The University Council meets at least twice per semester to consider and recommend action on any matter that is of common concern to faculty and administrators. The council shall consider and recommend action, or act, as appropriate, on such other matters as may be referred to it by the President, the Faculty Council, or the Council of Deans. For more information, please see the Faculty Handbook, visit the Council website, or contact the Office of the Provost at 617-353-2230.
The Council of Deans, presided over by the University Provost, meets biweekly to discuss issues and policies that affect the administrative and academic operations of the University’s schools and colleges. Council members include the deans of the 17 schools and colleges as well as selected senior administrators, as determined by the University Provost. For more information, please visit the Council of Deans website or contact the Office of the Provost at 617-353-2230.
The Faculty Council is the elected representative body for faculty at Boston University. Each school and college elects at least one representative and one alternate to serve on the council. The Faculty Council is an open forum in which the policies and activities of the University are discussed. It meets once per month during the academic year.
The Undergraduate Academic Council meets once per month to consider matters that affect the quality of the undergraduate experience at Boston University. Its membership is set by the University Provost, and normally includes the associate and assistant deans of the schools and colleges with undergraduate programs. The council is chaired by Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs Elizabeth Loizeaux.
The Graduate Academic Council meets once per month to consider matters that affect the quality of the graduate experience at Boston University. Its membership is set by the University Provost and normally includes the associate and assistant deans of the schools and colleges with graduate programs, as well as representatives from key University administrative offices. The council is chaired by the Associate Provost for Graduate Affairs.
The Cabinet is comprised of the Provost’s senior administration. The group meets weekly with the Provost to discuss issues and topics that affect the University. Members can access meeting materials on the Provost’s Cabinet webpage.
The Advising Network connects academic advisors across campus to share information, ideas and best practices in support of excellent guidance for BU’s undergraduates. The group is co-chaired by Sean Elliot, Professor of Chemistry (CAS), and Beth Loizeaux, Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs.
The Assessment Working Groups are University-level standing committees that work with the Assistant Provost for Academic Assessment to develop approaches and share knowledge about program learning outcomes assessment across the University. As such, they are a crucial channel of communication between the Provost’s Office and the Schools and Colleges about expectations and professional development needs and a means of sharing and responding to the results of assessment.
The BU Arts Council is a University-level, standing committee composed of faculty and staff that works with the Managing Director of the BU Arts Initiative to further develop and enhance the University-wide Arts Initiative following its launch in Fall 2012.
The University Committee on Academic Program Review (CAPR) is a standing committee composed of senior faculty representing the breadth of the University’s schools and colleges that serves as a governing entity with faculty oversight of the program review process. Members are appointed to serve by the Provost and recommendations for service will be solicited regularly from the academic deans and the executive committee of the Faculty Council. One member will be invited by the Provost to serve as chair.
The Faculty Advisory Board on Course Scheduling and Classroom Use advises the University leadership on course scheduling policies to maximize access to courses for students and assure that classrooms are used efficiently and courses assigned to pedagogically appropriate rooms.
The Provost’s Faculty Advisory Board on Distance Education provides broad faculty input on the academic aspect of distance education at Boston University. More information on the membership and mission of the advisory board can be found on its website. (Kerberos Required)
The Provost’s Faculty Teaching Awards Committee recommends to the president the winners of the Metcalf Cup and Prize and Metcalf Awards, and selects the United Methodist Church Scholar-Teacher of the Year and the recipients of other university-wide awards for excellence in teaching. The committee is chaired by Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs Elizabeth Loizeaux.
The Graduate Student Advisory Board advises the Associate Provost for Graduate Affairs on a range of issues affecting the graduate academic experience. Comprising representatives from across BU’s graduate schools and colleges on the Charles River and Medical Campuses, the board meets quarterly with the Associate Provost, sharing concerns of fellow students and ideas for improving graduate and professional education.
The Undergraduate Student Advisory Board advises the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Affairs on a range of issues affecting the undergraduate academic experience. Comprising representatives from across BU’s 10 undergraduate schools and colleges, the board meets monthly with the Associate Provost, sharing concerns of fellow students and ideas for improving undergraduate education.
The University Appointments, Promotion, and Tenure Committee (UAPT) is comprised of 16 senior faculty members selected by the University Provost and the Chair of the Faculty Council by mutual agreement. The normal term of service is two years. The list of current UAPT Committee members may be viewed here: 2018-2019 UAPT membership. This committee is advisory to the Provost.
The UAPT Committee reviews individual cases submitted by the deans for tenure and/or promotion, as well as initial faculty appointments at the rank of Associate or full Professor, regardless of tenure status. The UAPT reviews promotions and senior appointments for faculty on the Charles River Campus only; promotions for faculty in the School of Medicine, Goldman School of Dental Medicine and School of Public Health are reviewed on the Medical Campus.
For a complete description of the appointment, promotion, and tenure process, please see the Faculty Handbook.
Active Task Forces
Launched by the University Provost Jean Morrison in fall 2018, the Strategic Planning Task Force is charged with working collaboratively with faculty, students, and staff across BU to develop a vision and set of actionable priorities for the University over the next decade. The Task Force is expected to complete its report for presentation to the Board of Trustees in fall 2019. That report will be the basis for the University’s Strategic Plan for 2030.
The Task Force on LGBTQIA+ Faculty and Staff is part of a commitment to ensure that all faculty and staff enjoy a supportive work environment consistent with the University’s stated principles of employees’ feeling valued and respected. The Task Force was charged in October 2018 with facilitating a set of University-wide discussions about how Boston University can become a more LGBTQIA+ inclusive community for faculty and staff and with developing recommendations to help us meet this objective.
Completed Task Forces
The Council on Educational Technology and Learning Innovation (CETLI) was a University-wide group charged in October 2012 with discussing key assertions about the potential role of educational technology both in our on-campus, residential programs and as a means for reaching new learning communities via synchronous and asynchronous technologies.
The Council completed its work in July 2013, making several recommendations, including the establishment of a Digital Learning Initiative. To view the official charge to the Council, the Council members, and the July 2013 Report, please see the CETLI website.
In the spring of 2013, Associate Provost Elizabeth Loizeaux charged the Living-Learning Programs Review Committee with the task of undertaking a comprehensive review of BU’s Specialty Houses and making recommendations for the future development of BU’s living-learning programs over the next five to ten years.
The Committee completed its work in November 2013. To view the official charge to the Committee, the Committee members, and the November 2013 Report, please see the Living-Learning Review Committee website.
The Task Force on Faculty Diversity & Inclusion is part of a multifaceted effort that will consider new approaches to faculty recruitment and retention and the fostering of a more inclusive community. The Task Force is charged with facilitating a set of University-wide discussions about how Boston University can become the diverse, inclusive community of faculty we envision, and developing recommendations that will help us achieve this goal.
The Task Force completed its work in May 2016, making several recommendations, including the establishment of a University-wide Associate Provost for Diversity & Inclusion. The Task Force’s final report can be viewed here, and an announcement from President Brown and Provost Morrison on the Task Force’s recommendations can be viewed here.
Launched in May 2017, the Task Force on Evaluating Teaching was part of a commitment to examine the University’s approach to student course evaluations and consider the place of student course evaluations in the overall evaluation of both undergraduate and graduate teaching. The Task Force was charged with investigating the efficacy of current approaches, revising or re-drafting existing University-wide course evaluation forms, and submitting recommendations regarding online course evaluations, increasing levels of participation, and whether to make the results of student course evaluations available to students.
The Task Force completed its work in October 2018. The Task Force’s final report can be viewed here, and members of the University community are invited to share their feedback on its findings and recommendations.
In November 2014, University Provost Jean Morrison appointed a Task Force on General Education, comprising distinguished faculty from across BU. The Task Force was charged with developing a coherent set of core knowledge, skills and habits of mind that will equip BU graduates to thrive in their personal, professional and civic lives. This involved broad consultation with faculty, students, and staff, and exploration of the relevant literature on general education and of the practices of high-quality research universities with successful general education programs.
The Task Force completed its work in March 2016, laying the groundwork for a University-wide implementation of the program for all incoming freshmen by Fall 2018. The Task Force’s final report can be found here, and an announcement from Provost Morrison on the Task Force’s recommendations can be found here. Information on the program’s implementation – now known as the BU Hub – can be found on its regularly updated website.
Non-faculty research employees contribute directly to our research productivity and are an important part of the research enterprise at Boston University. This is a varied and complex group. This special Task Force will work to develop a comprehensive look forward for non-faculty research staff at BU, including recommendations that create consistency across the University and better provide support and advancement opportunities for these employees.
The Task Force completed its work in May 2016 and developed a report and set of recommendations for review by the President and Provost. The full Task Force report can be found here.
The Task Force to Envision Data Science at Boston University was launched in July 2018 to help develop a vision that further advance’s BU’s capabilities as a research and education leader in this rapidly evolving field. The Task Force was asked to draft recommendations that: leverage and build on BU’s existing strengths and recent investments in data science; promote appropriate differentiation and prevent needless duplication or competition among programs; and optimize faculty collaboration and the seamless integration of data science programs across disciplines, schools, and colleges.
The Task Force completed its work in April 2019. The Task Force’s final report and recommendations can be found here.