ACADEMIC SENATE MINUTES

 

 

DATE:            May 2, 2002

 

PRESENT:     George Benedict                                          Doug Brown

                        Sandie Rietz                                                 George Madden

                        Keith Edgerton                                            Randall Gloege

                        Doxey Hatch                                               Mark Hardt

                        Connie Landis                                              Matt Redinger

                        Alan Davis

                        Bob Carr (ex-officio)                                   George White (ex-officio)

                        Dan Zirker (ex-officio)                                 Terrie Iverson (ex-officio)

                        Janie Park (ex-officio)

 

ABSENT:       Dave Gurchiek – excused                            Paul Bauer – excused

 

                        Scott Harris (ex-officio)                               Randy Rhine (ex-officio)

                        Bryce Anderson (ex-officio)                         Lee Peters (ex-officio)

 

GUESTS:        Ronald Sexton, Chancellor

                        All Faculty were invited

 

PRESIDING: Keith Edgerton, Chair

 

 

Keith Edgerton called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m. on May 2, 2002 in room 122 of the College of Education and Human Services.

 

The April 25, 2002 meeting minutes were approved as amended.

 

I.          ITEMS FOR INFORMATION

 

Item 30 Committee Report – Graduate Committee 2001-2002.  For information.

 

Ž Motion by Matt Redinger, seconded by Sandie Rietz, to accept Item 30.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

 

Item 30.a Committee Report – Commencement Committee 2001-2002.  For information.

 

Ž Motion by George Madden, seconded by Matt Redinger to accept Item 30.a.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

Item 31 EDCI 535 Instructional Strategies in Art and Music.  Delete course (already replaced by EDCI 535 and 536).

 

Ž Motion by Randall Gloege, seconded by Connie Landis to approve on first and second reading Item 31.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

Item 32 Intersession (2003 & 2004) and Summer Session (2003 & 2004) Dates.  For information.

 

The Senate discussed Intersession pay, before noting that Faculty should be asked in the fall for some feedback on how Intersession works.

 

Dr. Janie Park, Provost, then brought up a problem concerning Intersession courses.  She stated that last Intersession, there were 11 students who were taking more than 4 credits in the 10-day period.  She stated her opinion that the number of credits a student is allowed to take should be limited to 3 or at most 4.  The Senate agreed that more than 4 credits in 10 days is too much.  Dr. Park then cited two ways to solve the problem.  First, all Intersession courses could be scheduled at the same time, so a student would be able to take only one course.  Second, a policy could be adopted limiting students to 3 or 4 credits per Intersession.

 

The Senate decided that this issue, and the drafting of a policy, will be taken up in the fall.  Dr. Park also noted that last Intersession, an internship was listed as an available course.  Can a student adequately complete an internship in just 10 days?  The Senate will discuss this further in the fall.

 

Ž Motion by Randall Gloege, seconded by Sandie Rietz, to accept Item 32.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

II.         NEW BUSINESS

 

A.  Report from General Education Committee by Mark Hardt, Chair, Gen Ed Committee.  Dr. Hardt reported that the committee voted to reduce the Gen Ed Program to 32 credits, one of which will be for a capstone course.  The other credit (above 30) is for the Science labs.  At Bozeman, the lab is part of the 3-credit course, mainly because graduate students run the labs.  At MSU-B, the labs are run by the faculty, and the faculty wish to get credit for work done.  The Gen Ed Committee also voted to reduce the number of courses in the Gen Ed Program from about 120 to about 60.  They also adopted a hybrid program, wherein there is room for integrated and multidisciplinary courses to be developed.

 

The committee also requires that in the future, all courses in the Gen Ed core must specify on their syllabi the category (or categories) they fit in, the skills the students will learn, and how those skills will be assessed.  The Gen Ed Committee will have to examine the syllabi annually to maintain compliance with this requirement.

 

Dr. Hardt then stated that he will be putting the following motion up for electronic vote to the Gen Ed Committee:

 

Motion to de-couple, that is, to separate in any way, shape, or form, the (transferable) General Education Program from the mandated Board of Regents regulatory “Writing Proficiency” processes and contents.

 

Dr. Hardt then asked Provost Park what the requirements from Northwest were on assessing Gen Ed.  She stated that assessment of components of the program can be done, but what are really required are defined outcomes for the whole program.  A measurement must be made to determine if students meet the requirements of the program.

 

The question was then raised as to when the changes in the Gen Ed Program (such as reducing the number of available courses to 60) will begin or go into effect.  Dr. Hardt stated that the program design would be completed by November of 2002, or earlier.  It was cited that there won’t be enough time for departments to prepare for the change if the Senate waits until fall for further action.

 

The Senate decided that they will meet in the summer, that is on May 16, to discuss the implementation of the new Gen Ed Program, and also to discuss changes proposed by George Madden for the Academic Senate Process.

 

B.  Report from Academic Computing and Allied Technology Committee by Randall Gloege, Chair, Academic Computing and Allied Technology Committee.  The committee met to discuss the Board of Regents Information Technology Policies.  As it was explained to the committee by IT personnel, there will be some tolerance and leeway for private use.  The policies are basically the same as they have been.  The main point of the changes is to increase security, which is both necessary and acceptable.  Dr. Gloege also stated that the files on your computer belong to you as your private property.  Even some use of private email is acceptable.  The committee will be meeting over the summer to draft a summary sheet, which should be completed by September.  This sheet will then be reviewed for accuracy by people knowledgeable in the field.

 

III.       Open Forum with Chancellor Sexton and Provost Park Concerning Potential Budget Reductions – All faculty are invited to attend.

 

Dr. Sexton opened by thanking the Senate for meeting with him again.

 

He stated that the University Budget Committee has met and many of their suggestions have been used for the report to be sent to President Gamble.  The 3% cut was addressed in detail, while the 10% cut was not.

 

He also explained another option that is being made available.  Rather than cutting the budget of MSU-Billings, a one-time 2% surcharge could be added onto tuition this year.  Dr. Sexton then stated that he will not increase tuition.

 

First to be cut will be the Education Enhancement funds.  This was 1% of the 13% tuition increase that MSU-B was awarded for enhancement.  We are offering up that money, but we are not even sure they will allow us to do that.  This is also a one-time cut.

 

Second is the enrollment reserve.  This money would also be a one-time cut, because we will need it next year.

 

Third is deferred maintenance.  Dr. Sexton would like to know what the Board of Regents’ stance is on deferred maintenance.  Currently, a deferred maintenance program is required, but if the program was cut, the money in that program could be used for more important maintenance problems.

 

Fourth is Information Technology hardware and software.  On all of these suggestions for cuts, we are assuming that this will be a one-time cut.  We will be able to get new software and hardware next year.

 

Next, some positions could be cut.  The grants office funding can be shifted to the indirect costs fund, but this is also only a one-time (or perhaps twice) solution.

 

The MTAP program is also a possibility.  This student assistance program is funded with state money.  We could use all of this money for the cut, but then we will have to pay for the students who qualify for this assistance out of our own budget.  This is also related to the problem of raising tuition.  If tuition is raised, then the amount of money going into the MTAP program must also be raised, resulting in the same problem we currently have.

 

No current searches have been stopped at this time.  We will probably not see MSU-Bozeman’s proposal until all proposals are sent to the Commissioner on May 10.  We will know in mid June if the 3%, 10%, or no cut at all is necessary.

 

It was also noted that there are 2,400 summer students and 1,800 fall students already registered, who think they know what their tuition will be.  Some have already paid their tuition.  If tuition were to go up, there would be chaos.

 

Dr. Sexton also asked the Senate to think about what the campus’ posture should be if other units raise their tuition.  Students may want to attend MSU-Billings since tuition will be lower here.  He also noted that last year the MSU-B Foundation awarded about $350,000 in scholarships.  At the Bozeman college of Agriculture alone, they awarded $500,000 in scholarships.  The larger units simply have tools that are not available to MSU-Billings.

 

It was noted that the Regents are starting to see that the Montana University System should not be entirely FTE driven.

 

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Eakle Barfield, Director, Facilities Services, then presented some improvements to the campus that will be accomplished with funding from grants.  First, the College of Business will be remodeled to make more room for the Center for Business Enterprise.  More classrooms will be installed.  Second, the Liberal Arts building will get a new art gallery and coffee shop, along with the Safety and Security remodeling scheduled for this summer.  The LA building will also be equipped with a new high-tech classroom in the space Student Opportunity Services used to occupy.  Adjacent to the Chancellor’s house, a 30,000-gallon propane tank will be installed (underground).  This tank can sustain the campus for two full days, should the need arise.

 

The meeting adjourned at 5:20 p.m.

 

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