1. Membership of a board of studies
(a) Membership of each Board of Studies will be in accordance with Ordinance 10.
(b) If an ex-officio member of the Board is unable to attend a meeting of the Board, they may nominate an alternate to attend that meeting. If a member appointed by another Faculty/School to serve on the Board is unable to attend a meeting of the Board, the Dean of that Faculty/Head of that School may nominate an alternate to attend that meeting. Alternate membership is not otherwise allowed. The attendance of an alternate at a meeting is at the discretion of the Chair of the Board.
(c) A member filling a casual vacancy will serve only for the unexpired period of office of the original member.
(a) The procedure for the election of members to serve on a Board of Studies will be in accordance with Ordinance 10.
(b) The candidates with the highest number of votes will be declared elected. In the event of a tie, the person to be declared elected will be determined by lot.
(c) A candidate nominated in accordance with Ordinance 10 will be elected unopposed if no other nominations are received for the vacancy for which they have been nominated.
3. Meetings of a board of studies
(a) Ordinary meetings of the Boards of Studies will be in accordance with the Calendar of the University as approved annually by Senate. There will normally be six ordinary meetings of the Board in each academic year.
(b) A special meeting may be called at the discretion of the Chair of the Board to consider matters to which specific or immediate attention must be given.
(c) An extraordinary or emergency meeting will be called if a request for such a meeting, University of Bath - Standing Orders of Boards of Studies.
(e) The Chair has the power to adjourn a meeting of the Board either temporarily or to an alternative date.
(a) Where a Board of Studies has elected a Vice-Chair, the Vice-Chair will normally chair a meeting in the absence of the Chair. In the absence of both the Chair and the Vice-Chair, members of the Board will at a meeting elect a Chair for that meeting.
(b) There will be a quorum when one-third of the total membership is present.
(c) The quorum may be challenged twice in any meeting. Thereafter any challenge to the quorum will be out of order.
(d) In the event of a successful challenge to the quorum, the options available to the Chair are to:
- adjourn the meeting to an alternative date
- close the meeting and defer all the business to be transacted to the next ordinary meeting of the Board
proceed with the meeting but clearly show in the minutes that the meeting was not quorate
- Any business requiring decisions can either be referred to the next ordinary meeting of the Board or the next available meeting of Senate
- Any business accomplished and decisions taken before the quorum is challenged will be valid
(e) The Chair's ruling on procedure is final.
5. Postponement and cancellation of meetings
Any meeting of the Board will be postponed:
(a) if one half of the members signify beforehand that they are unable to attend.
(b) if, half an hour after the time set for the commencement of the meeting, insufficient members are present to constitute a quorum.
(c) in the event of a directive from the Senate requiring a postponement. Any ordinary meeting of the Board may be cancelled by the Chair if there is insufficient business to warrant holding the meeting, provided that 72 hours' notice of cancellation is given to all the members.
The Secretary of the Board will compile the agenda in consultation with the Chair. Requests for inclusion of items on the agenda must reach the Secretary in writing, with copies of any papers for circulation, fourteen days before the date of the meeting at which the item is to be considered. The Chair may exclude from the agenda any proposed item which may be out of order. The agenda will be circulated with the supporting papers at least seven days before the meeting.
(a) The order of items for consideration may be changed with the approval of the Board. Consideration of items on the agenda may be deferred. No prior notice will be needed of items brought up under 'Any other business', but the Chair may use discretion in ruling that any of these items are out of order or that they be put on the agenda for the next meeting. The Chair's discretionary ruling may be reversed if two-thirds of the members present and voting support a motion to this effect.
(b) Reserved area business (the pink section of the agenda) is confidential and may not be divulged to anyone else (except in the circumstances set out at (e) below). Reserved area business is defined by Section 28.2(iii) of the Statutes of the University. All reserved area business is also restricted under the Freedom of Information Act and is not routinely published by the University.
(c) The remainder of business is separated into open/public information and information which is restricted under the Freedom of Information Act. The latter items of business are identified at the top of the agenda for meetings of the Board and a separate set of minutes of the discussion of these items is produced. Items of business restricted under the Freedom of Information Act are not routinely published by the University. Members are free to discuss public/open items with non-members but must be mindful of the sensitive nature of the business restricted under the Freedom of Information Act. If a member considers it necessary to discuss restricted items with non-members, it must be in a general way and in confidence. If not self-evident, the originators of restricted items will make clear any information which is particularly sensitive or must be regarded as confidential.
(d) The minutes of open/public business are published on the website of the University after they have been confirmed by the Chair.
(e) Subsequent to a meeting of the Board, the resolutions (and papers which form part of the resolutions) may, as necessary, be disclosed by the Secretary to the Board, in the form adopted, to those who properly require the information. Any information which is classified as reserved area business or is restricted under the Freedom of Information Act will be identified as such for the recipient.
(f) The Chair is authorised to act on behalf of the Board during the vacation and at other times to deal with urgent business which requires a formal decision before the next available meeting of the Board, subject to report of any action taken to the next meeting of the Board. The decision will be confirmed by the Chair in writing. This is on the basis that, if any such matter is expected to be of significant interest or the subject of significant debate, members of the Board will be consulted by correspondence before any decision is taken or a special meeting of the Board will be scheduled.
(g) Decisions made by email:
(i) At the discretion of the Chair, or as agreed by the Board of Studies, where an urgent decision is required, decisions may be made by the exchange of emails, or similar electronic means, provided all* members are copied into or otherwise participate in the electronic exchange.
(ii) For such a decision to be validly made, a copy of the final decision must be passed to all* members, not less than 75% of whom must reply to the secretary to confirm their agreement. A copy of the decision signed by the Chair and accompanied by a copy email from each member shall be treated as properly made by a meeting of the Board of Studies duly convened and held.
(iii) The secretary shall be responsible for ensuring that decisions made by email are reported to the next meeting of the Board of Studies/Senate and for retaining an appropriate record.
*Except where a member has a personal interest in the matter such that if it had been discussed at a meeting the member would have been asked to withdraw.'
(a) The Chair has discretion regarding the acceptance of motions. The Chair's discretionary ruling may be reversed if a majority of two-thirds of the Board members present support a motion to this effect.
(b) A motion must be formally proposed and seconded.
(c) A challenge to the Chair on a point of order takes precedence over all other discussion.
(d) Amendments will be considered prior to a vote on the substantive motion.
(e) Whenever an amendment is moved upon an original proposition, no second amendment will be taken into consideration until the first amendment has been disposed of.
(f) Motions or amendments may be withdrawn by the proposer with the approval of the seconder and with the consent of the Board.
(g) A member may, though there is a motion and an amendment before the Board, move:
(i) 'that the Board now adjourns', discussion of which motion shall have precedence over all other motions or amendments.
If (i) is carried, the Board will determine the time and place for the meeting to be resumed, or will authorise the Chair to convene a meeting which will be not later than seven days prior to the next meeting of the Board given in the Calendar.
(ii) 'that the Board now proceeds to the next business'.
If (ii) is carried, the matter may not be raised again except as a formal agenda item at a subsequent meeting; if it is lost, discussion may continue, and the same motion may not be proposed again during the discussion until a period of fifteen minutes has elapsed.
(iii) 'that the matter lies on the table'.
If (iii) is carried, the matter may be raised subsequently in the meeting if the Board so resolves.
(iv) 'that the matter be referred back to committee'.
(v) 'that the question is now put'.
If (v) is duly seconded, a vote will be taken without discussion; if it is carried, the main question will be put immediately.
(h) A member may, during discussion on the main question, but not during discussion on an amendment, move the previous question, that is to say, the member moves that the main question is not now put. If such a motion is seconded, it may be discussed but not amended. It may be displaced only by a motion to adjourn. If it is carried, there will be no further discussion of the motion at that meeting: if it is lost, the motion will be put immediately.
(i) A member who has proposed or seconded the motion under discussion may not move or second during that discussion any of the motions in clauses (f) or (g) other than 'that the question is now put'.
Voting will normally be by a show of hands but a written ballot will be held if one-third of those present so request it. A motion will be declared carried if it receives a simple majority of votes cast. In the event of a tie, the Chair will have the right of a second or casting vote. The Secretary will act as teller. The number of votes cast for and against a motion will not be recorded in the minutes unless such a record is demanded by three members.
10. Voting rights
The Chair, ex officio members, elected members and appointed members have the right to vote. Co-opted members have the right to vote if they are members of the University but not otherwise.
Minutes of meetings will be recorded by the Secretary and approved by the Chair before circulation. The minutes of a previous meeting must be approved by the Board and signed by the Chair. The Secretary will advise the Secretary of Senate of any items from the minutes of the Board which need to be placed on the agenda of Senate at least fourteen days before the meeting at which they are to be considered.
12. Amendments to standing orders
Any proposal for an amendment to Standing Orders will be referred to Senate who will receive the views of all Boards of Studies before reaching any decision. An amendment may be made by a simple majority of Senate and will take effect after the meeting of Senate at which the amendment is approved.
13. Suspension of standing orders
Any one or more of the Standing Orders may be suspended at any meeting so far as regards any business at such meeting upon a motion duly proposed and seconded, without debate, provided a majority of members present and voting so decide.
Approval Date: 21st October 2009 Approved By: Senate
Date of last review: amended by Senate 22 April 2020