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Dalhousie's Senate includes several committees that oversee areas like honorary degrees, discipline, and appeals.

Senate membership

The Senate is composed of 97 members from across the university, including: 

  • Elected members from the faculties
  • A representative from Black Faculty and Staff Caucus
  • A representative from Indigenous Advisory Council
  • Two elected Senators-at-large
  • Elected student representatives
  • A representative from the University of King's College
  • Senior administrators
  • Senate leadership (Senate Officers)

Senate Leadership

In addition, the Senate has three executive officers:

  • Chair of Senate: Oversees the business of the Senate and chairs meetings of the Senate.
  • Vice-Chair (Academic Programs): Provides oversight of matters relating to academic programs.
  • Vice-Chair (Student Affairs): Provides oversight of all aspects of student academic integrity and student academic appeal.

Standing Committees


The Senate has seven standing committees and four associated sub-committees. View the membership for each committee and sub-committee:

Senate nominations and elections

Calls for nominations for vacant elected academic unit Senator representative positions are sent out each year via the faculties following the procedure outlined in the Election Guidelines for Faculty Academic Unit Representatives.

Election Guidelines for Faculty Academic Unit Representatives on Senate 

Approved by Senate February 12, 2018

As part of its commitment to diversity, inclusion and equity, Senate aims to constitute a body that is reflective of the diversity in our society. 

The Senate shall explicitly articulate its commitment and desire to enhance institutional diversity, inclusivity and equity through its membership, mission and mandate. 

All Faculty Academic Units must review their election procedures, with the aim of removing any potential implicit bias, barriers to access and participation, and/or inequity in in‐reach/interest generation, formal or informal outreach processes, nomination procedures, application requirements, evaluation criteria, and ultimately election procedures. Faculty Academic Units may consult with Dalhousie’s Human Rights & Equity Service (link to HRES contact information) for advice on how to develop their procedures using accessibility, inclusivity and equity lenses. 

On an annual basis, Human Rights & Equity Services will conduct a specialized equity census for the Senate and report aggregate numbers across equity‐seeking groups to the University Secretariat, in order to identify progress and gaps in representation. 

The following are the election procedures to be followed by Faculty Academic Units that do not have Senate approved procedures.

  1. A call for nominations to fill vacancies on Senate anticipated by the Faculty Academic Unit for July 1st shall be sent to all faculty members in the Academic Unit by the preceding February 15th. Nominations shall close on February 28th. The call shall explicitly promote Senate diversity, highlighting the benefit of a diversified Senate, and invite diverse candidates, with an emphasis on attracting individuals from equity‐seeking groups
  2. At the time of the call, the University Secretariat will communicate gaps, identified by the annual census, to all Deans, Department Heads and Directors. Deans, Department Heads and Directors shall identify appropriate venues to verbally “call” for nominations, encouraging diverse applicants and nominations, with a particular emphasis on addressing gaps identified by the census data. 
  3. Deans, Department Heads and Directors shall directly approach, or leverage a relationship to indirectly approach, potentially strong candidates who self‐identify as members of equity‐ seeking groups, to encourage their application or nomination.
  4. All faculty members with an academic appointment of 50% full‐time equivalent (FTE) or more in a Faculty Academic Unit are eligible to be nominated. Nominations shall be accompanied by a statement of interest from the nominee indicating their interest and availability in serving as an Academic Unit Senator and an appropriate curriculum vitae.  Nominees must describe how they will bring diverse perspectives, identities and ideas to bear in their roles as Senators.
  5. Should an election be necessary, it shall be carried out by paper or electronic ballot (anonymously, if possible) and will normally be held over the two‐week period from March 1st to March 15th. All faculty members are eligible to vote, regardless of appointment FTE. 
  6. Faculty members shall vote for one or more members depending on the number of Faculty Academic Unit seats in Senate that will become vacant on July 1st. 
  7. The results of the vote shall be reported to Senate by the Faculty Academic Unit by March 31st. Statement(s) of interest for the successful candidate(s) shall be provided to the University Secretariat with the vote results. Faculty Academic Units shall monitor and report on the number of equity