I. Purpose

These Bylaws specify procedures for the governance of the Institute of Communications Research (hereafter the Institute). The Mission of the Institute is to support and advance communications research and doctoral education through funding and programming in the College of Media and across the campus. The Statutes of the University of Illinois have priority if any conflict of substance or interpretation of these Bylaws arises.

II. Membership

There are two kinds of members in the Institute:

A. Full members: Full members of the Institute (hereafter Members) must have earned a Ph.D. or other terminal degree in their discipline; must be tenured or hold a tenure-system appointment in the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; must be members of the University’s Graduate Faculty; and must have a budgeted line of 50% or more within the College of Media.  (Those members having a budgeted line of 25% or more at the beginning of Academic Year 2015 retain their current status as members with voting rights.)

  1. Faculty meeting these criteria become Members of the Institute and of the College of Media doctoral faculty immediately upon appointment to the College of Media faculty.
  2. Members shall have voice and full voting rights and responsibilities, including chairing and serving on doctoral committees, serving on standing committees of the Institute, and, when eligible (as described in Part III below), serving in administrative offices, such as Director of the Institute and Director of Graduate Studies.

B. Affiliate members: Faculty in the College of Media who do not hold the Ph.D. or other terminal degree but whose area of research or creative activity fits within the mission of the Institute, and who have a desire to participate in teaching, research or other Institute activities; and faculty with budgeted, tenure-system appointments in other units of the University of Illinois who hold the Ph.D. or other terminal degree, whose area of research fits within the mission of the Institute, and who have a desire to participate in teaching, research or other Institute activities may request or be invited to become Affiliate Members of the Institute (hereafter Affiliates).

  1. Affiliates have voice but not voting rights in Institute and doctoral program matters.  They also have the right to participate in meetings and activities of the Institute.  Affiliates may not stand for election to Institute standing committees, or be appointed to administrative offices of the Institute.  Affiliates are eligible to serve on doctoral committees consistent with their status as members of the Graduate College faculty.
  2. There are two pathways to Affiliate status in the Institute: 1) by invitation of one of the academic departments of the College of Media or 2) by direct request to the Institute Director with affirmative approval vote of the Institute Executive Committee.
  • Under pathway (1), departments may establish their own procedures for vetting, voting on and forwarding nominations of Affiliate candidates to the Institute Director.
  • Under pathway (2), a candidate may make a request to or be invited by the Institute director. A majority vote of the Executive Committee will be required for ratification. 

III. Officers

The Institute shall be organized with a Director of the Institute, who is the executive officer of the Institute, and a Director of Graduate Studies (DGS), who is the executive officer of the doctoral program. While both are appointed by the Dean of the College, the DGS will be chosen from members of the college doctoral faculty nominated by her or his peers, in consultation with the Director of the Institute. The appointment of the DGS will be ratified by a 2/3 majority of the voting members of the doctoral program faculty.

The duties and responsibilities of the Institute Director are those described in the Statutes of the University of Illinois.

The DGS is chair of the admissions committee and an ex officio member of the program evaluation committee and executive committee.

IV. Institute Standing Doctoral Committees

A. Executive

The Executive Committee consists of an at-large member and one member from each department elected by Institute members of the respective department. The EC meets at least twice a semester to consider matters relevant to the governance of the doctoral program. Members serve staggered two-year terms so that two new members are elected to the EC each year. Incumbents shall not be eligible for immediate reelection. If a member is unable to complete a term, an election will be held to fill the unexpired portion of the term. The one at-large member will be elected by a vote of the doctoral program faculty.

B. Admissions

The Admissions Committee consists of at least one member who has voting rights in the doctoral program from each department, chosen by the respective department Head in consultation with the DGS. One at-large member will be chosen by the DGS. The AC evaluates applicants to the doctoral program and makes recommendations on funding and award matters.

Note: At-large representatives of the EC and AC cannot be from the same unit.

C. Program Evaluation

Each year the DGS will appoint one member from each College department, in consultation with each department Head. The committee has the following duties:

  1. To make recommendations to the DGS on student petitions for advancement to candidacy.
  2. To make recommendations to the DGS on any matter concerning the doctoral program which the Committee believes requires comment.

V. Other Committees

The Director shall appoint such additional committees as are necessary for the operation of the Institute. The DGS, in consultation with the Director shall appoint such additional committees as are necessary for the operation of the doctoral program.

VI. Revision

Any three faculty members of the Institute may propose a modification of these Bylaws. The proposed modification must be submitted to the faculty in writing and discussed at a public meeting no more than two weeks later. A 2/3 vote of the voting members of the faculty is necessary for adoption of changes to the by-laws, and a 2/3 vote of the College doctoral program faculty is necessary for adoption of changes to the by-laws related to the doctoral program. Only members of the doctoral program faculty will be able to recommend and vote on changes to the parts of the by-laws directly related to the doctoral program.

12/10/75; 10/19/94; 09/03/96; 10/14/02; 10/07; 5/09; 10/10; 11/5/10; 12/9/14