Queen's University

Senate in brief


Highlights from the April 17 meeting of Senate.

Before the Senate meeting, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic) Alan Harrison led an open session on the new budget model and answered questions from those in attendance.

Principal's report

In his oral report to Senate, Principal Woolf provided updates on the following items:

  • Government relations, noting that both provincial and federal budgets were delivered since last meeting of Senate. He said the current government relations context means that Queen’s will have to continue to be very clear about our internal values and telling our story.
  • A document that the Principal will be releasing next month that will argue that Queen’s is facing a major turning point in the university's history, and will have to think very seriously about three things: where we are in the global context; the role of social media and technology; and the nature of the learning environment, including how to use our residential campus as a learning tool and how to use students to help other students learn.

Click here to read the principal’s complementary written report.

Provost's report

In his report to Senate, Provost Harrison provided updates on the following items:

  • Changes to dean's honour list criteria. Almost all of the university’s faculties have approved a new GPA cut-off of 3.5 to ensure that students who were on the list prior to the implementation of the cumulative GPA system will remain on the list. The Provost expects the remaining faculties to follow suit shortly and that 3.5 will soon be the new cut-off university-wide.
  • The cumulative GPA. The Provost reported that, while examining issues surrounding the cumulative GPA, new factors involving Bachelors of Education transcripts have been brought to his attention that require further consideration. The Provost will continue to examine the matter and update Senate.
  • The 3-Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, a university-wide competition for Queen’s masters (thesis only) and doctoral students in which participants present their research and its wider impact in three minutes or less to a panel of non-specialist judges. The finals take place on April 30 in the Biosciences auditorium, room 1101.
  • The tuition fee report, presented to Senate for information.

Reports of Committees

Senate approved a recommendation included in the report from the Senate Committee on Academic Development (SCAD) to approve the Enrolment Plan for 2012-2013.

Senate also approved a recommendation from the Senate Advisory Research Committee to approve the
renewal of the Cancer Research Institute for an additional five years
, effective December 8, 2011, subject to ratification by the Board of Trustees.

Senate moved into information session and Vice-Principal (Research) Steven Liss gave a presentation about the university’s Strategic Research Plan (SRP), outlining the plan’s objectives and priorities. The final plan will be delivered to Senate for approval at the May Senate meeting. For the latest on the SRP process see the Queen’s News Centre story.

Provost Harrison reported that the Queen’s University Planning Committee (QUPC) has been focused on discussions related to the University’s efforts to balance the 2012-13 budget, as requested by the Board of Trustees. The 2012-13 balanced budget will be presented to the Board in May 2012, and a preview was presented to QUPC at the most recent meeting on April 13, 2012. The final QUPC meeting for the 2011-12 academic year was last week, and the group will begin meeting again in the fall.

Reports of Faculties and Affiliated Colleges

Senate accepted for information the Queen’s School of Religion’s final report as an affiliated college. On May 1, 2012, the School will become fully reintegrated into the university.

Communications and Reports Submitted to Senate

Senate accepted for information the following reports: New Senators 2012; a report from the Sustainable Bioeconomy Centre; and the research report.


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