Meeting, September 8, 2005

Meeting, September 8, 2005
Gallagher Business Building, Room 123


 Members Present:
E. Ametsbichler, D. Beck, C. Bruneau, G. Cobbs,  J. Crepeau, K. Canty, F. Cardozo-Pelaez, J.Carter, D. Dalenberg, M. DeGrandpre, A. Delaney, P. Dietrich, D. Doyle, J. Gannon,  S. Gaskill, L. Gillison,  S. Gordon,  S. Greymorning, C. Hand, K. Hill,  W. Holben, S. Justman, K. Kane, C. Knight, B. Knowles,  M. Kupilik, B. Larson, C. Lawrence, S. Li, C. Loisel, J. Luckowski, McCrea, J. McNulty, V. Micheletto, D. Moore, D. Potts,  E. Putnam, B. Reider, Y. Reimer,  D. Schuldberg, P. Silverman, D. Smith, G. Smith, F. Snyder,  J. Sommers-Flanagan, A. Sondag, S. Stiff,  H. Thompson,  M. Tonon,  A. Ware

Members Excused:

S. Brewer, J. Campana, S. Derry, F. Glass, W. Freimund, L. Frey, T. Herron, M. Monsos, C. Nichols, S. Yoshimura

Members Absent:

C. Johnston,  F. Rosenzweig, J. Sears, R. Skelton, K. Unger

Ex-Officio Present:
President Dennison, Provost Muir, Associate Registrar Carlyon, Associate Provost Staubs and Walker-Andrews,  ASUM President Cederberg, and UFA President Kupilik

The Faculty Senate Administrative Associate called roll.

Minutes from 5/5/05 an 7/14/05 were approved.


President Dennison
The President shared a few items applicable for the beginning of the academic year.  The University tracks the registered student headcount, paid headcount, and paid FTE by day until the 15th day.  On the 15th day the information becomes final.  The University is running approximately at the same percentage for student headcount, paid headcount, and paid FTE as last year.  The figures are on track, but it is still a little early to tell.  The number of registered students is in excess of the projected number because many students decide between now and the 15th day to drop courses and don't translate into paid figures.  Credited to the efforts of Admissions and New Student Services, the non-resident figures are holding firm.  There is still a little softness in upper-division resident students. Summer enrollment was not quite at the level projected, but the shortage was not that large and could be handled by the contingency account.  Of interest is the increase in freshman honor students applying for fee-waivers.  There are a few more Native American Students and a few more dependents of faculty and staff taking credits than estimated using the figures from last year. These are all positive occurrences.  

In terms of expectations for the year, the University will to develop its initiatives between now and November and help the Regents refine their budget planning process.  He anticipates the Regents will use the same process as last year involving each campus identifying the expenditure level necessary to maintain quality and serve the students.  Once this level is established the state's contribution and tuition rates are estimated in order to reach the expenditure level.  In the past the process was reversed; for it started by looking at the state's contribution then estimating the tuition level.  The purpose of approaching the budget this way is to make it clear to policy makers that the University is going to maintain quality and serve the students to the best of its ability.  If the state doesn't contribute, tuition will have to increase.  This will be the third year of using this approach that enables the university to moderate tuition increases.  Tuition rates are still going higher than we would like, but they are at least moderate.    This process will continue until next spring when the Montana University System's budgets are due along with long range building planning.  At the same time the Regents will be revising the funding model that is the basis on which the state appropriation is allocated to the campuses. The current model was developed in 1995 and has been tweaked several times. Multiple tweaking causes an imbalance, so the Regents are taking a look at the model with the assistance of external consultants.  The main campuses will be involved because there are several issues that need to be considered.

The Montana Professor will be doing a couple of special issues this year focusing on the role of academics and the responsibilities of academics and universities. There will be a lot of discussion about who does what and there will be a couple of conferences in which faculty will talk about these issues.  It should be fairly interesting.  Dick Walton will be coordinating the effort and Jeff Gamble and he have agreed to be co-editors.

There were no questions.

The President apologized that he couldn't stay for the remainder of the meeting, but he had another meeting to attend at 3:30 PM.   

Provost Muir

The Provost followed- up on the figures from summer session.  The headcount was up by 41 but the FTE was down by 17.  An analysis is taking place.  One factor is that the number of students provided with financial aide is perfectly correlated with enrollment.  Over the past few years there has been fewer students receiving financial aid over the summer.  Academic Affairs is looking at the possibility of a more holistic approach that uses administrative unit's recruitment efforts for summer as well as the academic year.  There are some institutes and special targeted programs that deans are developing.  The Provost cautioned not to be discouraged, a decline in summer enrollment is occurring across the state. 

The Provost thanked the academic departments for their involvement in working to recruit students.  She also thanked Mike Mayer for developing a program for Constitution Day.  Universities are now required to have a program about the constitution around September 17th or they do not get financial aide.  So Professor Mayer deserves the credit for putting the program together.  Kermit Hall and Jim Goetz will be speaking on campus.  The flyers will be going out shortly. 

The new Admissions policy approved in 2002 is progressing to phase three which explicitly direct some students to the College of Technology.  There was some confusion at the Regents with whether the policy contradicted a Regents' policy.  She has personally spoken with a few Regents and they no longer believe there is a contradiction.  The item will officially go to the Regents this month.  Jim Jacobs will assist the Provost at the Regents meeting to make sure there is clear understanding. 

Academic Affairs is working on a number of academic initiatives that she will share as the year progresses.   

The Provost thanked the faculty for participating in the Academic Convocation.  The event was successful thanks to Student Affairs encouraging student and parent attendance.   Academic Affairs is interested in your comments and/or ideas for better events in the future.  Please direct these to Arlene Walker-Andrews.

The University is heading into a new academic planning cycle.  There are academic planning retreats for all the schools and colleges. The last cycle involved about 25% of the faculty in cross-disciplinary clusters.  This time the academic deans and she want to make sure all the departmental thinking is brought into the planning process.  The goal is to connect planning at department, Academic Affairs, institution, and Board of Regents levels.  All entities need to be moving in the same direction. Another piece is that the Regents want the University to provide a list of any new programs for the next five years. So it is necessary to make sure that any future ideas are on the list.   Granted there are needs assessment, proposal development, governance review process that need to take place, but the items must get on the list first.  We can add to the list, but there is a concern that if another unit has an idea on its list, the Regents will not allow duplication.

The Provost believes things are improving, and if you do not agree let her know.

Senator Beck has heard concern from several colleagues that in order to participate in the academic planning retreats they have to cancel classes.

The provost responded that she left the decision up to deans and it is being handled in different ways through discussions with chairs and faculty.  If a faculty member is not able to attend a retreat it doesn't close off his or her access. They should relay their ideas to faculty who will be attending.  There were some good ideas that surfaced at the science retreat. The planning will be a process and will change.  Academic Affairs will sort through the ideas to determine where there are intersections, and etc.

The Provost referenced the student travel memo that indicates Academic Affairs will provide up to five hundred dollars to support students giving research presentations, exhibits, or performance.  The proposal must be signed by the faculty member and the chair.  This will give students an example of outreach done by the profession.

ASUM President, Brad Cederberg

ASUM President Cederberg apologized on behalf of ASUM Vice President Leslie Venetz for missing the meeting.  She is attending the LAS Scholarship Reception.

One of the things ASUM is excited about this year is increasing students' knowledge about ASUM. There will be a revival of the Students First Campaign.  He would like to ask for the Senate to encourage faculty collaboration and will make a presentation next month about the details.  Participation could be simply displaying stickers.

At the Board of Regents May meeting the new grading policy was approved.  It was his understanding that the implementation of the policy would fall to the faculty.  The students have had discussions on the issue and would like the opportunity to provide input.

There is a resolution going through ASUM proposing that ASUM fund scantron forms and bluebooks for students. One of the difficulties with the resolution is the logistics of implementation. If faculty have any recommendations please contact him. 

There were no questions.

UFA President Mike Kupilik:

UFA President Kupilik announced that the faculty have a new contract.  A copy was mailed to each member.  The ratification was 304 in favor with 34 against.  The contract is for four years.  In two years compensation will be renegotiated along with any other item that both sides agree on.


Chairs Report
Faculty Senate Chair Joe Crepeau shared the goals for the year that were developed by the Executive Committee of the Senate In particular ECOS will need nominations to the Board of Regents General Education Council as soon as possible, in time to take to the next meeting on 9/21/05 (Goal 2 under General Education).  There will be four faculty appointed to the committee chosen by the Regents from names submitted by the various faculty governance bodies. There is no guarantee that our nominee(s) will be chosen.

There were several questions regarding the structure and charge of the General Education Committee.  The details are contained in the revised General Education Transfer Policy (below).   


       The Montana University System will establish a General Education Council to oversee the provisions of this policy.  The Council will have 12 members.  A minimum of four (4) members will be selected from nominations submitted by the faculty governance councils on the campuses.  Its responsibilities shall include:


1.    Periodically review and recommend possible revision of the Montana University System Core to the Board of Regents;  

2.    Approve by January of each year a list of general education courses, from each of the institutions described in the first paragraph of this policy, that satisfy the Montana University System Core criteria on that campus;  

3.    Periodically assess and recommend revision of this policy;  

4.    Perform other responsibilities, as assigned by the Montana Board of Regents or the Commissioner of Higher Education.

Senator Knowles asked whether there should be some kind of link between the General Education Committee and Board of Regents General Education Council.  It was suggested that a nominee be from the General Education Committee.

Senator Dietrich nominated John Eglin, last year's chair of the General Education Council.

Chair Crepeau indicated that the Council has not yet been implemented and could take some time.  All the Senate can do is forward names of faculty to serve. He and Chair- elect Ametsbichler will be very vigilant in monitoring the activities of this committee. The main function of the Council is to examine the General Education Core.



Goals for the Senate

Item: General Education


1.      Facilitate development of general education proposals that address Regential policy and accreditation concerns. 

2.      Nominate faculty to serve on the Regents' General Education Council.

3.      Facilitate communication with faculty representatives on the Regents' General Education Council.

4.      Monitor efforts to enhance writing proficiency.

5.      Monitor efforts to comply with the "Indian Education for All" requirement.


Item: Information Technology


1.      Increase faculty involvement in classroom technology decisions.

2.      Promote the creation of a long range academic plan for the UM Missoula online course effort.

3.      Create an ad hoc committee to examine intellectual property issues related to online courses and determine how to bring awareness to the faculty.

4.      Monitor Board of Regent initiatives for distance education.


Item: Evaluation of Administrators by Faculty


1.      ECOS will implement the revised evaluation instrument and improve communication and follow-up about the process.


Item: Campus Committees


1.      Maintain open lines of communication with faculty members serving on University Committees.

2.      Refine the survey instrument and committee membership list.

3.      Review the function of the Unit Standards Committee.


Item: Periodic Review of Centers and Institutes


1.      ECOS will perform the annual review of Centers and Institutes.

2.      Implement center review budget form and procedures.


Item: Resources and Quality


1.      Assure Senate committees are vigilant in reviewing proposals for new programs.

2.      Charge ASCRC to review courses under the University College rubric.

3.      Charge ASCRC to review courses offered for University credit through Continuing Education and Summer Programs.


Chair Crepeau had a blackboard class/shell set up for the Faculty Senate.  The purpose for this is to offer an enhanced form of communication to senators.  An example of this type of information comes from the Montana University System Faculty Association Representatives (MUSFAR).  This association tries to stay apprised of issues related to the Regents and is the faculty governance voice at the meetings.   The association has a list serve.  The information available on the blackboard shell is from this list serve.    These documents have been provided to the Regents as reference information for a discussion on the cost of text books. 

These documents are available on the Blackboard shell if senators are interested in viewing them or commenting.

Professor Knowles asked why this information shouldn't just be posted to the Faculty Senate website for easier access.   There is no reason for items that are not sensitive to be on the website.  This is a possibility.

Items that are sensitive such as the results of the evaluation of the administration will be placed on Blackboard to limit access.

Committee Reports
The year-end committee reports are available on the website for anyone to review.  The reports will function to open communication about the functions and work of committees.  ECOS will work on revising a form for collecting feedback from faculty committee members in order to keep the Senate informed of issues and faculty members' experiences on committees.  The reports may also provide a frame of reference for faculty considering service on a particular committee.

Old Business:
At the end of the May meeting Chair Crepeau as a senator made a motion.  In accordance with Roberts he will turn the meeting over to the Chair-elect so that he may comment on the previous motion.

The meeting was turned over to Chair-Elect Ametsbichler.

At the May meeting Senator Crepeau made a motion that the Vocation Technical Credits information item be considered as a motion. He would now like to withdraw that motion. 

The issue involves an articulation agreement between the School of Business, Accounting Department and the College of Technology, Business Technology Department.  ASCRC brought the item to the Senate for feedback, to consider the Senate's response and further deliberate on the issue.  Approving the withdrawal will illuminate the need for the Senate to take further action on the item today and the issue will go back to ASCRC for consideration.     

The motion was approved without objection.

New Business:

The Bylaw Amendment to adjust the structure of the General Education Committee Structure was briefly discussed.  One of last year's charges to the committee was to review its structure.  There were comments about the alignment of the number of members and language usage.  The Senate would like to know the reasoning behind the request for increased membership.  The Senate agreed that the amendment should go through the General Education Committee for revisions prior to the next Senate meeting.    

Good and Welfare

Senator Knowles expressed concern about the article on the front page of the Kaimin related to the shortage of books.  He wondered whether faculty governance should investigate the issue.

Senator Gillison commented that the bookstore should be aware that extra sections of courses could be created to accommodate students. It is difficult to estimate the volume of books because of the potential for students to purchase books from online vendors.

Senator Cobb had a shortage of six books in a senior level course where she provided an accurate estimate.  She would like to see competition for the bookstore.

Senator Justman stated that he is reluctant to prosecute the Bookstore because no matter what three quarters of students don't have books the first few weeks of class.  The Bookstore is not to blame.   

Senator Greymorning indicated he has a class that mysteriously doubled in size this semester.  He was aware of the Bookstore's practice of dropping the estimate by a percentage so has made it a practice to personally provide his book requests and has had good results.

Chair Crepeau will invite a representative from the Bookstore to attend the next Senate meeting to address the faculty's concerns.

Senator Stiff commented that he is currently taking graduate course and researched book prices online and other sources and found that the Bookstore was competitive and often had a slightly lower price.  

The meeting was adjourned at 4:40 PM.