeals, rank appeals, and grievances.

2. Provide direction for committees organized to hear tenure appeals, rank appeals, and grievances.

3. Serve on appeals committees when necessary.

4. Serve as a member of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.

5. At least once every five years in coordination with the SVPAA, conduct a review of the tenure guidelines for all UVU academic departments.

6. As a faculty senator, attend all meetings of the Faculty Senate.

3. Curriculum Standing Committee

1. Responsible for overseeing the efficient and effective approval of curriculum as outlined in UVU Policy 605.

2. Oversees course review outlined in UVU Policy and credit hour review outlined in UVU Policy 610.

3. Leads the University Curriculum Committee (UCC) in preparing, disseminating and presenting guidance materials on curriculum procedures to faculty and the wider academic community through the Academic Affairs Council (AAC), Chairs Meeting, College Curriculum Committee (CCC) meetings as well as Faculty Senate.

4. Presides over monthly UCC meetings.

4. Special Assignments Standing Committee

1. Investigates areas of interest or concern to senate that does not fall into other established areas.

2. Intentionally and directly solicits and fields questions and concerns from faculty members either anonymously or otherwise, providing a formal mechanism for all faculty of all levels to express their questions and concerns to the Faculty Senate.

3. In some cases, the results may be simply informative, in other cases it may entail subcommittee review and recommendations to the larger senate body.

4. Often this area of senate interacts with other areas of campus as it looks into topics.

5. Non-Standing Committees and Ex-Officio Members of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.

1. General Guideline for Non-Standing Committees: the Policy Liaison and the Chairs of the CAGAS and Faculty Development committees serve for 3 years and may serve a second term, but may not serve more than 2 consecutive terms.

2. Parliamentarian

1. Advises the Faculty Senate President in rules of order and procedure conducting Faculty Senate meetings.

2. Assists in the drafting and interpretation of bylaws, rules of order, and the planning and conducting of meetings.

3. The Parliamentarian is a non-voting member of the Executive Committee and Faculty Senate.

4. The Parliamentarian shall not be a sitting senator of the Faculty Senate.

3. Policy Liaison

1. Need not be a sitting senator and carries no release time.

2. Assists the senate in its role as a policy sponsor (Senate President) and may steward a policy if asked.

3. Under the direction of the Executive Committee works with administration on Stage 1 policy matters, particularly those of high interest for faculty.

4. Helps stewards in drafting policy and in identifying and resolving possible policy concerns prior to Stage 2.

4. Council on Admission, Graduation, and Academic Standards (CAGAS)

1. Responsible for recommending and evaluating policies concerning admission, retention, graduation, and academic standards and for establishing some of the procedures to carry out such policies. It also serves as an appellate body regarding such policies and procedures.

2. CAGAS is an advisory committee and makes recommendations to the SVPAA.

3. The bylaws of the Council will be maintained separately from the bylaws for the Faculty Senate. They will be found on the Faculty Senate web page until such time as the Council has its own website.

4. The Chair of the Council should not be a sitting senator, but does serve as an ex officio member of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.

5. Faculty Development Committee

1. One member elected by and from each College/School, the Associate Director of Faculty Development (from the Office of Teaching and Learning), and a Chair elected by and from the Faculty Senate.

2. Encourage faculty scholarship via the dissemination of financial assistance for travel and instructional development, facilitate the process of student evaluation of instructors, oversee the Faculty Excellence Awards process, and provide information to faculty on methods useful in improving classroom teaching and student / instructor relations.

3. Stay informed on all Office of Teaching and Learning faculty development initiatives so there is more effective communication and opportunities.

6. Senate Librarian

1. Advises the Senate on developments from the library.

2. Provides relevant information on topics of interest at the request of the Executive Committee or the Faculty Senate. This includes performing literature reviews and other research as needed.

3. The Librarian is a non-voting member of the Executive Committee and Faculty Senate.

4. Appointed by the Library Director.

7. Faculty Senate Secretary/Treasurer

1. Responsible for recording meetings and producing minutes of all Executive Committee Meetings and Faculty Senate Meetings.

2. Makes a copy of all minutes available to the public through the Faculty Senate webpage.

3. Records attendance at Faculty Senate Executive Committee and Faculty Senate meetings.

4. Acts as Senate Treasurer to the Executive Committee.

5. Compensated through an agreement between the SVPAA and Faculty Senate President.

5. Elections

1. General Guidelines for Elections

1. Faculty who are eligible to vote for Faculty Senate President and Vice President are defined in the Faculty Senate Constitution (Policy 103 Section 3.2)

2. The Faculty Senate Officers (i.e., President, Vice President, Chairs of the Faculty Senate Standing Committees, Parliamentarian) shall begin their respective terms of office on July 1 of the year they are elected and serve until the end of June in the last year of their term.

3. The newly elected Faculty Senate President presides at the election of the new Executive Committee members following her/his election to Faculty Senate President.

4. During the election of new Executive Committee members the Vice President, Parliamentarian, and Secretary may assist the President as requested.

5. The President and Vice President, serve a term of two years.

6. Chairs of the Faculty Senate Standing Committees serve one-year terms, except for the chair of the Curriculum Committee. The Curriculum Chair serves a 3-year term. If the 3-year term of the Curriculum Chair exceeds the length of time the Chair serves as a Senator the Chair will continue to serve as the Chair of the Curriculum committee, until their 3-year term is completed.

7. The Parliamentarian serves a four-year term and is elected by the Faculty Senate during the off year of the election of the Faculty Senate President and Vice President.

8. Election of Faculty Senate offices as well as all university committees faculty are elected or appointed to serve on shall be for a maximum of 3 years. Faculty can be appointed or elected to additional terms of service, unless otherwise stated by the committee bylaws, but terms should normally be for 3 year segments.

2. Election of President & Vice President

1. The Faculty Senate President and Vice President shall be elected prior to March 1st during the Spring Semester, prior to the end of term for the current Faculty Senate President.

2. Nominations for Faculty Senate President and Vice President are held during a Faculty Senate meeting starting during the Spring semester.

3. All nominations must be seconded.

4. At least 50% of the quorum in attendance must approve/ratify the nominations.

5. Voting may be conducted electronically through a means guaranteeing non-duplicate voting counts.

a. It is recommended that an online program (e.g., Qualtrics or Survey Monkey) is used and that all faculty receive a unique individual email invitations and with a unique URL for each faculty member to vote for President and Vice President.

b. The current Faculty Senate President, Vice President, and Secretary with assistance from the Service and Elections Chair, Parliamentarian, and other official UVU departments as deemed appropriate to moderate the election of the new Faculty Senate President and Vice President.

c. A preference voting and instant run-off process will be used to identify order of preference for each candidate nominated.

6. The outgoing President presides at the nominations of the new Faculty Senate President and Vice President.

7. Faculty Senate President and Vice-President may not be elected to more than one term in the same office.

3. Election of Parliamentarian

1. Parliamentarian serves for a term of 4 years.

2. Parliamentarian must be nominated by a sitting senator.

3. Voted by the Faculty Senate body, similar to the process outlined for the election of Faculty Senate Standing Committees and during the same meeting of the Standing Committee Chairs.

4. The Parliamentarian must not be a current sitting senator.

5. Needs to demonstrate proficiency in procedure and protocols

4. Election of Chairs of the Faculty Senate Standing Committees

1. Chairs of the Faculty Senate Standing Committees are elected during the last meeting of the Faculty Senate for the academic year.

2. Serve for a term of one-year, Curriculum Chair serves for 3 years.

3. Begin service on July 1st of the year elected.

4. Must be an elected Faculty Senator representing their Academic Department when they are elected.

5. All Executive Committee Officers may serve more than one term if they are also serving as Faculty Senate representatives of their own department at the time of re-election.

6. The term for Executive Committee Chairs will be one year for all Executive Committee Officers, except for the Curriculum Chair. The Curriculum Chair serves a 3-year term. If the 3-year term of the Curriculum Chair exceeds the length of time the Chair serves as a Faculty Senator the Chair will continue to serve as the Chair of the Curriculum committee until their 3-year term is completed.

7. Elections within the Senate, including those for Executive Committee Chairs, shall be conducted by secret ballot. Ballots shall be prepared by or under the supervision of the Faculty Senate President with the help of the Vice President, Parliamentarian, and Secretary.

8. In the event that no candidate receives a majority of the votes cast, a run-off election shall result between the top two candidates. The one receiving the highest number of votes in the run-off balloting will stand elected.

9. Senators elected as Executive Committee Chairs shall assume their responsibilities July 1st of the year they are elected, unless they are filling a midterm vacancy. If filling a midterm vacancy, their responsibilities shall begin immediately.

5. Election of Faculty Senators

1. Senators shall be elected for a three-year term and they may be elected for additional terms.

2. Elections of Faculty Senators representing departments shall take place within academic departments no later than April 1st of each year.

3. If Senators move from one academic school/college to another, they shall not retain their Senate seats, though they shall be eligible to be elected to the Senate from the new school/college. If an academic school/college loses a seat or seats due to reapportionment, the faculty members eligible to vote from that school/college shall determine how to apportion the school/college Senators among its faculty members. Some Senators may not serve their full three-year terms in this case.

6. Election of Other Faculty Senate Committees

1. Elections for other committees of the Faculty Senate shall be conducted at the last Faculty Senate meeting of the academic year

2. Elections are presided over by the Faculty Senate President.

3. Chairs of committees officially part of the Faculty Senate, but not Standing Committees serve for 3 years and may serve a second term, but may not serve more than 2 consecutive terms.

4. Faculty Senators begin their service on July 1st. The number of Senators serving for each department is defined in policy 103, 5.2.2. The count at that date is the official number used for apportionment of the following academic year. A senator will not lose his seat nor will another seat be given based on any changes in the department throughout the year.

5. As stated in the Faculty Senate Constitution (Policy 103) All tenured and tenure-track faculty members are eligible for senate membership (5.1.1); Each department shall determine how they select their senator. Disputes over the selection process shall be reviewed and resolved by the Executive Committee (5.2.1).

6. Election of Other Faculty Senate Committees

1. Elections for other committees of the Faculty Senate shall be conducted at the last Faculty Senate meeting of the academic year

2. Elections are presided over by the Faculty Senate President.

3. Chairs of committees officially part of the Faculty Senate, but not Standing Committees serve for 3 years and may serve a second term, but may not serve more than 2 consecutive terms.


6. Procedures of the Faculty Senate

1. General Procedural Guidelines

1. Robert’s Rules represents the official rules of the Senate. Our intent at the Senate is to follow procedure but not get bogged down by it or have it become the focus of our activities.

2. Senate can discuss any topics of concern or interest and form ad-hoc committees or use the Special Assignments Committee to explore anything relevant to campus life and the betterment of the institution. Often it is best to do this in conjunction with the administration but that is not necessary and at times may not be appropriate depending on the issue and level of concern expressed by the faculty.

3. All discussion at the Senate moves through the President- the President recognizes individuals and keeps an order of individuals if more than one person desires to speak. Speaking out or speaking without being recognized is seen as disruptive. The Senate is a place of open and often extended discussion- attempts to curtail or limit discussion should be made with the utmost care.

2. Policy Actions and Process by which policy is acted upon in the Senate-

1. Senators are first informed of policy as an Information Item- this informs faculty that the policy is now ready for their consideration- generally via the agenda.

2. At the next Senate meeting a policy is listed for a 1st Reading- this means all Senators come to the meeting prepared to discuss the policy and ask the steward questions.

3. The policy then becomes an Action Item- this means we will further discuss the policy then take some type of action. It should be noted that at any time in this process the Senate can suspend the rules and take whatever action it likes by a majority vote.

3. Procedural Actions/Motions

1. Do these actions by saying “I move (make a motion) to…” All actions below are accomplished by a motion, a second, and then a simple majority vote unless otherwise noted- a Senator can also request a paper ballot, a secret ballot, or a larger majority vote (say 2/3) at any time which must be passed by vote as well.

1. Make a Motion to … - a Senator can move to create something in this fashion- it is the most common action of the Senate- it must be seconded and depending on the type of action it is either then debated or immediately voted upon- all motioned items must be acted upon prior to moving to another action.

2. Propose an Amendment- this is either friendly or not- if the sponsor of the original motion agrees an amendment is friendly then we generally allow the motion to be modified with little formal process- if the motion is not friendly then it must be seconded, debated, and voted upon and then we return to the original motion depending on what action has been taken on the amendment.

3. Division of a Question- at times debate on a motion may bring us to a point where it is apparent that a motion is in need of division into separate parts- if this is seen as friendly by the sponsor then we simply do that otherwise it is voted upon.

4. Reorder the Agenda- any Senator recognized by the President can move to reorder the agenda- this action is non-debatable and if seconded is voted upon immediately- you might use this action to get something on the agenda you feel is important or to ensure that something lower on the agenda will be discussed at the meeting.

5. Table the Motion- again one must be recognized and then move to table- this is a non-debatable action and if seconded is immediately voted upon- a tabled item remains as such until a motion is made to remove it from the table- thus it is essentially dead until further action is taken. Part of the motion to table an item can carry with it the request to have it on the calendar at the following meeting.

6. Postpone the Action- procedurally like tabling except a postponed item is moved to the top of the agenda at the next meeting and requires action at that meeting which could be to postpone once again.

7. Call the Question or Previous Question- This is a procedural move that ends debate and if seconded forces an immediate vote on the motion being debated. Not generally viewed as a friendly action but can be useful.

8. Suspend the Rules- this action can be taken when the Senate might want to move faster on a policy than the calendar allows or when the Senate feels an action is important but the rules prevent such actions from occurring- it generally allows the Senate to function outside of its procedural norms on a specific item and then return to the normal procedural processes.

9. Point of Order- if you feel procedure has been violated then you call for this which stops debate and procedural action must be clarified- often occurs when we are debating a motion and without action move to a new motion prior to finalizing action on the first motion.

10. Limit or Extending a Limited Debate- generally the debate of a motion or item before the Senate is an open-ended discussion but there may be instances where limiting the debate is useful and extending the limits may be needed. Extending is also required if the Senate is going past its allotted time (we operate under a fixed time limit- 3-5 pm which means the Senate ends at 5 pm unless otherwise moved) - this can be useful if the Senate is close to finalizing an action but needs a limited amount of time to finish a debate that would otherwise be carried over to the next meeting.

11. Adjourn- this is a non-debatable motion if seconded and ends the session if passed- if not called for by the chair it is often seen as a hostile motion.

2. Meetings of the Faculty Senate

1. When there are no action items scheduled for the agenda of a regular meeting of the Senate, the Executive Committee of the Senate is authorized to cancel that meeting and to carry forward all other items of the agenda to the next regular meeting of the Senate.

2. The Executive Committee may meet using a conference call or email if members are given sufficient advance notice and at least a majority of the board participates in the conference call.

3. Special meetings of the Senate shall be held at the call of the President of the Faculty Senate or designee, or any twenty percent of the members of the Senate who submit a written request for a special meeting to the Executive Committee of the Senate. Rules governing the conduct of regular Senate meetings shall be in force at such special meetings.

4. Senate meetings shall be open to all faculty.

3. Order of Business of Faculty Senate Except as otherwise provided by the Faculty Senate President, the order of business of the Faculty Senate shall be:

1. Call to Order

2. Minutes

3. Roll Call or Silent Roll

4. Administrative Updates

5. Presentation Items

6. Consent Agenda

7. Debate Calendar

1. Action Items

2. First Readings

3. Informational Items

8. Standing Committee Reports

9. Other Committee Reports

10. Announcements

11. Good of the Order

7. Policy Procedure of the Faculty Senate

1. General Procedure Guidelines

1. The policy process at UVU is governed by Policy 101- every Faculty Senator should be familiar with this policy- this policy procedure primer outlines portions of 101 and address the role Senate plays.

2. Policy at UVU is governed by the Board of Trustees which delegates certain policy control to the President of the Institution who in turns delegates to various other entities on campus- however final policy action is retained at the Board level in consultation with the President.

2. Basic policy process:

1. Stage 1- Draft Development

2. Stage 2- Review by Campus Entities (PACE, UVUSA, AAC, and Faculty Senate)

3. Stage 3- Review by University Community (Policy draft is placed online for 7 to 30 days where all members of campus community can review and email comments to the Policy Office)

4. Stage 4- Review and Approval by Board of Trustees

3. The relevant sections of Policy 101 for Senate purposes in Stage 2 reads as follows: and

4. Role of the Faculty Senate on Institutional Policy

1. The Faculty Senate is an advisory board on policy unless the President is willing to delegate greater authority over certain policy areas. We can express opinion and pass along comments but we cannot procedurally halt or substantively change policy items. We can and should expect a positive working relationship with the administration but in the end, we do not formally control any aspect of policy. That should cause us to think how we want to convey our position on any particular policy and how we involve ourselves in the policy development process. Essentially we can take one of three actions on a policy, each of which conveys a different message.

5. Voting Actions Regarding Policy

1. Pass the policy with appended suggestions and/or concerns or include nothing.

2. Vote against the policy and then determine if we want to forward further comments or a suggested course of action.

3. Table or postpone debate on the policy until Senate establishes a position or allow the 60-day timeline to expire thus taking no action on the policy.

6. Debate Calendar of the Faculty Senate Explained

1. As a policy leaves Stage 1, it becomes an Information Item for the Senate.

2. After being listed as an Information Item, the policy moves to a 1st Reading at the next Senate meeting unless some other action is taken- a 1st Reading means all Senators come to the meeting prepared to discuss the policy and ask the steward questions.

1. It should be noted that the Senate could choose to suspend the rules at this point and pass out a policy if it feels enough discussion and recommendations have been made. This may be useful on policies of lesser concern to the Senate so as to preserve time for issues of greater interest. A simple majority vote accomplishes all these actions.

3. The policy is then placed on the agenda as an Action Item. This means we will further discuss the policy then take action on the policy per the options outlined above.

4. The final position of the Senate is conveyed to the policy steward via the Senate Policy Statement on the Policy. The Statement indicates the action taken by the Senate and includes all comments and/or material as voted upon by the Senate. This document is created after the Senate meeting in which an action is taken and once distributed Senators have two working days to amend the document or request it be returned to the Senate. If after two days no action to return the document has been taken and all changes have been agreed upon the document is forwarded to the Steward as the official position of the Senate. The President is ultimately responsible for official statements from the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate Vice President may work with the President, with the help of the Policy Liaison to represent the Faculty Senate, as requested by the Faculty Senate President.