You are here: Rules and Regulations > 1.70 Committees
Revised to 12/2013
There shall be Standing Committees on the following: Faculty Policy, Graduate Programs, Undergraduate Program, Curricula, Undergraduate Admissions and Aid, Academic Performance, Student Life, Discipline, Library System, Outside Professional Activities, and Nominations.
Each member of these Standing Committees elected from the Faculty at large shall serve a three-year term, approximately one-third of the elected membership being elected each year.
The undergraduate and graduate student members, if any, of each Standing Committee shall be appointed from an ordered list of nominees provided by the respective student governments. The term of student members of the Standing Committees shall be one year, and shall begin on July 1.
The Faculty Policy Committee shall consist of the Chair of the Faculty who shall be Chair of the Committee; the Associate Chair of the Faculty who shall be Deputy Chair of the Committee; the Secretary of the Faculty; the Chair-elect or the immediately preceding Associate Chair (in alternate years); seven elected Faculty members; one undergraduate and one graduate student; and, ex officiis nonvoting, two members designated by the Provost, and one member designated by the President.
The Committee shall have the following duties and responsibilities:
- Formulate policy on matters of concern to the Faculty, for approval by the Faculty; interpret and implement policy as approved by the Faculty.
- Coordinate the work of the other Committees of the Faculty, establishing liaison with them, providing guidance and direction, and referring issues to particular Committees or establishing Ad Hoc Committees as appropriate.
- Maintain a broad overview of the Institute's academic programs, coordinating and reviewing proposals from the Standing and Ad Hoc Committees for presentation to Faculty meeting.
- Maintain a broad overview of the activities of the Office of Corporate Relations and other similar efforts as they relate to the activities of the members of the Faculty.
- Communicate with the Faculty as a whole on important matters of policy, reporting regularly at Faculty meetings.
- Meet periodically with the President, Academic Deans, and others to enhance the interchange between the Faculty and the Administration on matters of concern to the Faculty.
- Consider issues involving relationships between Administration and both Faculty and other academic staff with teaching responsibilities
- Establish the manner in which the academic program is presented in official Institute publications, delegating to other Standing Committees such parts of the responsibility as deemed desirable.
Each of the Standing Committees defined below shall, in addition to the specific duties listed, be responsible for (1) formulating and reviewing educational policies and other policies which relate to its work, (2) requesting any needed clarification of such policies from the Faculty Policy Committee, (3) recommending to the Faculty Policy Committee any changes of such policies which it deems to be advisable, and (4) performing such other duties as may be delegated to it by the Faculty Policy Committee or by the Chair of the Faculty.
The Committee on Graduate Programs shall consist of six elected faculty members, the Associate Chair of the Faculty, two graduate student members, and ex officiis , the Dean for Graduate Education and the Vice President for Research (or their designated representatives). The Chair of the Faculty shall appoint the Chair of the Committee from the group consisting of the six elected faculty members. The Chair of the Committee and the Dean for Graduate Education shall jointly appoint one departmental or program graduate administrator to the committee.
The Committee shall exercise general oversight of graduate educational programs and of graduate student policies.
Among the duties and responsibilities of the Committee shall be:
- Evaluating proposals for the adoption of new graduate degree programs and making recommendations to the Faculty concerning these programs.
- Evaluating proposals for the termination of existing programs with the aim of ensuring that (1) students currently enrolled in the program are able to complete their degree requirements; and that (2) departments whose curricula are affected have been given reasonable notice of termination; and reporting to the Faculty on the steps that are being taken in the process of termination.
- Considering proposals that would change or modify general policies related to graduate programs and graduate students and making recommendations to the Faculty.
- Encouraging best practices for graduate educational programs, including collecting and disseminating such practices.
- The Committee shall retain responsibility for:
- evaluating academic performance of graduate students, including the issuance of formal warnings and denials of further registration
- approving requests for minor departures from general requirements for advanced degrees
- approving proposals for changes in a graduate level subject of instruction
- cooperating with the Committee on Academic Performance in making recommendations to the Faculty on such matters as minor changes in the calendar, examinations and grading
- recommending to the Faculty, at the conclusion of the two regular terms and of the end of the summer session, candidates for advanced degrees
- Serving as the standing Faculty advisory body to the Dean for Graduate Education and the Vice President for Research on policies related to graduate students.
The Committee on the Undergraduate Program shall consist of seven elected faculty members, the Associate Chair of the Faculty, four undergraduate student members, and ex officiis,the Chancellor (or designate), the Dean for Undergraduate Education, and one member designated by the Dean for Undergraduate Education. The Chair of the Faculty shall appoint the Chair of the Committee from the group consisting of the seven elected members and the Associate Chair of the Faculty.
Among the duties and responsibilities of the Committee shall be:
- Considering proposals that would change or modify undergraduate educational policies, and making suitable recommendations to the Faculty.
- Overseeing undergraduate education, including the freshman year, undergraduate advising, the General Institute Requirements, and other interdepartmental programs, giving attention to both short-term and long-term trends and directions.
- Encouraging experimental innovation in undergraduate education, including the approval and supervision of limited educational experiments and granting of exceptions to allow any experiment to depart from specific Faculty Regulations and MIT administrative procedures. Descriptions of experiments and reports on their progress and outcome shall be circulated to the Faculty. Experiments that show enduring value should be incorporated in the usual ways into the Faculty Regulations and administrative practices.
- Interacting with other Faculty Committees and with the Schools, departments, and programs on important issues in undergraduate education and communicating with the MIT community as a whole about such issues.
- Acting with power, through the permanent CUP Subcommittee on the Communication Requirement, to support, encourage, and monitor the development of new, innovative subjects and changes to the Communication Requirement and to ensure review of subjects to ascertain that the educational goals of the Communication Requirement are met consistent with MIT's high educational standards.
- Acting with power, through the permanent CUP Subcommittee on the Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences Requirement, to support, encourage, and monitor the development of new, innovative subjects and changes to the HASS Requirement and to ensure review of subjects to ascertain that the educational goals of the HASS Requirement are met consistent with MIT's high educational standards.
The Committee on Curricula shall consist of six elected Faculty members, four undergraduate student members, and the following ex officiis, nonvoting members: the Dean for Undergraduate Education, the Registrar, and one member designated by the Dean for Undergraduate Education, and the Chair of the Committee on the Undergraduate Program.
- The Committee shall interpret and implement undergraduate educational policy as approved by the Faculty.
- The Committee shall act with power on proposals for subjects which may be used to satisfy the Restricted Electives in Science and Technology Requirement and Laboratory Requirement within the General Institute Requirements and shall report such actions to the Faculty. Only subjects with prerequisites such that the subjects can be taken by freshmen or sophomores are eligible for this purpose; except that the Committee is authorized to specify other subjects which may be used to satisfy the Laboratory Requirement. Approved Laboratory subjects shall emphasize as much as possible work of project type or laboratory technique which follows approaches used by professionals in the field.
- Committee shall act with power for the Faculty on requests from individual students for exceptions to the General Institute Requirements.
- The Committee shall act with power on proposals for changes in undergraduate subjects of instruction and shall report all approved changes to the Faculty.
- The Committee shall act with power on proposals for new curricula, changes in existing curricula, and discontinuation of existing curricula, when such proposals do not involve substantial changes in policies relating to undergraduate educational matters. All approvals shall be reported to the Faculty. Each department shall indicate whether the proposed curriculum shall lead to the degree Bachelor of Science in a specified field or to the degree Bachelor of Science without designation of field. In the latter case the graduate's record and transcript shall indicate the department recommending the degree. Upon request of a department, the Committee may approve in the case of an individual student a program leading to the degree Bachelor of Science without designation of field.
- In considering proposals to terminate existing curricula, the Committee shall determine that adequate provisions are made to: (1) enable students currently enrolled in the curriculum to complete their academic requirements; (2) give reasonable notice to all departments whose curricula may be affected by the termination; and (3) advise other relevant Faculty committees of changes affecting Institute Requirements.
- The Committee shall serve as the standing Faculty advisory body to the Registrar.
The Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid shall consist of six elected Faculty members, three undergraduate students, one graduate student, and, ex officiis, the Dean for Undergraduate Education, the Dean of Admissions, the Executive Director, Student Financial Services, and one member designated by the Dean for Undergraduate Education.
- The Committee shall be responsible for formulating and reviewing policies on admission of all undergraduate students, including college transfers, except in cases of students applying for readmission, and on financial aid to students, including undergraduate scholarships, loans, and student employment.
- The Committee shall also exercise prior review of MIT publications and formal releases directed toward the prospective undergraduate student.
The Committee on Academic Performance shall consist of six elected members of the Faculty, three undergraduate students, and the following ex officio nonvoting members or their designate: the Dean for Undergraduate Education; the Registrar; the Medical Director; the Executive Director, Student Financial Services; the Heads of Student Support Services; Disability Support Services; and one additional member designated by the Dean for Undergraduate Education.The Committee shall be concerned with the academic performance of undergraduates. It shall make recommendations to the Faculty on such matters as minimum scholastic standards, calendar changes, examinations, and grading, in consultation with the Committee on Graduate Programs on those matters which also relate to graduate students.
- The Committee shall act with power on petitions from individual undergraduate students relating to exceptions to established academic standards, and on applications for readmission at the undergraduate level after a voluntary, medical, or required withdrawal.
- At the conclusion of each regular examination period, the Committee shall hold meetings with representatives of the Office of the Dean for Undergraduate Education and of the second-year, third-year, and fourth-year Faculty Advisors, in order to review the academic records of undergraduate students and to take appropriate action in the name of the Faculty.
- The Committee shall present to the Faculty its recommendations on candidates to be awarded Bachelor's degrees, and also a summary of its other actions.
The Committee on Student Life shall consist of six elected members of the Faculty, three undergraduate and two graduate students, and ex officio nonvoting, the Dean for Student Life. The three undergraduate students shall normally include one sophomore, one junior, and one senior.
Because successful education depends on social and affective, as well as cognitive, aspects of the student's experience, the Committee shall be concerned with student life and the quality of the learning and living environment at MIT with specific attention to issues of community.
Among the duties and responsibilities of the Committee shall be:
- Exercising general attention for the range, availability, and effectiveness of Institute-wide support services to students, and with the formal and informal relationship among the students, the Institute, and the Faculty.
- Considering proposals that would change or modify policies pertinent to student life and making recommendations to the Faculty and the Dean for Student Life.
- Encouraging innovation in programs regarding student life, particularly involving faculty, including the coordination and review of initiatives. Descriptions of initiatives and reports on their progress and outcome shall be circulated to the Faculty. Initiatives that show enduring value should be incorporated in the usual ways into the Faculty Regulations and administrative practices.
- Interacting with other Faculty Committees and student governing organizations and with the Schools, departments, programs, and representatives of support services to students on important issues concerning student life and community and communicating with the MIT community as a whole about such issues.
- Serving as the standing Faculty advisory body to the Dean for Student Life.
The Committee on Discipline shall consist of six elected members of the Faculty, three undergraduate and two graduate students, and the Dean for Undergraduate Education, the Dean for Student Life, and the Dean for Graduate Education, ex officiis , or representatives as designated by the respective Deans. Past members who have completed their terms may, for a period of three years thereafter, be called to fill out a quorum for a particular hearing, only one such member to serve in a given hearing.
- The Committee shall consider such cases of alleged misconduct by students as shall be brought to its attention. An accused student shall be given an opportunity to appear in person at a meeting of the Committee.
- The Committee shall act with power in all circumstances, including suspension or expulsion of a student from the Institute, or revocation of a degree. A COD decision to suspend or expel a student or revoke a degree may be appealed to the Chancellor on grounds described by the COD Rules & Regulations.
The Committee on the Library System shall consist of six elected Faculty members, two graduate student members, two undergraduates, and the following ex officio members: the Provost (or representative), the Head of Information Services and Technology (or representative), and the Director of Libraries and two members of the Library Staff designated by the Director.
- The Committee on the Library System, with the advice of the Director of Libraries, shall formulate policy for the administration of the Libraries consistent with the objectives of the Institute.
- The Committee shall serve as liaison between the Libraries and their users.
- The Committee shall review budget allocations as prepared annually by the Director of Libraries.
- The Committee shall monitor and uphold the MIT Faculty Open-Access Policy, which details the process for disseminating scholarly research.
The Committee on Outside Professional Activities shall consist of six elected Faculty members.
- The Committee shall keep itself informed of and shall report periodically to the Faculty new problems of potential conflicts of interest and recommend appropriate modifications of policies and procedures to the Faculty.
- The Committee shall also consider any case of Faculty involvement in outside activities, present or proposed, which in its judgment raises questions of conflict of interest. The Faculty member concerned may request such consideration, but the Committee shall also investigate on its own initiative or upon request from other responsible sources. It shall discuss the issues privately with the individual concerned, with the objective of arriving at a satisfactory resolution of the problem. In the event that such discussion fails to resolve a situation, either the Committee or the individual concerned shall refer the matter to the Faculty for final disposition.
Unless otherwise requested by the individual, or unless referred to the Faculty, all matters discussed by the Committee shall be held in strict confidence.
The Committee on Nominations shall consist of seven Faculty members appointed by the President, each member to serve for a three-year term. At least two new members shall be appointed each year. The President shall designate the Chair from among the membership.
- The Committee shall nominate the following in the appropriate years: a Chair-elect, an Associate Chair, and a Secretary of the Faculty; and shall also nominate candidates for the elected membership of the Standing Committees.
- The Committee shall circulate the list of nominees to all members of the Faculty not later than the April meeting of the Faculty.
- The Committee shall have power to fill any vacancies that may occur during the year in the offices of Chair, Chair-elect, Associate Chair, and Secretary, and in the elected membership of the Standing Committees.