Governance Procedures of the Association of College and Research Libraries Instruction Section

A. Name

The name of this organization shall be the Instruction Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association.

B. Purpose

ACRL Sections are established primarily for the purpose of building communities of learning and providing professional development and networking opportunities for their members. A Section’s name, purpose, and mission are as proposed by the Section and approved by the ACRL Board. The ACRL Board ascertains that overlaps between the mandates of various Sections are minimized.

The mission of the Instruction Section of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) is to foster the profession of academic and research librarianship and to enhance the ability of academic and research instruction librarians and their libraries to effectively serve the library and information needs of current and potential library users.

C. Membership

Any member of the Association of College and Research Libraries may elect membership in this Section.

The number of “community of practice” affiliations included in the basic ACRL dues is determined by the ACRL Board. The dues for additional affiliations are also set by the ACRL Board.

Every member has the right to vote. Any personal member is eligible to hold office.

D. Relationship to ACRL Board

The Board shall be authorized to establish Communities of Practice (including Sections), to monitor their activities, and determine their continuance in consultation with the respective groups. The Board shall also be entitled to establish policies to govern the activities of Communities of Practice. (ACRL Bylaws, Article XV)

The Board liaison role provides a critical connection between membership structures and the ACRL Board of Directors. This liaison role can be particularly helpful in providing perspective, guidance, and insight regarding ACRL policies, procedures, and initiatives; soliciting feedback from Communities of Practice regarding proposed Board actions; and providing helpful advice regarding Action Plan Proposals and Board Action Forms which community of practice leaders will need to submit for official ACRL Board and ACRL Executive Committee action/decisions. The liaison relationship is meant to enhance communication; it is not an advocacy role and for that reason Board members are asked to liaison with communities in which they have not been active. (Tip Sheet for Board Responsibilities)

The Board of Directors is the voice for the association. Sections, committees, and other established units are not authorized to speak for the association except through the Board. This is to say that unit leaders should refrain from issuing statements, taking positions, or endorsing any statements or positions except with Board approval. (ACRL Guide to Policies and Procedures, Chapter 5.12.8, Use of ACRL’s Name)

E. Meetings

Section meetings at the ALA Midwinter Meeting and ALA Annual Conference are scheduled by the Section chair.

ACRL units are encouraged to work outside of Midwinter and/or Annual Conference to increase group participation, efficiency, and productivity. Electronic meetings are conducted within the environment of ALA/ACRL bylaws and policies. In all cases these requirements must be adhered to, although they may have to be adopted to fit the virtual environment.

The ALA Policy Manual 7.4.1 defines a meeting as “an official assembly, for any length of time following a designated starting time, of the members of any board, committee task force, commission, etc., during which the members do not separate except for a recess and in which the assembly has the capacity to formalize decisions.” Conference calls, Internet chat sessions (and their equivalents), and in-person meetings are recognized as meetings subject to the open meetings policy (ALA Policy 7.4.4). Committees must confirm all decisions made in these forums by affirming the actions at the next face-to-face meeting.

There is a distinction between carrying on work of a committee electronically and conducting an electronic meeting. Asynchronous electronic discussions by electronic mail or other asynchronous communication methods do not constitute meetings because they are not an official assembly with a designated starting time (ALA Policy Manual 7.4.1).

The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure (Alice Sturgis) applies to meetings of the Section to the extent that it is applicable, upholds the integrity of the voting processes, helps facilitate progress, and ensures equality, fairness, and common sense.

Section 1. Regular Business Meetings. The regular business of the Section shall be conducted at the meetings of its Committees, which shall be held in conjunction with the Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference of the American Library Association.

Section 2. Special meetings of the Section membership may be called by the Chair, with the approval of the Executive Committee. Fifteen members of the Section being present shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business at a special membership meeting.

Section 3. All meetings of the Section shall be conducted in accordance with the parliamentary authority used by ALA and ACRL. The Chair of the Policy and Publications Review Committee shall act as parliamentarian for the Section.

F. Officers

The officers of the Section shall be a Chair, a Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, the immediate Past Chair, and a Secretary. The officers serve one-year terms. The Vice-Chair, becomes the Chair, and then the Past Chair, for a total of three years. After serving a one-year term as Secretary, the individual serves another one-year appointment as Section Archivist. The Archivist is not an officer, but does serve as a member of the Advisory Council. The duties of the officers are detailed in “Responsibilities of Instruction Section Officers.”

G. Executive Committee

The Section Executive Committee is responsible for the stewardship of the Section and the coordination of its activities, provided that it operates within the Section mandate and budget as determined by membership level (ACRL Guide to Policy and Procedure, Basic Services, 4.3.2).

A Section’s Executive Committee may establish and appoint standing or ad-hoc committees to assist it in fulfilling the Section’s mandate .

Section 1. Composition. The Executive Committee shall consist of the officers and four Members-at-Large who shall serve two-year terms which will overlap so as to provide continuity of policy.

Section 2. Meetings. Regular meetings of the Executive Committee shall be held at the time and place of theMidwinter Meeting and Annual Conferenceof the American Library Association. Special meetings may be called at the discretion of the Chair.

Section 3. Powers and Duties. The main function of the Executive Committee shall be to provide direction for the attainment of the objectives of the Section. The Executive Committee has authority over the affairs of the Section during the period between meetings of the Section, subject to review by the members at a meeting of the Section.

Section 4. Quorum. A majority of the members constitutes a quorum at any meeting of the Executive Committee.

H. Advisory Council

Section 1. Composition. The Advisory Council shall consist of the members of the Executive Committee, the chairs of all standing and special committees of the Section, and ex officio members including the IS Web Administrator(s), the IS Newsletter Editor, and IS Archivist, and teh director of the Library Orientation & Exchange Clearinghouse (LOEX).

Section 2. Meetings. The Advisory Council shall meet regularly at the time and place of theMidwinter Meeting and Annual Conferenceof the American Library Association. The Secretary of the Section will take minutes at the Advisory Council meetings.

Section 3. Function. The purpose of the Advisory Council is to provide a forum for reporting, discussing, and coordinating the work of the Section’s various standing and special committees.

Section 4. Quorum. A majority of the members constitutes a quorum at any meeting of the Advisory Council. If the chair of a standing or special committee is unable to attend the Advisory Council meeting in person, he/she is responsible for sending a knowledgeable committee member to report on the activities of that committee.

I. Committees

Section 1. Authorization and Discontinuance. Committees of the Section may be authorized or discontinued by the chair with the approval of the Executive Committee.

Section 2. Standing Committees. Standing Committees may be established to consider matters of the Section that require continuity of attention by the members. When such a committee is established, its function, name, and size will be determined. Unless otherwise approved by the Executive Committee, members of standing committees will be appointed for terms of two years and may be reappointed for a second but not a third consecutive term; in no case will a person serve on a committee for more than four consecutive years. Appointments will be made in such a manner as to provide continuity in membership.

Section 3. Special Committees. Special committees may be established at any time for the performance of a particular assignment. No such committee may be continued beyond two years without review and approval by the Executive Committee.

Section 4. Appointments. The Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect shall appoint committee members and chairs to fill vacancies due to occur during his/her term as Chair. Committee chairs are appointed for a one-year term from the end of one annual conference to the end of the next annual conference. Committee chairs who have served a one-year term may be re-appointed for an additional year.

Section 5. Reporting. Committee chairs will report to the Executive Committee at the Advisory Council meeting held at each Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference of the American Library Association.

J. Nominations and Elections

To be nominated, elected, and continue to serve on a Section’s Executive Committee, a person must be a current member of the Section (with ALA, ACRL, and section dues-if applicable-paid).

Section 1. Nominating Committee. The Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect will appoint a Nominating Committee of at least three personal members of the Section, one of whom will serve as chair of the committee. This committee will prepare a slate of at least two nominees for each of the offices of Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, Secretary, and for each open Member-at-Large position.

Section 2. Additional Nominations. Additional nominations may be made by petition signed by no fewer than twenty personal members of the Section and filed with the Executive Secretary of the Association of College and Research Libraries at least three months prior to the date on which ballots are to be distributed.

Section 3. Nominees. All nominees for office will be personal members of the Section and will have consented in writing to their candidacies.

Section 4. Elections. Elections will be held in accordance with ALA and ACRL bylaws and procedures. The candidate receiving the largest number of votes will be elected. In the case of a tie vote, the successful candidate shall be determined by lot.

K. Vacancies

Section 1. Chair. A vacancy in the office of Chair shall be filled, for the remainder of the term, by the Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect. This succession will not prevent a person who succeeds to the office of Chair because of a vacancy from serving his/her normal term as Chair the next year.

Section 2. Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect. If a vacancy occurs in the office of Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, the Executive Committee shall elect as Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, for the remainder of the term, one of the members of the Executive Committee. The office of Chair, which the Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect would normally assume the succeeding year, will then be filled at the next regular election.

Section 3. Vacancies in both Chair and Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect. If vacancies occur in the offices of Chair and Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect in the same term, the Executive Committee shall elect as Chair, for the remainder of the term, one of its members. The offices of Chair and Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect will then be filled at the next regular election.

Section 4. Past Chair. If the Chair is not able to carry out the duties of Past Chair after completing his/her term as Chair, the Executive Committee shall elect one of its members to carry out the duties of Past Chair.

Section 5. Secretary. A vacancy in the office of Secretary shall be filled for the remainder of the term by an IS member appointed by the Chair, with the advice of the Executive Committee.

Section 6. Member-at-Large. A vacancy of one year or less in a Member-at-Large term shall be filled by an IS member appointed by the Chair, with the advice of the Executive Committee. A vacancy of more than one year shall be filled in the same manner until it is possible to fill the remainder of the term at the next regular election.

Section 7. Committees and Task Forces. A vacancy in any of the Standing Committees or Special Committees shall be filled by an IS member appointed by the Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect.

L. Amendments to Governance Procedures

As long as they are not in conflict with ALA/ACRL bylaws, policies, and procedures, these Operating Procedures may be amended through proposals made to the IS Executive Committee.

Section 1. Proposals. Proposals for amending theseOperating Proceduresmay be made by any committee of the Section or by petition signed by twenty personal members of the Section and will be presented in writing to the Chair.

Section 2. IS Executive Committee Vote. The IS Executive Committee will solicit input from membership on a proposed change to the Operating Procedures through ILI-L, e-mail to the membership list, open forums, or other means necessary to gather broad membership feedback. After gathering comments from membership, the IS Executive Committee will vote on the proposed change.

A current copy of Section’s Governance Procedures shall be provided to the Executive Director per ACRL Bylaws, Article XV, Section 3.

Bylaws first adopted: Chicago, June 27, 1978.
Revisions adopted, May, 1998.
Revisions adopted, May 1999.
Editorial changes approved by Executive, November 2004.
Revisions adopted, May 2008.
Governance Procedures adopted, May 2009