Illinois State University centers and institutes are organized, named entities affiliated with and recognized by the University, and whose primary purpose is to conduct multidisciplinary research, teaching, and/or service. Illinois statutes and administrative code provide for the state authorization and recognition of centers and institutes through the Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE).
Illinois State University encourages multidisciplinary initiatives and seeks to support the development of centers and institutes that
Upon establishment, centers and institutes are entitled to the following University resources:
Formally established centers and institutes must
are units of research, teaching, and/or public service located within a college, school, or department. Centers report to either a department/school or a college. (see existing examples at Illinois State)
are units of research, teaching, and/or public service located at the campus level, or that include units from multiple colleges. (see existing examples at Illinois State)
IBHE Authorization means that the center or institute has been formally authorized and recognized by the IBHE. Seeking IBHE authorization is voluntary on the part of the center or institute. Being authorized by the IBHE may provide benefits through increased statewide exposure and enhanced opportunities for external funding. This authorization may be granted on a temporary basis or a permanent basis as described below.
A request to establish a center or institute may be made by any faculty member or group of faculty members at the University. Efforts to establish a center or institute typically begin with informal conversations among interested faculty members and then informal discussions involving the appropriate department chairperson(s) or school director(s) and college dean(s). Conversations should also be initiated with the associate vice president for research (for centers/institutes that are primarily research focused) or the associate provost (for centers/institutes that are primarily curricular or service focused).
After these discussions, if the faculty members decide to formally request the establishment of a center, they should compile a written proposal that (Online Submission Form), at minimum, includes the following content:
Proposals for centers and institutes must attain the following approvals
The Provost makes the final decision regarding the establishment of a center or institute.
|Approving Bodies||Temporary Informal Center||Temporary Formal Center||Permanent Center|
|Board of Trustees||no||no||yes|
|Higher Learning Commission (HLC)||no||no||no|
|Documentation for External Bodies|
|Annual listing of Changes (IBHE)||yes||yes||yes|
|Notice of Intent (IBHE)||no||no||yes|
|Reasonable and Moderate Extension (RME, IBHE)||no||yes||no|
|New unit application (IBHE)||no||no||yes|
Illinois State University's Board of Trustees (BoT) – The approval of the Board of Trustees is required prior to the establishment of any new unit of instruction which is submitted to the Illinois Board of Higher Education for approval. These items include new degree programs, certificate of advanced study, professional development sequences, centers, institutes, departments, schools, divisions, campuses, off-campus programs, and international programs. The Board of Trustees typically have four meetings per year (Feb., May, July, Oct.). (Illinois State's governing document)
IBHE Application Process
Illinois Board of Higher Education (IBHE) - Once proposals have been approved through Illinois State's internal approving bodies, those that require IBHE approval will be further developed in conjunction with the Office of the Provost. Submissions to IBHE are made by the Office of the Provost (not directly by faculty, units, or colleges).
The name of a center or institute should reflect its primary function or disciplinary orientation, and when possible be named "Center for ..." or "Institute for ..." to distinguish it from other types of campus units and buildings (e.g. Mail Services Center, Bone Student Center, Career Center, Alumni Center). The name should not include terms that may lead to confusion with other types of University units (e.g. "school", "department", "college", "office", "division"). When appropriate and with approval from the Provost, alternative terms such as "unit", "consortium", "program", "organization", or other appropriate term may be used.
Centers and institutes must be funded through some combination of resources external to the University, revenues generated by the center or institute, and resources internal to the University. It is expected that all centers and institutes strive for fiscal sustainability through external resources and center/institute revenue. No center or institute should expect to receive University funding if planned external funding or center/institute revenue fail to materialize.
Seed money may be made available through the Provost’s Office or the Office of Research and Graduate Studies, but such funds will be provided for no more than 3 years.
Each center and institute will have a dedicated budget line within the budget of the parent unit (i.e. department/school, college, or Provost’s Office), and will prepare an annual budget for approval by the parent unit. The parent unit will maintain close fiscal oversight of the center or institute.
Facilities and Administration (F&A, Indirect) Costs. F&A costs collected from external revenue sources by the center or institute are distributed according to University policy (7.6.3). In the absence of a prior agreement, the following process will be used.
Centers and institutes must have clearly defined reporting lines and may not report to more than one entity.
Each center and institute should have bylaws that describe the a) administrative structure and reporting lines, b) term, remuneration, qualifications, selection, and review process for the director, c) nature of faculty affiliations with the center and the process through which these affiliations are established and maintained, and d) means by which input from internal and external stakeholders is gathered.
The center or institute director is appointed by the head of the unit to which the center reports, and this appointment is subject to approval by the Provost. The director is reviewed annually by the head of the unit in which the center or institutes is located. At a minimum, the center or institute director will
Monitoring. All centers and institutes will submit an annual report to their parent administrative unit as appropriate to their local governance documents. (Annual Report template to be developed). All centers and institutes are also formally evaluated at least once every four years. Prior to this first formal evaluation, newly-established units will be evaluated each year for progress towards sustainability and achievement of the measures of success outlined in its application. Centers and institutes that fail to make progress in these areas are subject to administrative disestablishment.
All centers are also subject to periodic auditing by the University’s Office of Internal Auditing. The schedule for internal audits is established by the Office of Internal Auditing with input from the Office of the Provost.
Centers and institutes are often not permanent but are typically formed to facilitate collaborations related to specific disciplines or timely issues and should therefore be disestablished when their objectives have been met, when faculty participation wanes, when an unsatisfactory evaluation report is received two times in a row, or when the unit is no longer financially sustainable.
Centers and institutes are disestablished by action of the Provost. Prior to disestablishing a center or institute, the Provost shall consult with the center or institute director, the chair(s) or director(s) of the associated unit(s), the dean(s) of the associated college(s), and the appropriate associate vice president or associate provost. The Provost shall also inform the Academic Affairs Committee of the Academic Senate of the proposed closure.
A request to disestablish a center or institute may be made by the Provost at the request of the center or institute director, the head of any administrative unit associated with the center or institute, or upon a recommendation resulting from a regularly-scheduled review. Disestablishment of IBHE-authorized centers or institutes shall be reported to the IBHE by the Office of the Provost through its annual listing of program changes, as required by Illinois statutes and administrative code. In the absence of other stipulations, assets of the deactivated center/institute will revert to the control of the parent unit.
Inactive Status. In lieu of disestablishing a center or institute, the Provost may place it in inactive status. When doing so, the Provost shall communicate the reason to the center or institute director and to all other internal stakeholders. In the absence of other stipulations, assets of the center/institute in inactive status will revert to the control of the parent unit. The Provost shall also communicate activities the center or institute may undertake while in inactive status, and the actions needed for restoration to active status. Prior approval from IBHE staff is required for placing an IBHE-authorized center or institute on inactive status, and for its return to active status.