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Massachusetts Institute of Technology faculty meeting records

 Collection
Identifier: AC-0001

Scope and Contents of the Collection

A record of the MIT faculty begins with the minutes of the September 25, 1865, meeting and continues to the present day. Among the topics discussed at faculty meetings are proposed degree programs, disciplinary actions, admission and graduation requirements, enrollment and diversity, and issues concerning student life.

This collection is a valuable source of biographical material as the minutes include resolutions on the death of individual faculty members written by faculty peers. There is also biographical material included in Killian Award and Edgerton Award announcements.

Minutes may also contain reports produced by committees and task forces as their results are reported and discussed at faculty meetings. Additional issues relating to academics, student life, and faculty are handled by standing committees of the faculty. Committees have changed over the years in response to the needs of the Institute. Examples of 19th century standing committees are the Committee on the Catalogue, Committee on Periodicals, Committee on the Elective Course, and Committee on the School of Mechanical Arts.

Beginning with September 2012, the minutes and meeting material are digital files, most being common Microsoft office formats (Word or Powerpoint) documents or PDFs.

Dates

  • 1865-2017

Creator

Access note

Materials in this collection are open unless they are marked as restricted. Restrictions are noted in the container list.

In general, MIT Faculty meetings minutes restricted for 20 years except to the MIT community

Intellectual Property Rights

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Separate written application for permission to publish must be made to Distinctive Collections. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the creating office.

Historical note

The first recorded meeting of the faculty of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) was held on September 25, 1865, and meetings have been held regularly since. In 1907 the faculty reorganized to carry out its funtions more effectively. Under the new plan there was a chair of the faculty, elected yearly, a permanent secretary, and various standing committees.

The MIT faculty, as defined in Section 1.10 of Rules and Regulation of the Faculty, currently meets on the third Wednesday of each month during the academic year except in January.

The Call to the Meeting, which includes the agenda and enclosures, is sent to each faculty member and is posted on the web prior to the meeting.

Rules of the Faculty was first published in October 1879. This document outlines the structure of the faculty, meetings, committees, course work, grading system, and more. The title was changed to Rules and Regulations of the Faculty in 1937. The latest revision is available to members of the MIT community on the faculty web site: http://web.mit.edu/faculty/governance/rules/

A current list of committees is available online at http://web.mit.edu/committees/faculty/.

Officers of the faculty are the chair, the associate chair, the secretary and, ex officio, the president of the Institute. The president of the Institute is, ex officio, president of the faculty.

The faculty gives out two awards each year: the Harold E. Edgerton Faculty Achievement Award and the James R. Killian, Jr. Faculty Achievement Award.

The Harold E. Edgerton Faculty Achievement Award Selection Committee chooses one individual from among the junior (non-tenured) members of the MIT faculty. The award was established in the fall of 1982 as a permanent tribute to Institute Professor Emeritus Harold E. Edgerton for his great and enduring support for younger faculty members over the years. The purpose of the award is to recognize exceptional distinction in teaching and research or scholarship.

The James R. Killian, Jr. Faculty Achievement Award Selection Committee chooses one member of the MIT faculty to be the Killian Award Lecturer for the following academic year. The purpose of the award is to recognize extraordinary professional accomplishments by MIT faculty members and to communicate these accomplishments to members of the MIT community. The award was established in the spring of 1971 as a permanent tribute to James R. Killian, Jr., president of the Institute from 1948 to 1959 and chair of the MIT Corporation from 1959 to 1971.

Extent

1.603 Gigabytes (2458 digital files)

55.3 box(es) (63 files)

27.3 Cubic Feet (27 volumes, 48 manuscript boxes, 13 deep boxes, 13 cassette boxes, 40MB)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

A record of the MIT faculty begins with the minutes of the September 25, 1865, meeting and continues to the present day. Among the topics discussed at faculty meetings are proposed degree programs, disciplinary actions, admission and graduation requirements, enrollment and diversity, and issues concerning student life. This collection includes biographical material in Killian Award and Edgerton Award announcements and resolutions on the death of individual faculty members written by faculty peers. Minutes may also contain reports produced by committees and task forces as their results are reported and discussed at faculty meetings.

Other Aids to the Collection

Each volume of meeting minutes, beginning with volume five, is indexed. There is a separate comprehensive card index to meeting minutes created by staff of the faculty that is now housed in the Institute Archives and Special Collections, and covers the period 1904-1993. Beginning in 1993, agenda summaries posted in electronic form serve as an index to the subjects discussed at each meeting.

Provenance

In 1977 and 1978 records were acquired from the Registrar’s Office and faculty offices. Since then additions to the collection have been transferred regularly to the Institute Archives by staff of the Secretary of the Faculty.

Location of Originals -- Digital

Beginning with September 2012 digital files accessioned into the Institute Archives and Special Collections are the record copy.

Existence and Location of Copies

Faculty meeting minutes and material from recent years are available to MIT community members on the Faculty Governance website.

Related Materials

Distinctive Collections houses separate collections for the following faculty committees:

Ad Hoc Committee on the Military Presence at MIT, Records (AC 150)

Committee on Academic Performance, Records (AC 196)

Committee on Admissions, Minutes (AC 45)

Committee on Educational Survey (Lewis Committee), Records (AC 124)

Committee on Graduate School Policy, Records (AC 120)

Committee on Nominations, Records (AC 194)

Committee on Outside Professional Activities, Records (AC 158)

Committee on Petitions, Records (AC 197)

Committee on the Library System, Records (AC 370)

Committee on the Undergraduate Program, Records AC 189)

Committee on Undergraduate Policy, Records (AC 526)

Faculty Policy Committee, Records (AC 188)

Standing Committee on Scholarships, Records (AC 540)

Standing Committee on Special Laboratories, Records (AC 128)

Physical Facet note

Minutes in volumes 1 to 17 are handwritten, thereafter typed. Beginning with September 2012 digital files of the minutes and background materials accessioned into the Institute Archives and Special Collections are the record copy.

Processing Information

Thumbs.db system files were removed by digital archivist Joe Carrano from the 2014-2015 meeting minutes accrual (2016-005).
Title
Guide to the Minutes of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Faculty
Status
Completed
Author
Elizabeth Andrews
Date
(Copyright 2004)
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Revision Statements

  • 2020 December 1: Digital archivist, Joe Carrano, added information on the 2014-2015 minutes and files processing work
  • 2021 February 11: Digital archivist, Joe Carrano, added information on the 2015-037 accession, which is the 2013-2014 minutes and files
  • 2021 March 05: Digital archivist, Joe Carrano, added information on the 2020-013 and 2017-033 accessions (1993-2017 minutes from Libraries website and 2016-2016 minutes and files)
  • 2021 March 15 : Digital archivist, Joe Carrano, added information on the 2014-006 extent (2012-2013 minutes) to collection level

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Contact:
Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US