ACADEMIC SENATE MINUTES

 

 

DATE:         October 17, 2002

 

PRESENT:    George Benedict                               Jan Spicer

                  Audrey ConnerRosberg                      Paul Bauer

                  George Madden                               Keith Edgerton

                  Randall Gloege                                 Connie Landis

                  Matt Redinger

                  Janie Park

 

ABSENT:     Sandie Rietz – excused                       Alan Davis – excused

                  Mark Hardt – excused

                 

                  John Cech (ex-officio)                        Joe Michels (ex-officio)

                  Randy Rhine (ex-officio)                     George White (ex-officio)

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

                  Nichole Alley (ex-officio)                    Curt Kochner (ex-officio)

 

PRESIDING: Keith Edgerton, Chair

 

 

Keith Edgerton called the meeting to order at 3:36 p.m. on October 17, 2002, in room B001 of the College of Technology.

 

The October 3, 2002, meeting minutes were approved.

 

I.       NEW SENATE MEMBER

 

A.  Jan Spicer to replace Doug Brown as the College of Business Representative.  Jan Spicer stated that there was a misunderstanding and she was not replacing Doug Brown.  Dr. Spicer and Mr. Brown were under the impression that there were supposed to be two representatives from the College of Business on the Senate.  It was decided that Dr. Spicer will sit in for Mr. Brown at this meeting, and the situation will be rectified later.

 

II.      OLD BUSINESS

 

A.  Proposed New Academic Senate System of Approvals – Discussion of Responses and Final Vote.

 

Keith Edgerton distributed the responses (printed anonymously) from the faculty.  He noted that none of the responses were favorable.

 

It was noted that the language could be changed so that items are not approved, but rather “endorsed” positively or negatively.  The approval power ultimately rests with the Chancellor.

 

It was noted that this system would allow a proposal to be endorsed negatively at some levels and positively at the UCC or Senate.  It was also noted that taking the administration “out of the loop” until the end seemed to please the faculty.  The question was then raised as to whether a Dean has ever stopped an item from moving forward because he or she did not approve of it.  Can a dean just “sit on” an item?

 

It was noted that in the proposed system, it would be up to the Provost to talk with the Deans to resolve issues.  This already happens in the present system.

 

George Madden, Chair of the UCC, noted that recently the UCC discussed the proposed Minor in International Studies.  This item was not well prepared, and was not very informative of the intentions of the program.  This proposed system would help eliminate that because the entire college would be involved.  Getting the faculty more involved is the ultimate goal of the proposal.

 

It was pointed out that several of the responses from faculty noted the difficulty of getting an entire college to vote on or endorse an item.  It was noted that if a college (or other group) has trouble getting together, and email vote could be used.

 

It was also noted that this was sent to the entire faculty of MSU-B, and only 8 responses were collected.

 

It was then stated that faculty are expecting the representatives they elect to the various committees to do the job.  The representation rotates, and all faculty take their turn.  The current process seems to work just fine.

 

It was also noted that although no one could think of an item that had been vetoed by a Dean, they are often sent back for clarification and revision.

 

Concerns were also raised about the narrative.  Some of the writing on campus is quite bad, and some items will come forward as such.  Especially worrisome is a lack of content in such an important proposal.

 

It was noted that if this proposal does not pass, the Senate needs to take a serious look at the current forms.  They need a great deal of revision.  There are so many questions on the new course form; they are daunting.  Also on the new course form, it asks whether other departments have been contacted, and if so, which ones.  It does not ask what the departments said.  On each signature line, “recommended” could be changed to “reviewed” or “endorsed.”

 

It was noted that faculty used to communicate much more at lunch.  Now, however, we all teach during the lunch hour.

 

It was also noted that the Teacher Education Committee seems to be the Dean’s rubber stamp.  Perhaps they should have less authority.

 

It was stated that the faculty need to know that in spite of the differences across campus, we should all respect each other as faculty members.  They are important and responsible.

 

It was noted that faculty involvement does need improvement.  Perhaps the Senate should make some sort of effort to energize the faculty.

 

It was also stated that the Senate would like to thank George Madden for all his hard work, and they would like to carry on the spirit of the proposal—to re-energize faculty.  This proposal has given the Senate the impetus to address this problem.

 

Ž Motion by Matt Redinger, seconded by Randall Gloege to approve the Proposed New Academic Senate System of Approvals.

 

Ž Motion failed. (2 for, 6 against)

 

Keith Edgerton stated that he will suggest revision of the Academic Senate Forms at the next ASFAC meeting (October 29 at 3:30pm in the Missouri room).  It will also be discussed at the next Senate meeting.

 

III.     NEW BUSINESS

 

A.  Nominations to the Sabbatical Committee.  The list, set up by the Committee on Committees, was presented to the Senate.  The names were:  Barbara Ayres, Keith Edgerton, Judith McEnany, Tom Zwick, Walt Utroske, Sandie Rietz, and Mary McNally.  Matt Redinger suggested that Connie Landis be added to the list.

 

Ž Motion by Randall Gloege, seconded by Matt Redinger to approve the list of Sabbatical Committee nominees as amended.

 

Ž Motion carried.

 

B.  Update on New Programs and Program Cuts, Janie Park.  Dr. Park stated that there will be four items going to the Board of Regents either for the November or January meeting.  We have two Level I items, and two Level II items.  Level I items tend to be minor changes such as department reorganizations, changes in names, and deletion of programs.  Level II items are major changes such as new programs, new options, and new minors where there is no major.

 

The Level II changes will not actually go to the Board until January.  The Board has, however, shortened the process for new programs.  The two Level II items will be wending their way up through the committees now.  One is for information only.

 

The Level I changes are being submitted to the Board now, even though the items have not reached the Senate yet, in order to make it in the catalog.  One of them is a reorganization of the degrees in the department of Health, Physical Education, and Human Services.  They are removing the BSED in Health and PE in favor of a BS with teacher certification.  The second part of this reorganization is combining degrees to make one BS in Health and Human Performance with three options:  Teacher Certification, Health Promotion Option, and Human Performance Option.  This will combine their graduation data and make them less vulnerable to budget cuts.

 

One of the Level II items is a new Master’s in Public Administration.  This degree will be offered through the Political Science program here in conjunction with the MPA offered in Bozeman.  This will be a joint degree with half the courses taught here and half in Bozeman.  However, the students will be able to earn the entire degree here.

 

The other big change going to the Board is the creation of a School of Health Professions.  Geoff Gamble has given the green light, but we have a lot of work yet to do.  The proposal we are sending is intentionally very vague, and will not go until January.  This program will be built entirely from existing programs and courses, so it will be virtually no cost, except for a director.  However, even the director position is up in the air.

 

The question was raised as to how the Regents will react to a new program when they are trying to reduce the budget.  Dr. Park stated that right now, this is a zero cost change.

 

C.  Gamble visits to MSU-Billings.  Dr. Gamble stated last spring that he would like to have further meetings with the faculty of MSU-B.  It was noted that he was here for the forum on nursing a couple of weeks ago.  The Billings health care community wants a 2-year nursing degree offered here in Billings.  However, it’s very expensive per student, so the only way we could really afford it is if the health care community offers to pay for part of the program.

 

The meeting adjourned at 4:55 p.m.

 

The next Senate meeting will be October 31, Halloween.

 

rjrm