FACULTY SENATE MEETING
March 25, 2008
Present: Chair Martin, Secretary Kellner, Provost Nielsen; Parliamentarian Corbin, Ambaras, Anson, Bernhard, Dawes, Domingue, Evans, Fauntleroy, Fleisher, Genzer, Hanley-Bowdoin, Havner, Hergeth, Heitmann, Hudson, Levy, Lindsay, Moore, Murty, Overton, Poling, Raymond, Schweitzer, Scotford, Walker, Williams
Excused: Past Chair Allen; Senator Lindbo
Absent: Senator Akroyd, Muddiman, Ozturk, Ristaino, Robarge, Shamey, Ting, Wessels
Visitors: Vicki Walton, Assistant Vice Provost; Marcia Gumpertz, AVP Faculty & Staff Diversity; Katie Perry, Senior Vice Provost; Suzanne Weiner, Library Administration; Thomas Conway, Undergraduate Academic Programs; Donn Ward, Department Head, Food Science; Betsy Brown, Special Assistant to the Provost; Cheryl Brown, ACE Fellow, Office of the Provost; J. Mark Scearce, Director, Music Department; Randolph Foy, Associate Director, Music; Alex Miller, Associate Vice Chancellor; Jonathan Kramer, Music Department, Heather Dollar, Student; Thomas Stafford, Vice Chancellor, Student Affairs
1. Call to Order
Chair James D. Martin called the fourteenth meeting of the fifty-fourth session of the North Carolina State University Faculty Senate to order at 3:00 p.m.
2. Welcome and Remarks
Chair Martin welcomed Senators and Guests
General Faculty Meeting Follow-up
Chair Martin begin the meeting with a brief reflection and follow-up from the General Faculty meeting.
Chair Martin reported the clicker technology was used at the General Faculty Meeting to get a sampling of perspectives and ideas on various topics from the UNC Tomorrow Report. In conversation with a few people, questions were raised: what are we going to do with this information, and, secondly, out of curiosity, how representative was that group compared to any other group.
Chair Martin asked the senators to do the same exercise that was done at the General Faculty meeting with the clicker questions so he could make a comparison between the senators and the group that attended the General Faculty meeting by prioritizing the top three choices on the page with one being the top priority, two being the second priority and 3 being the third.
What do we do with this information? How do/should we respond?
Chair Martin stated that there is no right thing to do with it. These kinds of studies are always a challenge to see what do you do with this sort of massive quantity of information. As I reviewed and thought about it a lot, I thought about strategic planning in general, I was reminded of the same kinds of exercises I participated in with the Department of Energy, and the Solid State Chemistry subdivision of the National Science Foundation, thinking about how do we get the best funding to make sure our field stays healthy. How do we respond to the needs of the nation? How do we respond to the needs of the university?
Chair Martin stated that as a culture we have become obsessed with the big fish. So much so that everyone wants to be the big fish. The problem with this big fish is that we can’t all be the big fish because, before you can get big fish, you have to have the beginning of the food chain.
Chair Martin stated that as he looks at the UNC Tomorrow report, or listens to the community responses, he clearly sees a public that wants some healthy big fish to keep our communities strong make our State great, but in their response he believes that the community is looking to its public University system, not to be the Big Fish, but to be a major supplier of plankton…the nutrition that forms the basis of a healthy food chain. This plankton will include education in communication and critical writing skills, fundamental research, and various forms of extension. The community also wants universities like NC State to provide some of the intermediate size fish through technology transfer programs etc.
Chair Martin stated that as we develop a response to the UNC tomorrow report we need to remember that we are not the food chain, we are not the biggest fish in the food chain – rather, we are to be the suppliers of the source of nutrition so that the community has big fish to keep the state healthy. So as we develop our response to the UNC Tomorrow Report, whether it’s this information or any of the information let’s remember that we are not the food chain, we are part of the food chain.
Chair Martin reminded the senators that the nominations for Senators, Hearings Panel Members and Grievance Committee members are due by April 1. He stated that the goal is to have one more person running than there are positions to fill.
The Interdisciplinarity in General Education Symposium sponsored by CUE (Council on Undergraduate Education) is going to be held April 2, 2008 from 1:00-5:00 pm at the University Club. They are requesting RSVPs tomorrow.
The annual meeting of the AAUP—plenary lecture will be at 7:00 pm, April 4 at the UNC FedEx Global Education Center. Jennifer Washburn, fellow of the New America Foundation will address “Higher Learning and Higher Profits: The Privatization of America’s Research Universities.”
3. Approval of the Minutes, Meeting No. 13 March 11, 2008
The motion passed to approve the minutes as corrected.
4. Consider Endorsement of the Music Major Feasibility Study
Chair Martin acknowledged the presence of Dr. Mark Scearce, Director of the Music Department. Dr. Scearce also served as chair of the task force that looked at the music major feasibility study.
Chair Martin stated that the Senate has called for initiatives such as this as we move toward becoming a more comprehensive university. Efforts in the arts are clearly a component of learning and education. I believe these are highly complimentary and would do us well.
Chair Martin stated that NC State is the only one of the UNC campuses that does not offer a music major and he thinks that would be a reason to at least give it some thought.
The study looked specifically at what could be unique to a major in music here at NC State and came up with several proposals. They recommend potentially offering a BA degree with four emphasis; Jazz Studies, Music Theory, World Music, and Music Entrepreneurship. In part, these reflect the personnel that are already on campus but also areas that mesh well with the overall mission at NC State.
There is also the suggestion that we would have a MM (Music Masters in Composition) and, again, this was because it would be relatively resource-efficient, but would have some significant payback, and a MME (Masters in Music Education), which would allow us to help resource primarily the K-12 Program. In looking through this and information that was provided at the UNC Tomorrow Forum at the General Faculty meeting, it was also noted that the North Carolina Symphony, which is the largest public funded symphony at least in the southeast if not in most of the east coast is just right downtown and they apparently would like to build relationships with NC State University. If we had a music major program that would likely be a partnership, definitely extension and engagement that could be worthwhile for us and for the state.
A motion was made and seconded to endorse the report.
Senator Fleisher asked, “Do you feel that you have sufficient faculty to do this or if not, will you have the funds to hire them?”
Dr. Scearce stated they understand that it is a priority for the current Provost to have a music major in place. We have spelled out the faculty, the new hires that would be needed to have this work, and we have been assured that such new hires will, in fact, be in place when the music major is also in place.
Chair Martin encouraged Senator Fleisher to read the report that is in place, noting that clearly there will be resources needed to let it grow like any other program to grow. He thinks there is an effective strategy laid out to at least begin that process.
Senator Ambaras stated that he supports the proposal to endorse the report but of the three governance models it seems that the third is the one that they least favor, which is the only one that Student Affairs deems acceptable. He wonders how they plan to address that.
Dr. Scearce stated that he would address that by asking the question, “Do we need to have this discussion in this forum?” It does open a controversy that maybe it’s better to deal with behind closed doors, rather than in this public forum. If there is a need to bring it up then they can bring it up and if there is in fact, a need he would defer to the representatives of Student Affairs to pitch the first bullet, but noted that it is not a conversation that he needs to have right now.
Chair Martin stated at this stage the Senate doesn’t want to take a position. It may have sentiment one way or the other, but it is more to endorse that the conversation proceed in a constructive fashion as possible because there is validity to all perspectives.
Secretary Kellner wanted to know if the possibilities of making this proposed department unique, if those options came from the faculty in the program.
The response was yes.
Dr. Scearce stated that about ten years ago there was a time when considerable discussion was going forward informally lead by then Provost Kermit Hall and Rick Porter who was the late great Associate Dean of the School of Engineering about establishing a music major in music technology because that seemed to fit the traditional mission of the university, and to play off of the traditional strength of the university and it is certainly one that we continue to look at and support.
The particular majors that we are putting on paper now are majors that we can launch at the outset or shortly thereafter but we are certainly thinking about other kinds of majors as resources become available, as incoming students express new interests and expanded interest, so the door is still open on that.
The motion passed unanimously to endorse the task force report.
Provost Nielsen stated that he thinks the report from the task force looks good and he plans to do everything he can to implement it.
5. Remarks by Provost Nielsen
Provost Nielsen stated that we are not anywhere close to where we need to be in order to make this system work. For the fall adoption rate this year the number of courses for which we had books designated was 49%, which is fundamentally half of the courses that will be offered in the fall. Our spring adoption rate was 82% and right now we are trying to adopt textbooks for the fall. In the fall when we are adopting for the spring it’s in the middle of the academic year and everything is rolling along well, so a lot better for spring adoption than for fall adoption.
Adoption rates vary highly depending on departments and colleges. Basically a year ago for our fall adoption rate for CALS was 68%; CHASS 42%; Design 6%; Education 39%; Engineering 63%; First Year College 100%; Management 48%; Natural Resources 61%; PAMS 69%; Student Affairs 76%; Textiles 35%; Veterinary Medicine 50%
You can see that in general none of us are doing terrific.
General Administration has set goals for textbook adoptions. For 2008-09 the average across two semesters is eighty five percent. NC State’s average over two semesters was sixty five percent. The goal for 2009-2010 is ninety percent.
President Bowles in a letter talked about tying his attitude toward campus initiated tuition increases to our paying attention to these adoption rates so tying his interest in raising faculty salaries to this adoption rate. In order to make this happen, you are going to have to do some adoptions as a group on behalf of those courses that don’t have instructors identified yet.
Let’s say that you know you are going to have two books that you need in the class but you can only identify one right now and the other one would have to wait because you are not sure, so if you adopt one book by the deadline and then add another book later, does that count as an on time adoption or not? It does count as an on time adoption.
Secondly if you are not going to use any book in a section you need to tell the bookstore, because if they get no response that counts as a didn’t get one adopt in time, so no response is a bad response in this case.
Provost Nielsen reported that the issue of travel funds for faculty is in very short supply. He plans to run a trial program for 2008-09. For every on time adoption past the fifty percent rate within a college he will provide one hundred dollars toward a faculty travel fund for the 2008-09 academic year. A 100% adoption would be a commitment of $183,900 for the next academic year in additional travel funds made available for faculty.
Provost Nielsen stated the data provided to him by the bookstore is in terms of what they call book adoptions and when they talk about it, it is not by section. If a book is adopted for a course and it has eight sections that counts as one adoption. He doesn’t think that is fair, so he has asked them to run the data in terms of sections as well as what they call book adoptions. That will mean that certain colleges like CALS that have multiple sections that use the same book will get more credit. The maximum number will go up.
If adoptions provide more credits to a college use adoptions and if sections adopted provides more credits to a college we will use sections adopted. It will be based on the adoption rate in fall 2008 classes. The funds will be given to the deans for them to disburse to the departments.
Provost Nielsen stated this would mean if we had a 100% adoption rate based on the data that he currently has, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences would get $105, 200 available for faculty travel that they never had before. The College of Engineering would get $18,400; PAMS $14,000; Education $11,900; CALS $11,600; Management $8,300; Physical Education $5,300; Natural Resources; $4,200; Textiles, $4,000; Design $900; Veterinary Medicine $0
Provost Nielsen stated that there are two points here that are important. One is just because you tell the bookstore that this is the required book doesn’t mean that students have to buy it from the bookstore. What really is important about that is that that allows the bookstore to know that they can buy the books back from students because there is a market for them for the next semester. That is the really important point here. So letting the bookstore know that you are going to use this book, even if you are recommending that there are other places to buy, it is an important thing or if you are not officially requiring a book I need to find out how those data are reported.
Provost Nielsen said he would think that since a course-pack can’t be bought back and used again that it certainly would affect this. If you state back to the bookstore that you are going to use a course-pack and you have made that designation does that count as an on time adoption or does that go into limbo somewhere? He stated that he has to find an answer to that question.
6. Revision of Faculty Senate Bylaws
Senator Gary Moore, Chair of the Governance Committee reviewed the proposed changes to the Faculty Senate bylaws.
Senator Kellner stated he thinks the third option for the Executive Committee [Execuitive Committee elected by the standing committees] is a very poor idea. “We have to realize that the Executive Committee, the agenda, and the direction of the Senate is very largely in the hands of the Chair of the Faculty. This would severely tie the chair’s hands in terms of the direction of things, and the movement of people among committees. I think that flexibility is good as shown by Senator Moore’s success in governance, a committee to which he is new. I think this proposal would take far too much power away from the Senate as a whole, away from the Chair. It would give that power to various groups in the committees, which are often run by very small groups. So I object to that third possibility. I think there are other ways of adjusting the second option.”
Senator Moore noted that three options were offered because no one could agree on one.
Senator Williams stated that he was on the Senate the last time the bylaws were amended and standing committees were not included because the ideal then was to do away with them, to give the chair more power to create committees to work on important agendas rather than have standing committees that are constrained and boxed and waste a lot of people’s time.
Chair Martin stated that he could see some value to that but if we want better reporting structures to the university committees and task forces, if we don’t have some kind of a standing structure then it’s hard to know who to report to, so he thinks the Senate needs to reserve the right to initiate new committees.
Chair Martin thinks the Senate should come up with some strategy and suggested that the senators think about it and it will be discussed in the next session.
He asked that any comments or ideas be forwarded to Senator Moore or a member of the committee.
7. Issues of Concern
Secretary Kellner drafted a resolution relating to the evaluation of teaching in response to some comments that have been forwarded by a number of parties particularly with respect to the whole idea of what to do about minimum response.
Secretary Kellner presented the resolution for its first reading.
The resolution will be discussed at the next Faculty Senate meeting.
Any comments or feedback on the resolution should be sent to a member of the Executive Committee.
Chair Martin received an email from David Drooz in the Office of Legal Affairs and they would like the Senate to reconsider its recommendation, asking that both place and date of birth be removed from the directory information. Chair Martin received quotes from Louis Hunt that stated, “The date of birth can be useful when trying to verify a degree, for example especially in trying not to use social security numbers. It’s a benefit to students that we can verify degree and enrollment information on their behalf to potential employers, companies, lenders, etc., which is typically done without exchange of a signed release.”
Jerry Barker, Head of Student Health Services notes that “Student Health needs date of birth on forms to do screening. We do those for under-eighteen folio. For those over fifty, limited shots are required. Also the health forms serve as parental consent for those under eighteen, for SHS services, in addition the MMR must not be administered before the first birthday. The pharmacy must have date of birth for all claims they submit electronically and our cashier must have date of birth on claims submitted to Blue Cross/Blue Shield.”
Chair Martin said it seems that these issues raised are a matter of maintaining the information as opposed to disclosing the information. The sense he received from the Personnel Policy Committee was the issue of disclosure, not maintaining the information.
Chair Martin stated that the Senate has two or three options, maybe more. We can accept removing our concern about date and place of birth all together being in the directory. We can accept that these parties don’t mind removing place of birth, leaving date of birth in, or we can work for language that clearly identifies disclosure of information, as opposed to maintaining and using it internally.
Senator Levy stated that there is a clause that basically says anyone who is an official at the university has access to that. The committee has no objection to that; the objection is if someone from the outside wanted that information. The information is there and anyone who is working at the university that has a legitimate need for that has access to it.
Chair Martin stated that he would work with David Drooz and Louis Hunt to massage the word to make sure that you are only talking about disclosure and otherwise remove the place of birth.
A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.
The motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:35 p.m.