Meeting Minutes

For Seminars and Workshops Only

Effective July 1, 2023

Minutes taken by rapporteurs are an integral part of the intellectual history of The University Seminars and Columbia University. Minutes of seminar and workshop meetings are stored in The University Seminars Digital Archive and at Butler Library. Reporting the minutes from seminar and workshop meetings are a primary part of a rapporteur's job. It's the part that has the most longevity—75 years and counting.  Recordings of Zoom meetings are for the purpose of taking minutes only and may not be shared with anyone or posted on any platform.

Requirements and Submittable

The University Seminars office requires, at minimum, the following:

  • Full seminar name and number. See Seminar List here.
  • Meeting date and location.
  • Name and Affiliation of Speaker(s): It is important to use the speaker’s full name, title,and affiliation(s) in both the minutes and email announcements. The central office refers to this information when preparing copy for the annual Directory of Seminars, Speakers,& Topics.
  • Title of Meeting Presentation: This is the title of the presentation as it is to appear in the Directory; if there is a discrepancy between the title given in the meeting announcement and the title listed in the minutes, the directory will use the latter.
  • Name(s) of Presiding Chair(s).
  • Name of Rapporteur.
  • Name and Affiliation of Attendees: Collect this information from the chat sign in.
  • The Seminar/Workshop Privacy Policy: This is the policy read at the start of the meeting. Chairs may adjust to suit their meeting. Include whether the minutes are "closed" or "open."
  • Acknowledgement of Privacy Policy: Record how the policy was acknowledged. .
  • Summary of Presentation: This is a narrative description of the speaker’s presentation, not an outline. If the speaker has provided a paper with an abstract, the abstract may be used as the summary, but it should be clearly identified as the speaker’s work.
  • Summary of Discussion: The major work of the meeting takes place in the discussion period, making this the most important part of the minutes. The discussion need not be recorded verbatim, but the summary should clearly convey the specific issues addressed.
  • Copyright Language: Please add the following to the seminar's/workshop's minutes document footer:” ©[Current Year], The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York.”
  • Use the Minutes Template as a reference.
  • Rapporteurs should consult with Chairs about any particular requirements beyond these.

The University Seminars uses Submittable as a one-year repository for minutes and related materials from seminar and workshop meetings. After the academic year closes, files are moved to The University Seminars' server. After five years, materials are made available to scholars through The University Seminars Digital Archive. It is the responsibility of the rapporteur to upload a PDF copy of the meeting minutes for every meeting prior to submitting a timesheet. Additional materials, such as a background papers and email lists may be uploaded as well. See Submittable section below.

Submittable is a cloud-based submission management system used by The University Seminars office to manage the collection of minutes and other meeting documentation. 

  • Go to Submittable. Look for "Meeting Documentation (20222023)" section in Submittable and press Submit button.
  • First-time submitters will be asked to create an account by entering their email address and setting a password.
  • Setting up a Password: Submittable is not connected to the Columbia UNI/password system. Users can set any password they like. If a password is forgotten, reset it from the Forgot Password page.
  • Rapporteurs are required to follow The University Seminars I RBML naming convention before submitting documentation in Submittable.  The only approved file format is PDF.
    • The file naming format is:
      [Seminar or Workshop#].AY[academic year].[meeting date].[file content].pdf
    • File Content List:
      • a = announcements
      • e = email
      • h= handouts
      • m= minutes
      • sn = speaker's notes 
      • sp = speaker's papers
  • Once a submission has been sent, submitters will receive an email confirmation from Submittable Notifications. Status of a submission can be checked at any time by logging in to their Submittable account.
  • For more information or assistance with Submittable, contact Summer Hart ([email protected]).

If the Rapporteur or Chair is ready to submit, click button below to open Submittable.