About the University of Guelph Senate

The University of Guelph Senate was established through the University of Guelph Act and is responsible for academic programs, regulations and policies.

Comprised of a membership that is representative of the University community, with both elected and ex-officio members (see Senate Bylaws for full composition), responsibilities of Senate include:

  • electing the Chancellor;
  • to control, regulate and determine the educational policy of the University;
  • to determine the courses of study and standards of admission to the University and continued membership therein, and qualifications for degrees and diplomas;
  • to conduct examinations and appoint examiners;
  • to deal with all matters arising in connection with the awarding of fellowships, scholarships, bursaries, medals, prizes and other awards;
  • to confer the degrees of Bachelor, Master and Doctor and all other degrees and diplomas in all branches of learning that may appropriately be conferred by a University;
  • to confer honorary degrees in any department of learning;
  • to create faculty councils or committees and committees generally to exercise its powers."

(1964), c.120, s.13 and amended 1965, c.136, 2.13)

If you have any questions related to Senate or the information found on this website, please contact the University Secretariat office.

Changes to Composition of Senate

At its meeting on December 5, 2011, Senate approved changes to its composition and membership resulting in an overall reduction in size from 215 to 162 members -- a 25% reduction over all. The last attempt at such revisions occurred in 1994, with no resulting success. The recommendations for the new composition were based on a set of principles approved by Senate on February 7, 2011. In the new composition, the provision for elected faculty and student representation by population has been retained, with adjustments to the formula to determine the number of seats. It was also agreed that one associate dean per college will be retained in the ex-officio membership, to be appointed by the college dean each year. Alumni representation by college was also revised to two alumni "at large" seats.  The changes will be effective as of the 2012-13 Senate session.

"This achievement represents almost three years of work by the committee, and would not have been possible without the willingness of the various constituent groups to be open to new ideas. It's an historic feat that will have a truly transformative effect on Senate for many years to come," said Chair of the Committee on Bylaws and Membership Dr. Peter Conlon. 

For full details on the meeting and the motion, please refer to the Senate meeting agenda for December 5, 2011, Report from the Committee on Bylaws and Membership.