Academic Services


The role of a Senate member and reasons to nominate yourself for election to Senate

This election is an opportunity for all members of the academic community to get involved with Senate and the role it plays within the University.

What is Senate?

The Senatus Academicus (Senate) is the University’s supreme academic body. Its core function is to oversee the learning, teaching and discipline of the University and to promote its research.

Senate is chaired by the Principal and Vice Chancellor and the membership includes academic and research staff, Heads of Schools, Heads of Colleges, the Provost, Vice-Principals, Assistant Principals, and student representatives.

It holds a minimum of three meetings each year. Business is also conducted electronically via three annual ‘E-Senates’.

Why become a member of Senate?

Senate is a vital forum for consultation and communication, bringing together elected academic staff and student representatives and senior University leadership. Becoming a member of Senate is an opportunity to:

  • Make a key contribution to major University learning, teaching and research projects
  • Be part of the conversation on the academic direction and priorities of the University
  • Help to ensure that our University continues to deliver excellent teaching and research
  • Engage with the University’s long term strategy and play your part in its success
  • Contribute to the University as part of your ‘academic citizenship’

Strategy 2030

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

The University is committed to improving the diversity of key University committees, and we encourage all academic staff to consider nominating themselves for election.  All teaching staff, research staff, clinical staff, postdoctoral fellows, and tutors and demonstrators are eligible, including staff on a fixed term contract: please contact if you want to check your eligibility.

If you wish to discuss the possibility of nominating yourself for election to Senate, you can speak to your Head of School or a current Senate member from your School or College: a list of current Senate members can be found on the Senate website:

The nomination process is straightforward, you can self-nomination and you do not need any other member of staff to second your nomination.

Senate’s role

Senate is responsible for:

  • Approving the award of degrees, including honorary degrees
  • Approving the conferment of Emeritus status on retiring professors
  • Maintaining the quality and standards of the University’s awards
  • Setting high level policy and strategy on learning and teaching, working within the strategic direction contained within the University's Strategic Plan approved by Court and its underlying strategies
  • The promotion of research
  • Regulating the conduct of the students of the University
  • Making recommendations, requests and reports to the University Court
  • Receiving reports from a range of University-wide committees and groups

 Further information can be found on the Senate webpages.

Senate Standing Committees

In order to effectively conduct the day to day business of Senate, a range of powers are delegated to three Senate Standing Committees: the Senate Education Committee, the Senate Academic Policy and Regulations Committee, and the Senate Quality Assurance Committee. The Standing Committees formally report to Senate annually, with interim updates received at each meeting of Senate.

Elected members of Senate will also have an opportunity to stand for election to a Senate Standing Committee. Senate formally approves the process for these elections annually in February. 

The Standing Committee remits and membership can be found via the link below.