ACADEMIC SENATE MINUTES

 

 

DATE:            December 6, 2007

 

PRESENT:     Agnes Samples                                     Jeff Sanders

                        Sandie Rietz                                         Kay Streeter

                        Lorrie Steerey                                      Gershon Bulgatz

                        Mark Hardt                                          Craig McKenzie

                        Steve Coffman

                        David Garloff (ex-officio)                      Tasneem Khaleel (ex-officio)

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

                        George White (ex-officio)

 

ABSENT:       Alicia Esteves (student)                         James Ellis (student)

                        Rakesh Sah*                                        Bruce Brumley*

                        Johanna Mitchell*                                 Keith Edgerton*

                        Gary Young (ex-officio)                        Karen Heikel (ex-officio)*

                        Terrie Iverson (ex-officio)                     Stacy Klippenstein (ex-officio)

* excused

 

GUESTS:        Jay Shaw                                              Adam Sundstrom

 

PRESIDING: Lorrie Steerey, Chair

 

 

Lorrie Steerey called the meeting to order at 3:48 p.m. in the Chancellor’s Conference Room.

 

Dr. Steerey stated that December 2, MSU Billings lost an incredible colleague, Dr. George Madden.  A moment of silence was held in honor of Dr. Madden.

 

The minutes of November 29 were accepted as presented.

 

Provost George White noted that last week the agenda indicated a discussion of the success/failure of the Summer 2008 schedule.  The Senate did not request a proposal to be brought to the meeting.  The Senate needs to open the lines of communication so we can all get on the same page.

 

I.          ITEMS FOR INFORMATION/APPROVAL

 

Item 67  BS Major in Outdoor Adventure Leadership.  New program.  With additional information

Item 67.a  HHP 131 Cross Country Skiing.  New course.

Item 67.b  HHP 134 Beginning Snowboarding.  New course.

Item 67.c  HHP 181 Basic Navigation/Orienteering.  New course.

Item 67.d  HHP 182 Advanced Navigation.  New course.

Item 67.e  HHP 185 Winter Survival Skills.  New course.

Item 67.f  HHP 200 Foundations of Outdoor Adventure Leadership.  New course.

Item 67.g  HHP 230 Wilderness First Responder.  New course.

Item 67.h  HHP 280 Challenge Course Fundamentals.  New course.

Item 67.i  HHP 380 Adventure Counseling and Leadership.  New course.

Item 67.j  HHP 465 Ethical/Legal Aspects in Outdoor Adventure Leadership.  New course.

Item 67.k  HHP 480 Advanced Challenge Skills and Facilitation.  New course.

 

̃ Motion by Mark Hardt, seconded by Craig McKenzie to take Items 67, 67.a, 67.b, 67.c, 67.d, 67.e, 67.f, 67.g, 67.h, 67.i, 67.j, and 67.k off the table.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

It was noted that there are 31 courses and Jay Shaw seems to be teaching 22 of them.  Mr. Shaw noted that there are courses taught by other faculty in the program, and the courses are staggered so there is no additional teaching load for him.

 

̃ Motion by Sandie Rietz, seconded by Kay Streeter to approve Items 67, 67.a, 67.b, 67.c, 67.d, 67.e, 67.f, 67.g, 67.h, 67.i, 67.j, and 67.k.

 

The question was raised as to what kind of cooperation the Department will have with Outward Bound in Red Lodge.  Adam Sundstrom stated that Outward Bound supports the program and MSUB may actually offer some classes for them.  Mr. Shaw noted that MSUB students will also be able to do their practicums with Outward Bound.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

II.         ITEMS – FIRST READING

 

Item 20  Modification of the 51% rule specified in the MSUB COT Catalog.

 

̃ Motion by Steve Coffman, seconded by Gershon Bulgatz to approve Item 20.

 

It was noted that the Nursing, Health, & Safety Occupations department wants to decrease the required number of credits taken from MSUB from 51% to 25%.  Currently, all COT students are required to earn at least 51% of their credits from MSUB rather than transferring in credits.  The rest of the COT did not want to make the decrease, so only the Nursing, Health, & Safety Occupations programs are asking for this exception.  Dean John Cech noted that the exception is being requested for the new Nursing program.  LPNs who bridge into the ASN program to become RNs will only take the last two semesters of the program and thus will not earn the 51% needed.  It was cited that there are other programs, not just the Nursing program which are included in this change because the whole department is adopting the change.

 

̃ Motion by Mark Hardt, seconded by Sandie Rietz to table Item 20 until someone from the department can attend to discuss this policy change.

 

̃ Motion carried with one abstention.

 

Item 21  Modification of the Teacher Education Committee bylaws to the College of Education Council.  New bylaws remove the “review and approval of submitted curriculum” function and include the provision of insight and recommendations regarding MSUB College of Education programs and assisting to ensure the integrity of the College in a manner that benefits Montana’s learners as well as the profession of education.  Adopted by Committee 10/23/07

 

Dean Mary Susan Fishbaugh noted that in the past the College of Education had two boards:  the COE Advisory Committee and the NCATE required Teacher Education Committee which includes community participants.  Item 21 rolls both of the boards together and also removes the requirement that the group review all curriculum changes related to teacher education.  The Teacher Education Committee had become a rubber stamp and the community members who sat on it were not interested in the level of detail in the curriculum changes.  The new College of Education Council (COEC) will take a much broader view of teacher education, and will not review the curriculum changes.  Thus, the COEC will not be a part of the shared governance process.

 

̃ Motion by Sandie Rietz, seconded by Mark Hardt to approve Item 21.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

III.       ITEMS FOR INFORMATION

 

Item 32.b (2006-2007)  BS Major in General Broadfield Science Teacher Certification Option.  New program.

 

̃ Motion by Kay Streeter, seconded by Craig McKenzie to accept Item 32.b.

 

It was noted that there were some problems with this program that have been fixed so it will meet OPI standards.  Dean Tasneem Khaleel noted that this program has been approved by the Board of Regents as “General Science” rather than “Broadfield Science” so a Level I change to the BOR will be in order.

 

Dean Fishbaugh noted that all teacher education programs are now to be called “Teacher Licensure” instead of “Teacher Certification.”  This will be changed in the catalogs.

 

̃ Motion carried.

 

IV.       DISCUSSION/ACTION ITEMS

 

A.  Academic Foundations Assessment:  Mark Hardt

 

Dr. Hardt, Chair of the Academic Foundations Committee, noted that the AFC held two sessions on the main and COT campuses to inform faculty about Academic Foundations assessment.  The Academic Foundations Committee has received the most positive feedback on these sessions compared to anything else that has been presented in the last eight years on general education.  One item that has come out of this is that NWCCU does not require the detail of how each and every student performs on the assessment objectives.  A percentage of those who passed will work.  The problem is, eCompanion is set up only for individual scores for individual students.  We need to be able to enter one percentage for the whole class for each of the ten assessment objectives.  Dr. Hardt also noted that he is working with Associate Dean Val Martinez on the “upper level” assessment of Academic Foundations, and that component could have more detail including demographic data.

 

Dr. Hardt asked Dean Khaleel to speak on the conference she attended.  Dean Khaleel stated that at the conference she saw a presentation by Spaulding University, in which they put forward their standards.  They set benchmarks in the form of percentages of how many students should achieve an outcome.  If those percentages were not met, they either re-evaluate the benchmark or make changes in their general education program.  This is essentially what we need to do.  The only problem we have now is getting our data into a database and then being able to pull it out again.

 

Provost White noted that our contract with eCollege has expired and bids are going out for our elearning provider.  The bid could end up being for the entire state, meaning we could be required by the BOR to use a different product.  As the bids become narrowed down, faculty will be able to access the different products and test them out.  However, FolioTek is a separate company we have contracted with to create electronic portfolios.  Training for the faculty on that product will begin soon, and Tim Tirrell, our new Director of eLearning, will be handling that project.  Dr. White also noted that MSU Billings generates more online FTE than all the other units in the Montana University System combined, but this does not mean we have any extra sway in the elearning product decision.

 

It was noted that the ideal way we can collect assessment data would be to have the data pulled from the student grades entered by the faculty.  If there is a lot of data-entry, faculty will have difficulty.  The process needs to be as efficient as possible.  It was cited that faculty are not opposed to assessment, but the process cannot be onerous.  We have to make it easy for them to record.

 

̃ Motion by Mark Hardt, seconded by Sandie Rietz that eCompanion not be mandatory for faculty to assess Academic Foundations courses.  If eCompanion is not used, faculty must use another tool for assessment.

 

Provost White stated that if the Senate does not require eCompanion, we must require something.  Not doing assessment is no longer an option.  Provost White noted that at the University Wide Meeting at the beginning of Fall 2005, he stated that by Fall 2007 all departments must have an assessment tool, and eCollege will be used if they don’t have one.  If eCompanion needs to be less detailed, we can do that.  It was noted that we cannot, at this time, extract data out of eCompanion.  Provost White confirmed this but noted that eCollege is designing something now to extract the data.  It was noted that most likely very few faculty are entering their assessment data into eCompanion for various reasons, including not understanding eCollege or because they were told we will be switching to a new product and not to bother with eCompanion.

 

It was cited that there needs to be more training on the use of eCompanion.  Provost White noted that there are multiple trainers in each College.  It was noted that more training is surely needed because eCompanion is difficult to use for those who have never used it, and it’s also difficult to learn.

 

Dean Fishbaugh noted that the College of Education designed their own database for assessment, and there were a lot of issues.  The graduate students who built the database are long since gone, so the College is stuck.  Using eCollege might be the easiest solution.

 

Dr. Hardt stated that he would meet with Michael Barber, Chief Information Officer, over the winter break to discuss how eCompanion could be simplified.  Dr. Steerey would also like to join in that meeting.

 

Provost White noted that if the motion carried, the Academic Foundations Committee would be responsible for the aggregation and/or disaggregation of data related to informed decisions.

 

̃ Motion carried with 1 opposed and 2 abstentions.

 

 

B.  Announcements

 

Dr. Steerey noted that one more Senator could attend the NWCCU Workshop in Seattle in February, 2008.  Those currently interested are:  Lorrie Steerey, Mark Hardt, Bruce Brumley, and Craig McKenzie.

 

The Senators and their spouses are invited to a get-together January 1 at Dr. Steerey’s home.  Please RSVP to Dr. Steerey later this month, and bring something to share.

 

Please bring donations to the January 24 meeting if you would like to contribute to the George Madden scholarship fund.

 

The Senate will meet during finals week this semester to review curriculum items.

 

 

The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

 

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