Conversion of the Division of Biological Sciences into the College of Biological Sciences

[Advice to Divisional Chair Bruce Madewell 9/17/2002]

CERJ, among other committees, was asked to comment on the proposed establishment of the Division of Biological Sciences as a college, in particular, to address the question of whether the simple expedient of a name change would be feasible.  CERJ has looked into the matter and believes that we can offer some guidance.

The controlling authority is Regent's Standing Order 110.1 Academic Units and Functions, Affiliated Institutions, and Related Activities of the University :

The Board has established the colleges, schools, graduate divisions, certain other major academic units, affiliated institutions, and related activities at the several campuses and facilities of the University of California, and, upon the recommendation of the President of the University, with the advice of the Academic Senate, has established the degrees awarded by the several academic units of the University. The Board shall approve the establishment and disestablishment of colleges, schools, graduate divisions, and organized multicampus research units, upon the recommendation of the President with the advice of the Academic Senate. Detailed provisions of such establishment and disestablishment shall be set forth in the minutes of the Board. The Board may amend these provisions by resolution, upon recommendation of the President of the University. The President is authorized to approve name changes of academic units and establishment, name changes, and discontinuance of degree titles, upon approval by the Academic Senate.

CERJ reads SOR 110.1 as affirming that only the Regents may establish a college.  The process of name change referred to in the standing order does not permit a college to be created through the backdoor.  The procedure for name change is meant to cover a case such as redesignating the College of Letters and Science as the School of Scientific Letters.  In that case, no substantial change in organizational status is involved.  Even though DBS already looks rather like a college, it is not one; the Regents have never made it one; and, if it wants to be one now, it needs Regental approval.

The Division would be involved in the process in the following ways:

1. The Administration would initiate the establishment of DBS as a college by applying to the Regents through the President.  The President, in turn, is required by SOR 110.1 to seek the advice of the Senate.  The Academic Council is the normal source for such advice.  They may, if they wish, initiate further consultation with the Division.  CERJ believes that it would be prudent for the Chair of the Division to alert the Academic Council if, and when, the matter is referred to the President in order to ensure that he does ask for and receive Senate advice.

2. Clearly, if DBS were to become a college the Administration would have to provide the infrastructure and organization of a college for a new CBS to take up those functions now covered by L&S and AES.  Although that is fundamentally the Administration's problem, it surely would have budgetary implications on which they must confer with CAPBR.

3. The Division would want to pass a bylaw creating a new Faculty of BS.

4. CERJ would have to work with their faculty to create a set of functioning bylaws.  That cannot be done through the dean's office.