Graduate Studies

Graduate Council Bylaws

Article I — Name

The name of this organization shall be the Graduate Council.

Article II — Purpose

Section 1.

The Graduate Council is the graduate faculty's advisory body to the Chief Academic Officer (Provost) regarding graduate education at USM.

Section 2.

In particular, the Graduate Council shall advise the Provost, through the Associate Provost/ Dean of Graduate Studies, with regard to:

  1. The setting of policy for the operation of graduate programs.
  2. The growth of graduate studies at USM.
  3. The approval of all graduate programs offered by the university including certificates, concentrations, and significant program changes.
  4. The setting of minimum university-wide standards for admission to and graduation from graduate programs.
  5. The approval of program exceptions to university graduate admissions and graduate administration policies.
  6. The means by which proposed and existing graduate programs can be strengthened.
  7. The qualifications for designation as graduate faculty.

Article III — The Graduate Council

Section 1.

The Council recommends the academic policies and procedures for graduate study at the institution. All university-wide policies pertaining to graduate programs, faculty, and students are developed with input from the Council. The mission of the Graduate Council shall include recommendation of new graduate degree, certificate, and concentration proposals; participation in the periodic review of graduate programs; periodic review of college/school and program specific academic and admissions policies and procedures; assisting the Provost in setting directions and priorities for graduate studies at USM; and assisting in other matters relating to graduate study as requested by the Provost.

The Graduate Council members will inform the Graduate Faculty in their units or programs of policy changes and recommendations that will alter the direction of or significantly affect the graduate programs.

Section 2.

  1. Each graduate program shall be represented on the Graduate Council by the program director, coordinator, chair or his/her designee. Only members of the Graduate Faculty or elected Council members are eligible for voting membership on the Graduate Council. Two graduate student representatives shall be appointed by the Chair of Graduate Council from students recommended by graduate faculty.
  2. The Chair of the Council shall be elected by its members.

The duties of the Chairperson shall include:

  1. scheduling and publicizing meetings of the Graduate Council;
  2. presiding at meetings of the Council;
  3. overseeing the taking, maintaining, and distribution of minutes of all Graduate Council meetings;
  4. overseeing the conduct of all written or electronic ballots;
  5. communicating on a regular basis with the Chair of the Faculty Senate about issues common to both bodies;
  6. disseminating information about Graduate Council actions to the Provost and others as appropriate or requested.
  1. The Chief Academic Officer may appoint to the council an administrator from the Division of Academic Affairs. This appointee will represent the Provost's Office and will be responsible for ensuring that the Graduate Council decisions are coordinated with USM and University of Maine System policies, and that they fit with the recommendations of the Board of Visitors.
  2. The Graduate Council shall meet monthly, with additional meetings scheduled as needed. The regular time, place, and date of meetings will be published. All meetings are open. Agendas will be distributed by the Chair to Council members, the Provost, academic deans, and others by request one week prior to each regular monthly meeting.
  3. The quorum for conducting Graduate Council business shall consist of those members who are present. Substitute attendees may only vote on matters before the Council if they are faculty.

Article IV — Adoption and Implementation

The Chairperson of the Graduate Council will recommend the adoption and implementation of these by-laws, which must be approved by the Provost and President before they take effect.

Article V — Amendments

Section 1.

The procedure for amending the by-laws will be as follows:

  1. The motion to amend may be made at a meeting of the Graduate Council. Such motion must be confirmed by a majority of those present at the following meeting of the Graduate Council in order to be adopted.
  2. Representatives of the Graduate Council will share recommendations for changes with the graduate faculty members within their units and bring suggestions or feedback to the Council.
  3. A successful motion for amendment will require approval by Provost and President before it takes effect.

April 12, 2013