Faculty Senate Bylaws


Revised April 7, 2014 (Meeting #198)

Sect. 1 (ART III: Membership)

A.     The membership of the Faculty Senate, hereinafter referred to as "Senate," shall consist of approximately 41 members plus one non-voting presiding officer. Approximately 35 members shall be elected by and from the faculty and will have voting privileges.  Four non-voting members will be selected by and from other university constituencies as follows:  one student selected by the ASUAF; one dean or director selected by the Provost; one staff representative from the registrar's office; and one additional staff member selected by the Staff Council.  Three additional non-voting members will be selected by and from the faculty unions as follows:  one elected official each from United Academics-AAUP/AFT, UAFT, and Adjuncts (United Academics)-AAUP/AFT.

Terms shall be for two years and staggered, with approximately one-half of the Senate elected each year.

B.      Representation shall be by academic or research unit and based on the number of qualifying faculty in each unit as described below.

1.     A unit is a single school or college or research institute, a collection of schools and/or colleges or collection of research institutes (see item 5).

2.     For representational purposes only, a qualifying faculty member shall be defined as one who holds academic rank or special academic rank. 

3.     Tenure-track faculty with split appointments will be counted only in the tenure-granting unit.  Research faculty and other qualifying faculty with split appointments will be counted only in the unit of primary appointment.

4.     Each unit will elect the number of representatives to the Senate equal to the number of qualifying faculty in that unit divided by the total number of qualifying faculty at UAF, multiplied by 35 and rounded to the nearest integer.

5.     Schools, colleges and research institutes whose representation under item 4 is zero may form a conglomerate group for the purpose of joint representation as a single unit, if together they qualify for representation under item 4.  If they do not qualify as a conglomerate group, or if they do not choose to be represented as a group, then each unit shall join with a represented school, college or research institute.

6.     Re-apportionment will be done in the year of accreditation review of UAF, expected to be every seven years, or upon two-thirds vote of the Senate.

7.     Each unit will have at least 2 representatives. 
C.     Election Procedure

1.     Election shall be conducted by the represented units, or by the Senate office for any conglomerate groups to provide representatives to the Senate according  to Article III of the Senate Constitution.  Elections are to be held during the spring semester and election procedures are the responsibility of the units, subject to the following:

2.     A faculty member may vote for Senate representatives in only one unit.  For tenure-track faculty, that unit must be the tenure-granting unit.  Research faculty and other qualifying faculty must vote in the unit of primary appointment.

3.     Units with full-time permanent faculty based on other than the Fairbanks campus should elect Senate representatives in a number that is at least equal to the proportion of the non-Fairbanks based qualifying faculty.

4.     Units with faculty who teach in associate, certificate, or noncredit programs should elect representatives in proportion to such faculty.

5.     Units with senior faculty should elect associate and full professors as Senate representatives in a number that is at least equal to the proportion of such faculty.

6.     Units with graduate programs should elect at least one graduate faculty member.

7.     Each unit shall elect at least half as many alternate representatives as representatives.

D.     Vacancies

1.     In the case of death, resignation, transfer, or other reason why an elected representative can no longer represent the unit, an alternate shall immediately become the representative.  The president of the Senate will appoint a replacement from among the unit's elected alternates, with the concurrence of the affected constituency and the consent of the Administrative Committee. 

2.  If no alternate is available to replace the departing senator, the affected unit may hold a special election to replace that senator.  This special election must be held within 30 days of the last day the departing senator served.  All policies and procedures governing regular senate elections apply to these special elections.

E.        Changes in Unit Representation
  1. Changes in a unit's number of representatives on the Faculty Senate shall be implemented at the time of the next scheduled election.  Reductions in a unit's number of representatives shall be accomplished by attrition, as terms expire.  Increases in a unit's number of senate representatives shall be implemented through election of additional representatives at the next scheduled election.
  2. Representatives should serve out the terms to which they are elected.  This includes but is not limited to representatives who hold office at a time of reapportionment of the Faculty Senate, and those whose unit affiliation changes during a term of office. If the representative is no long affiliated with the unit from which they were elected, then an alternate shall be appointed and both shall serve concurrently to the end of the term.  This may lead to a temporary increase in the number of elected representatives serving on the Faculty Senate.
F.       Absenteeism

1.     When elected members are unable to attend the meetings, their alternates will serve.

G.       Recall

1.     Unethical and/or unprofessional conduct by any elected officer or member of the Senate may constitute a cause for a vote of no confidence and hence a recall.  In order to recall an elected officer or member, the Senate must have a 2/3 majority vote of its total membership.

Sect. 2  (ART IV:  Officers)

The President of the Senate shall be an ex-officio, non-voting member of all elected and appointed committees of the Senate. The President-Elect of the Senate shall be chairperson of the Administrative Committee of the Senate and shall be an ex-officio, non-voting member of such elected and appointed committees of the Senate as the President of the Senate shall direct.

The following internal appeals process will be followed to resolve disagreements between members and the Faculty Senate President and/or President-Elect.

1. Appellant makes a good-faith effort to resolve the issue directly with the President and/or President-Elect. If appellant is not satisfied with the resolution, continue with the following steps.

2. Appellant requests time to speak to the Administrative Committee at its next regularly scheduled meeting. (Standard time allotment will be five minutes’ speaking time.) Appellant may submit a brief summary to be distributed as a written handout to the committee at the meeting, if desired, in addition to being present and speaking. The handout should be submitted five business days before the Administrative Committee meeting and include a description of the decision being appealed, the reasons for the appeal, and the proposed resolution.

3. After the appellant has spoken, the President and President-Elect may respond. (Standard time allotment will be five minutes each. One or both may speak.) The President or President-Elect may also provide a written response as a handout for the consideration of the Administrative Committee.

4. The Appellant will leave the meeting and the Administrative Committee will consider two options: A. No change to the original decision; or, B. Sustain appeal and come to an alternate decision based on the committee's deliberation. The Administrative Committee will vote on the matter. An affirmative vote by an absolute majority of the committee is required to sustain the appeal.

5. A brief report is shared at the next Faculty Senate meeting by the Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee. There is no further discussion on the matter at the Senate meeting.

Sect. 3  (ART V:  Committees)

A.     An Administrative Committee will be composed of the chairpersons of all standing Senate committees and of permanent Senate Committees.  The Provost of UAF shall be an ex-officio, non-voting member.  Specific duties of the Administrative Committee in its obligation to fully prepare the agenda and materials for efficient operation of the Senate are:

1.     Receive reports from the president of the Senate, the Provost, and, as deemed timely, other individuals, on issues of current and future importance to the Senate;

2.     Accept and review the motions of standing and permanent committees, and from members of the Administrative Committee;

3.     Make certain that the motions are ready for Senate action to the maximum degree possible, and if not, refer them back for further work and/or direct them to other relevant committees that may not           have considered the motions;

4.     Move the motions to the Senate's agenda;

5.     Review and approve other items of the Senate's agenda, as deemed necessary;

6.     Review reports of all committee work in progress; and

7.     Discuss other issues, which may or should lead to later  committee and senate actions.

            In addition,

8.     Within the scope of authority granted by the Senate at the last meeting of the spring semester, the Administrative Committee will represent the Senate from the close of the last Senate meeting in the spring until the opening of the first Senate meeting of the fall semester; and

9.     At the first meeting in the fall semester make a report of all actions carried out in the name of the Senate since the last meeting in the spring semester.

10.    The Administrative Committee shall oversee the process of evaluation of academic administrators.

B.      Membership on standing and permanent committees will be for two years except as noted below with the possibility of re-appointment.  The initial appointment or re-appointment is recommended by the President and President-Elect or as specified in the definition of a Permanent Committee, approved by the Administrative Committee, and confirmed by the full Senate.  Senators are limited to serving on a maximum of one standing committee at any one time.  To provide continuity, terms will be staggered and an initial appointment may be made for one or two years as determined by the Administrative Committee based on need.

C.     Standing committees will be constituted entirely of Senate members. Permanent committees can be constituted without Senate members.

D.     All permanent and standing committee chairs will be elected from and by the members of their respective committee and must be full-time faculty at UAF.

E.      The standing and permanent committees of the Senate are:

1.     The Curricular Affairs Committee will deal with curricular and academic policy changes on all levels except the graduate level.

In addition to the non-voting ex officio member(s) appointed by the provost, the committee may add non-voting ex officio members for one-year terms as deemed necessary.

2.     The Faculty Affairs Committee shall review issues dealing with faculty prerogative and recommend policy changes to the Faculty Senate.  Issues of faculty prerogative include academic freedom, faculty ethics, research and creative activity, and legislative and fiscal issues that may impact faculty concerns at the university.  The committee will act as a faculty advocate with legislators and candidates.  In its concern for fiscal issues the committee shall monitor budget appropriations to the university and evaluate any notice to the faculty of financial exigency.  In performing these duties, the committee will coordinate as necessary with the relevant officers (and/or their representatives) of the extant collective bargaining units who serve as non-voting members of the Senate and ex-officio members of this committee.

The committee will also act as a pool to be drawn upon to act as the United Academics representatives to the Faculty Appeals Board.  The Chair of the Faculty Affairs Committee will appoint, from the committee, tenured members of the United Academics Bargaining Unit who will serve on the particular appeals board. If no qualified faculty members are available within the Faculty Affairs Committee, the matter will be referred to the Faculty Senate President for appointment of faculty senators to the Faculty Appeals Board.

3.     The Unit Criteria Committee will review proposed unit criteria for evaluation of faculty submitted by the various peer-review units of UAF, and to work with the heads of those units (or their designees) to ensure that their criteria are consistent with criteria defined in the UAF Faculty Appointment and Evaluation Policies and Regulations "Blue Book".  The committee will also review proposed changes to the "Blue Book."

To ensure that perspectives from across UAF are represented, membership will consist of at least five senators, one each from the following five schools / colleges: CLA, CRCD, CNSM, SFOS, and CEM; and at least one from CES, SNRAS, SOE, SOM or LIB; and at least one senator who has an appointment with a research institute.

Final composition of the Unit Criteria Committee will be approved by the Faculty Senate Administrative Committee.


1.     The Graduate Academic & Advisory Committee will include ten faculty members.  The Dean of the Graduate School, Director of the Library, the University Registrar, and two graduate students, are non-voting ex-officio members.  The committee will be responsible for the review and approval of graduate courses, curriculum and graduate degree requirements, and other academic matters related to instruction and mentoring of graduate students.  The committee will also have responsibility for oversight, review and approval of all professional degree courses and programs including 500-level courses.  The committee will advise the Dean of the Graduate School and the Provost on administrative matters pertinent to the operation and growth of graduate studies at UAF, including financial and tax-related issues and dealings with other universities.

2.     The Student Academic Developmental and Achievement Committee will include one representative from each of the following units of the College of Rural  and Community Development: Bristol Bay Campus, Chukchi Campus, Interior-Aleutians Campus, Kuskokwim Campus, Northwest Campus, and the Community and Technical College.  One or more of these should be from rural campus student services.  The committee will also include one representative from the Department of Developmental Education; two at large representatives from the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics: one from the Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Geology, or Physics), and one from Math; one from the College of Liberal Arts English Department; and one each from Rural Student Services, the Academic Advising Center, and the Student Support Services Program. 

The Student Academic Developmental and Achievement Committee shall consider policies concerning student development and retention.  This committee will function as a curriculum review committee for all developmental education courses and other courses facilitating student progress.

3.     The Faculty Development, Assessment and Improvement Committee will be composed of faculty members and a representative from the Office of Faculty Development to be selected by the Provost.  This committee will deal with faculty and instructional development and evaluation.

4.     The Curriculum Review Committee evaluates proposed substantive undergraduate course and program additions, changes, and deletions submitted by the appropriate school/college curriculum committees.  Among the topics of its review are number and duplication of courses, credit assignment, establishment of need for new programs, and resource impacts of curricular changes.  Decisions of the Curriculum Review Committee may be appealed to Curricular Affairs by the department submitting the proposal.  The Committee shall be composed of the chairs of the college/school curriculum councils, the University Registrar or the Registrar's designee, and shall be chaired by a member of the Curricular Affairs Committee.

5.     The Core Review Committee reviews and approves courses submitted by the appropriate school/college curriculum councils for their inclusion in the core curriculum at UAF.  The Core Review Committee coordinates and recommends changes to the core curriculum, develops the process for assessment of the core curriculum, regularly reports on assessment of the core curriculum, monitors transfer guidelines for core courses, acts on petitions for core credit, and evaluates guidelines in light of the total core experience.  This committee will also review courses for oral, written, and natural science core classification.  If the committee determines that a course fails twice in a row to meet "O" or "W" guidelines as specified by the Faculty Senate, the committee shall have the power to revoke "O" or "W" designators from that course.*  Committee actions made prior to March 1 will become effective in the next year's Catalog.  Designators will be restored as soon as the course has been reapproved by the committee as once again conforming to "O" or "W" guidelines.

*As found at:

The committee shall be composed of one faculty member from each of the core component areas:  (Social Sciences, English, Humanities, Mathematics, Natural Sciences, Communication, and Library Science) and one faculty member from a non-core component area.  Membership on the committee will include an undergraduate student, and representatives from the colleges specifically tasked with core assessment.

6.     The Committee on the Status of Women.  Membership will consist of nine people, two of whom will be a senator, the others to be elected at large from among UAF faculty.

The purpose of this committee is to monitor the status of women faculty at UAF and to work proactively for gender equity.

Such actions will include, but are not limited to:  Maintaining lists of women faculty with hire, tenure and promotion dates; Organizing and supervising surveys on the status of women and assessing the cultural climate of the university as it pertains to women; Recommending policy to address the needs of women faculty; Supporting mentoring of women, both new and mid-career faculty, including running workshops on mentoring, promotion & tenure, negotiating techniques and other forms of faculty development identified as necessary; Addressing family-work issues, such as child care, parental leave, spousal/partner hire; Coordinating with other campus and university groups which deal with women's and gender issues; and any other issues which would help women to achieve equity at UAF.

7. The Research Advisory Committee.  The Research Advisory Committee consists of up to ten voting members, a chair and a co-chair, along with at least one ex officio member who is the vice chancellor for research. The committee exists to review the issues of researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks and to provide reports, recommendations, and resolutions to the UAF Faculty Senate on behalf of the UAF research community. The Research Advisory Committee will provide a connection between the faculty and the UAF vice chancellor for research, and advise the VCR on developing productive relationships with the different research facilities across UAF.

8. The Faculty Administrator Review Committee (FARC) will facilitate the process of evaluation of academic administrators in Groups A and B.  This will include encouraging the timely completion of all reviews and resulting letters, as well as presentation of the results of each review to the Provost, Chancellor, Vice Chancellor for Research, or other supervisor in March.  The FARC will also approve the process which each ad hoc administrator review committee utilizes.

The Faculty Administrator Review Committee shall be composed of the chairs of all individual ad hoc academic administrator review committees plus one Faculty Senate representative appointed by the Faculty Senate President who shall chair the committee.  The ad hoc administrator review committee chairs may, but do not have to be, members of the Faculty Senate.

9.  The Information Technology Committee will address information technology issues and needs affecting aspects of work faculty engage in.  They will also be the recognized committee to work with requests submitted for consideration by the Office of Information Technology (OIT).

Members shall be appointed by the Faculty Senate President.  To help ensure that perspectives from across UAF are represented, membership will consist of at least five representatives, with not more than one from each of the schools, colleges, institutes or libraries.  Representatives from OIT and E-Learning shall be ex officio members of the committee.  The committee chair must be an elected representative from Faculty Senate.

F.      Any standing or permanent committee may create subcommittees to assist the committee.

G.     The Senate President may create and appoint the members of any ad hoc committee necessary for conducting Senate business. Ad hoc committees are subject to later ratification by the Senate.

H.     Committees must forward any legislation which involves the setting or altering of policy to the full Senate for approval.  Committees which are specifically charged with applying policy to make decisions may do so without having the Senate approve those decisions.  A review by the full Senate may be requested by the reviewing Senate committee.  A request to the Senate Administrative Committee for a further Senate review may also be submitted by individual Senators if the question has policy implications.  The committee chair is responsible for the presentation of the committee's motion to the Senate at the meeting in which it will be considered.

Sect. 4  (Art. IX  Parliamentary Authority)

Majority and supermajority votes of the Senate shall be counted on the basis of a majority or supermajority of the votes cast by members present, with abstentions not counting as votes.

April 7, 2014

Back to Top