Regulations Governing the Election of Students to Senate

  1. Administration of Election
  2. Term of Office
  3. Representation
  4. Eligibility
  5. Retention of Seat
  6. Vacancies and Replacements
  7. Nomination and Election Periods
  8. Nominations
  9. Elections
  10. Election Results
  11. Irregularities
  12. Related University Policies
  13. Document Authority and Information

1. Administration of Election

  1. The University Secretary shall be the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) responsible for the overall co-ordination, implementation and administration of the election of students to Senate, on behalf of the Senate Committee on Bylaws and Membership.
  2. At the discretion of the University Secretary, the responsibilities of CEO may be delegated to the Associate or Assistant University Secretary.

2. Term of Office

  1. The Term of Office for students appointed to Senate shall begin September 1 and end August 31.  The Term of Office shall be one year in length.
  2. A student Senator shall be eligible to stand for re-election, in accordance with the eligibility requirements as outlined in s.4.

3. Representation

  1. Undergraduate Degree Programs: The undergraduate degree programs shall be entitled to representation on Senate, elected by and from the undergraduate students of each degree program on the principle of representation by population1 as follows:
    1. 1-1500 students in the program: one member
    2. 1501-3000 students in the program: two members
    3. 3001-4500 students in the program: three members
    4. Over 4500 students in the program: four members
  2. Graduate Degree and Diploma Programs: The graduate degree programs shall be entitled to representation on Senate, elected by and from the graduate students of each College on the principle of representation by population per college as follows:
    1. 1-1500 graduate students in the college: one member
    2. Over 1500 graduate students in the college: two members
  3. If the calculation in s.3(a) and s.3(b)  results in an overall entitlement of less than 21 students, the minimum entitlement of 21 members shall be distributed among the programs and colleges on a pro rata basis, except that each program or college shall be entitled to at least the number of members it would have had under s.3(a) and s.3(b)
  4. Undergraduate Diploma Program: The number of diploma students on Senate shall be determined using the representation rule listed in s.3(a).  Students enrolled in undergraduate diploma programs at any University of Guelph campus are considered to be in one program for the purposes of representation by population.
  5. Guelph-Humber Programs: The number of Guelph-Humber students on Senate shall be determined using the representation rule listed in s.3(a). Students enrolled in undergraduate programs at the University of Guelph-Humber are considered to be in one program for the purposes of representation by population.

4. Eligibility

  1. In order to be eligible to stand as a candidate for election to Senate, a student must be registered as a full or part-time student in an academic program under the jurisdiction of University of Guelph Senate in the semester in which the election is held.
  2. In order to be eligible to nominate, a student must be:
    1. registered as a full or part-time student in an academic program under the jurisdiction of University of Guelph Senate in the semester in which the election is held; and,
    2. in the case of undergraduate students, registered in the same degree program2 as the candidate whom they nominate for election; or
    3. in the case of graduate students, registered in a graduate program in the same college as the candidate whom they nominate for election.
  3. In order to be eligible to vote a student must be:
    1. registered as a full or part-time student in an academic program under the jurisdiction of the University of Guelph Senate in the semester in which the election is held.
  4. Eligibility will be confirmed by the CEO at their discretion, through the University Registrar.

5. Retention of Seat

  1. In order to continue as a member of Senate, an elected student must:
    1. be registerable in the three semesters of the Session of Senate3 for which they were elected;
    2. be registered as a full or part-time student in an academic program under the jurisdiction of Senate in at least two of the three semesters of the regular Session of Senate
  2. Under any one of the following circumstances, a Senate seat shall be forfeited:
    1. a student Senator is required to withdraw from an academic program;
    2. in the case of an undergraduate student, a student Senator changes degree programs and is no longer registered in the degree program for which they were elected;
    3. in the case of a graduate student, a student Senator changes their registration to a department in a college other than that for which they were elected;
    4. a student Senator completes their academic program at the end of the Fall semester.
  3. A student who completes their academic program at the end of the Winter semester may retain their seat until the end of the current Session of Senate.
  4. If an elected student becomes ineligible to continue as a member of Senate by virtue of their registration status, they shall notify the CEO, in writing, within two weeks of the change affecting eligibility.
  5. Continuing eligibility will be confirmed by the CEO at their discretion, through the University Registrar.

6. Vacancies and Replacements

  1. If a vacancy occurs after the election, a replacement shall be made by automatic appointment of the candidate who holds the next highest weighted sum of votes from the results of the same election and satisfies all other applicable rules for membership on Senate.
  2. If there are no eligible replacements, the Committee on Bylaws and Membership shall make a determination as to whether a by-election shall be held4
  3. An individual appointed or elected to fill a vacancy shall hold office only for the remainder of the predecessor’s term.

7. Nomination and Election Periods

  1. Precise dates for the annual Nomination and Election Periods shall be established by the CEO no less than six months in advance.
  2. The annual Election Period shall be held in the Winter semester.
  3. The Nomination Period shall be no less than 7 calendar days in length.
  4. The Election Period shall be no less than 72 hours in length, excluding Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays.

8. Nominations

  1. Nominations must be submitted on the nomination form issued by the CEO, and:
    1. show the name, student ID number and signature of two nominators;
    2. show the signature of concurrence and student ID number of the nominee;
    3. be submitted before the end of the Nomination Period.
  2. Should an insufficient number of nominations be received during the Nomination Period to fill the available seats on Senate, a by-election shall be held at the beginning of the next Session of Senate. Failure to fill a seat in the by-election will result in the seat remaining vacant for the duration of the Session of Senate.

9. Elections

  1. When the number of nominations exceeds the number of seats available in a degree program or college, an election shall be held.
  2. The means by which votes are cast shall be determined by the CEO.  Normally, voting shall proceed through use of an internet-accessible electronic voting method and ballots shall be issued to all eligible students by way of the University’s official electronic mail system.  
  3. A voting list of all eligible students shall be provided by the University Registrar to the CEO.
  4. A preferential voting system approved by Senate, shall be used5.
  5. When the number of nominations is equal to or less than the number of seats available for a particular constituency of Senate, the nominees for that constituency shall be acclaimed6.
  6. Each candidate shall enjoy the right to campaign and inform7 the student body of their candidacy in a manner consistent with relevant University policies8 and regulations.

10. Election Results

  1. In the case of an equality of votes where the election of the candidates receiving an equal number of votes would result in the election of a greater number of candidates than there are available seats for a particular constituency, the CEO shall determine the candidate(s) to be declared elected, by lot, in the presence of all candidates receiving an equal number of votes.
    1. For the purposes of this section, “lot” means the method of determining the successful candidate(s) by writing the names of the candidates on pieces of paper equal in size, folded identically and placed in a receptacle.  The CEO shall withdraw the appropriate number9 of names from the receptacle and those names shall be considered to have received one more vote and are thereby elected.
  2. Normally, preliminary election results shall be released and posted publicly on the next business day following the close of the Election Period.
  3. Election results shall remain preliminary for a period of seven calendar days following the close of the Election Period.
  4. Election results shall be presented to the Senate Committee on Bylaws and Membership and subsequently to Senate, for information.

11. Irregularities

  1. If during the course of the election, it appears to any candidate or member of the student body that an irregularity has occurred, it must be reported to the CEO in writing within seven calendar days following the close of the Election Period. 
    1. For the purposes of this section, “irregularity” means a contravention of these regulations that could reasonably hold the potential to affect the outcome of the election.
  2. The CEO will consider and attempt to resolve any complaints that arise regarding the electoral process.  All complaints received will be dealt with in a timely manner.
    1. For the purposes of this section, “complaints” means assertions of irregularities.
  3. If the complaint cannot be resolved, the CEO shall determine whether they will:
    1. Make a final decision regarding outcome; or
    2. Convene an ad-hoc committee (the “Committee”) to further investigate the complaint where the CEO finds that:
      1. The irregularity has the potential to affect the outcome of the election; and,
      2. The irregularity is sufficiently complex to require further investigation
  4. The Committee will investigate any complaint referred to it by the CEO, and make a recommendation regarding outcome to the Committee on Bylaws and Membership. The decision of the Committee on Bylaws and Membership regarding outcome shall be final. 
  5. The CEO shall provide a report to the Committee on Bylaws and Membership summarizing all complaints received and their disposition.

12. Related Documents

Following is a non-exhaustive list of related University policies and procedures:

  • Policy on Non-Academic Misconduct
  • Human Rights Policy
  • Mass E-Mail Policy
  • Student Email Communications Policy
  • Acceptable Use Policy
  • University postering policies (e.g. Student Housing, University Centre, etc.)

13. Document Authority and Information

  • Approved Date: April 7, 2014
  • Last Revised Date: March 5, 2014
  • Next Review Date: No later than 5 years from date of last approval
  • Authority/Ownership: Senate, on recommendation of the Senate Committee on Bylaws and Membership

 

 

1. Approved as part of the Review of Composition and Membership of Senate, December 5, 2011.

2. In the case of undergraduate diploma programs or University of Guelph-Humber programs, eligibility is in accordance with sections 3(d) and 3(e) 

3. As defined in Senate Bylaws

4. In the case where a by-election is not held, the seat shall remain vacant for the remainder of the Session of Senate.

5. Refer to Preferential Voting Method for Senate-related Elections, approved April 2012.

6. Subject to confirmation of eligibility

7. Candidate information is published by the University Secretariat for the purpose of provision with ballots

8. See Section 12 for related University policies

9. In accordance with the number of available seats and candidates with an equality of votes