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This paper sets out the role and function of the Registrar‟s nominees
on Faculty Board and Standing Committees.      (For frequently asked
questions suggested by current Registrar's nominees, please see
Appendix A.)

Registrar‟s nominees are expected to safeguard the integrity of the
University‟s decision-making processes by ensuring the proper
application of University policies and rules and observance of
regulations and procedures in the development and implementation of
academic programs within the faculty to which they have been

This requires:

     A good knowledge of University and Academic Board policies;
     A thorough understanding of University rules and regulations,
      conditions and procedures, including levels at which various
      decisions are made;
     A commitment to being an interested member of the faculty and
      being familiar with local issues and more general issues which
      might affect the work of a faculty;
     A detailed knowledge of the responsibilities of the relevant
      central administrative sections and good relationships with the
      staff in these sections and the administrative staff within the
      faculty; and
     Knowledge of meeting procedure to assist the Presiding Member to
      conduct meetings and draft resolutions.

Registrar‟s nominees should be well prepared for meetings, including
prior consultation on contentious issues with relevant members of the
administrative staff, and prepared to put a point of view if
necessary. Such views should conform to University policy and

It is important that Registrar‟s nominees take follow up action to
ensure that administrative matters are quickly attended to and that
documentation is prepared and despatched in a timely fashion.


1.1     General

Registrar‟s nominees should be thoroughly familiar with the business
and the people of their own faculty. They should be broadly familiar
with the issues that are „at large‟ or of concern in other faculties
or the University generally, particularly those being dealt with at
the Academic Board or its Standing Committees. Where matters being
addressed originate from the Registrar‟s Division, Registrar‟s
nominees should be well briefed on any official view or attitude the
Division might have; if no such official view is provided or
appropriate, the basic reason for requesting a faculty to address a
matter should be well understood.

Registrar‟s nominees should always consult with other officers
(student information, postgraduate section, admissions, examinations,
publications, etc.) whenever matters with which they are unfamiliar
are on the agenda. In special circumstances the Registrar may suggest
that a departmental expert be present at Standing Committees to
assist discussion of a particularly complex matter. For the vast
Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

majority of matters Registrar‟s nominees will be expected to rely
upon their own detailed preparation for meetings.

1.2   Agenda

Normally agenda papers go from academic members of the faculty to the
Presiding Member and/or the Secretariat. The Presiding Member should
direct any papers received to the Secretariat and     the Registrar‟s
nominee should make sure anything s/he receives is transmitted
without delay to the Secretariat.

The draft agenda is prepared by the Secretariat in consultation with
the Presiding Member and, rather more rarely, the Dean. The agenda is
then checked by the Registrar‟s nominee whose responsibility it is to
ensure that any known business is not overlooked, to check the
wording of proposed resolutions and to advise where appropriate how
some matters might best be presented.

1.3   Submission of Academic Proposals

The Guide for the Submission of Academic Proposals sets out the
format              for              academic         proposals.

The responsibility for ensuring that academic proposals are presented
in the approved manner and accompanied by an appropriate resources
statement is the Presiding Member‟s, assisted by the Registrar‟s
nominee.   The Secretariat can advise on the appropriate level of
approval for proposals (also refer to the Council Delegations to
Faculty Standing Committees (Appendix D) and Item 4.1 below).

1.4   Attendance

Registrar‟s nominees should take their attendance responsibilities
seriously. This includes arriving before the meeting begins.

If for some reason Registrar‟s nominees are unable to attend a
meeting, they should ensure that another Registrar‟s nominee will
attend for them. Registrar‟s nominees should brief their replacements
on any contentious or complex matter likely to be raised. The
Presiding Member of the Faculty should be informed of the arrangement
prior to the meeting.

The Secretariat is not in    a position to service ad hoc committees of
faculties other than the     faculty board and the standing committee.
There may be occasions,     however, when it is clearly in the best
interest of the Division    that the Registrar‟s nominee attend ad hoc

Registrar‟s nominees may also find it useful to offer to co-ordinate
responses from schools on a matter in which they have some


2.1   General and Procedural

Registrar‟s nominees should be generally familiar with the Faculty
Standing    Orders   and    Rules   of    Procedure   (Appendix   B)
( Rules on such
matters as quorums and voting procedures and representational rights

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

of the schools, students, and late or tabled cases       or   business
without notice, etc. should be thoroughly understood.

The role of the Registrar‟s nominee is to assist the Presiding Member
in the efficient dispatch of the business of the particular meeting.

2.2   Membership

The establishment of a faculty and its committees is set down in the
University of New South Wales Rules 1999 Section 3 (Appendix C).
Familiarity with Section 3 of the University of New South Wales Rules
is essential:

      Each Faculty Board is to consist of the professors, associate
      professors, senior lecturers and associate lecturers (or such
      alternative designations as may be adopted for those academic
      positions in the courses for which the faculty is responsible)
      and such other persons having appropriate qualifications as the
      Council may appoint to the faculty.

      The members of the Standing Committee shall be the Presiding
      Member of the Faculty, the Dean of the Faculty, the Registrar,
      the Heads of Schools of the Faculty and such other persons,
      including a number of elected members, as the Faculty Board may
      determine and then appoint.

Each Faculty shall establish Faculty Committees comprising:

(a)   Education Committee


      Undergraduate Education Committee and a Postgraduate Coursework
      Education Committee

      (i) The members of a committee established under this sub-rule
      shall be the Presiding Member of the Faculty, the Dean of the
      Faculty, the Registrar, and such other persons as the Faculty
      Board   may  appoint   which   shall  include   at   least one
      undergraduate and at least one postgraduate coursework student
      enrolled in programs of the Faculty, as appropriate.

(b)   Research Committee


      Higher Degree Committee and a Research Management Committee

      (i) The members of a committee established under this sub-rule
      shall be the Presiding Member of the Faculty, the Dean of the
      Faculty, the Registrar, and such other persons as the Faculty
      Board may appoint which shall include the Associate Dean
      (Research) and at least one higher degree research student
      enrolled in a program of the Faculty.

(c)   Assessment Review Group

      Each Faculty Education Committee shall establish an Assessment
      Review Group which shall consist of the Presiding Member of the

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

      Faculty, who shall be the Presiding Member of the group, the
      Registrar or nominee and such other members as the Faculty
      Education Committee may appoint.

Elected membership of the committees is reconstituted in March/April
in even years; ex-officio membership is continuously updated. The
Secretariat should provide a membership list for each committee after
the elections and the relevant Secretariat staff member should have
up-to-date lists available at each meeting.

2.2.1 Such other persons

Most faculties have established categories of "such other persons".
In some cases the person who occupies a particular position (e.g. the
University Librarian) is automatically a member of a faculty while in
other cases a person has to be nominated to fill a category (e.g. the
Head of the School of Psychology or nominee).        The "such other
persons" membership of Faculty Boards is reviewed in March every two
years in even years.

2.2.2 Quorum

The quorum is established under the University of New South Wales
Rules 1999 Section 3.

      The quorum of the Faculty Board will be the greater of 20 or
      the product obtained by multiplying the number of full time
      academic staff of the Faculty by one quarter, any fraction in
      the product being disregarded.

      The quorum for the Faculty Standing Committee and each Faculty
      Committee will be 2/3rd of the approved membership, any
      fraction in the product being disregarded.

      Unless otherwise determined by the Faculty Board, the quorum of
      the Assessment Review Group shall be the number of members who
      attend at the appointed time and place.

Current quorums are specified on the agenda papers for Faculty Boards
and Faculty Standing Committees.

Where a meeting of the Faculty Board has been convened but remains
inquorate after 15 minutes, a meeting of the Faculty Standing
Committee will be held to deal with the items on the agenda.
Registrar‟s nominees should also check carefully that the remaining
members of Faculty Board actually constitute a quorum for the
Standing Committee. Faculty members who are not members of the
Standing Committee should be invited to stay and participate in
discussion of the items. They should be reminded that they have no
voting rights.

2.3   Faculty Board and Standing Committee

Registrar‟s nominees are full members of the Faculty Board by virtue
of the University of NSW 1999 Rules (Section 3), or by appointment by
the Faculty Board to Standing Committees. As such, Registrar‟s
nominees have the technical right to speak and vote on all issues
whether   they   are   procedural   or   substantive,   academic   or
administrative, detailed or embracing the philosophical or academic
direction of the Faculty.

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

2.3.1 Delegations

Council has approved certain delegations to be made to Standing
Committees by Faculty Boards. The full list is attached as Appendix
D. Please be aware of which of these delegations your Faculty Board
has delegated to the Standing Committee.

2.4.   Discussion

There is no doubt that Registrar‟s nominees will have views,
sometimes strong views, on some matters under discussion at Faculty
meetings. Registrar‟s nominees are not discouraged from expressing
those views except that they should have a keen awareness for the
relevance of what they say, and perhaps more importantly, the value
of discretion. Any view advanced should be put with respect for the
rules of procedure at meetings and for the dignity and rights of
other participants in discussions. The views expressed should be well
researched and understood and well argued.

The key elements of any contribution made should be the underlying
neutrality of the position of the Division and of the continuity
represented by the role.

When officers of the Division, particularly junior members of staff,
are being criticised for failure to perform, with justification or
otherwise, the only appropriate response is to offer to investigate
and report on the matter. Any subsequent report should be private and
not to the meeting at large unless this is unavoidable.

2.4    Voting

Voting is regulated by the University of NSW Rules 1999 Section 3

       Except where otherwise provided by these Rules, all questions
       which come before a meeting of a Faculty Board, Standing
       Committee or Faculty Committee at which a quorum is present
       shall be decided by the majority of the members present and
       voting and the Presiding Member shall have a vote, and in the
       case of an equality of votes, a casting vote.

Please note that it specifies “those present and voting.” Votes are
normally taken “on the voices” but where a vote is close, a Presiding
Member may ask for a show of hands. The Registrar‟s nominee and the
Secretariat clerk should perform the count.

Registrar‟s nominee have the right to vote and some do from time to
time. Proposing and seconding resolutions and voting on procedural
matters are generally a matter of judgement in the circumstances of
the moment.

Voting on matters of substance is another matter. As a general guide,
if the matter is within the competence of the Registrar‟s nominee,
the Registrar‟s nominee may be on safe ground in voting. In matters
outside   the   competence   of  the   nominee   (academic   matters,
philosophical or discretionary concerns), voting may tend to
undermine the position of underlying neutrality and continuity so
essential to the successful discharge of the role of Registrar‟s
nominees. It would not be appropriate for the Registrar‟s nominee to
be seen to be voting on matters of great contention to do with the

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

academic direction of a faculty where voting among academic members
is close.

In some cases it may be important to a faculty to have a unanimous
vote. This can occur, for example, in the nomination of someone for
an honorary degree. If the faculty wanted the support for the motion
to be recorded this would be written nem.con (no one contradicting).
There should be no problem for a Registrar‟s nominee to take part in
a vote of this kind but other instances, such as a vote of no
confidence, may present different problems. In these circumstances,
it would be more appropriate to abstain.

3.      MINUTES

3.1     Faculty Board and Standing Committee

The role of Registrar‟s nominees is to check the accuracy of the
draft minutes prepared by the Secretariat. Responsibility for this
rests formally with the Presiding Member but there is a real sense in
which this responsibility lies with Registrar‟s nominees. English
expression, sensitivity to University-wide concerns, consistency of
style, etc, should be reviewed.

Registrar‟s nominees have a responsibility to ensure that unwarranted
verbosity is deleted from the minutes and that the overall tone is
neutral. Above all, gratuitously unhelpful remarks should not appear.
Sometimes remarks are made at a meeting on administrative matters
such as staffing levels, or quality of service or both. It is
preferred that these not form part of the official record just as
references to omissions and/or errors by staff should not appear. It
may be, however, that some reference must be made if the matter is of
sufficient   substance;  here   too  Registrar‟s   nominees  have   a
responsibility to ensure that the minutes show a balance and
sensitivity which does justice to the issue and leads to its
resolution in the best interests of all concerned.

Registrar‟s nominees should pay particular attention to the wording
of resolutions to ensure that the level of approval is appropriate
for the particular decision. Please refer to the Council Delegations
to Faculty Standing Committees (Appendix D) and the following
definition of new and revised program proposals:

      revision is one which will alter the program to such an extent
      that new students will complete a program substantially different
      from students already enrolled in the program, eg. a significant
      change in the proportion between compulsory and elective courses,
      changes to core requirement.

      revision is where the proposed changes fit within the existing
      program structure, eg. new plan (major) proposed, requirements for
      plan altered (units of credit).

     Please note that all proposals for new programs and changes to
      program names go to Council.


5.1     Faculty Board and Faculty Standing Committee

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

The Secretariat has a responsibility to prepare documentation from
Faculty Standing Committee to Faculty Board to Academic Board and its
Standing Committees. The Registrar‟s nominees‟ role is limited to
oversight of this process.


2 August 2001
N:/SEC/Roles and Functions of RNs

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

Appendix A

Registrar's Nominees Briefing Paper


Please note that much information can be found in the academic proposal section of the Secretariat
Website and more general information relating to Faculties on the main page of the Website at:

Q:      Exactly which Faculty committees am I supposed to attend?

A:      You should attend the Faculty Board and Faculty Standing Committee meetings.
        The Secretariat is not in a position to service other committees of faculties. There may be
        occasions, however, when it is in the best interest of the Division that the Registrar’s nominee
        attend other Faculty meetings.

Q:      What should I look for in proposals to revise or for new programs and                courses?

A:      You should check to make sure that all sections of the proposal forms have
        been filled out and that the Dean, yourself, and the Librarian have signed the proposal.

        You should check that the proposal addresses General Education requirements and
        Information Technology requirements.

Q:      What degree nomenclature is acceptable?

A:      The University Council has frequently expressed the desire for rationalisation of
        degree structures and has indicated that it does not support the proliferation of degree titles.

        Discipline areas may appear on testamurs, for example, Bachelor of Science in
        Nanotechnology, but the formal degree title is Bachelor of Science. Discipline areas should
        always appear as "in discipline area", without brackets.

        Contact the Student Information and Systems Office (ext 3118) for more advice on program
        names and abbreviations.

        The Academic Board has agreed (June 2001) that the issue of degree nomenclature should be
        revisited by Academic Board and Council and the President of the Academic Board will be
        preparing a paper.

Q:      How do academic proposals flow through the University's Committees?

A:      See the attached flow chart - academic proposals pass through Faculty
        Education Committees to the Faculty Standing Committee, then to the Academic Board
        Standing Committees: Undergraduate Studies or Postgraduate Coursework Committee (or
        both in the case of concurrent bachelors/masters programs), or the Committee on Research for
        research degree proposals. The General Education component of program proposals must be
        referred to the General Education Committee of the Academic Board. Then program revision
        proposals go to the Academic Board and new program proposals go to Council via the Board.

Q:      Who is the Presiding Member of Faculty?

A:      The Presiding Member is not the Dean, nor necessarily an Associate Dean or
        Head of School. He or she is elected to chair faculty meetings for two years, by the academic
        members of the faculty. He or she must be a full-time member of the academic staff of the
        faculty. He or she is an ex-officio member of the Academic Board while Presiding Member of
        the Faculty.

Roles and Functions of Registrar's Nominees

Q:   Who is the Presiding Member of Academic Board Standing Committees?

A:   Academic Board Standing Committees elect a Presiding Member from their membership,
     except in the case of the Policy Advisory Committee, which is chaired by the President of the
     Academic Board. Sometimes Presiding Members of Academic Board Standing Committees
     are already members of the Academic Board, other times they are members of the Standing
     Committee who are appointed as "such other persons" members of the Board once they are
     elected to chair the Standing Committee.

Q:   What is the Registrar's Nominee's role on Faculty Assessment Review Groups?

A:   The Registrar's Nominee's role on Faculty Assessment Review Groups is to
     ensure that UNSW policy is being implemented accurately.


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