ACADEMIC SENATE MINUTES

 

 

DATE:            October 6, 2005

 

PRESENT:     Agnes Samples                                            Mark Hardt

                        Sandie Rietz                                                 Paul Bauer

                        Audrey ConnerRosberg                               Ben Marschke

                        Keith Edgerton                                            Randall Gloege

                        Noreen Lee                                                 Matt Redinger

                        Lewis Rife (student)                                     Brittany Lane (student)

                        Tasneem Khaleel (ex-officio)                       

 

ABSENT:       Craig McKenzie

                        Lorrie Steerey – excused                             Bruce Brumley – excused

                        David Garloff (ex-officio)                             Joe Michels (ex-officio)

                        Mary Susan Fishbaugh (ex-officio)               John Cech (ex-officio)

                        Kirk Lacy (ex-officio)                                  George White (ex-officio)

                        Terrie Iverson (ex-officio)                            Curt Kochner (ex-officio)

 

GUESTS:        Curtis Sherrodd (student)                             Dan Gross

                        Loyd Knudsen

 

PRESIDING: Keith Edgerton, Chair

 

 

Keith Edgerton called the meeting to order at 3:42 p.m. in the Chancellor’s Conference Room.

 

The minutes of September 29 were accepted with a correction.

 

I.          SEATING OF NEW SENATOR:  Dr. Ben Marschke, At-Large

 

The Senate welcomed the new Senator.

 

II.         ITEMS FOR INFORMATION

 

Item 16 Committee Roster 2005-2006

 

̃ Motion by Matt Redinger, seconded by Mark Hardt to accept Item 16 for information.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

III.       RACE Update

 

Keith Edgerton noted that he and Sue Barfield, Chair of the RACE Committee, met with Chancellor Sexton on Wednesday.  The Chancellor agreed that there will be as much funding this year last year.  He had planned to budget more, but budget cuts took that allocation.  He also suggested that we approach Terrie Iverson about getting some of the Student Equipment Fee funds that could be used for RACE equipment proposals.  Ms. Iverson has all but agreed to allocate $10,000, which will raise the RACE total to $35,000.  Dr. Edgerton confirmed that the funds in the Student Equipment Fee account are not from fees for individual courses, but from a fee that all students pay.

 

IV.       ITEMS FOR INFORMATION

 

Item 69  PSYC 499 Senior Thesis.  Change credits (from 1 to 3).

Item 69.a  BA Major in Psychology.  Modification of an existing program.

Item 69.b  BS Major in Psychology.  Modification of an existing program.

 

̃ Motion by Matt Redinger, seconded by Mark Hardt to accept Items 69, 69.a, and 69.b for information

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

Item 74  ENGL 100 English Essentials.  Change course description.

 

̃ Motion by Mark Hardt, seconded by Lewis Rife to accept Item 74 for information.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

Item 79  AAS & Certificate in Automobile Collision Repair and Refinishing Technology.  Modification of an existing program.

Item 79.a  Certificate in Automobile Refinishing Technology.  Modification of an existing program.

Item 79.b  Certificate in Automobile Collision Repair Technology.  Modification of an existing program.

Item 79.c  ABDY 111 Introduction to Auto Body Repair.  Change credit hours.

Item 79.d  ABDY 122 Automotive Collision Mechanics.  Change credit hours.

Item 79.e  ABDY 131 Introduction to Refinishing Principles.  Change credit hours.

 

̃ Motion by Noreen Lee, seconded by Audrey ConnerRosberg to accept Items 79, 79.a, 79.b, 79.c, 79.d, and 79.e for information.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

V.        DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS

 

A.  BSLS Continued Discussion

 

It was stated that the BSLS seems to be a degree that can help some students but its academic rigor is questionable.  The Department of Communication and Theatre has the most BSLS students, so the Senate has invited Dan Gross, Chair of the Department, and Loyd Kundsen, BSLS Advisor, to discuss the program.

 

Dan Gross stated that right now they have 195 BSLS students, and that means a lot of work.  Loyd Knudsen is currently the advisor to all these students.  Mr. Knudsen stated that there are so many BSLS students in Communication and Theatre because their department converted easily and early to the online system, which grew like crazy.  The Department of Communication and Theatre did not invent this degree.

 

The question was raised as to whether the BSLS is really a good degree.  Mr. Knudsen responded that it can be for students who are willing to do the work, and many have gone on to graduate school and done just fine.  However, yes, students can abuse it as a way out of other major requirements.

 

Another question was raised as to why these students might be taking the BSLS.  Could they be designing and taking a certain program of courses that they would get no where else?  Mr. Knudsen noted that most all of the BSLS students are older people who have college credits scattered throughout their lives and they need to get a four-year degree for some reason, usually job-related.  Most of them are already employed.  They are not getting this degree so they can get a job.

 

Dr. Gross noted that the BSLS is not a major—it is simply a four-year degree.  It was noted that the degree is really just a four-year certification.

 

It was observed that perhaps some outcomes need to be defined for the BSLS.  However, they may end up so general that they are pointless.  It was noted that a well-crafted thematic concentration essay is in itself outcomes for the BSLS.

 

It was further noted that if students are claiming to have a degree that they don’t (e.g. saying they have a degree in Psychology when they have a BSLS with a thematic concentration in Psychology), that is fraud.  We cannot do anything about it.  Students who have a B.A. in History can claim that they have a degree in Business if they want to.  It was noted that some students may be unaware that they are defrauding an employer because they don’t understand that a BSLS does not have a major.

 

Mr. Knudsen stated that we have to weigh how many people are abusing this degree versus how many have been helped by this program.  There seems to be many more of the latter.

 

It was stated that we could take one step to add more rigor to the BSLS by adding the requirement that 15 credits of the thematic concentration be upper division.  The Senate agreed to talk about this topic next week.

 

B.  Hiring Priorities this Academic Year

 

Dr. Edgerton stated that he attended Provost Council this week hoping to talk about hiring priorities.  Hiring was not discussed.  They did discuss the new program “wish list” required by the Board of Regents.  Dean Khaleel noted that the Board of Regents required that all the campuses submit a list of new programs that they may want to propose in the next three years.  We got a little far-fetched because if a program is not on this list, it cannot be submitted.

 

It was noted that when the College of Arts and Sciences first proposed graduate degrees, the Senate was told that those new programs would help grow FTE.  That has not been the case, and now departments are struggling to staff both undergraduate and graduate programs with no new faculty.  It was cited that any new program that comes through needs to be checked more carefully for staffing issues.

 

It was stated that if we do not have hiring priorities at this time, we have failed to get into the job market.  We should have the Provost and Chancellor here to find out why we have missed this important deadline.

 

The students noted that there are many classes filled beyond capacity, and the student/faculty ratio is going up alarmingly.  Unqualified faculty are being hired just so there will be someone to teach the many sections that are filling up.  The Senate asked that the students state those same concerns next week for the Provost and Chancellor.

 

 

The meeting adjourned at 5:02 p.m.

 

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