It has been said by one of the greatest of English writers on parliamentary law: "Whether these forms be in all cases the most rational or not is really not of so great importance. It is much more material that there should be a rule to go by, than what that rule is, that there may be a uniformity of proceeding in business, not subject to the caprice of the chairman, or captiousness of the members. It is very material that order, decency and regularity be preserved in a dignified public body." This work is the classic edition of Robert's Rules of Order. Originally published in 1875, Roberts Rules of Order is a manual of rules for deliberative assemblies and is often used in business, government and other governing bodies.
ROBERT S RULES OF ORDER What are Robert s Rules of Order? The first edition of the book was published in February, 1876 by U.S. Army Major Henry Martyn Robert. Its procedures were loosely modeled after those used in the United States House of Representatives. Robert wrote Robert s Rules of Order after presiding over a church meeting and discovering that delegates from different areas of the country did not agree about proper procedure. The book is now in its 10th edition; Robert s Rules of Order Newly Revised (RONR). Robert s Rules of Order provides applicable rules governing key matters of meeting and general procedures, including: Establishing a Constitution and Bylaws for your student organization. Structure of the meeting Agenda and debate. Motions; including making, seconding, debating, modifying and amending motions. Sufficient majority and simple majority and which decisions are appropriate to them. Establishment of a quorum. Definition of membership. Voting rights of presiding officer and voting procedures. AN OUTLINE OF BASIC PARLIAMENTARY PROCEDURE Prepared by Douglas N. Case Parliamentary Authority: Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised, Tenth Edition, 2001. I. Rules Governing an Organization State and Federal Law - governing corporations, tax-exempt organizations, public legislative bodies, etc. Articles of Incorporation - applicable to corporations Governing Documents of Parent Organizations - applicable to chapters, affiliates, etc. of larger organizations D. Local Constitution and Bylaws - defines the organization's basic structure and fundamental rules. Normally requires a 2/3 vote and prior notice for amendment and are not subject to suspension. E. Standing Rules - operating procedures consistent with all of the above. Normally can be amended by majority vote at any business meeting and can be suspended. F. Rules of Order - parliamentary authority, superseded by any of the above that conflict. Precedent and Custom - apply when there are no written rules governing a situation. Student Activities and Campus Life