Meeting, May3, 2007

Meeting, May3, 2007
Gallagher Business Building, Room 123


Members Present:

L. Ametsbichler, C. Anderson, T. Atkins, L. Barnes, D. Beck,  R. Bendick- Kier, N. Bradley-Browning, K. Canty,  B. Cochran, J. Crepeau, M. DeGrandpre, A. Delaney, P. Dietrich, B. Douma, J. Eglin, L. Frey, J. Gannon, F. Glass, J. Glendening, L. Hayes, K. Hill, L. Knott, M. Kupilik, B. Larson,  C. Lawrence, S. Li, J. Lopach, J. Luckowski, M. Mayer, S. McCann, D. McCrea, J. McNulty, N. Nickerson, M. Pershouse, D. Potts, L. Putnam, B. Reider, Y. Reimer, T. Seekins, D. Shively, P. Silverman, R. Skelton, G. Smith, J. Sommers-Flanagan, S. Stiff, D. Stoll,  D. Swibold, A. Szalda-Petree, H. Thompson, E. Uchimoto, N. Uhlenbruck, K. Unger, A. Ware

Ex-Officio Present:

President Dennison, Associate Provosts Staub and Walker-Andrews,  Registrar Micus

Members Excused:


Members Absent:

B. Allan,  F. Cardozo-Palaez, S. Gordon, S. Justman, G. Larson, M. Monsos, M. Neilson,  A. Sondag, R. Stubblefield, M. Tonon, N. Tuleja

W. Freimund, C. Hand, C. Nichols, G. Quintero, F. Rosenzweig, F. Snyder



Chair Ametsbichler called the meeting to order at 3:10 p.m.
Registrar Micus called roll.  

The minutes from 4/12/07 were approved by unanimous consent

President Denison
The College Affordability Plan is now contained in HB 820 and the university's building projects are in HB 830.  The expectation is that the special session will be 4 -7 days and will start from where the legislature left off.  The College Affordability Plan, which freezes tuition for resident students, was not a controversial issue and will likely be approved.       

ASUM President
Andrea Helling introduced her successor ASUM President Dustin Leftridge and ASUM Vice President Tara Ness.  He is majoring in Geology, and she has a double major in Biology and Chemistry.   They will be continuing ASUM efforts on transportation, renters' issues, and other issues integral to students' lives.  They will also pursue a central sustainability and a green campus student movement. Other goals include getting more students involved with ASUM on a grassroots level and updating the website with a  focus on student groups.  They look forward to working with the faculty.   

UFA President Kupilik
UFA President Kupilik reported that HB 95 passed the house and the Senate and has been signed by the Governor. The union worked hard for the faculty on this issue.

The UFA is bargaining compensation only. He estimates there will be an agreement in two or three more sessions.  When there is a tentative contract, the bargaining team will take it to the Executive Board, and if the Board agrees, ratification ballots will be mailed to your home for a yes or no vote.  This should happen sometime in June.

Chair's Report
Chair Ametsbichler informed the Senate that the annual report, which includes a summary of ECOS goals and senate business for the year, is available for senators to review.  She did not go into the report in detail due to the more urgent items on the agenda. For the most part, the goals have been met or are a work in progress.

Committee Reports:
ASCRC Chair Allen Szalda-Petree

ASCRC reviewed perspective 1 and 2 courses according to the three-year rolling review policy.  The majority of courses were approved.  However, it was quite difficult to get documentation for some courses.  The review lists were approved.

ASCRC Chair Szalda-Petree summarized the annual report.

Graduate Council Chair Louis Hayes
The curriculum consent agenda was approved.
Graduate Council Hayes briefly summarized the annual report.

Faculty Library Committee Chair Andrew Ware

Faculty Library Chair Ware summarized the annual report.  He emphasized the need for additional faculty input in the core approval plan process. Next year the approval plan will be the primary acquisitions method for the library.


Unfinished Business:
Bylaw Amendments

The Committee Appointment Bylaw Amendment was amended and approved as follows: 

G. Committees to Which ECOS Makes Appointments.
(5) Only tenured faculty members belonging to the bargaining unit who are not department chairs may be appointed to the University Appeals Committee or Committee on Service.

Standards Committee shall consist of tenure-track faculty members from the bargaining unit (selected as above by the Faculty Senate) who are not department chairs and two five students (nominated by ASUM for one-year terms and confirmed by the Faculty Senate). Four faculty shall be from the schools' voting groups and two each shall be from the humanities, sciences, and social and behavioral sciences voting groups.

Senator Anderson proposed an amendment that was distributed electronically to the Senate prior to the meeting.  It failed with one in favor.

The Vacancies Bylaw Amendment was sent back to committee with specific instructions that the term ‘vacancy' and ‘temporary absence' be defined.

General Education Model
[Background: The Provost appointed a General Education Taskforce May 2001.  It provided a proposal to ASCRC and the Faculty Senate April 2004.   September 2004 a General Education Subcommittee of ASCRC was formed.  The charge was created by an ad hoc committee of ECOS and included a review of the Taskforce's report with consideration of the factors that influence UM's program.  The General Education Subcommittee created a preamble, approved by the Senate April 2005.  It then submitted three possible models for general education to ASCRC March 2006.  Since then, ASCRC has been working to create a model that would be acceptable to campus.  It presented a draft to ECOS October 2006 and was instructed to meet with various department representatives, to receive input, and modify the model to be acceptable to the entire campus. ]

ASCRC Chair Szalda-Petree commented on the General Education Forum on Tuesday.  A number of faculty attended that were very passionate about general education, but not very complimentary about the proposed model.   Senator Lopach distributed an email that incorporated many of the concerns voiced at the forum into a revised / compromise model.  This compromise model replaced the specified lower-division writing course with an approved writing course; it reinstates foreign language courses at 5 credits, but maintains the default status; it reinstates the Ethics and Human Values requirement and reduces the number of science credits from 6 to 3; It also includes an American Institutions and Non-Western category that is met within other course requirements; and allows upper-division courses that are sufficiently broad to count for general education.

Arguments were made to retain the 6 credits of science based on diversity within the sciences, the country's slippage in science and math literacy, and the use of practical math skills in science courses.  Many faculty members feel that 3 math credits are not sufficient. The MUS core includes 6 science credits as well.  However, the Commissioner's Office has made it clear that the intent of the core is not to prescribe the units' general education programs.  One set of courses cannot meet the needs of the diverse student body and campuses.

President Dennison commented that the difficulty experienced by the Senate with regard to general education is accurately described by Derek Bok in "Our Underachieving Colleges.  A candid Look at How Much Our Students Learn and Why They Should be Learning More."  General education cannot be defined separately from the baccalaureate degree. We need to look at general education within the context of the individual baccalaureate programs, and include upper-division courses that accomplish what is intended by a liberal education. It seems this could be accomplished within a year's time. 

ASCRC Chair Szalda-Petree indicated that the faculty need to decide on a framework, so work can move forward on defining the criteria for the requirements.  There will be opportunity for input and modifications as the components are clarified.

Further problems with the model were identified.  Currently there are not enough lower-division writing courses to meet the requirement. Diversity is not served by foreign language courses, and a western tradition requirement defined as US or Europe should be included.

Senator Frey's motion to amend the model with the writing requirement of ENEX 101, or equivalent, and two additional writing courses, one of which must be upper-division failed with 9 in favor and the remaining senators opposed. 

There was discussion regarding sending the model back to ASCRC, the General Education Subcommittee, or a General Education Workgroup appointed by ASCRC with instructions to consider the points raised at the forum and today's meeting, soliciting input from department chairs, and identifying more concise goals and objectives.  There was concern about time, input from the new provost, and the learning curve of new committee members.  

Senator Silverman made a motion for ASCRC to reconsider the proposal in light of the memo from Senator Lopach.  It is instructed to create an ad hoc subcommittee, consisting of members familiar with the issues to make recommendations to ASCRC.  The new model should go to the Senate at the November meeting.  It was unanimously approved.


New Business:

The outgoing senators were thanked for their service and the new Senators were seated. 

The floor was opened for chair-elect nominations.  Senator Ware was nominated.  There were no other nominations.  Senator Ware was elected by unanimous vote.

The Senate caucused to nominate ECOS candidates.
Senator McCain, Mansfield Library, was nominated by the Professional Schools Caucus.  Senator Eglin, History, and Senator Knott, Math, were nominated by the College of Arts and Sciences Caucus.  The Senate approved the nominations. The new

ECOS includes:

Lou Hayes, Political Science (Chair)
Andrew Ware, Physics and Astronomy (Chair-elect)
John Eglin, History
Libby Knott, Math

Jean Luckowski, Curriculum and Instruction
Mike Monsos, Drama/ Dance
Steve McCain, Mansfield Library

Good and Welfare:  None

The meeting was adjourned at 5:00 pm.