Minutes of the Faculty Senate
April 17, 2009

Attendance: Jennifer Anderson, Mary Bantell, Bilaye Benibo, Kent Byus, Kirk Cammarata, Mark Hartlaub, Louis Katz, Karen Loveland, Margaret Lucero, Ahmed Mahdy, Michael Moody, David Moury, Marvarene Oliver; Karen Paciotti, Mark Pfeifer; Nancy Rogers, Elizabeth Sefcik, Sharon Talley

Ex Officio: Anantha Babbili, David Billeaux, Robert Nelsen, Christine Silliman, Cely Smart

Guests: Swint Friday, Christine Shupala, Ben Soto, Scott Street, Susan Wolff Murphy

New Senators: Shane Anderson, Kristen Davis, Chuck Etheridge, Sherrye Garrett, Steven Hall, Ajay Katangur, Yolanda Keys.


1. Speaker Lucero called the meeting to order at 2:02 PM.

2. The minutes from the February 20, 2009 meeting were approved as corrected (by voice assent). Tally moved to accept, Mahdy seconded.

3. Speaker’s Report

3.1. Meeting with President Killebrew – cordial, important points covered, discussed communication-related concerns and, ways to improve lines of communication. Changes include: (1) speaker will receive advance copy of president’s cabinet agenda, (2) all faculty senators will receive copies of president’s cabinet minutes as approved, (3), cabinet will meet once per semester with Faculty Senate Executive. Committee, (4) we will provide Faculty Senate meeting packets to president’s office prior to meeting.
3.2. Budget report (attachment) – brief discussion.
3.3. Goals – we have a blank goals and objectives page; we need to add a page for SACS. The Executive Committee drafted some goals (see handout). Lucero moved to accept, Bantell seconded.
3.3.1. Nelsen suggested changing “oversight” to “advice on” in goal 4. Lucero accepted the change as a friendly amendment.
3.3.2. Babbili suggested that we swap the order of research and teaching in first goal. Lucero accepted the change as a friendly amendment.
3.3.3. A senator suggested changing “with” to “within” in the first goal Lucero accepted the change as a friendly amendment.
3.3.4. The motion passed by show of hands (17 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).

4. Intercollegiate Athletics Council - Swint Friday
4.1. Budget handout
4.2. Introduced new athletic director, Scott Street
4.3. Reiterated emphasis on the “student” in student athlete.
4.4. Street reconfirmed the emphasis on student graduation rates and performance.
4.5. Discussion of budget – focus on truth in budgeting.
4.5.1. Projected numbers for FY 2009. Budget figures include a new category, “transfers”, to identify sources of funds transferred from other university areas.
4.5.2. Second page reports total weighted SCH and tuition funds generated by athletics.
4.5.3. A senator asked about missing information…Friday said that he had focused on looking at transfers from other areas, revenue, and tuition transferred to school because he thought of tuition as being of interest to senate. Offered to provide more information about budget on request. Friday suggested it was a very lean budget.
4.5.3.1. A guest asked if tuition report reported out of state rates. Friday said, “no”, that it was calculated by formula. Nelsen noted that 90 student athletes made honor roll and the cumulative GPA of student athletes was 2.78.
4.5.3.2. When asked about the NCAA investigation, Friday and Street noted that “… we have weathered the storm”. New policies and procedures are now in place to prevent future problems with an emphasis on transparency.
4.5.3.3. A senator asked about interest income, reportedly large, from athletic endowments. Friday didn’t know the amount and said he would report it in the future.
4.5.3.4. A senator asked if graduation rates were broken down by sport.
4.5.3.5. A senator asked about tracking academic progress. Friday and Street discussed the APR (academic progress record) and the 5th year aid program to encourage completion of degree. Nelsen noted that the faculty deserve credit for helping with progress reports. Lucero noted that Jennifer has asked to speak to senate next fall. Lucero thanked Friday and Street and wrapped up questions

5. QEP - Susan Wolff-Murphy (attachment) – noted that she has received the Executive Summary of the QEP and extended her thanks to QEP steering committee members. She noted that they have been meeting for two years. In that time, they have narrowed down the focus to the first year Islander program. She asked for questions and endorsement from senate. Lucero opened the floor to questions., Oliver moved to endorse, Talley seconded. The motion passed (18 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).

6. SACS Up-date – Robert Nelsen and Christine Shupala

6.1. “this aint your mamma’s SACS” – reported that we are making progress and that credentialing is an issue.
6.1.1. Deans have received a list of faculty and courses taught. Under the old SACS guidelines, credentialing was based on degree. Now, faculty must be credentialed to specific courses taught. Credentialing includes showing 18 graduate hours in course taught, CV showing papers/publications that demonstrate mastery of the topic, CV showing documented experiences related to topic. Nelsen noted that, “people will lose their jobs over this”.
6.1.2. Demonstrated report using UT Dallas records.
6.1.3. Shupala reported that the deans have been given spreadsheets (see handout for example) and noted that as long as everything is linked to your CV, you are “okay”. That experience teaching the course is not a stand-alone justification. A senator asked about new fields; Shupala indicated that was handled on a case-by-case basis.
6.1.4. What do they need
6.1.4.1. Collect every syllabus,
6.1.4.2. Need to demonstrate that “stacked” courses are legitimate and noted that as long as you have two syllabi, and use higher order Bloom’s Taxonomy and require more work for graduate students, they should be okay. Harvey Knell is the only one than can approve “stacked” courses.
6.1.4.3. Distance Education courses – must have a syllabus that demonstrates it is equivalent to traditional course…if comparison not available then must find it at another institution or cancel the class.
6.1.4.4. Certificates. – have identified nine that weren’t approved by coordinating board. Have requested approval from board.
6.1.4.5. Minors part of program not assessed…if specialized, must be assessed. Deans reviewed compliance with this issue.
6.1.4.6. Deans, associate deans, and department chair evaluations need to be conducted as do evaluation. This year, evaluations will be conducted for the Dean of Graduate Studies, Dean of Business, and the Director of the Library.
6.1.4.7. Substantive changes…any time you change mode of delivery (e.g., F2F to online), have to notify SACS…change in levels also requires notification. We have 19 substantive changes we haven’t notified them about. SACS can take federal money and revoke it from Pell Grants to higher education.
6.1.4.8. Rewriting principles …need process for student complaints and substantive changes and haven’t updated most policies since 2002.
6.1.4.9. September 10 deadline
6.1.4.10. Provost noted that many of the oversights started in 2002 and expressed gratitude to Robert Nelsen for his help.

7. Unapproved dance course – course got missed in catalog…asked Kelly to share the problem. Noted that it was a clerical error. The theater program is doing well, many awards, tripled enrollment, many other changes. Administrative Assistant on sick leave resulted on a “cut and paste mistake”. Copy was forwarded on October 12 to committee with missing page. Suggested a new “failsafe”, faculty review of catalog copy, to prevent miscommunication. Asked if copy can be included this year, if not will be put forward next year. To prevent problem in future, they have created policy for making one person responsible for checking everything. Nelsen reported that 17 students have registered. Hartlaub reported that it came to academic affairs, only two members of committee were available resulting in a split vote so the committee couldn’t endorse. Lucero summarized choices (1) we approve or they implement work around. Katz moved to approve, Talley seconds. The motion passed (16 for, 0 against, 2 abstentions).

8. WebCT/Blackboard Task Force up-date - Sharon Talley

8.1. Introduced Ben Soto, from IT services to field technical questions.
8.2. Talley reported that senate set up committee to consider need to upgrade WebCT for integration with Banner.
8.2.1. Task force considered going with WebCT 8.0 or 9.0. Both solutions eliminate double entry of grades, and other benefits (see report). Version 9.0 is more unstable and carries additional costs
8.2.2. The committee recommended a timeline for implementation of switch to WebCT 8.0.
8.2.2.1. Fall 2009 will be an extended training and testing period. WebCT 8.0 will go into “production” in January 2010. The task force recommends concurrent running of 4.1 and 8.0 during Spring and Summer of 2010. Will discontinue 4.1 and go with 8.0 only in Fall 2010.
8.2.3. Budget = $249,000. Noted that they need to firm the timing to finalize budget.
8.2.4. Other recommendations include:
8.2.4.1. LMS Council to oversee development and implementation, developing policies and practices to improve online teaching.
8.2.4.2. Enhanced help desk support
8.2.4.3. Four (4) hours of training for faculty
8.2.4.4. Development of standardized template and student training module..
8.2.4.5. Focus on buy-in and roll-out to gain faculty and staff support.
8.2.4.6. Lucero noted that she asked for the task force and promoted it once she learned about the double required for posting grades. She then realized that if we can put this together properly we could use this as a disaster backup plan. Noted that she does not favor requiring use of WebCT.
8.2.4.7. Nelsen noted that the decision to keep 4.1 active during transition is expensive. Setting up a “sandbox” is also expensive to give faculty time to get comfortable with 8.0. His biggest concern is that it is going to be a learning experience for students…who will come to faculty for help. He suggested that it is going to take faculty buy-in and support to have a successful implementation. We will be able to keep the technology for at least three years. Nelsen extended compliments to Talley on the way she ran the meetings and to the IT staff for their support and input.
8.2.4.8. Soto reported that customer service is priority as is creating a stable, user-friendly platform for faculty.
8.2.4.9. A senator asked for a point of clarification about whether we would need to switch versions in Summer 2010 or Fall 2010. Soto reported that the IT staff extended the timeline from Fall 2010 (from report) to Spring 2011 to allow more time for testing and that the final report will be corrected to note that WebCT 4.1 will be available until end of 2010.
8.2.4.10. Soto noted that budget request was completed on time.
8.2.4.11. Lucero read a note from Senator Loveland regarding her service on the committee. To quote, “To clarify the endnote on page 4 of the report, the chair distributed the draft of the task force report and recommendations on Friday, April 10. After reviewing the draft report, I (Dr. Loveland) stepped down from the task force citing my concern that the decisions and recommendations didn’t convince me that supporting or endorsing the report was in the best interests of the faculty I represent. Please note that my decision in no way indicates a rejection of the decision or recommendations in the report. I do believe the university community will ultimately benefit from the decisions reflected in the report. Instead, my decision reflects my need for more information before I could recommend embracing WebCT 8.0 to my colleagues.”
8.2.5. Oliver moved endorse the committee recommendations, Benibo seconded. The motion passed (17 for, 0 against, 1 abstention).

9. Committees
9.1. Academic Affairs Committee – Mark Hartlaub – provided brief summary.
9.1.1. Undergraduate Council Proposal (attachment) – Lucero noted that we endorsed its creation in principle at the last meeting but that we need to discuss some specifics.
9.1.1.1. Nelsen recommended that we reduce the number of faculty from each college from three to two and replace the third with the Associate Dean responsible for undergraduate education in each college. This would improve communication between the undergraduate council and the dean’s councils.
9.1.1.1.1. A senator asked if it made sense for the Graduate Council to have a larger number of faculty members than the Undergraduate Council. Nelsen suggested that we don’t have an Undergraduate Dean to act as a liaison with the dean’s council. Hartlaub accepted Nelsen’s suggestion as friendly amendment.
9.1.1.2. Hartlaub moved to approve the proposal, Katz seconded. The motion passed (18 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).
9.1.2. End-of-year Report (attachment)
9.2. ABE Committee – Jennifer Anderson
9.2.1. Awards up-date- excellence awards determined…reminded faculty to attend awards ceremony.
9.2.2. Case Award deadline was last Friday. Regents award packets to committee by May 1.
9.2.3. End-of-year Report (attachment) – one correction, senate elections took place in late March not late April as noted in the report.
10. Committee on Committees – Nancy Rogers
10.1. Progress on appointments – Currently working on committee assignments for Fall 2009.
10.2. End-of-year Report (attachment)
11. Faculty Affairs Committee – Marvarene Oliver
11.1. Calendar procedure revision - second reading (attachment) – reviewed policy. Major change is going to a four-year cycle. No vote necessary (an FYI).
11.2. Emeritus candidate Ross Purdy – committee received information last week. Recommending that we support application. Oliver moved to recommend Purdy for emeritus status, Talley seconded. The motion passed (17 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).
11.3. End-of-year Report (attachment) – see report for information about safety phones and traffic issues addressed by committee.
12. Budget Committee- Mary Bantell
12.1. Salary research up-date and recommendations summarized in report
12.2. Loveland talked about CUPA data
12.3. Cammarata presented data from AAUP and SSA COLA
12.4. End-of-year Report (see attachment). Katz noted that expenses for instruction-related issues are increasing and as this continues, we need more money to keep up.
12.5. A senator commended the committee for all their hard work.

13. Talley moved to extend the meeting, Hartlaub seconds. The motion carried by voice assent.

14. Provost Comments

14.1. Student retention action plan – see handout of draft recommendation from Provost to President’s councils.
14.1.1. Addition of midterm grades - 76% participated in midterm grades. Trying to discover why students are coming in larger numbers but also dropping out at a faster rate.
14.1.2. See approved retention action plan and enrollment management plan
14.1.3. Review draft retention action plan and comment to Provost.
14.1.4. See president’s retention task force membership list for proposal for future membership of committee (after it is institutionalized).
14.1.5. A senator asked if we have formal mechanism for tracking students that leave. Babbili reported that we have some data but no profiles of students that leave.
14.1.6. Provost asked for support for “consortium for academic success and achievement” (CASA).
14.1.7. A senator asked if they had considered asking for a representative from the counseling center. The Provost noted that it was an interesting idea and might ask someone to serve on the advisory council.
14.1.8. A senator asked if we are admitting students with lower SAT scores than in the past. The Provost reported that average test scores have been flat since 1994 but that the probation rate is up and the retention rate is down.
14.1.9. A senator noted that good demographics on exiting students would be helpful. Might also be possible to look at information in secondary data related to probation.
14.2. Case professor award. Babbili suggested the process was “chaotic”. The Senate is positioned as stopgap for filtering candidates through the senate to the provost. He noted that there were three nominations this year, one from the senate. However, the senate recommendation was visiting professor. Babbili suggested this doesn’t look good. Babbili opted to put forward a single candidate. Requesting that the senate develops a process to allow VPAA office and senate to come up with a solid nominee for Case and other external award nominations. A senator noted that some visiting professors are wonderful teachers and scholars.
14.3. Chancellor’s teaching awards – Provost’s office will send information in May, Chancellor’s office will provide information to payroll regarding award recipients. Awards should be announced in June and paid in July.

15. Other issues?
15.1. Moody provided “white paper” on turnitin.com issues. Noted opposition to use of turnitin.com being mandated and that many now recommend that even optional use should proceed with caution. Lucero will handle the issue over the summer and review again next fall.

16. Recognition of out-going ’08 – ’09 Senators

17. Recognition of ’08 – ’09 Executive Committee Members

18. Seating of new senators
18.1. Election of officers (Speaker, Deputy Speaker, Secretary)
18.1.1. Speaker (Sefcik nominated Lucero, Bantell seconds). Moody move to close nominations, Loveland seconds. Lucero elected speaker by a show of hands (18 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).
18.1.2. Deputy Speaker (Bantell nominates Katz, Loveland seconds). Lucero closed nominations. Katz elected deputy speaker by a show of hands (17 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).
18.1.3. Secretary (Bantell nominated Loveland, Paciotti seconds). Lucero closes nominations. Loveland elected secretary by a show of hands (16 for, 0 against, 0 abstentions).
18.2. Creation of senate committees
18.2.1. Academic Affairs – Sefcik (chair), Changchit, Garrett, Davis, Anderson
18.2.2. Award/bylaws/elections – Moody (chair), Bhattacharya, Mahdy, Katangur
18.2.3. Committee on Committees – Rogers (chair), Loveland, Moury
18.2.4. Budget – Hall, Etheridge, Keys, Benibo (chair)
18.2.5. Faculty affairs – Bantell, Pfeiffer (chair), Mehrubeoglu, Paciotti
18.2.6. Executive: Lucero (cob), Katz (LA), Loveland (cob), Moody (coe), Sefcik (conhs), Rogers (conhs), Pfeiffer (lib), Moury (at large…s&t), Benibo (CLA).
18.3. Summer retreat – Aug. 21, 2009 at 10:00 AM.
18.4. Lucero asked about summer meetings…that we will need to review some policy changes in the summer. She will keep us informed via email.

19. Lucero adjourned the meeting at 5:16 PM (Loveland moved, Hall second, unanimous voice assent).

Respectfully Submitted
Karen A. Loveland, Faculty Senate Secretary