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Faculty Senate

Faculty Senate » April 3, 1997

Faculty Senate Minutes

1997 No. 529
April 3, 1997
For All Faculty
The meeting was called to order at 3:00 pm by President Anthony Wilcox. The March minutes were corrected to reflect the correct spelling of Senator Esbensen's name; deleted "...but felt that it was necessary to do so..." in the last sentence of the next to the last paragraph under "Enrollment Projection Process"; and the word "abstentions" was added to the last sentence of the last paragraph of the "Alumni College Recommendation" to read "...and abstentions are, therefore, irrelevant." The minutes were approved as corrected.

Meeting Summary
  • Special Reports: Legislative Update, Mark Nelson
  • Committee Reports: University Honors College Council and Committee on Bylaws and Nominations
  • Action Items: AR 20, Repeated Courses [Motion 97-529-01 through 02]
  • New Business: There was no new business.

Roll Call
Members Absent With Representation:
Fast, G. Hightower; Isensee, P. Brown; Jenkins, P. Thomson; G. Pearson, I. Wong; Pereira, J. Krueger; Savonen, T. Gentle; Seville, J. Drexler; Thies, M. Matzke; Wander, S. Francis; Williamson, L. Semprini; and L. Woods, U. Mali.

Members Absent Without Representation:
Bentley, Burke, Cappaert, Cheeke, Christie, Cowles, Cromack, P. Farber, V. Farber, Farnsworth, Frank, Hemphill, Hu, Huyer, B. Johnson, Jones, P. Lee, Leong, Levine, Lomax, Lundin, Matzke, McAlexander, T. Miller, A. Mix, Putnam, Rielly, Rowe, Tiger, and Verts.

Faculty Senate Officers/Staff Present:
A. Wilcox, President; M. Niess, President-Elect; K. Krane, Immediate Past President; G. Tiedeman, Parliamentarian protem; and V. Nunnemaker, Senate Administrative Assistant.

Guests of the Senate:
L. Burns, A. Hashimoto, and N. Wendt.


Legislative Update

Mark Nelson, Association of Oregon Faculties Lobbyist, provided an update on higher education issues in the legislature.

Nelson noted that we are facing a Republican dominated session: 31-29 in the House and 20-10 in the Senate. Dominating issues before the legislature include:

1)The "Kicker" - A 1979 requirement that returns personal and corporate taxes if the revenue projections exceed 2%. At present, the kicker amounts to $444 million. It has not yet been determined if the money will be returned.
2)Ballot Measure (BM) 47 - The approved measure cuts and caps property taxes. The impact to both schools and local governments totalled $1 billion at the beginning of the session, but has dropped some since. The legislature is committed to replacing most of the lost revenue to K-12, that would come from the general fund.
3)Term Limits - The exodus of quality legislators has had a dramatic effect on institutional memory, leaving many freshmen legislators heading committees.

The State Board adopted a budget in July which addressed access, tuition freezes, the statewide engineering school, technology, and compensation. The pre-BM 47 budget allowed an average of 6% faculty salary compensation for six years to reach the mid-point of comparator lists. Upon passage of BM 47, the Governor reduced the faculty compensation from $45 million to $28.5 million, to be allocated by the Board. Nelson felt that the best Ways and Means Subcommittee in the last 10 years was in place, the majority of whom are all strong higher education supporters. On the downside, there seems to be even more control exercised by the Ways and Means leadership on the subcommittee in an effort to reduce budgets.

The major difference between the Governor's budget and the Republican budget is that the Governor included the "kicker" and the Republican's didn't. Due to the last minute intervention of Senator Hannon, $7.5 million for recruitment and retention was restored to the budget.

The Republican budget now stands at a 2+2 faculty salary package. An additional $10 million is to be given as merit; higher education's cut amounts to about $2.5 million. Nelson believes that an add-back may occur to restore the 3+3 package.

There is a push to be more aggressive to place additional dollars back on the table. It's important to replace the $16.5 million lost from the pre-BM 47 State Board budget. Nelson briefly outlined several areas where replacement revenue could be reallocated. He noted that there has been a continuous reinvestment to K-12 since the passage of BM 5.

Nelson mentioned several other areas being considered:
  • He felt there is a good chance that the bill sponsored by IFS and AAUP to add two faculty members to the State Board will be approved.
  • There are still some anti-PERS bills, but not as many since the departure of Representative Tiernan.
  • Senate Bill 580 would eliminate fair share.
  • BM 9 campaign finance has been struck down by the Supreme Court.
President Wilcox noted that OSU Professor Gary Tiedeman gave a powerful statement to the State Board to encourage them to be aggressive to pursue funding and asked for Nelson's assessment of the State Board in that pursuit. Nelson responded that the State Board and the Chancellor have been too timid.

When questioned whether there was a plan to unify a stronger voice for higher education, Nelson stated that OSU is the only alumni organization that has been effective. He also noted that the Oregon Student Lobby has been absolutely wonderful - their testimony yesterday before Ways and Means has been among the best presented.

Committee Reports

University Honors College Council

Jim Krueger, University Honors College Council Chair, explained that the Council has general jurisdiction of policies and procedures of the University Honors College (UHC) and advises the UHC Director. The UHC was established in the fall of 1994 and opened in fall 1995.

Administration of the UHC rests with UHC Director Joe Hendricks, but the Council is responsible for the following:
  • admission criteria
  • degree requirements
  • criteria for selection of UHC faculty
  • assessment of program quality
  • curricular structure and content of UHC
The objectives of the Council are to:
  • review the director's annual report and assess progress of the College
  • recommend new or modified policies
  • review information distributed in November calling for new courses
  • assist in recruiting new courses and faculty
  • review new student applicant files for admissions
  • review prospective schedule of classes
  • evaluate the applicant review process
  • review demographics of entering group
Krueger outlined the two types of admissions to the UHC: entering freshman are "Honors Scholars" and those entering the UHC with two years left at OSU are "Honors Associates." A student graduating from the UHC receives a joint degree from the UHC and the college responsible for their major. There are currently 265 students with a target of 400. There have been 375 UHC applications received for 1997-98, with 197 already accepted.

Krueger mentioned that there is an effort to have student representation from all colleges that have undergraduate students. There is a fairly broad representation of courses among most disciplines, but additional courses are always encouraged. However, there is a special need for Engineering courses. Krueger welcomed Engineering faculty to suggest courses that could be offered, in particular, Baccalaureate Core Courses. He noted that not many courses are repeated from one year to the next, allowing opportunities for new courses.

Senator Mix, Science, questioned whether there was a process to follow-up on students from their department of interest if not accepted to the UHC. Krueger responded that he didn't think that anything was yet organized, but that Director Hendricks plans to send a list of prospective students not accepted to the UHC to respective OSU departments.

Senator DeKock, Science, felt that the UHC was a good way to raise the number of quality students and questioned why enrollment was limited. Krueger responded that the number of courses limits enrollment.

Krueger urged faculty to assist in making the UHC competitive across the U.S. and noted that the UHC would welcome any questions or inquiries.

Committee on Bylaws and Nominations

Sally Francis, Committee on Bylaws and Nominations Chair, and Senate Membership Task Force Chair, discussed the function of the task force.

When asked to consider the issue of Senate membership, the Committee recommended that a task force be appointed, which was approved by the Executive Committee, to allow for broader input and discussion. The considerations put before the committee were 1) the reclassification of former Management Services employees who, with the former No Rank Faculty constitute the newly created Professional Faculty rank; and 2) the motion in December 1996 to create an academic senate whose members would be comprised of professorial ranked faculty and Faculty Research Assistants who do not have formal administrative assignments.

The charge to the task force is:
  • to revise the existing Bylaws to reflect the discontinuation of the No Rank classification of faculty appointments and the creation of the Professional Faculty classification;
  • to formulate recommendations on the issue of Faculty Senate representation for the former Management Service employees and for Faculty Research Assistants;
  • to consider whether former Management Service employees should have designated representation on the Faculty Economic Welfare Committee, the Faculty Grievance Committee, and the Faculty Mediation Committee;
  • to consider the recommendations made at the December 1996 meeting to create an Academic Senate; and
  • to consider if a higher apportionment ratio is needed to reduce the size of the current Senate.
Francis listed the task force members: Dan Edge, Karin Hardin, Ken Krane, Jo-Ann Leong, Laurel Maughan, Jan Mosley, Al Mukatis, Teresa Sawyer, Tom Scheuermann, Sara Schreiber, Garry Stephenson, Ray Tricker, Lita Verts, Robert Wess, and Bill Wilkins.

At the first meeting the following list of concerns were generated:
  • What is the purpose of the Senate?
  • How inclusive should the Senate be?
  • Should Faculty Research Assistant's (FRA) be included?
  • How would the inclusion of FRA's affect the size of the Senate?
  • How would the inclusion of FRA's affect the proportionality of specific apportionment units?
  • Should there be an exclusion period for Senate eligibility?
  • Is there an inherent difference in viewpoint among the different classifications of faculty?
  • How can the curricular purview of traditional academic faculty members be protected if the composition of the Senate changes?
The task force will meet each Monday from 9:30-1-1:00 and expects to have its work completed by June 15. Francis encouraged faculty to provide input to any task force member.

Action Items

Academic Regulation 20 - Repeated Courses

Nancy Wendt, Academic Regulations Chair, presented the following proposal to change Academic Regulation 20 concerning "Repeated Courses." AR 20. Repeated Courses
If a course is repeated, all grades received in that course (except for I, W, S, U, N, P, Aud, and WAU) shall be used to compute the cumulative grade point average. Although more than one grade will appear on the transcript for a repeated course, the credits will only be counted once toward graduation requirements. Courses may be repeated once for grade replacement. Both grades will appear on the academic record, but only the second grade will be counted in the cumulative grade point average and toward graduation requirements. Additional retakes of the course will appear on the academic record but not count in the cumulative grade point average. Regardless of the number of times a course is repeated, credits earned will be countedonly once for graduation requirements. Recognized repeatable courses, such as activity courses, research, seminars, and selected topics, do not come under this restriction.
Wendt explained that a number of individuals, as well as the Academic Advising Council, requested a review of AR 20. Concern has been expressed that this method is punitive and adversely affects retention.

She noted that this regulation has been handled in many different ways on this campus and provided the following chronology:
  • 1972 - Students could repeat courses with the previous grade lined off their record.
  • 1982 - Students needed to petition for "legal repeats" which would be lined off their record. "Illegal repeats" were averaged.
  • 1984 - Students could repeat courses with the previous grade lined off their record.
  • 1985 - Students may repeat courses, but grades are averaged.
PSU, EOU, OIT, SOU, and WOU currently allow repeated courses to be replaced with the second or latest grade. OSU and U of O currently average the grades. UC Davis, UCLA, and ASU allow repeated grades to replace the original. Some institutions limit the number of repeats allowed.

The Committee originally spoke with the Executive Committee about only allowing repeats for the lower grades. Concern was expressed that a student hovering near the C- point would purposely earn a lower grade in order to be eligible to repeat the course. The current wording was then proposed.

Wendt noted that, currently, certain colleges can and do limit the number of repeats allowed and would continue to be allowed to do so under the proposal.

An additional concern regarded receipt of a low grade due to academic dishonesty. The committee didn't feel it was appropriate to address that issue in the regulation since it rarely occurs. She also mentioned that it appears that this issue is taken care of in the Dean of Students Office.

There are currently about 2,000 cases per year where a student repeats a course. Under the proposal, multiple retakes will be allowed, but only the first retake will be figured into the cumulative gpa.

Wendt agreed when questioned by Senator Gamble, Science, whether the rationale behind the proposal is to allow students to improve their grade.

Senator Prucha, Associated, spoke against the proposal since she felt that it has an under-graduate thrust which has a potential to inflate gpa's.

Senator Coakley, Science, was supportive of the proposal and felt it would assist in retention.

Senator protem Drexler, Business, found it difficult to understand the rationale and questioned why, if the purpose is to be less punitive, was the highest grade earned not recorded. Wendt responded that it would unduly inflate the gpa and would not be representative of what the student was capable of.

Senator Rose, Forestry, raised the point of how this proposal would impact graduate student funding if students retake a class and expect to be funded for an additional quarter.

Wendt did not know the answer to Senator van der Mars, Health & Human Performance, questioning whether she was aware of the percentage of retake grades which are lower than the first time.

Senator Morris, Science, didn't understand what difference it would make if a student takes a class five or six times.

Senator Plant, Engineering, felt that the current system is effective. He also felt it was not productive to have a student continually repeat courses.

Senator Ladd, Extension, felt that the current averaging system was punitive and supported the proposal.

Senator Coblentz, Agricultural Sciences, felt that a student should have an opportunity to correct a problem with a course, although he didn't feel that a student should have endless opportunities to take up space in a course.

Senator Cornell, Liberal Arts, questioned which grade would stand if the initial grade received was as a result of academic dishonesty and a student repeated the course. Wendt responded that the committee is attempting to ascertain how this will be handled without an additional academic regulations change. Senator Oye, Student Affairs, explained that the appeal process for academic dishonesty does not rest with the Dean of Students Office. As with other grade disputes, it goes through the department chair and college. He noted that, although extremely rare, a second offense of academic dishonesty would likely result in suspension.

Senator Krane, Science, was opposed to the proposal based on the vagueness of the academic dishonesty issue. However, he also felt that the current regulation is punitive since the credits are counted once toward graduation requirements and again for gpa. He would prefer that the regulation state that the credits be counted only once toward both graduation and gpa.

Senator Rathja, Engineering, felt that Senator Krane's reference to the regulation being punitive was true for a student taking a small number of credits, but didn't feel it was an impact on a student earning 192 credits. He spoke in opposition to the proposal and felt the issue is currently being handled well.

ASOSU President Libby Mitchell expressed concern that OSU students would be competing for admission to graduate school with students from other institutions who have this policy in place. OSU students will be at a disadvantage if grades continue to be averaged.

Senator protem Matzke, Science, noted that she and Senator Thies felt this proposal would be useful when a student is coming off probation or suspension since it would give them a chance to improve their grade.

Senator Randhawa, Engineering, was concerned that this proposal would promote mediocrity. However, he was in favor of encouraging students to repeat courses when appropriate.

Senator DeKock, Science, called for the question. Motion 97-521-02 to end debate and vote on the main motion passed by voice vote with no dissenting votes.

Motion 97-521-01 to approve the changes to AR 20 passed by voice vote with many dissenting votes.

When questioned about the implementation date, Barbara Balz, Registrar, stated she will recommend to the Provost's Office that the changes take effect fall term 1997.

Senator Krane requested a definitive ruling concerning academic dishonesty; Wendt will continue to talk with Oye.

Senator Gamble asked Wendt to determine why the gpa from transfer institutions has been separated from the OSU cumulative gpa; Wendt will research AR 2.

Information Items

Committee Interest Forms - Please consider volunteering to serve on University or Faculty Senate committees; forms are to be returned to the Faculty Senate Office.

Reports from the Provost

Provost Arnold reported on the following items:

As a result of a news report concerning denial of tenure to an OSU faculty member, Dr. Arnold focused on the Promotion and Tenure Process. He noted that he could not publicly discuss specific cases, but outlined the steps involved in the process:

-The guidelines place a distinctive emphasis on the review of the dossier submitted in relation to expectations defined for the faculty position. -Decisions will be based on quality and productivity in three areas:
a)focus on all aspects of performance and responsibilities as defined for a particular faculty position
b) scholarship
c) service (professional and university)
-Input from clients, students, and peers

A typical process consists of the following:

- Dossier preparation and sign-off by the faculty member indicating it is a complete statement of what was done
-Initial review at departmental level consisting of a departmental committee and independent judgement by the department chair. Recommendations originate at this level.
-Provisions allow for additional faculty input on issues raised by the department to the next level of consideration.
-It is next reviewed at the college level by a college committee and independently by the dean. At this point, a level of comparable treatment for all dossiers across units within the college is reviewed. Additional questions or issues will be reviewed and addressed, which may require additional information prior to a recommendation.
-The University Promotion and Tenure Committee then reviews each dossier. The Committee will meet with respective deans regarding questions resulting from recommendations. If there is a difference between the recommendations at the departmental and college level, both the chair and dean will be involved. An observer from the Faculty Senate Promotion and Tenure Committee will be present when dossiers are being considered and are allowed to review individual dossiers.
-Recommendations are forwarded to the Provost for review and a final decision. The Provost is allowed to seek additional information.
-Appeals are sent to the President who ensures that the guidelines and procedures have been followed appropriately.
-When all decisions have been made, two reports are developed: 1) An annual report by the Associate Provost for Academic Affairs which summarizes the outcomes of decisions for that year, and 2) a report from the Faculty Senate Promotion and Tenure Committee which incorporates the previous report, offers observations, raises issues, and makes recommendations for consideration.

Arnold noted that, in previous years, these reports have noted the thoroughness and careful attention in the process to assure that faculty are fully represented and considered in the process.

Senator DeKock questioned whether there is any way to redress a dossier during the process. Arnold stated that it is not uncommon for deans to return a dossier which is not complete or which requires a letter to be reworded. The Associate Vice Provost may also return dossiers for additional information.

Reports from the Faculty Senate President

President Wilcox included the following items in his report:
  • Reminded Senators to complete and return the Committee Interest Forms.
  • Thanked Gary Tiedeman for serving as Parliamentarian.
  • Reported that a Task Force on Post-tenure Review is being chaired by Ken Krane. The charge is as follows:
  • to compare OSU's Periodic Review of Faculty with review processes in place at other institutions;
  • to assess the current status of the relationship between tenure and academic freedom;
  • to provide guidance to OSU administrators in conducting faculty reviews, especially the use of the position description and/or other performance expectations as the basis for the review;
  • to strengthen our Periodic Review system by incorporating opportunities for faculty development and enhancement of professional skills in scholarship, instruction, or service.
  • The joint IFS/AAUP/AOF meeting has been post-poned from April 26. The meeting date will be announced when determined.
  • Several meetings ago the Senate was dealing with Article III. Sec. 2 of the Bylaws requiring apportionment units to comply with OAR 580-15-005 banning discrimination. At the April meeting it was stated that, due to difficulty in implementing that Section, a recommendation would be brought before the Senate to rescind that Bylaw. It is still the intention of the Executive Committee to ask the Senate to reconsider that Bylaw, but probably not until the early fall.

New Business

There was no new business.

Meeting was adjourned at 5:03 PM.

Respectfully submitted:

Vickie Nunnemaker
Faculty Senate Administrative Assistant