The University Advisory Council on Teaching (“UACT” or “the
Council”) was created in 1998 in response to a university-wide
study of teaching at Emory University undertaken by the University Teaching
Commission. The report that was created from this study, “Teaching
at Emory” (1997), made several recommendations regarding the improvement
of teaching throughout the university. These recommendations, combined
with numerous meetings between members of university administration
and faculty members from across the university, led to the creation
of this university-wide council on teaching.
Mission and Functions of UACT
UACT’s primary mission is to promote excellence in teaching and
learning at Emory. At the university level, UACT is charged with implementing
the Teaching Commission’s recommendations for improving teaching
at Emory. Specifically, the Council addresses those recommendations
that call for
the designation of an individual within each school to oversee the
support of teaching in that school;
- the documentation, by faculty members, of their teaching development,
for both formative and assessment purposes;
- the evaluation of teaching (including that teaching that reaches
beyond the traditional classroom) as a prominent factor in the schools’
decisions about hiring, tenure, promotion, and remuneration; and
- the establishment, by the university and each school, of more teaching
awards, including teaching professorships.
serves as the major communications network among the schools and their
faculties, and between the individual schools and the central administration,
on all matters related to these teaching improvements. As such, the
Chair of UACT also serves as a member of the University Teaching Fund
(UTF), which provides grant support for teaching proposals. The Council
is also expected to develop its own agenda for furthering teaching excellence
at Emory. As such, UACT meets monthly to consider issues and aspects
of teaching that reach across individual schools, promoting discussion
and reflection on teaching generally across the university. At the same
time, the Council assists individual schools in their promotion of teaching
excellence. UACT also creates sub-committees, as determined by the Council
members, to give ongoing attention to topics such as teaching and technology,
the documentation of teaching excellence, and teaching students with
disabilities. These sub-committees, like much of UACT’s work,
often engage larger groups of faculty beyond the Council’s own
ranks. Ultimately, UACT assists Emory faculty in becoming the best teachers
they can be, and provides faculty and administrators with a comprehensive
view of teaching at Emory – not only teaching in and of itself,
but also teaching within the larger context of ideals and activities
in the modern research university that Emory has become.
A. Types of membership.
UACT consists of twelve regular members as well as ex-officio members
and support staff members.
The twelve regular members are faculty members from across the university,
including one representative from the Schools of Law, Nursing, Theology,
Business, Public Health, and Oxford College; two representatives
from the two largest schools, the School of Medicine and Emory College/Graduate
School of Arts and Sciences; the Director of the Center for Teaching
and Curriculum (CTC), and the Chair of the UTF. Regular members
are appointed by invitation from the Provost, usually acting on
the recommendation of the Deans of the appointee’s school.
A representative of the Provost’s Office maintains an ongoing
ex-officio role on the Council. Other ex-officio members, such as
the Director of Inclusive Learning, may be appointed by vote of
Staff members may include Program Coordinators or Assistant Program
Coordinators for UACT, as provided by the Provost’s Office.
B. Terms of membership.
Each type of membership carries a different membership term.
i. Regular Members
Regular members serve for a term of three academic years. The representatives
of the CTC and the UTF will serve as regular members of UACT throughout
their terms as heads of those organizations. Should a regular member
be on academic leave during his or her term of membership, another
faculty member from his or her School will be appointed to serve
as a replacement during that time. Membership terms of regular members
are staggered, so that no more than three regular members should
be rotating off of the Council at any one time. After the completion
of the three-year term, regular members may serve an additional
year at the discretion of the Provost.
A representative of the Provost’s Office shall serve as a continuing
member of UACT. Other ex-officio members will serve one-year terms,
renewable indefinitely by a vote of the Council.
Staff members are continuing members of UACT.
C. Rights and responsibilities of membership.
Regular members are expected to attend monthly UACT meetings; serve
on at least one sub-committee; attend UACT special events, and serve
as liaisons for disseminating information and providing feedback
between the Council and their respective Schools. Regular members
may be asked to represent the Council at UACT-sponsored events.
Each regular member gets one vote; regular members may also suggest
agenda items and sub-committees.
Ex-officio members are expected to attend monthly UACT meetings;
attend UACT special events, and serve as liaisons for disseminating
information and providing feedback between the Council and the Administration,
or their respective divisions of the University. Ex-officio members
may serve on sub-committees. They may be asked to represent the
Council at UACT events. Ex-officio members may suggest agenda items
and sub-committees. Ex-officio members do not vote.
Staff members are expected to attend and assist in the preparation
of monthly UACT meetings, as well as to disseminate the agenda for
the meetings and notify members of meeting places and times. Staff
members are also responsible for taking meeting minutes and subsequently
disseminating them to all UACT members. Staff members should also
attend and assist in the preparation of UACT special events. They
may be asked to represent the Council at UACT events. Staff members
serve as a source of communication between the Chair and the members,
and among the members, notifying members of any Council news or
upcoming events. Staff members may suggest agenda items and sub-committees,
but they do not vote.
The Chair of UACT is one of the regular members of the Council, appointed
as Chair by the Provost. The usual term of the Chair shall be for
a period of three years. In addition to the standard rights and responsibilities
of regular members, the Chair is also responsible for facilitating
monthly meetings, approving meeting agendas, serving as a liaison
between UACT and other campus organizations when necessary, serving
as a voting member of UTF, and representing UACT at special events
A. Monthly meetings.
UACT meetings are held monthly, on the first Thursday of the month
during September, October, November, December, February, March,
April, and May. Meetings begin at 4:00 p.m. and usually adjourn
no later than 5:30 p.m. All members are expected to attend these
meetings. If members must miss a meeting, they are expected to notify
the Chair and/or staff member at least one week in advance. Agendas
are distributed at meetings and available in advance of the meetings
on the UACT website, http://www.emory.edu/TEACHING. Meeting minutes
are recorded by a staff member and disseminated to members afterward
via e-mail, and available after the meetings on the UACT website.
Monthly meetings are facilitated by the UACT Chair, following a
written agenda and conforming to Robert’s Rules of Order with
regard to voting. A minimum of six voting members shall be present
in order to establish a quorum for those matters coming before the
Council for a vote.
B. Sub-committee meetings.
The frequency of sub-committee meetings may vary, but these meetings
should be held as often as necessary to accomplish the work of the
group. Location, time, frequency, and facilitation of the meetings
shall be determined by the sub-committee group members.
Amendments to the Bylaws
Amendments to these Bylaws may be made by a majority vote of the Council