Faculty Senate Minutes
February 16, 2007
Present: Bantell, Buck, Causgrove, Elwood, Fugate, Hartlaub, Johnson, King, Lewis, Lucero, Murray, Oliver, Pierson, Pohan, Reuter, Talley, Thomas, Wheeless, Winston, Yellen
Absent: Bickley, Cook, Waheeduzzaman, Wingfield
Guests: Kristen Hawes, Judith Sutherland, Sarah Sutton
I. Approval of 1/19/07 minutes
It was moved and seconded to approve the minutes of the January 19 Senate meeting.
The minutes were approved as written.
II. Guest Speaker – SGA representative Kristen Hawes (textbook loan to
The Student Government Association would like to join with the Faculty Senate to restart
a textbook reserve program. In the past, the university bought textbooks to keep on reserve
in the library at a cost of $90,000/year. The program would help students with financial
need (the majority of students do not buy their books from Barnes & Noble because of
price). The SGA would like faculty to either place books on reserve or have SGA Senators
pick them up. They are asking for a Faculty Senate coordinator. A concern was voiced
that this might be in violation with the university’s contract with Barnes & Noble. No action
III. Speaker’s Comments – M. Hartlaub
1. The football feasibility study was done to gain entrance into the Southland Conference.
According to President Killebrew and Bob Lovitt, we are not moving forward with a
football program because we are not in a position financially to do it.
2. Waheed is at the Texas Council of Faculty Senates meeting in Austin this weekend.
IV. Committee Reports/Actions
1. Faculty Affairs – E. Yellen
?Policy 12.01.99.C4 - Granting Extension of Tenure Probationary Period
The policy was passed with no changes and no discussion.
?Policy 12.01.99.C1 - Evaluation and Promotion of Full-Time Faculty Members
Slight changes were made by the committee (copies provided). The policy passed
?Policy 12.01.99.C1.03 - Responsibilities of Full-Time Tenured and Tenure-Track
The title has been changed from “Responsibilities of Full-Time Faculty Members”
?Policy 12.01.99.C1.01 - Academic Rank Descriptors for Tenure-Track Faculty
The title has been changed from “Academic Rank Descriptors”
Yellen suggested that Senators review policies and take them to their constituents for
?Evaluation of chairs every other year
Dr. Wheeless pointed out that this would only apply to surveys and not eliminate annual
evaluations. Faculty Affairs recommends leaving yearly evaluations as they are. It was
pointed out that in some colleges chairs only serve 3-4 years. King brought up the point
that without annual evaluations, a bad chair may have their tenure extended. Wheeless
reminded the Senate that it is possible for faculty to request an evaluation. It was
suggested that sometimes the faculty is unhappy when the dean is not.
?Recommendation of Professors Emeritus
The Faculty Affairs Committee submitted Dr. Robert Maroney and Dr. Albert Trevino
for emeritus status to the Provost’s office.
2. Awards/Bylaws/Elections – S. King (for S. Bickley)
King reminded Senators of ABE deadlines:
•February 28 – faculty award packets due to college committees
•March 30 – CASE Award due
•April 17 – Faculty Speaks
•March 1-19 – Senate nominations
•March 20-28 – Election balloting
•March 30 – Ballot counting (1:00)
King also mentioned that Bickley reminds everyone to please fill out the Library
3. Committee on Committees – R. Thomas
The Faculty Interest Surveys will go out soon.
4. Academic Affairs – T. Causgrove
?College Algebra in the Core Curriculum
We are one of the few schools to have modeling and calculus with nothing in
between. This addition will bring us in line with other universities. Reuter said that their
department has been told that the core is untouchable. This shows that we can work
the core to avoid closing departments. Our core is huge compared to most. Hartlaub
pointed out that certain aspects of the core are untouchable, others aren’t and that
perhaps we can have Carlos Huerta come to our next meeting to discuss the issue.
The State mentions College Algebra by name and it is a pre-requisite for many
classes. Adding College Algebra to the core passed.
?Undergraduate Catalog Copy
The Academic Affairs Committee presented some very minor changes in the catalog copy.
Catalog copy passed.
It was proposed that freshmen be allowed a 1.8 GPA (currently 2.0) in order to maintain
financial aid. After discussing the merits of this proposal, it passed.
?College of Business
Two minors added: Marketing and Personal Financial Planning. Passed.
?College of Education
Change in criteria for acceptance in the Kinesiology program in order to achieve
certification (no new courses added). Passed.
?College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Rearranging of courses. Passed.
Academic Affairs suggests that the Faculty Senate be removed from the entire catalog
copy process. They further suggest that it be handed over to the University
Undergraduate Curriculum Committee. Senators should take it to their colleges for
discussion. Hartlaub thanked the committee for their great job and hard work.
5. Budget – M. Bantell (for Waheed)
Not all deans weigh contributions equally for merit pay, and there is no particular way that
each college sets merit pay. One problem may be that it can be perceived as unfair. Money
for merit pay comes from the Provost and is not equal among colleges. The dean/chair
allocates the money as he/she chooses. Mark thanked the committee for their work and
suggested Senators share the report with those who are interested. Dr. Wheeless will
provide more information re: how things have been done in the past.
6. Finals Schedule – S. Talley
Most faculty would like to return to mailing diplomas (which will happen).
•Finals held after 3pm are a problem.
•There should be a break (even 15 minutes) between all finals- this is not happening
with later finals.
•There is no consensus re: 2-2½ hour tests. Keep 2½ finals.
•Finals should be held at the time the class is regularly held.
•Perhaps finals should be started on Monday.
•Students prefer Reading Day and the weekend in between.
•If a Finals Committee is convened, a faculty member should be included.
7. Calendar – S. Talley
We teach more days than other Texas universities– perhaps a Monday start would be better.
There is a proposal in the works with a Monday start that does not change graduation.
Talley is currently the only faculty member on the Calendar Committee. The deans have
proposed a few changes to the Calendar Committee’s proposal (no weekend between finals).
There is discussion re: contact hours and workload.
V. Other Issues
1. Oso Golf Course Expansion
Informal Life Sciences poll: The Faculty Senate should push for faculty representation on
the project. COLA: 70/30% - 60/40% in favor of faculty input. Wheeless informed us
that there is discussion/study of various land around town. King said that some faculty
are not concerned with “where” and some are adamantly opposed to all expansion.
Bantell suggested we propose a steering committee for “reasonable” faculty
representation. It was proposed that:
“There be reasonable participation of faculty on any steering
committee for expansion of the university.” Motion passed.
2. Football Feasibility Study
Thomas stated that the consensus is if the academic side will in no way be affected
financially, fine. If having football harms any other programs, no. It was suggested
that other programs in the Southland Conference be investigated. Many felt that the
feasibility study was misleading– it seemed closer to an “advocacy study”. We are
hearing “don’t worry, it won’t happen” on campus, but that’s not the word in the
community. Hartlaub asked for volunteers for a mini-football committee within the
Faculty Senate. Email him if interested.
VI. Provost’s Comments
The Ed.D. change to a Ph.D. has been accepted and sent along for approval. The Marine
Biology and Geospatial Surveying Engineering degrees have moved on to the next step.
On March 5, we will learn more about what it is to be an HSI (Hispanic Serving Institute)
when Dr. Daniel Arreola of Arizona State University comes to speak. The deans from
COLA, COST and COE are going to look at hours and compare them to the other colleges
to see if changes should be made. Dr. Wheeless asked Dr. Billeaux to create a process to
approve programs that are over 120 hours. There is an issue of competition for students
(it’s more expensive if the core has more hours). Summer school has also become an
issue. Class size rules will have to be enforced to break even/make money.
VII. Provost’s Presence at Senate Meetings
An “us” vs. “them” attitude is not good. If we exclude the Provost, that’s the way it will be.
It seems to be that way right now with the new administration and we need to try to get away
from that. We can always ask them to excuse themselves for some discussions. It is good
to have them present for accountability and responses. Another option is closed meeting
status (but that is for visitors only). The Provost would have to be considered a visitor, not
a Senate member. It was brought up that meetings are not private. Minutes are kept. It is
valuable to have her here and be able to ask questions and get immediate responses. The
Education faculty feels that this should be a forum for faculty to feel comfortable and be
open. Most Senators felt that it was important to have the Provost attend Senate meetings–
Dr. Wheeless is here forming a relationship with faculty. The consensus was to leave things
The meeting was adjourned at 4:39 p.m.
Submitted by Christine Silliman, Assistant to the Faculty Senate