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The University of Texas System
Faculty AdvisoryCouncil Meeting

Meeting Minutes: December 6 - 7, 1999

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1. Meeting called to order at 1001 by Joel Dunnington (FAC Chair, UT MD Anderson Cancer Center).

2.      Chancellor Cunningham visited the FAC meeting:

a)      Chancellor Search: He is technically not involved in the process, however, he will interview the final candidates to ensure they understand the scope of the position and its responsibilities.

b)      Legislative Session: A telephone conference call with the local Presidents of the component institutions to identify priorities. The focus will be on: (i) funding of the medical institutions (not properly funded at the last session); (ii) differential flexible tuition; (iii) possibility/need to develop academic flagship universities—which ones they will be and the mechanism for funding to achieve flagship status. In the last funding cycle all universities were brought up a notch with no flagship designations—although there have been discussions, the local Presidents cannot agree as to who should receive flagship status. There had been an extra 75million dollars earmarked for this.

c)      Major challenges for the new chancellor: (i) access/continuing effort to provide access opportunities for students to attend college; (ii) ethnic diversity in the student body and among those graduating; (iii) funding of higher education; (iv) question of flagship institutions as just discussed; (v) immediate immersion in the legislature—will have a lot of scrambling to make the right contacts unless they are already familiar with Texas politics and politicians; and (vi) becoming well-acquainted with the individual campuses will take considerable time.

d)      Capital improvement program: Currently this is where the focus is. The Regents have approved in concept the expenditure of 2 billion dollars over 6 years (wish list). Are now working to prioritize projects with PUF funds to support some of them. The Academic Affairs Committee will prioritize their projects with input from Ed Sharpe and Chancellor Cunningham, and the Medical campuses will prioritize their projects. Once the choices are made, Ed Sharpe and Charles Mullins will review and make a list of the priorities. Chancellor Cunningham will then take the list to the Board of Regents who will make the final decision re the funding of the projects. These are decisions the board of Regents makes. Then Ed and Charley will come back and a list will be made. Cunningham will take the final list to the BOR and they will make the final decision. Still being discussed is what percentage of the PUF funds will be used—the figures are ranging 4.2-5%.

e)      Run for governor

f)        Legislative Committee: Discussions continue regarding how to respond to the Perry Commission and the Coordinating Board.

g)      UTIMCO and the passage of Proposition 17: will mean millions of new dollars to be made available in the near future. This was a very targeted campaign that worked well.

h)      Chancellor Cunningham thanked the FAC for the commitment to the University of Texas.

3. Tom Scott (Assistant Vice Chancellor for Governmental Relations)Amendment to the PUF funds usage was adopted November 2, 1999. The fundamental change involved how the PUF monies would be managed—instead of only being able to use the dividends, fund managers will now be able to grow the monies by looking at the totality of the fund. The maximum allocation rate is 7%. Also, distributions cannot be increased if the purchasing power of the fund has not been maintained over the last 10 years. Last month the Board of Regents determined the distribution rate of 4.5%, which is greater than last year, but is less than in prior years. There is an increase of 33M dollars to AUF—1/3 goes to Texas A&M and 2/3 to the UT System. The 2000 column (Table was provided) illustrates what is budgeted at the moment. The immediate beneficiary of the monies is UT Austin. During their January meeting, the Board of Regents will consider how to approach the CIProgram with the additional money that will be available from the AUF (approximately $14M). This may mean that we may be looking at $285M more dollars in bondable projects over the next 6 year planning horizon.

Charles Lackey (UT-Brownsville): Why did the debt service go down?

ScottIn 99 had more income than was forecast—these monies were applied to outstanding debt.


Dunnington (MDACC)
: Does PUF go up when gas prices go up?

Scott
: The fund is a function of our stock portfolio. The fund has grown significantly as the value of stocks have grown.


4.      Ed Sharpe (Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs):

There are a number of departments at different components that are having difficulties: The Division of Mathematics and Statistics at UT San Antonio, Communications Department at UT El Paso and the Human Ecology Department at UT Austin. What is going on? I will address each separately.

A. Mathematics Division, UTSA: They have been having trouble for a long time. Last year the Associate VP for Faculty Affairs in the Provost’s Office interviewed each member o the division and concluded that there was deep concern re the health of the division—3 factions appeared. An outside person was brought in as Division Director and also to evaluate if the division can move forward. Weekly meetings of the entire division are being held by a facilitator to begin the process of determining how the faculty can bring the organization into a healthier state. The general expectation is that the faculty can figure out what to do.

Robert Nelsen (UT-Dallas): What happened with the confidential information that was put out on the Web?

Sharpe:
The administration put together a lengthy document that included the results of the interviews, emails, etc., and thought that providing the information would be better the allowing the information to trickle out. The thought was that they would have an email daily update (Update)—and make the information available through this mechanism. Unfortunately Administration did not know that the information automatically went out on the Web. As soon as they discovered this, the information was officially removed the next day. However, it was also archived, so it took a few more days to remove it totally from the Web.


Nelsen:
All of the information should have been confidential.
Sharpe: Everything falls under the Open Records Act—anyone in the state could request the records.

James Schneider (UT-San Antonio):
The information contained the summary from the interviews and as such the faculty were anonymous. However, one faculty was interviewed via email and thus was identified. The information also went out to all members of the faculty senate as the decision was being announced. There was concern regarding the confidentiality issue with the information posted on the Web. The information was available for 4 days. There have been no developments since the last special senate meeting that dealt with this issue. There is no organized survey of University opinion on this—but it was recognized by the faculty that the math situation was serious and something needed to be done. It was also expressed that there were other units on the campus that had problems too. People are hopeful that mediation will work.
Nelson: A group of people chose what information to put out. The Open Records Act is not really involved since no request for information was made. This appears to be a violation of confidentiality.

Sharpe: Relating to the confidentiality issue—from a legal standpoint the Open Record request is broad in Texas. You are saying the Administration decided what to include, and it was voluminous. They made a good faith effort to account for the events. It was a judgement call by reasonable people. In hindsight it was a reasonable job that caused problems for some of the people in the department.


Dunnington
: We were concerned with the term “Receivership” as it was used on the campuses. Is this something new that we may be seeing more of in the future, or is it a symptom?


Sharpe
: Receivership is not the proper term. In each case there were problems that needed to be addressed. It may be a signal to other units that are struggling to get better organized. You can often see examples of this in the Chronicle of Higher Education, as for example the History Department from California. Allowing the departments to drift is not a prudent or responsible action on the part of the university.
Hale: What is the proper term that describes the situation?

Sharpe:
I don’t know one. Receivership has some legal definition. The most significant thing in the situation is placing someone else as Chair of the Department.


Hale
: Are there resources available from System to an institution to address these issues or is this a local problem?
Sharpe: The respective President needs to monitor changes at each institution. In every department there are a whole range of things that go on that we don’t know about unless we are in that department. The hope is that everyone is taking their responsibilities seriously and are staying attuned to developments. Ivor Page (UT-Dallas, Past-Chair, FAC): Passions can get intense in the departments at times. This doesn’t necessarily mean any ill will. Factions do develop as part of the human condition. How do you manage people like that—is a difficult job and may involve things like the Provost talking with people and making notes. If I thought the Provost were putting my notes in a public forum I would never talk to him again in that format. This type of situation makes you cautious about talking.

Schneider
: Need to also remember that the content of any email is subject to Open Records.

Sharpe: Anything that you do in your professional capacity is subject to review.

Hale: Having your conversation transcribed and then put out for review is very different from having an email made public. There really is no record except for the notes the administrator made.

Sharpe: You have to put things in context. You don’t have to talk to anyone unless you are subpoenaed. These are difficult complex issues where action needs to be taken. In the case of San Antonio, everything really is still in the hands of the division. If they can’t solve things in the next year or so, then another solution will have to be taken. They will have to come to some kinds of mutual terms that will permit them to get their work done.

Sue
Mottinger (UT-Pan Am): Does that mean the Dean of the College/Provosts are involved?


Sharpe:
The Division Director now reports to the Provost. The Division Director is keeping things going. The facilitator is meeting with the faculty in the department. There is no one from the Provost’s Office currently involved.

B. Communications at UT-El Paso: Communications is in the department of liberal arts, which has a large number of students. This has been a troubled situation for a number of years. A Search for a Department Chair had begun. It was the view of the Administration that the applicants for the position were not acceptable. The Administration decided to use a different model (used in criminal justice)—and so, they used their staff. The department of Communications is being disbanded. The courses will be taught by faculty in other departments following the model used in criminal justice. There are some faculty who are very critical of this approach—they have contacted a number of people in/out of the university. This issue has been aired thoroughly. The press in El Paso have interviewed both inside/outside people, and have chosen not to print anything about this.

Martha Hilley (UT-Austin): the existing faculty in the department—what happens to them?

Ralph Liguori (UT-El Paso): This is not clear yet—things go into effect in January. There is still a lot of controversy. There is an ad hoc committee investigating the situation that has not yet reported to the Senate. They have spoken to the Dean, Provost, Chair, and faculty. They will present their report to the Senate at the February meeting. The committee is not a mediator, they were to just investigate the impact on curriculum. There are certain procedures in the Handbook of Operating Procedures to follow if you eliminate a department. Administration says we are not eliminating a department, we are creating a centre. We don’t know yet where the affected faculty are going to be placed. The President hasn’t made any public announcements. The faculty are not yet happy—things are still being played out.

Hilley: What do the students register for?

Liguori: The program is not being eliminated, the students will register for the courses as they normally would. There has been a long term problem with that department, but no one wants to call it a restructuring of a department because of the procedures that would need to be followed. This may end up in court if faculty are dealt with badly. Mottinger: What is the role of the faculty senates in these situations with respect to a department’s internal strife.

Sharpe: San Antonio had a meeting with the Provost as things were happening.

Schneider: was an airing of views. We received no requests to do anything other than to serve as a forum for airing the issues.

Liguori: In El Paso, shortly after the announcement to the faculty of the proposed change, the senate passed unanimously that we set up the ad hoc committee to investigate the situation. This was considered under curriculum issues—this is not mediation committee.

Page: The question is more about what could be done. At UT-Dallas the president decided to delete a department with one year’s notice. Could that be done. There was almost a vote of confidence concerning the President. And then he agreed to talk with us. This was approximately in 1990. It was made clear that the faculty should be given the option of applying for another job within the University, and the time was extended to give two year’s notice. The result is that tenured people are tenured to the university and not their department. The Court suggested the main error in the President’s decision was that the faculty should have been given the option of applying for jobs. This lead to the rewriting of RR 6.11 and 6.12.

Hale: are the courses going to be taught by the faculty now teaching them at El Paso?

Liguori : As far as I know no one is out of a job. It is not clear what is really happening by changing from a department to a center.

Stocks (UT-Tyler): Should we recommend that major changes/dissolution of a department should have faculty input in the process before the decision is made?

Liguori: The Provost has had discussions over the years, but the faculty has never had the perception that administration has fully supported the department in resolving the problem.

C. Human Ecology Department, UT-Austin: The department was having difficulty. There are several different disciplines within the department. There was not a consensus with respect to finding the new department chair. In consultation with the Provost’s office it was determined that there was trusted person that everyone agreed would be a good interim chair (Jack Gilbert) that would help work through the process to find someone. The department is now trying to figure out how to operate. The department is completely in the control of the faculty, and they are happy with Jack.


Hilley: The situation is different from the other two. 90% of UT-Austin faculty don’t know anything about this—is not an issue.

Hale: It appears that the investment the institution makes in the department chairs has diminished over the years. Searches are now internal and no money is invested into external candidates, although they have expensive searches for levels above that. If there is a split in the department over any issue you have an internal candidate that is in one camp or the another.

Liguori: There have been other examples of restructuring at El Paso. This is the one in which the faculty have not participated in a satisfactory way—this is where the rub is.

Schneider: In UT-San Antonio everyone agrees that the precipitating factor in the Mathematics and Statistics Division was the new Division Director—this person was controversial from the start and exacerbated the internal differences. This was a large portion of the problem.

Dunnington: If we allow the dissemination of faculty interviews on the web under the Freedom of Information Act, then I expect Administration will as freely acquiesce to our request for information

 5.      Minutes were approved with minor corrections.

 

 Campus Reports

UT-Arlington - Michael Moore

* Three Academic Deans have resigned this year (Architecture, Business, and Engineering). Internal replacement for Architecture and Engineering are on board and an appointment in the College of Business is expected in the next two weeks. We have also appointed a new VP (the former Dean of Engineering) to oversee our Riverbend Campus.

* The Upward Review of Academic Administrators has been returned from OGC with suggestions for minor modifications that we hope to tackle (and finish) are our meeting next week.

* Early next spring our President plans to appoint a committee to begin work on plans for our new library.

* The President has also indicated that we will start to develop more formal policies related to distance education (e.g., workload, compensation, development release, etc.).

* Starting in the Fall 2000 students will have access to the grade distributions for individual courses. They have also expressed a desire to obtain access to course evaluations and this is creating some concern among the faculty.

UT-Austin - Martha F. Hilley

In the interest of brevity, as discussed at our last meeting, our report will deal with two issues brought before the Faculty Council at our November meeting – one in the form of legislation, the other as a final report from an ad hoc committee.

Legislation from the Committee on Educational Policy and Curriculum:

RECOMMENDATIONS:

1.That the University of Texas at Austin continue to award credit by examination either with letter grades or with the symbol CR but that letter grades for credit by examination not be counted in a student's UT Austin grade point average.

2.That the catalog and other official publications of UT Austin be amended to reflect this change in policies.

Final Report from the Faculty Council ad hoc Committee on Course Instructor Surveys: Evaluating Teaching Effectiveness and Excellence:

Three originals goals – 1) increase the efficiency and quality of teaching evaluation methods; 2) improve the quality of information gathered; and 3) improve the administrative uses of resulting information.

The first set of recommendations addresses revision and consolidation of the current CIS forms. The second set of recommendations discusses alternative methods available for assessing teaching excellence and effectiveness. The third group of recommendations reconsiders administrative use of information gathered – privacy issues are also discussed in this section.

Dunnington: Why hasn’t the President passed the grade policy?

Hilley: There is a possibility of having multiple GPA’s on the transcript that would satisfy everyone. For example, you could have transfer credits—at this point they don’t count in the GPA. There is information on the website related to credits.

University of Texas at BrownsvilleTerry Jay Phillips

1.      The Provost has delivered a charge to the University Personnel Committee to develop a new merit pay system to replace our current, anomalous, two-tiered merit system. The Provost/VPAA would like to replace this system with something that is more in line with the merit process at other UT System components. This will be the main item on the agenda of the Meeting of the Faculty at the beginning of the spring semester.

2.      A new position for Director of Distance Education has been created and a search is underway to fill that position.

3.      Ground has been broken on two of the four buildings that have been scheduled to begin construction in the current academic year.

4.      A timetable has been established for the development/revision of courses to be included in the new 48 hour general education core. These revisions should be to the College/School Curriculum Committees in early December and to the University Curriculum Committee at its first meeting of the Spring Semester.

5.      At the request of the President our campus is participating in a Survey of Organizational Excellence conducted by the School of Social Work at UT Austin. The faculty and staff have been strongly encouraged to participate, however some of the faculty have expressed concerns about maintaining anonymity of responses as each survey form has a code number imprinted on the bottom.

6.      The Director of Human Resources spoke to the Faculty Welfare Committee of the Academic Senate at a meeting on November 19. In this meeting she answered several questions brought up by the faculty about changes in insurance coverage and the timing of the open enrollment period. She indicated that most of the H.R. people in the system were in favor of a November open enrollment period. This would make things much more convenient for the faculties of the academic institutions, but there are administrative hurdles to this change in the timing of the open enrollment period.

7.      At the Academic Senate meeting of November 19, 1999, the following data were presented to the Senate for consideration. The data are taken from a pamphlet published by the U.T. System called "Fast Facts Fall 1999".

Institution

Enrollment

Faculty

Students

Non Faculty

Students

Budget

Students

 

 

per faculty

Employees

per employee

M$

per M$

Arlington

19148

1141

16.78

2986

6.41

188.4

101.63

Austin

49034

2687

18.25

17655

2.78

1061

46.21

Brownsville

9094

235

38.70

383

23.74

66.6

136.55

Dallas

10137

258

39.29

710

14.28

119.7

84.69

El Paso

14695

805

18.25

1214

12.10

159

92.42

Pan American

12520

694

18.04

1187

10.55

104.1

120.27

Permian Basin

2222

125

17.78

150

14.81

23

96.61

San Antonio

18607

858

21.69

1595

11.67

153.7

121.06

Tyler

3392

275

12.33

159

21.33

33.1

102.48

Average

22.35

13.08

100.21

The data show that UTB has the fewest resources of any academic institution in the system. However there is one important comparison to be made from these data that was pointed out to our Senate (which includes the Provost). Comparing the three institutions that fall significantly below the system average in the dollar per student category, we find: UT San Antonio manages to have a 78% higher faculty to student ratio and a 104% higher employee to student ratio with only a 12.8% higher dollar per student ratio than UTB, and UT Pan American manages to have a 115% higher faculty to student ratio and a 125% employee to student ratio while only having a 13.5% higher dollar per student ratio than UT Brownsville. Most of the Faculty considers our institution to be seriously understaffed and these figures would support that position.


Lackey: Have any other campuses done the survey of organizational excellence.


Mottinger: We did it in the first part of October. Don’t have results yet.

Schneider: The data for San Antonio are not correct.


Phillips: The information was taken from the brochure.

Page: This is probably the picture the Board of Regents has.

University of Texas at DallasRobert Nelsen

The President of the University delivered his State of the University address to the faculty yesterday. 89/257 faculty showed up. In conjunction with the Senate, the President restructured the presentation so that he spoke for only 30 minutes (actually, he spoke for 45 minutes) so that the faculty had 2 hours to ask questions. Nice idea, no?, to have the President and his Senior Staff fielding questions from the faculty. As Madonna would say, “Not”. 5 faculty members asked questions. The Speaker of the Faculty asked 12 questions (counting subquestions) to get down to the nitty gritty (or was it to use up the time?).

Frankly, I was shocked by the silence. Must mean that UTD is nirvana. Or that everyone is scared to death. Or more likely that people are satisfied enough to want to maintain the status quo.

What the faculty did achieve from the meeting? Well look at UTD’s home page. You’ll see, if you go to the strategic planning page, what the average salaries are in each school/college/department for all ranks and how those salaries compare with the other institutions in the State and the nation. We also got the figures regarding the money the President has raised over that last five years.

What greatly depressed us was that we were told that the only money that would be available to raise the TA’s stipend would be money from faculty, staff, or M&O. Faculty salaries may be comparable with other institutions; however, our TA’s stipends are not. Students and faculty remain very concerned about the future of graduate education.

As you know, UTD is currently reviewing the situation of the Senior Lecturers. At the meeting, we were told that the only new money that could be afforded them was money—from where?—you got it—from the current faculty, staff and M&O budgets. The commitment from the administration is to keep the numbers (ratio) of lecturers to staff at its current level. Given our mandate from that group of southern accreditors, we are going to have to find other ways to resolve the situation.

The biggest controversy on campus is the status of the Faculty ClubI received 57 responses today from a survey I sent out. What the Faculty Club’s future will be I cannot tell you. But I do know that it can no longer run a deficit.
And, oh yea, the students were given permission by OGC to set up their own web page (as part of the Student Government web page) where they can post comments about individual professors. Troubling? Maybe, maybe not. At least, the Senate would have appreciated knowing about OGC’s decision before reading about it in the student newspaper.

Dunnington: do the students have to sign their name?

Nelsen: We don’t’ know for sure yet. Students will be keeping a record of their names. The students are liable for the information they place there. Faculty are not sure what exactly OGC has approved for them to put in. This information can be placed into faculty folders for consideration of promotion and review.

Page: Faculty evaluations are being placed there using the raw data.

Nelsen
: There is no controversy related to this. No written comments are being placed on the web from the evaluations.


Dunnington
: What is a senior lecturer?

Nelsen: They are fulltime adjunct employees teaching full loads each semester. SACS felt we were in an unhealthy situation and needed to address this before the next review. The possibility of opening up tenure slots for them based on their salaries has been discussed.

University of Texas at El Paso - Ralph Liguori

The issue concerning the reorganization of the Department of Communications continues to circle the campus. It appears that the administration had not thought through the situation fully before announcing the plan to reconstitute the department. They did say at the outset that the plan for reorganization was to be developed during the fall semester and that it would require the participation and support of the faculty. An Ad Hoc Faculty Senate Committee was formed to investigate the impact and ramifications of the change on the curriculum. That committee is still meeting and expects to report to the Senate in February. They appear to have talked to most of the relevant individuals about the situation and their report should be informative. The controversy still swirls, and I have brought a copy of the campus newspaper with a number of stories on the subject.

A troubling situation is developing concerning academic freedom on our campus. Last summer a group of high school students investigated banking practices in El Paso sponsored by an organization called Community Scholars. The report was critical of the banking community for its failure to provide information and for its practices concerning small business loans. It received wide circulation through the local media. The report was submitted to UTEP’s College of Business administration by the director of Community Scholars and was criticized on a scholarly basis. There was a call for a more professional investigation which was to be funded by the local banking community but under the direction of UTEP faculty members. This caused a controversy and has resulted in a letter from State Senator Eliot Shapleigh to the Dean and involved faculty members invoking the Freedom of Information Act to require them to provide him with information concerning contact of these individuals with the affected banks. It is a very detailed list. Further he suggests that any studies done would be tainted and slanted to favor the banks. Since this is coming from a State Senator it is particularly serious and the issue has been turned over to the Committee on Research for a report to the Faculty Senate.

We have discovered that the boiler plate policy Grievance Policy has mysteriously appeared in our HOP. I have discussed the situation with our President and she has agreed to investigate the situation. The policy was never approved by the Faculty Senate. We are beginning to correct the situation.

The issue of grade changes surfaced on our campus. The University Catalog informs students that a request for grade changes must be filed in the Academic Deans office within one year of the assignment of the grade. The HOP spells out that only the Faculty member and in special cases The Student Welfare Committee after an appropriate procedure may assign a grade. Unfortunately there is no link between the two. I have requested that the catalog reference the HOP so that no one be misled into believing that a Dean could change a grade.

A procedural question is developing concerning Faculty Senate minutes and Action Reports. The Faculty Senate passed a curricular change over a year ago. The related action report was neither signed nor disapproved when the other items of the minutes of the same meeting were signed. The issue involved the El Paso Community College curriculum and ours. The Provost appears to be reluctant to approve the change in spite of an accord worked out with EPCC by the affected department and his own Associate VP. The change was implemented with the understanding that the Provost was satisfied by the agreement and has been in effect for this academic year. The Provost is now requiring his staff to undo the change. The issue has to do with the rejection of a Senate Action by pocket veto and without stating the objection to the Senate. We plan to continue the issue with the Provost.

We are currently reviewing the questionnaire for the Faculty Evaluation of Academic Administrators. We successfully implemented our evaluation last year and plan to do it on a biannual basis. We will spend the spring in reviewing recommended changes and then prepare it to be administered in the next academic year.

Page: The Senator discovered a research project is funded by one of the bodies that will be researched, and thinks that the project will be tainted. Is he saying “I’m watching!” or “Don’t do it!”. Senators don’t have power of veto in this.

Liguori: We are not sure yet—he could be saying either. This senator has influence over the budget so that is worrisome.

Dunnington: Is there a refusal of publication if they don’t like the outcomes of the research? If you have that, you’re in trouble.

Liguori: We don’t know—is not imputed in the letter.

University of Texas at Pan American - Sue G. Mottinger

1. UTPA has initiated a web-HOP-tracking program that includes measures of reviewing, amending, or initiating new policy. The President of UTPA has appointed an individual to monitor all web-based HOP transactions. The web HOP is the official version for the university.

2.       The Chair of the Faculty Senate appointed an ad hoc committee to study the present summer school salary for faculty, adjunct faculty, and overload course salary and make recommendations. The committee reviewed UTPA comparable institutions as well as other UT System institutions. The ad hoc committee is to file its completed report at the December 1999 Faculty Senate meeting.

3.       The Chair of the Faculty Senate appointed an ad hoc committee to study the present department chair summer school compensation. The committee will review UTPA comparable institutions as well as other UT System institutions. A completed report will be presented at the March 2000 Faculty Senate meeting.

4.       A roundtable of faculty currently teaching or creating web-based courses has been formed at UTPA. Discussions concern a variety of distance-learning issues including whether a policy pertaining to online courses should be created or not.

5.       The UTPA Curriculum Committee has proposed a university wide 51 hr advanced requirement for completion of a baccalaureate degree at the university. A faculty referendum will decide acceptance or rejection of the proposal.

6.       A "writing across the curriculum" emphasis has been recommended by the UTPA Curriculum Committee. Currently, a number of classes emphasize major writing assignments but these are not university wide, yet.

7.       A Core Oversight Committee has been created in cooperation with the Office of Academic Affairs and the Curriculum Committee to track the effectiveness of the newly created 48-hr core curriculum at UTPA.

8.       An oral presentation by the Faculty Senate was made in November at the Chancellor Search Forum held in the Valley. Suggestions concerning the criteria for the new Chancellor as well as recommendations for potential applicants were shared and subsequently submitted in writing to the search committee representatives.

9.       Parking continues to be a challenge at UTPA and are somewhat solved by good communication between campus police and the Faculty Senate.

Dunnington: With respect to the HOP, what kind of tracking procedures are you putting in it?

Mottinger: The policy will show the date approved, last reviewed and when next to be reviewed. There is no date as to when the policy is posted on the HOP because the printed version has always been in existence. We are seeing inconsistencies since the Web is now the official site.

Dunnington: Ours (UT-MDACC) is on the web. We haven’t had a whole handbook in a long time. Is there a mechanism for how new things get put into the HOP and how the faculty are advised of the additions/deletions?

Mottinger: No. Our President created a new position this past September—the Web HOP keeper! This is her sole responsibility. She doesn’t write policy. When the policy comes back from System it isn’t always correct. Some one needs to stay on top of it.

Dunnington: There needs to be a policy in place that will notify faculty that there is a change or something is added into the HOP.

Phillips: There is a real problem in that there is conflicting information between what is on the Web and what’s in the paper copy.

Page: If the senate was involved in the negotiation then they should be aware of the changes. But seems to be impractical to email everyone with every change.

Dunnington: Would seem to be easier to be notified of what changes were made and when they were made. We are held to the HOP by contract.

Verklan: Helen Bright said last year that we would be notified of any changes that System would place into the HOP.

University of Texas at Permian BasinCorbett Gaulden

P.T.R.:

The second round of Post Tenure Review is now underway. Some procedural delays have been encountered, but the process is now in the works. Only two persons university-wide will be evaluated this year. Our small size, and two promotion attempts are the reasons for the very small pool of evaluatees this year. It may be that we will not finish until early in the spring semester.

SACS:

SACS campus visit is scheduled for February, 2000. The first full draft of our self-study is finished and under review and revision at this time.

INSTIUTIONAL COMPLIANCE:

At this time, the compliance committee does not contain a faculty representative. The Vice President for Business Affairs, who has been responsible for compliance, has stated that she will appoint a faculty representative and some faculty names have been suggested to her. The appointment has not yet happened, but will soon.

The university community is not experiencing any significant problems at this time. A general preoccupation with SACS and building projects seems to be part of the reason for the lack of current controversy.

Hale: With respect to the Fields of Study—Corbett is on the committee for the business fields of study. They are supposed to have the work done by February. The School of Business at UT-PB has started the process of business school accreditation.

Hilley: Michael Granoff from UT Austin is also on the business fields of study committee. In contrast, there are 8 community college people on the committee.

The University of Texas at San Antonio - James C. Schneider

RESTRUCTURING is the major campus-wide issue at the moment. President Romo charged a committee, consisting largely of faculty, to examine the question of academic restructuring at UTSA. They composed a brief survey asking for opinion about the general subject of restructuring, as well as inviting more specific comments. This was posted on the Web and generated a large number of responses. When the committee determined that opinion overwhelmingly favored further pursuit of the issue, it requested specific proposals from faculty. The committee received proposals to form new colleges from faculty in Engineering and in Education, in addition to numerous proposals that individual disciplines separate from existing divisions to form their own units. It may be that the committee will recommend that the University abandon its divisional structure in favor of traditional departments. Their report is due within two weeks.


THE APPOINTMENT OF A PERMANENT PROVOST was the other major event on campus since our last SYSFAC meeting. The President charged a committee, again mainly composed of faculty, to advise him on whether to engage in a national search for a permanent provost or to offer the post to the Interim Provost, Dr. Guy Bailey. The committee examined the advantages and disadvantages to a national search in the context of the existing situation at UTSA. It examined Dr. Bailey’s qualifications with reference to the job description and Dr. Romo’s preferred qualities in a Provost. While reluctant in principle to dispense with a national search, the committee judged that the large number of senior administrative searches pending at the University and the presence of a new President without experience at UTSA justified an alternative course of action. The vote in favor of Dr. Bailey was unanimous.


Unfortunately, from the perspective of many faculty and staff, there has been no movement on GOVERNANCE issues to parallel that in the area of restructuring. No mechanism exists at present to address various proposals to alter the current structure. The President is not unsympathetic to governance reform and it is quite possible that he wished to await the findings of the Restructuring Committee. However, there is definite impatience in many quarters because a number of proposals have been in limbo for a very long time. Among these are the Faculty Senate’s BY-LAWS and a GRIEVANCE POLICY.


The situation involving the Division of MATHEMEATICS AND STATISITICS, which was placed in receivership at the beginning of the Fall semester, has unfolded no further in public. Faculty members have met as a group each week with a conflict resolution consultant.


Activity in preparation for the SACS visit to determine REAFFIRMATION of ACCREDITATION continues to be intense. The Site Visit will take place next April.


The visit by representatives of the SEARCH COMMITTEE to find a new CHANCELLOR for the UT SYSTEM was well enough attended for Regent Tom Loeffler, admittedly a San Antonian, to boast publicly of how we surpassed totals at all other communities around the State. The Committee has heard from many members of the audience. Among those commenting was the Chair of the UTSA Faculty Senate, who emphasized the need to select a Chancellor with sound academic credentials and for greater inclusiveness in the selection process.

UTSA does not have a privacy policy. A copy of our letter of appointment is attached.

Finally, the Faculty Senate voted to change the minimum criteria students must meet to earn summa cum laude laurels, lowering our standards to those at UT-Austin.

 

UT –Tyler - Steve Rainwater

UT-FAC Action Items:

1. Attached to this report is a copy of UT-Tyler’s policy for the evaluation of academic administrators...the policy indicates that every year an evaluation of each academic administrator is conducted under the responsibility of the individual's immediate supervisor. Additionally, every four years there will be a more extensive evaluation conducted by the supervisor which provides an opportunity for input by all faculty members in the unit(s) reporting to or directly affected by the administrator.

2. Provided separately to the UT-FAC’s Academic Affairs committee are sample Memoranda of Appointment for fiscal year 1999-2000. These were provided to faculty on September 1, 1999 for acceptance and submission to the Office of Human Resources.

3. There is one faculty representative on the university’s Institutional Compliance committee.

4. Regarding grade change policy, the 1998-2000 catalog specifies a one-year time limit for grade changes and ONLY the instructor of the course may change a grade. However, the catalog, Student Guide, and Handbook of Operating Procedures all specify that a student can appeal a course grade in writing through the normal channel of department chair, dean, VPAA, and president with no designation as to who may then change a grade if the student’s appeal is successful at one of those levels.

5. Insofar as can be determined, the university has no written privacy policy related to faculty offices, files, mail, or vehicles.
6.      Regarding the report on the periodic review of tenured faculty for the 1998-1999 year at UT-Tyler, there seems to be some confusion over the report that six of the eighteen reviewed faculty were found to be “unsatisfactory” with “specified areas for further development.” According to our VPAA, only one faculty member was deemed “unsatisfactory” with an approved development plan. Reports from the deans to the VPAA of the other five faculty indicated “satisfactory” ratings but also included SUGGESTIONS FOR IMPROVEMENT in one or more areas as is typical in any formative evaluation.
 

Faculty Senate Items:

1.The proposed revision of evaluation/tenure/promotion policies and procedures, which were developed by the Dean’s Council and submitted to the senate, is currently under review by the Faculty Affairs committee and is available campus-wide on the Lotus Notes Faculty Senate Bulletin Board.

2.Consideration of a resolution supporting the establishment of a policy allowing faculty to administratively drop students for excessive absences has been tabled pending further review of the effect of a supposed new federal financial aid policy requiring universities to be responsible for repayment of a portion of student aid when students withdraw from courses.

3.Senate committees reviewed assigned sections of the SACS Institutional Report appropriate to their oversight. Committee review of the university’s Millennium Vision strategic plan is on hold pending release of the plan by the President.

4.The ad hoc senate committee appointed to consider the reorganization of university and faculty senate committees is near completion of its charge. A preliminary design of the reorganization proposes the incorporation of many university committees as subcommittees under the current senate committee structure. Each senate committee would then be composed of a chair (senior senator), a vice-chair (junior senator), and committee members with dual service as chairs of each of the university subcommittees.

5.The Faculty Senate has hosted guest presentations at each of the senate meetings this year. These presentations have included: representatives from the bookstore, the SACS steering committee chair, and the interim director of the Longview University Center. Additional presentations being planned include enrollment management, strategic planning, and the university budget process.

6.On December 9th the senate will host the annual Alpha Omega luncheon which recognizes new faculty, recently tenured and/or promoted faculty, and recently retired faculty.

 

University Items:

1.  The SACS Institutional Report is complete!!!

2.   A survey was conducted to obtain information to help determine course and degree program interests for the Longview University Center. The survey revealed that interest was highest for degree programs in nursing, education, business, and computer science.

3.                  President Mabry is proposing an ambitious initiative to offer scholarships for all community transfer students with a 3.5 GPA...scholarships could be continued for these students if they further sought a graduate degree. 4.                  Fall 1999 enrollment: up slightly in total number of students, but down slightly in semester credit hours. 5.              Implementation of the new Poise student records system is continuing with full automation of degree plans/audits projected by the fall of 2000.

UT Southwestern Medical Center at DallasCheryl Silver

1.      The Donald W. Reynolds Foundation has awarded a $24 million grant for cardiovascular clinical research to UT Southwestern, the largest peer‑reviewed grant ever made to the institution. The award, to be distributed equally over a four‑year period, will establish the Donald W. Reynolds Cardiovascular Clinical Research Center. The nationally‑competitive grant will advance research into the prevention and treatment of heart disease caused by atherosclerosis.

2.      Plans are being completed for a new 43,000‑sq. ft. student center to be called the Bryan Williams, M.D. Student Center.

UTMB GalvestonLinda Phillips

UTMB Faculty Senate has sent out the initial version of the Faculty Satisfaction Survey. The pilot date will be compiled with modifications as necessary of the survey itself.

As the University continues to restructure, the Senate has requested discussion from campus administrators regarding Mission Based Management and campus wide service restructuring. We requested the Administrative Task Force for Mission Based Management to include documentation of national organizational administrative activity. This was noted by the Steering Committee and will be incorporated in the MBM Faculty Effort survey.

The Faculty parking was recently changed without notice. We have requested and received membership on the committee which is responsible for these changes.

Attached are sample Memoranda of appointment letters. These are sent by Dr. Judy Carrier, Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs, working in the office of the Dean of the School of Medicine.

Investigation of privacy policies show that policies concerning posted or campus mail, e-mail, telephone and voice mail, fax, office files, and private vehicles on campus center on the idea that anything maintained by the University of Texas Medical Branch can only be used for official UTMB business. To do otherwise is to serve as a breach of policy. Campus traffic is moderated by the city. There is no policy as to who would be able to monitor or enforce policy compliance. While e-mail is monitored in terms of volume, it would take a complaint from a recipient or an excessive amount of volume to consider probable cause for direct monitoring. Probable cause would require a subpoena and search warrant. Current court rulings do protect our activity while on vacation. Phone monitoring or tapping would require a court order. There is no voice mail policy.

UT Health Science Center at HoustonWilliam Schnapp

Progress continues in the area of post-tenure review and in preparation for a SACS site visit in March. Of particular importance is the adoption by the InterFaculty Council of the report and recommendations of its ad-hoc Committee to investigate the Support, Recognition and Reward of Teaching on the UT-Houston HSC campus. This report includes (1) a review of the committee’s efforts to survey opinions of faculty, deans and APT chairs on support, recognition and rewards of teaching, (2) primary characteristics of a supportive teaching culture, (3) committee findings and (4) recommendations.

Recommendations covered such areas as faculty development, technology, hiring practices, as well as promotion and tenure. The InterFaculty Council unanimously adopted this report. The HSC Executive Council has received this report and has requested a definition of teaching excellence and methodologies for evaluating it. The IFC continues to place a high priority on this endeavor.

UT Health Science Center at San AntonioCheryl Staats

1.      Faculty Organization: By laws for the proposed Faculty Senate are being finalized. A vote is planned toward the end of January 2000.

2.      Searches:

The School of Nursing is searching for a Dean of Research and Director of Doctoral Studies.

Interviews are being planned for the eight applicants for the position of Associate Dean for Students. A candidate’s name has been submitted for the position of the Interim Associate Dean for the Undergraduate Program with an announcement expected in the near future. The position of Chair of the Department of Family Nursing Care has been filled.

Medical School: Candidate’s names have been submitted to the President for consideration to fill the position of Dean of the Medical School. An announcement is expected in the near future.

School of Allied Health: Searches continue for the Directors of the Physician’s Assistant Program and the Physical Therapy Program in the School of Allied Health.

3. Post Tenure Review:

A total of 72 individuals were included in the pool for Post Tenure Review. Of those, 70 were reviewed with satisfactory performance results. One individual resigned and one postponed the process for health reasons.

4. Institutional Compliance Committee: One faculty member sits on the committee.

5. Policy for communication media and privacy:

A policy on information security is to go to the Executive Council in the near future for addition to the HOP. There is no policy in media privacy at this time.

6. Policy for inspection of autos on campus by campus police:

Campus police are considered peace officers and hold the same status as any other peace officers. They are bound to uphold local, state and federal laws, statutes and codes.

7. Privacy with regard to e-mail:

a.       VMS Mail folders sit in the user's personal directory and are backed

up like any other data. Those tapes are held about a year.

b.      For POP users, there is not necessarily a back up, because mail is

normally deleted from the server as the user downloads it. Some percentage of

messages do get captured by the backups, e.g. mail that arrives shortly before

the tapes run, or mail accumulating for someone who's on vacation. But this is only a "backup" in terms of restoring the server after a disaster; once a message is downloaded to a POP client there isn't a way to provide any recovery for it. People concerned about confidentiality will want to know about the retention of those few messages that do find their way to tape. If the POP account were based on VMS Mail, those messages would be retained as long as regular VMS user data. The Popstore is backed up separately, and because that tape contains only mail in transit, it is kept long enough for disaster recovery purposes (a week or two).

c.       In Exchange the only backups are short-term tapes for disaster recovery. These are kept for a month at most. When users transfer messages to a personal folder, they no longer exist on the server and the user has effectively taken responsibility for them. The personal folders might sit on a file server that has a backup. The Vice President and Chief Information Officer would be responsible for authorizing the checking of e-mail. An independent technician would be contracted for such a task.

8.      Letters of Appointment and Contracts:

Seven distinctive types of appointment letters are issued to the faculty, administration

and professional staff. Samples will be given to the Committee on Governance.

9.      Evaluation of Vice Presidents:

The President evaluates members of the Executive Committee. The Deans are

evaluated on a 5-year cycle (1 Dean per year in a 5-school campus). The same holds

true for the Vice Presidents, although the cycle is different based on the number of

Vice Presidents. Information is shared with the individual evaluated and placed in the

personnel file.

10.  Transfer of credits:

Transfer of credits is unique to each individual professional school. There are

specific criteria that must be met in each of the disciplines based upon accrediting

agencies’ requirements. The procedures for transfer are specific and can be

determined by contact with the admissions and registrar’s offices for the particular

schools.

Dunnington: It can’t be emphasized enough how important it is to have faculty on the compliance committees.

Nelsen: UT-Dallas’ compliance committee has found new regulations which will not allow beepers or water into labs because of federal rules regarding production of drugs.

Travis: What is the status of law regarding confidentiality of data under federal monies.

Dunnington: We can obtain a copy of the rules and have someone speak on the issue at the next FAC meeting.

Cooley: Because of the influx of comments from academia the rules have been revised, but I don’t have a copy of them.

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Clinic—David Farquhar

Life is generally good at the Cancer Center. The administration is the best it has been in years, and the environment is extremely supportive. Most of the problems stem from success. In-house beds have a high occupancy rate and there are occasionally difficulties in accommodating new patients. The research faculty have been very successful in the grants market and there is a problem finding laboratory space to conduct the work. Construction on a major new research building is scheduled to begin next year. The major issue on the Senate calendar is that of 7-year term appointments vs. tenure. The President has said that he will support whatever the faculty wants. Most of the basic science faculty support a switch to tenure. On the other hand, most of the clinical faculty - which are in the majority - prefer to retain the present term appointment system because they fear that the “bar will be raised” for tenure award. A vote on this issue will occur in the near future.

M. D. Anderson faculty who devote more than 70% of their time to research have been directed to put 30% of their salaries on grants. This policy is now in effect. An unexpected development was the appearance of a clause in the annual contract of everyone affected stating that administration reserved the right to reduce the salary of any faculty member by 30% in the coming academic year if they did not comply with this directive. The Faculty Senate Officers met with senior administration and requested that this clause be removed, pointing out that it was offensive to many faculty and could lead to a legal challenge. After much deliberation, administration agreed to remove the clause - but inserted a new clause stating that all faculty are expected to comply with the directive.

University of Texas Health Science at TylerJerry McLarty

No major advancements or problems have occurred since our last meeting. The faculty chairs, Drs. Stocks and McLarty, met with our President, Dr. Garvey, to discuss the tenure issue. He remains neutral on the subject and suggested that he get us in to see the Chancellor to present our case for tenure. We asked that instead, he write a letter to the Chancellor asking for a change in Regent's Rules to permit tenure or term-tenure at the Health Center in Tyler. The meeting was interrupted and will be continued at a later date.

The local newspaper in Tyler recently reported salaries and raises of administrators at the Health Center. Some administrators got as high as 25% increases. About half the research faculty got a 5% increase, the rest nothing. Clinical faculty is on an incentive plan where salary bonuses are tied to funds generated from their clinical practice and other activities, such as service and teaching and consulting.

We requested that a faculty member be placed on the local Compliance committee. Although the chairman of the Compliance Committee is willing, he said the appointment has to come from the President. We are pursuing this action.

Darcy Hardy, Director of UT Telecampus

  • Distributed UT Telecampus Benefits of Service outlining the benefit of running courses through the telecampus. This is being circulated to all campuses.
  • There is some confusion re library licensing—it will be licensed through a proxy server for courses for the students involved in our programs.
  • Distance education evaluation forms: We have reviewed copies of evaluations from each campus in the development of this form. The form will be emailed to the students, who will email it back to the telecampus, from which the evaluation will be forwarded to the respective campus. Her office is now requesting faculty feedback on the content of the evaluation form before issues of distribution are dealt with.

 
Kellner (UT-Arlington): What is the rationale for Questions 12, 11 and 10. If there is no narrative response, what is the purpose?

Hardy: We just wanted to get a feel of how the student felt about it. 11 and 12 are really geared for the marketing office. All of these questions don’t necessarily directly affect faculty.

Schnapp (UT-Houston): What will you do with all of the points in using this as an evaluation tool? A faculty could score badly on one of these points, and it could affect his overall evaluation. I am concerned with how the evaluations may be interpreted. Is the goal to effectively evaluate telecommunication teaching?

Hardy: It will not be used for that purpose. We were just trying to replicate the kinds of questions used in the traditional evaluation forms on the first page. The second page is to be used for telecampus purposes. The purpose was to first develop an evaluation form, and second to determine how well the class runs in the electronic format.

Nelson: I would recommend that the second page not be sent to the universities. That information is specific to the telecampus and could be interpreted too many ways for a faculty evaluation as that page is not a part of the formal evaluation.

Hardy: Could page 2 be shared with Academic Affairs committees on the campuses. Lackey: I don’t think the second page needs to be evaluated in the context of the individual faculty member with respect to promotion and performance. People may target individual questions rather than look at the overall information.

Hardy: Are these 15 questions similar to the traditional evaluation questions—that’s where they came from.

Liguori: I would expect differences because the delivery of the information is so different. For example, question 7—the interaction would be very different. Ques 6—is very different in a traditional classroom as compared to an on-line classroom.

Page: The instrument lacks design—it looks like a bunch of questions were pulled together form a number of sources. If you designed the instrument, you could determine what it is that you explicitly want to measure. The course will be one thing, the faculty’s performance is another, and there are a number of dimensions between the two that need to be kept in mind. It is difficult to interpret what exactly the questions really mean. Design the question to be aimed at one simple point and get specific data so that the student knows exactly what is being asked. I would recommend a committee be formed of those who develop evaluation tools to do this.

Schnapp: Students want a place where they can say they have learned something—that is not found here.

Hardy: We have talked to Academic Affairs committees at length. One group wants the same questions that are traditionally used.

Moore: Have you asked the campuses if it is ok that this evaluation supersedes the existing evaluation forms? I am concerned that we oversurvey students and ask them the same questions over and over. There is an issue of comparability between existing surveys and this. I would also recommend that the NA option be added so the student can honestly answer what doesn’t apply.

Hardy: We can build in individual departmental questions. We can also build in open-ended responses.

Kellner: A numerical response can’t be given to things that can’t be counted. You could have a narrative series of questions that is tacked onto the objective questions. You want this information as a marketing tool to show how great the telecampus is going to be—but it will move to evaluation for matters of promotion and tenure, and now to students who are asking for the course evaluations to be posted. I would second Page’s suggestion that the questions be designed to obtain specific data/responses.

Lackey: I think you should also ask the students how things compare to the traditional experience, especially since this is being done for the first time.

Nelsen: Have you looked at the University of Washington’s surveys—they have over 53 different universities and provide forms for all class sizes on the telecampus. This might give you something to base your questions on. The tool is well designed and thought out.

Hilley: We have just completed a teaching survey—have you gone to the center for teaching excellence—we are in the process of how you evaluate data as it pertains to an instructor or administrator or student.

Page: We have participated in the growth of the telecampus since the beginning. We have asked for faculty involvement and we have gotten what we have asked for. The protections and boiler plates are there for your protection. People need to get involved so that they are aware of what the telecampus is doing.

Gaulden: the on-line courses takes 3 times the time the traditional course does. Besides the development of the course there are the emails, written assignment, and bulletin boards. If things are specific to one student then email is used, as opposed to using the chat rooms or bulletin boards.

Liguori: I would recommend you have an up front question about what the student expects from the course.

Hardy: The questionnaire has a pretest and posttest. We had asked all faculty to have 10 questions for the pre- and post-test, and then we tacked on 5 questions that were specific to the telecampus.

Schnapp: You want to test whether students thought it was a good experience, the effectiveness of the course, the excellence of the faculty initiative within the course. For excellence do peer review, for effectiveness do validity.

Hardy: The primary goal was to come up with something electronic rather than paper evaluations, so that at the end of the course the student could evaluate on-line. This is the purpose of the first page. But when the faculty is teaching on-line as a part of their teaching load, then it is important that they make the course interactive and well thought out, and that needs to be evaluated.

Dunnington: There are questions related to administrative and technical support—students have different equipment, browsers, etc. Where are the glitches? The course and graphics can appear different depending upon the linkage, hardware, etc that the student has—there is no question dealing with this.

Hardy: Those issues have been solved—we have final approval on the course design and pay close attention to the size of the graphics, etc. This will ensure that all students can download documents without waiting for a long time irregardless of phone lines, browsers, their personal equipment, etc. We have tried to cover everything that is out there. We work with someone in the home office with AOL. We have tried to make everything the lowest common denominator. We also have a network analyst and technical support locally until 5 p.m.; help from AOL is available until midnight.

Gaulden: We already have peer review and faculty oversight in the courses, especially in the MBA. We have almost gone overboard in trying to anticipate all the problems.

Buckman (UT-Pan Am): What are the disadvantages, what isn’t offered. There needs to be a question of what a traditional course gives you that the telecampus doesn’t.

Kellner: Students will miss the contact with each other that they get by interacting with each other in the classroom. It is very difficult to get that connection on-line.

Lackey: I disagree—I have conferences on-line that include them describing themselves, they post pictures, etc., so that they can get to know each other. Their term papers are posted so they can see how each other is developing their ideas. The interaction and knowledge they can get on-line is incredible.

Cooley: Would it be beneficial to have an ad hoc committee of interested individuals to help you design the tool.

Hardy: A group of 3 or 4 from the FAC would be welcome. Our goal is to be very involved in this since so many are already doing this—we need to make the most effective use of the technology and ensure excellent quality in what we put out. We want to attract those students who don’t fit on the campus and who will want to come to us rather than another telecampus.

Travis: I have a question in general about faculty evaluations. I was talking with the president of the student group—they are working with System in developing a faculty evaluation form. Do we need to get involved in this? She wanted to know how the faculty would feel if faculty evaluation summaries were posted on the web site provided by UT System—if there isn’t an issue from faculty this will become a reality. Faculty input is supposed to be solicited on these issues.

Dunnington: We would be willing to develop model language to be used on the campuses, but don’t know if they are following through with this.

Travis: Should be have a joint committee with the students to do this.

Kellner: There will be major changes in the evaluation forms when they are placed on-line. Let the students develop their own evaluation forms and see what they come up with—the idea is that they are taking official/semi-official instruments designed for other purposes and are putting them on-lineCOMMITTEE REPORTS

Health Affairs Committee Report -- Linda Cooley

I.                    Attendees: Linda Cooley (UTHSC-Houston), Bill Schnapp (UTHSC-Houston), Kevin Oeffinger (UTSW), Ross Sherman (UT-Tyler), Rodger Marion (UTMB), J.B. Pace, Bob Malloy (EGI), James Guckian (Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs).

II.                 FOIA: Dr. Guckian indicated that the FOIA was revised after numerous comments from academic institutions and that UT System is now satisfied with the revision. He stated that original data and patient information will not be accessible. He also indicated that federally funded for-profit institutions are under the same rules as non-profit institutions.

III.               Legislation signed by President Clinton 12/1/99 amends the balanced budget act. Indirect payments for GME will still decrease, but will decrease at a slower rate. Direct payments will increase to Texas beginning in October 2000.

IV.              For the next legislative session UT is working on mechanisms to increase funding for faculty salaries.

V.                 Update on Health Science Centers

v     MDA is doing well financially

v     UT-H Medical School is making progress financially with the new IDX billing system

v     UTSA is improving; a new MS Dean soon; $200M for Children’s Cancer Ctr

v     UTSW is doing well

v     UT-Tyler continues to have problems primarily because it is small; new leadership may improve campus

v     UTMB continues to recover from problems. Strategy is to do those things UTMB does best and discontinue programs that lose money or that don’t have enough patients to support the teaching program.

VI.              PTR summary – All academic components have had a PTR with percent of tenured faculty reviewed ranging from 6-21%. A June summary indicates all reviews were completed. 32 faculty had specified areas designated for further development. Three of the HSC had completed their PTR and 2 were still in progress. Several faculty chose retirement over PTR.

VII.            Bob Malloy from EGI:

v     Reported that he is aware of 9 applications for the position of EGI director.

     At retirement, funds must remain in your ORP or TRS account, however, there is no minimum amount that has to be present when you elect to begin retirement benefits. Part of the ORP or TRS accounts can be rolled out prior to retirement. The account does not have to remain open once the retirement benefits are begun. The retirement explanatory document is still in draft form. Mr. Malloy is awaiting information from the OGC.

v     Customer service issues with health care providers continue. The United Health Plan has a 24-hour nurse hotline for questions. EGI is considering a similar position with someone who would be knowledgeable about all the health plans offered by UT System.

v     Delta Dental benefits are being reviewed. EGI is looking at trying to increase the annual benefit to over the current $1000 maximum.

v     The prescription plan is also being reviewed.

VIII.         Rodger Marion (Galveston) suggested that interested FAC members access the UTMB web site www.UTMB.edu and go the site on Mission Based Management to review the information there for a discussion in Health Affairs committee at the next FAC meeting. If this can be done prior to the next FAC meeting, and if members want it, Dr. Stobo is willing to talk with us by teleconference at the next meeting about this item.

 

IX.              Recommendation: The institutional reports be submitted in writing for review by the members and that oral reports be limited to items solicited or approved by the Chair or Executive committee. This is recommended to keep the time spent on institutional reports down as well as keeping them focused on items of interest to all components.

Dunnington: Could everyone prepare your campus reports together and email it a week before the meeting and we will discuss pertinent issues only.

Verklan: I could email everyone out a reminder 7-10 days in advance.

Stokes: We will lose the flavor of the meeting if we only report on what that person thinks is interesting.

Schnapp: What is the goal of the campus reports? If the goal is to know what is going on, then that could be done in written format. There is little time for processing important issues and discussing with each other these issues, and what needs to be done with these issues.

Dunnington: The items that are of interest are assigned to the respective committee. Nelson: We need to continue to converse. As things are discussed and are rephrased, they give you new ideas on what needs to be done at the home campus. Limit the time for reports. Schedule for 2 hours and then have half an hour afterward for general discussion.

Travis: If it is a consideration that we don’t have enough time, could we make Thursday dinner a working dinner? We are taking on more substantive issues than in the past and we may need more time to get the work done.

Silver: The campus reports do contain answers to specific questions that FAC has on issues.

Hilley: Set a specific time limit for each verbal report.

ACTION: Verklan will send out a reminder 7-10 days before the next meeting for the campus reports to be emailed to her so that they can be emailed out to the FAC in their entirety.

X.                 Recommendation: The FAC set aside some time at each meeting for members from the Health components and the Academic components to meet separately to discuss issues germane to only those institutional types.

 

Dunnington: If we split off the groups for an hour or so during the committee meetings, how many Health Sciences people would actually go (no one raised their hands).

Cooley: Health Affairs addresses issues related to insurance, etc., but there is also a wider scope of issues that could be addressed. One possibility would be to take one of those committee meeting times and make it a health component time. That could also be true to the academic side.

Nelson: The tradition of keeping us together is tremendously important. I had not sat down with a medical component before coming to the FAC. It is stimulating to have everyone listening to all of the issues—we are not just academic or health science components. We have opinions about everything. This would be a division that could later separate us apart. If this type of meeting is something that is wanted by a few people, then they could set up a time to come earlier for themselves.

Schnapp: We are already separated. Those people that are interested in health affairs that didn’t attend the meeting missed out on the discussion.

Nelsen: That’s exactly why we should stay together. All of us should have heard that presentation.

Dunnington: We can make a special effort next meeting to invite someone to talk on specific health matters (Stobo, for example). We could have an hour set aside to do is.

Stokes: When a committee is going to have a presentation the FAC should be made aware and then those who wanted to attend could.

Dunnington: We usually do announce when visitors are coming to specific committees. We can be more explicit in what the agenda is for the individual committees.

ACTION: None taken.

Academic Affairs Committee – Corbett Gaulden

Guests: Catherine Parsoneault and Glenda Barron

Members: C. Gaulden, M. Hilley, S. Mottinger, C. Lackey, L. Phillips, R. Liguori

 

Q&A session.

    The “Illinois Study” (also a Florida study) on success of students who go to community colleges. Catherine will get us copies of the studies.

    CC/JC articulation groups have met lately on articulation and transfer. (Junior colleges, community college)

    Current study between UT and feeder CC’s is underway to identify certain “problem” transfer courses.

    oS Advisory committees are being launched now – gen. business and music. Interdisciplinary studies is already launched.

    The accounting group did some stuff last year. Concluded that we should leave acct. in with gen. business. Business deans have been consulted twice by way of TCCEB – deans are looking at the basic 18 hour thing.

    The feasibility study on FOS is due September 2000. We do have to go ahead with the current committees prior to that time. Purpose is to have some experience to feed into the feasibility study.

    Reports are sent by universities back to feeder CC’s on how students who transfer are doing at the universities. Can we get these reports? Go to individual UT campuses for a starter – by March???

    Appears these THECB folks perceive the transfer problem is backwards of the way we perceive it. It seems they are hearing it more from the perspective of the universities complaining about the quality of CC/JC courses. It looks like it’s basically backwards from the way the legislature is perceiving it.

    SACS evaluations of community college faculty insures appropriate credentializing of faculty who may teach core curriculum courses. (Masters and 18 hours). SACS uses same criteria for part time as for full time.

    Transfer problem questions come to THECB about every week or so, but resolution mechanism has only been used twice in history.

    Catherine and Glenda seemed to disagree on the implementation of transfer of individual core curriculum courses.

 

Message from Governance Committee: How is summer teaching done (budgetarily)? Inconsistent from to campus to campus. Inconsistent within campuses? Survey campuses. How is budget determined, etc? Flexible scheduling is a growing phenomenon. What is going on? Is there anything that FAC needs to be concerned about? Relationship to the summer question. Feeling is that administrators are trying to get more for less.

    The Senator Shapleigh letter with respect to the banking study in El Paso was discussed. The issue relates to the impact of that sort of legislative involvement in the research agenda of the university. To be continued . . .

Dunnington: There is 0 data on transfer problems in Texas.

Gaulden: We could shape a group of questions and find the answers to answer the legislature’s concerns.

Dunnington: If the community colleges are sending the reports of how well their students are doing, let’s send the report to the coordinating board and let them review it.

Hilley: There isn’t a 100% involvement in these reports going back to the community colleges. The quality of the reports is awful.

Governance Committee Report – Robert Nelsen

The committee discussed 3 issues – academic and administrative hires, letters of appointment and upward evaluation of administrators. The committee has proposed the following resolutions:

1. Hiring of Academic Administrators

Resolved: University System component Academic Administrative hires (academic officers from Chairs through Presidents) should be conducted in an open manner inclusive of the opinions of affected faculty and administrative members, and should include consultation from external professional sources.

Moore: What are the thoughts regarding interim appointments?

Lackey: Should Chairs be included in this, because I think of myself as a faculty member and I am a chair.

Kellner: The intent is to provide open appointment/consultation with large number of informal faculty groups as much as possible and to prevent closed secret meetings.

Hale: I was anointed as chair, and when asked to do it again I refused until there was full faculty involved in the process. I think this is a good thing so that faculty are supportive of their Chair.

Nelsen: Chairs are called administrators in Regents Rules.

Travis: Where will this resolution go?

Nelsen: It will go to the individual institution to begin discussions. I will give to Joel Dunnington (Chair, FAC) who will speak to Vice Chancellors Sharp and Mullins re distribution.

Sherman (UT-Tyler): Chairs are not academic administrators. My letter of appointment is as a faculty.

Nelsen: According to Regents Rules, Chairs are administrators.

Dunnington: This is stated in 37.435 of Regents Rules.

Dunnington: Can we make an amendment: “…….professional sources external to the component.”

Sherman: The implication of that is that you are now hiring someone from the outside.

Hale: I don’t see that implication. I think that it is good that there is some external review.

Schneider: This will help address incestuous situations that are now in place.

Moore: It is common to have someone appointed as interim and then is put in place.

Change hires to appointments.

Resolved: University System component Academic Administrative appointments (academic officers from Chairs through Presidents) should be conducted in an open manner inclusive of the opinions of affected faculty and administrative members, and should include consultation from professional sources external to the component.

Vote: passes unanimously

Nelsen: We will take up the issue of interim appointments and the issue of the President’s Councils—no records, no notes, no agenda, no faculty consultation. Will look at the possibility of interacting with them in the meeting.

Travis: Can we ask for copies of the President’s meetings?

Dunnington: We have done that, but since they don’t have minutes (not in compliance with state law) we can’t get anything.

2. Letters of Appointment

Letters that notify faculty of appointments have various names and differ greatly from campus to campus, especially in the health components. However, all of the letters should:

1)      Be sent out at the earliest possible date following the August Board of Regents Meeting;

2)      Contain the exact dates of employment;

3)      Contain the phrase “by signing this document I am not waiving any institutional rights.”

Gaulden: What is “institutional rights”?

Stokes: The right to a grievance.

Hale: Then why not just say grieve?

Nelsen: We thought that we needed the larger rights protected, because the campuses are so different and the grievance policies on each are not the same. Administrators would reject it thinking they are being set up for grievance.

Dunnington: MDACC contracts lays out the rules you will obey. If you don’t have to sign a contract how can they say you violated Regents Rules if you haven’t signed. Is it because you cashed the paycheck?

Moore: Are we opening up unnecessary tension? With the compliance policy now in place the faculty are not being forced to go through this, but the staff on contracts are. This may set us up to have to go through this so that administration knows we know what our rights are.

Nelsen: Should we change to not waiving the right to grieve?

Dunnington: Let’s hold this until the next meeting and get those sample contracts Schultz has written in the past.

Travis: OGC has taken out our right to grieve contractual issues. That’s why it’s important to keep it here.

Lois: That’s a good idea to put it on next meeting’s agenda so we can have this discussion with System.

Nelsen: now changed to “By accepting this document I am not waving my right to grieve contractual matters.

Dunnington: With respective to Number 1, if they expect my academic year to be Sept 1, then I would expect the letter to be here before the start of the academic year.

Nelsen: Then we would have to change the meeting dates for the Board of Regents.

Resolution:

2. Letters of Appointment

Letters that notify faculty of appointments have various names and differ greatly from campus to campus, especially in the health components. However, all of the letters should:

1)      Be sent out at the earliest possible date following the August Board of Regents Meeting;

2)      Contain the exact dates of employment;

3)      Contain the phrase “by accepting this document I am not waiving my right to grieve contractual matters”.

Vote: passed unanimously

As to upward evaluation, the Committee chose to focus on:

1)      How deep?

2)      How often?

3)      What form?

4)      For whose eyes?

5)      Presidents?

6)      Purpose?

WE need your upward evaluation forms to be able to evaluate the issues.

Patty Harris (UTSA alternate): a 7th question is what is the impact from the evaluation.

Mottinger: Are you going to disseminate the forms from all of the UT components.

Nelsen: If you ask me for them I will send them to you.

Faculty Quality Committee – Lois Hale

(a) The letter from Dunnington and Sharpe re the faculty satisfaction survey was discussed (draft of letter at end of FAC report)

The RFP was discussed re issues of timing and moving things along. The FAC Executive Committee could review the applications and make recommendations. The date the application is due is being left blank until FQ speaks to Sharpe to resolves issues such as when the RFP goes out, monies, etc.

Proposal: Submit the RFP to Sharpe for distribution to all Chief Academic Officers and Faculty Governance Organizations with a flexible date.

Vote: passed unanimously

(b) The Mechanism of the Survey (Mike Moore)

There have been issues raised regarding the anonymity since a social security number will be needed to verify that the responder is a faculty member. The request to participate will only be asked once. Will need to determine if we have a representative sample of all faculty from all campuses. Using email will make the survey less expensive to distribute, and easier to analyze—can take off the old survey and make an new one easily. We will talk to System to determine if they want to do a pre-survey using paper and pencil asking about the level of comfort re web based surveys before we do this. The old method was quite expensive—in addition to being quite lengthy.

Hale: The survey could also be done on the web and be supplemented with paper. I can’t yet see just doing the web at this time. We will have to do a lot of promotion on our respective campuses to ensure faculty participation. The web also allows you to nag people to fill out the survey.

Dunnington: How do you find everyone’s email address?

Hale: the component institutions will provide those.

Dunnington: Do you follow up with a sample survey to determine demographic differences if you do the web based survey?

Moore: We will need to determine the level of comfort first. The System does not yet have the survey engine developed—will take hundreds of hours to develop. Before we do this we will determine if we can get a representative sample.

Stokes: The insurance sign-up on the web could be that engine.

Moore: But the social security number is linked in that data base and you could be identified.

McLarty (UTHC-Tyler): Shouldn’t it be the person who responds to the RFP who decides how it is implemented?

Hale: We said that it was the responsibility of the System to distribute and collect the surveys.

Criminologist: There is a middle ground—a questionnaire could be posted on the web. It is important to let the faculty know what happened with the last survey—that changes did occur as a result of the survey.

Exit Survey—please provide feedback. This is a previous draft that has been revised. Please email me (Michael Moore, UT-Arlington) with suggestions/comments. This has never been done. We will follow up at the next FAC meeting.

Hale: It was a rider that was passed on a bill at the legislature that required the Coordinating Board to survey faculty who were leaving before Oct 1. They were sent a form by the board (1 page survey) in an attempt to largely look at the reasons why faculty are exiting all state universities/institutions in Texas. When that data is analyzed perhaps we can get their data.

Travis. Was there anything on there regarding PTR?

Hale: No.

Privacy Issues—Cheryl Silver

This relates to all areas including mail, fax, office, files, cares on the campus. Please send any additional information you may have on your respective campus. There is no privacy except in outgoing US mail. Incoming mail is protected only if it has confidential or personal on the outside. If you have private materials in your car, they are also accessible.

Criminologist: 4th amendment search and seizure only applies to police. You are at the mercy of the employer when you are on their grounds.

Hale: the President of the respective campus has to authorize it.

Travis: Not only is the issue of who has the authority, but there has to be a reason presented for why they are looking at the mail, your files, etc. They can’t come in just looking for something.

Hale: What about the confidentiality of the act?

Travis: At what point is the faculty told that this is occurring? How do you know when they are reading the email?

Page: Except for extreme cases of criminal cases, there should be notification. If the policy is in the HOP, then everyone should know what reasonable behaviour is.

Ad hoc committee to work on the telecampus survey instruments: Lois Hale (UT PB), Michael Moore (UT Arlington), Bill Schnapp (UT Houston), Pat Davis (UT Austin)

Meeting adjourned at 3:06.


December 29, 1999 DRAFT

 

The University of Texas System

Office of Academic Affairs and the Faculty Advisory Council

601 Colorado Street

Austin, Texas 78701-2982

512/499-4233 Fax: 512/499-4240

 

December 15, 1999

 

TO: Chief Academic Officers and Faculty Governance Officers

 

FROM: Edwin R. Sharpe, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, and Joel Dunnington, Chair, U.T. System Faculty Advisory Council

 

SUBJECT: Request for Proposals to Conduct a U.T. System-wide Faculty Satisfaction Survey

 

The University of Texas System Faculty Advisory Council with the cooperation of the Office of Academic Affairs is soliciting proposals from University of Texas System faculty interested in conducting a survey of all research, clinical and teaching faculty employed at U.T. System component institutions. The purpose of the survey is to determine the extent to which faculty are satisfied with their jobs.

 

The periodic assessment of faculty satisfaction is essential to the recruitment and retention of first-rate faculty at all University of Texas System components. For this reason, the University of Texas System Faculty Advisory Council (FAC) administered a Faculty Satisfaction Survey (FSS) to U.T. System faculty in April and August of 1993. The FSS was successful in identifying several areas of strength as well as certain problems experienced by faculty throughout the U.T. System. Some six to seven years later, it is essential to reexamine faculty satisfaction in order to identify trends, to incorporate new information arising from activities of the U.T. System Committees on the Status of Women and Status of Minorities, and to examine many recent development potentially affecting U.T. System faculty job satisfaction. Developments of particular significance include new state legislation, financial restructuring at the health components, and initiative in the areas of distance learning, computing, and information-resources technology.

 

Please distribute the attached Request for Proposals to any and all faculty who might be interested in constructing the survey instrument, analyzing the data, and preparing the final report. The U.T. System Office of Academic Affairs in conjunction with the Office of Information Resources will handle the actual distribution and collection of the surveys.

 

Please contact ????????? if you need additional information.

 
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