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Higher Education Institution Governing Boards

The control of postsecondary education by a board of trustees is often considered one of the most powerful tools of administration of the modern university. A governing board is an organized group of individuals with collective authority to control an institution of higher education. The individuals are lay board members, which means they are citizens who do not necessarily have a background or expertise in the governance of higher education. While there are various types of governance structures in postsecondary education, most higher education institutions in the United States and other countries are controlled by a board that maintains the formal legal authority for decision-making and oversight of nearly all of the institution’s affairs.

The structure and responsibilities of higher education institution governing boards often differ ...

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