Duties of the Senate

Its duties are set out in § 25 para. 1 of the Austrian Universities Act 2002.

§ 25 (1) The senate shall have the following duties:

  1. enacting and amending the statute as proposed by the rectorate;
  2. approving the draft development plan prepared by the rectorate within two months; if the senate fails to give approval within the appointed period, the development plan shall nevertheless be forwarded to the university council;
  3. approving the draft organisation plan prepared by the rectorate within two months; if the senate fails to give approval within the appointed period, the organisation plan shall nevertheless be forwarded to the university council;
  4. changing the size of the university council and electing its members (§ 21 para. 6 subpara. 1, para. 6a and para. 7); 
  5. approving the advertisement for the post of the rector within two weeks upon receipt from the university council; if the senate refuses acceptance within two weeks, the university council shall submit a new advertisement without delay; if the senate again fails to approve it within the period stipulated, the responsibility for the advertisement shall be transferred to the Federal Minister. If the senate fails to take a decision within two weeks, the post shall nevertheless be advertised;

    5a. drawing up a shortlist of three candidates for the election of the rector by the university council, taking into account the shortlist of the search committee within a maximum of four weeks upon receipt of the shortlist. If the senate does not comply with the shortlist of the search committee, an explanatory statement in writing for its decision shall be forwarded to the university council together with the shortlist of three candidates. Regard shall be given to the principle of non-discrimination under the Federal Act on Equal Treatment when drawing up the shortlist of three candidates; 
  6. expressing an opinion on the rector’s recommendations with regard to the vice-rectors (number, extent of employment and shortlist);
  7. participating in procedures for the dismissal of members of the university council, the rector or vice-rectors;
  8. participating in procedures for the awarding of habilitation degrees;
  9. participating in procedures for the appointment of professors;
  10. enacting and changing the curricula for degree programmes and certificate university programmes for further education (§§ 56 and 57) according to § 22 para. 1 subpara. 12 and § 54 para. 10; 
  11. prescription of the academic degrees and titles for graduates of certificate university programmes for further education;
  12. decisions on appeals in matters relating to studies;
  13. establishing criteria for the allocation of income from tuition fees;
  14. appointing collegial bodies with or without decision-making power (paras. 7 and 8);
  15. enacting directives on the activities of collegial bodies;
  16. approving the implementation of decisions by collegial bodies with decision-making power;
  17. opinions to the rectorate prior to the assignment by it of persons to given organisational units;
  18. establishing a working group on equal opportunities;
  19. nominating one female and one male member of the arbitration board.