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Undergraduate Committee Bylaws

  1. Preamble
  2. Membership
  3. Officers
  4. Subcommittees
  5. Meetings
  6. Amendments
  7. Adoption
ADDENDUM A -Administrative Representatives

Bylaws of the Undergraduate Committee of the Faculty Senate of the University of Houston

Established September 2011
Amended February 2021 and Approved May 2021

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I. PREAMBLE
The Undergraduate Committee shall work to advise the Provost on matters pertaining to the assessment and strengthening of undergraduate academic programs and curriculum offerings, setting of standards and priorities leading to academic excellence, monitoring of college and departmental requirements for baccalaureate degrees, stimulation and assessment of excellence in teaching, development and implementation of strategies for the recruitment and retention of undergraduate students, implementation of crucial recommendations from any university level study and its impact on the undergraduate students, refinement and monitoring of the admissions criteria and process, particularly for target populations, create and maintain more effective coordination and cooperation with student organizations, and any other matters pertaining to or having an impact on undergraduate education. (Constitution of the Faculty Senate, November, 2019). 

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 II. MEMBERSHIP

  1. The Undergraduate Committee (hereafter referred to as the Committee) shall consist of members representing the faculty, student body, and administration of the University of Houston.
  2. The faculty shall be represented by 32 elected Faculty Senators determined annually prior to August 20 as follows:
1. Each college with an undergraduate program, as well as the Honors College and the University Libraries, will have a minimum of one representative.
2. The remaining number of available seats will be allotted based on the percentage of undergraduate semester credit hours (SCH) offered by each college represented on the Committee.
a.   The SCH percentage will be calculated annually after the official reporting day (ORD) of the Spring Semester.
b.   Seat allocations will be reapportioned based on these calculations prior to the conduction of the election.
c.   Seats shall be assigned using standard rules of rounding.
d.   Should any seat or seats remain unassigned due to rounding, the college or colleges that were closest to the cut off for another seat before rounding, in part c above, will be awarded the remaining seat or seats.
e.   Seats, once assigned, will be retained through the end of the elected terms, regardless of reapportionment. This may result in the temporary increase in the number of elected Faculty Senators.
f.    College representation will be capped at 25% of elected faculty senators.
3. The total number of Faculty Senators may be reconsidered every four years following the Faculty Senate reapportionment.
4. Faculty Senators serving on the Committee shall
a.   be active faculty members of the University of Houston,
b.   be eligible under the criteria outlined in the Faculty Senate Constitution,
1. an eligible faculty member is a full-time, tenured, tenure-track or non-tenure track faculty member at the University of Houston (Article One).
2. must have taught at least one undergraduate class in two of the three years preceding nomination (Article Five), and
3. must be actively involved in the undergraduate academic programs administered within their own academic unit (Article Five).
c.    hold rank no higher than Associate Dean,
d.    serve for three years beginning August 20, with approximately one-third of the terms expiring each year,
e.    be eligible for re-election, and
f.     have full voting responsibilities.

            5. The distribution of elected Faculty Senators for the academic year shall be reported at the first regular meeting of the Committee each fall semester.

     C. Each college may be represented by an additional faculty member of the college’s choosing who represents the undergraduate curriculum planning for the college.
1. College representatives shall
a.   be active faculty members of the University of Houston,
b.   hold rank no higher than Associate Dean,
c.   serve for one year beginning August 20,
d.   be eligible for re-appointment, and
e.   have full voting responsibilities.
D. The University Undergraduate Advising Committee (UAC) shall be represented by two members appointed by the UAC.
1. UAC members serving on the Committee shall
a.   be active undergraduate academic advisors in their colleges,
b.   serve for one year beginning August 20,
c.   be eligible for re-appointment, and
d.   have voting responsibilities at the subcommittee level only.
E. The Undergraduate Student Body shall be represented by two elected Student Senators of the Student Government Association (SGA).
1. SGA Senators serving on the Committee shall
a.   be appointed as governed by the SGA bylaws,
b.   be continuously enrolled throughout their term on the Committee, and
c.   have voting responsibilities at the subcommittee level only.
F. Student-Athlete Academic Services (SAAS) shall be represented by one member appointed by SAAS.
1. SAAS members serving on the Committee shall
a.   be an active undergraduate academic advisor in Student Athlete Academic Services,
b.   serve for a three year term beginning August 20,
c.   be eligible for re-appointment, and
d.   have voting responsibilities at the subcommittee level only.

G. Administrative representatives shall serve ex-officio and have no voting responsibilities. The administration shall be represented by persons from the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services and from the Provost Office of Academic Programs and Undergraduate Student Success. (See Addendum A for a current list of representatives for the identified administrative units. This addendum is not a part of the bylaws and can be amended by the Provost.)
H. Any other individuals from the University community who may contribute to the function of the Committee may be nominated by any Faculty Senator serving on the committee.
1. Appointments must be confirmed by a majority vote of the Committee, and are eligible for reappointment.
2. Such individuals may not make up more than one third (1/3) of the Committee.
3. Appointed members shall
a.    be actively engaged with the undergraduate curriculum at the University,
b.    serve for one year starting August 20, and
c.    have voting responsibilities at the subcommittee level only.

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III. OFFICERS

A. The Committee shall have a Chair and a Chair Elect who shall be elected members of the Faculty Senate and the Committee.

B. Chair position and role are as follows:

1. The Chair assumes office for one year on August 20 after having served as Chair Elect in the previous year.
2. The duties of the Chair shall be to
a.   Determine the dates of and set the agenda for all regular meetings of the Committee.
b.   Preside at all meetings of the Committee and its Executive Committee.
c.   Appoint the chairs and members of all subcommittees of the Committee no later than the first regular meeting of the fall semester.
d.   Appoint a Nominating Subcommittee for the Chair Elect in March.
e.   Appoint the chairs and members of ad hoc subcommittees whenever necessary.
f.    Serve as an ex officio member of all subcommittees and ad hoc subcommittees of the Committee.
g.   Prepare the Chair Elect on the role of Chair.
h.   Serve on the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate.
i.   Represent the Committee on other University bodies as appropriate and report their activities to the Committee; Chair may appoint a designee to these duties.
j.   Monitor subcommittees’ progress in review and approval of proposals with the assistance of the Program Manager for Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA).
k.   Communicate with the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Student Success regarding administrative initiatives, policy and major curricular proposals.
l.   Report directly to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost in writing and in a timely manner all actions of the Committee providing copies of the report to departments, schools, and colleges when appropriate.
m. Submit, no later than August 31, a written summary report of the Committee’s activities for the previous twelve-month period to the President of the Faculty Senate as well as to the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost.
3. The Chair shall be entitled to
a.   Call special meetings of the Committee and set the agenda for those meetings.
b.   Participate in the discussions of the Committee at its regular and special meetings, unless prohibited from doing so by a two-thirds vote of the members of the Committee present and voting.
c.   Vote during meetings of the Committee when the vote is by secret ballot and in all other cases where the vote would change the result.
d.   Appoint to subcommittees representatives of the faculty, student body, or administration who are not members of the Committee, provided that a majority of each subcommittee shall be composed of members of the Committee.
e.   Appoint to ad hoc subcommittees representatives of the faculty, student body, or administration who are not members of the Committee, provided that a majority of each subcommittee shall be composed of members of the Committee.
C. The Chair Elect election and role are as follows:
1. The Chair Elect is elected by the Committee in the regularly scheduled April meeting of the spring semester.
a.   Nominations for election of the Chair Elect are facilitated by the Nominating Subcommittee (see Subcommittees).
b.   The election is held in the meeting by secret ballot.
c.   The ballots are counted by Faculty Senate staff under the auspices of the Faculty Governance Committee bylaws.
2. The Chair Elect serves in a preparatory role for becoming the Chair for one year and then assumes the role of Chair on August 20 in the second
year.
a.   If the Chair Elect is elected in the last year of their term of service on the Faculty Senate, their term will automatically be extended to the end of their official duties as Chair.
3. The Chair Elect duties are to:
a.   Perform the duties of the Chair during the Chair’s temporary
absence.
b.   Report all changes in Committee membership to the Committee in a timely manner.
c.   Serve as an ex officio member of all subcommittees and ad hoc subcommittees of the Committee.
4. The Chair Elect’s term shall end on August 19 and transition into the oneyear term as Chair on August 20.
D. No member shall be elected Chair or Chair Elect for two consecutive terms. A current Chair may not be nominated for Chair Elect.
E. The Chair or Chair Elect may be removed from the position by three-fourths written vote of members present at a regular or special meeting.
F. If the office of Chair becomes vacant, the Chair Elect shall assume all duties of the Chair.
G. If the office of Chair Elect becomes vacant, the Committee will hold a special election from among the members to determine the successor.

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IV. SUBCOMMITTEES

A. The Committee shall have subcommittees as appointed by the Chair, each chaired by an elected Faculty Senator.
1. The number of subcommittees will be determined by the number of proposals submitted.
2. The number of proposals submitted will be determined at the latest submission due date.
B. Subcommittees will consider proposals related to the following:
1. Texas Core course creation, revision and deletion.
2. General course creation, revision and deletion.
3. Undergraduate degree program creation, revision and deletion for
a.   majors,
b.   minors and certificates,
c.   departments, programs and centers, and
d.   related administrative changes.
4. Undergraduate policy creations, revisions and deletions.
5. Revisions to the Undergraduate Catalog; including those that
a.   standardize format and language, and
b.   clarify established University, College or Departmental policies.
6. Student Success Initiatives; including those that
a.   address issues of diversity and inclusion,
b.   maintain academic rigor, and
c.   fulfill the mission of the University of Houston.
7. Faculty outreach opportunities; including those that offer
a.   University committee participation,
b.   student orientation participation, and
c. participation in Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment
Services (DSAES) program assessment visits
C. Subcommittee chairs shall:
1. attempt to hold subcommittee meetings when a majority of the subcommittee members can attend and notify the members of the subcommittee where and when meetings are to be held at least twenty-four hours before they begin.
2. notify the Chair of the Committee in writing of any member assigned to the subcommittee who has been absent from either three consecutive regular meetings of the subcommittee or half the regular meetings of the subcommittee during a one-year period beginning August 20.
3. report the recommended decision of proposals to the Committee. Written reports are due to the Chair, Chair-Elect, and Program Manager of UAA by the deadline set by the Chair.
D. Subcommittee membership adheres to the following:
1. Each Faculty Senator on the Committee shall be a member of at least one
subcommittee.
2. The membership of a subcommittee shall include no more than three
Faculty Senators from the same college.
3. No subcommittee will have more than one SGA representative.
4. No subcommittee will have more than one UAC representative.
5. Members shall be regular in their attendance at meetings of their
subcommittees. One-half the membership of each subcommittee shall
constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.
E. The Committee shall have an Executive Committee.
1. The Chair of the Executive Committee shall be the Chair of the Committee. The other members shall be the Chair Elect of the Committee and the chairs of the Committee’s subcommittees.
2. The Executive Committee may meet as needed at the discretion of the Chair and report if any meeting held at the next regular UC meeting for the purpose of the minutes.
F. The Committee may have ad hoc subcommittees as necessary to consider matters clearly not the responsibility of a subcommittee or the Executive Committee. No ad hoc subcommittee shall continue beyond the term of the Chair appointing it.
G. Each year the Chair will appoint a Nominating Subcommittee that will facilitate
the nomination and election of the next Chair Elect.
1. Every year at its first regular meeting in March, the Chair shall appoint a
Nominating Subcommittee with the approval of the Committee.
2. The Nominating Subcommittee shall be made up of four members of the
Committee, at least three of whom shall be faculty.
3. The Nominating Subcommittee will:
a.   be responsible for nominations of Chair Elect.
b.   prepare and certify the election of the Chair Elect.
c.   at the Committee’s regularly scheduled meeting in April, shall nominate eligible members of the Committee to be Chair Elect of the Committee for the next academic year.
4. Action by this Nominating Subcommittee shall not preclude individual members of the Committee from making additional nominations at the regular April meeting of the Committee.

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V. MEETINGS 

A. The Committee shall hold regular meetings at least four times each fall and spring semester and if necessary during the summer.
1. The first regular meeting each fall and spring shall take place during either the first or second week of classes. The agenda of the first fall meeting will include instructions regarding procedures for reviewing and approving proposals.
2. The Chair shall announce in writing the dates of the semester’s other regular meetings no later than the first regular meeting each semester and the date of the regular summer meeting(s) no later than the first regular meeting of the spring.
3. During the fall and spring semesters, regular meetings shall be held on Wednesdays from three until five o’ clock in the afternoon.
4. At least forty-eight hours in advance, the Chair shall notify the members of the Committee in writing where each regular meeting is to be held. In the absence of such notification, a meeting shall be considered to be special rather than regular (see Section V.B).
B. The Committee shall hold special meetings upon the call of the Chair or upon awritten petition of at least five members. The Chair or members who call themeeting shall notify the members of the Committee where and when it is to beheld at least twenty-four hours before it begins. If possible, special meetings shallbe held on Wednesdays at three o’ clock in the afternoon.
C. At regular and special meetings of the Committee, a quorum will be established when at least half of voting Faculty members of the Committee are present.
D. Upon request of at least three of its members present and voting, the Committee
shall postpone consideration of any proposal unless a spokesperson for the proposal is present.
E. No changes to either the Undergraduate Curriculum of the University of Houston or the undergraduate admissions requirements shall become effective during the academic year following their adoption by the Committee, unless said changes have been received in writing for review by the Committee on or before March 1 except with the consent of at least two-thirds of the members present and voting at a regular or special meeting of the Committee.
F. Except where the bylaws provide otherwise, all elections and matters voted upon shall be determined by a majority of those voting.

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VI. AMENDMENTS

A. These bylaws may be amended at a regular or special meeting of the Committee by a two-thirds vote of elected members present. A written notice of the amendment in the exact form in which it will be finally adopted shall have been distributed to the members of the Committee at least five days in advance of the meeting.
B. Unless it specifies otherwise, an amendment shall become effective immediately upon its adoption.

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VII. ADOPTION

The Committee’s bylaws shall become effective when approved by two-thirds of the voting members of the Committee, a majority approval by the Faculty Senate Governance Committee and final approval of the Faculty Senate Executive Committee.

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ADDENDUM A – Administrative Representatives per Article II. Membership, Section G. rev. August 2021

Provost Office

Vice Provost, Dean Undergraduate Student Success Teri Longacre
Assistant Vice Provost for Undergraduate Student Success Melissa Pierson
Assistant Dean, Undergraduate Academic Affairs Heidi Kennedy
Program Manager, Undergraduate Academic Affairs Shonnita Leslie
Program Director of Academic Programs Daniel Chang

Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Services

Associate Vice President for Student Affairs Dan Maxwell
Associate Vice President of Enrollment Services Mara Affre
             Executive Director of Scholarships and Financial Aid Briget Jans
             Office of the University Registrar Scott Sawyer
Karina Acuna
Rachel Honora
              Executive Director of Admissions Mardell Maxwell
              Integrated Enrollment Services Patrick Lukingbeal

 

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