Minutes of the Wichita State University Faculty Senate
Monday, November 14, 2011
CH 126 3:30 pm
Members Present: Adler, Barut, Besthorn, Bolin, Caruthers, Close, Decker, DeSilva, Hull, Driessen,
Hemans, Henry, Horn, Jacobs, Klunder, Kuman, Lewis, Matveyeva, Miller, Moore-Jansen,
Mosack, Pulaski, Rokosz, Russell, Skinner, Solomey, Thompson,
Members Absent: Bryant, Gibson, Mandt, Mukeerjee, P. Smith, Yeager
Members Excused: Celestin, Johnson, Rillema, Ross, M Smith
Summary of Action:
1. Accepted Committee Appointments and New Senators (see Committee reports)
2. Accepted and forwarded to Career Services the following: ““The Senate requests that Carrier Services send an email to all faculty, asking them to opt-in to the Hire-a-Shocker mailing list, with the understanding that whomever opts-in can opt-out any time later”
I. Call to Order: President Steven Skinner called the meeting to order at 3:30pm
II. Informal Statements and Proposals:
Senator Close requested the Senate pause for a moment of silence in respect for Les Anderson, who died over the weekend. Les had been a member of the Wichita State faculty since 1977 and a former member of the Senate as well. He was well known and respected within the community.
III. Approval of the Minutes
The minutes of the November 14, 2011, meeting of the Faculty Senate were approved with no dissent.
IV. President’s Report
President Skinner provided the following information to the Senate:
1. Kansas Board of Regents:
The Presidential Search Committee (PSC) will be announced Wednesday, November 16. The PSC will have a deadline of April 30, 2012, to provide an unranked list of names of 4 to 5 candidates to the KBOR. Faculty members on the search committee will be invited by the Board.
The COFSP will meet this Wednesday, Nov. 16, with Transfer and Articulation issues being the primary focus.
2. General Education – General Education worksheets distributed to the academic departments have been returned. President Skinner thanked all of departments for their rankings and ideas. Many suggestions for wording of the mission of general education and some suggestions for learner outcomes were received. The results of the rankings have been tabulated and there was clear agreement that critical thinking, oral and written communication, and problem solving were the three most important outcomes of the general education experience.
The next steps are to clearly define these outcomes, determine ways of assessing them, and prepare proper descriptions of the outcomes. This will be brought to the Senate for its consideration.
3. Scholarly and Professional Integrity training for Graduate Students. At the first meeting this year’s Faculty Senate, Abu Masud, Associate Dean of the Graduate School, presented a proposal developed and endorsed by the Graduate Council. The proposal contained wording that would require each department with a graduate program to provide training regarding “scholarly and professional integrity.” The authority of the Graduate School to require such a curricular change has been challenged. The central question is can the Graduate School make a general curricular requirement, or rather does each program have the sole authority with regard to curricular matters? Lengthy discussion followed. Senator Moore-Jansen stated that according to Wichita State’s Policies and Procedures curricular changes are clearly the responsibility of the individual program. Senators Caruthers, Klunder, and Lewis offered other suggestions and ideas, but no one questioned Senator Moore-Jensen’s opinion of where the authority resides on curricular matters. The resolution by the Senate was that the Graduate School would bring the proposal to the Faculty Senate and if the Senate agrees a meeting of the graduate faculty will be scheduled to consider the proposal.
4. Faculty involvement in commencement. President Skinner asked the members of the Senate for suggestions of how the faculty might have a greater role during commencement programs. Several suggestions followed: a. Invite faculty to form a line off-stage to shake hands with the students from their department, b. Have the faculty form a tunnel for students to pass through before and after the ceremony, and c. Allow faculty to hood their MS students. The president took those suggestions and said that he would investigate the feasibility of any of these and bring the matter back to the Senate.
5. Status of the Faculty Senate Committees: President Skinner reported on the primary activities of the Senate standing committees.
a. Planning and Budget Committee is working with the provost to develop the procedure for evaluating the facilities planning proposals submitted by the colleges of the University. The proposals are not available on-line yet, but the provost has indicated that they will be eventually. An “outside” firm will be contracted to assist in the final selection process.
b. The Academic Affairs Committee has a full slate of issues to consider. These include the following: double counting of credit hours for dual majors, policies for granting a grade of incomplete, grade replacement policies, and requirements for WSU hours in the major.
c. The General Education Committee is examining the policy and practice of general education courses being used in the major and the creation of a pilot program of assessing critical thinking.
d. The Faculty Affairs Committee is going to reconsider the Research Faculty issue. The committee evaluated a proposal from the associate provost of research last year calling for the creation of a research faculty position at Wichita State. That proposal was returned to the associate provost without a decision, but asking for the matter to be discussed with the faculty of the College of Engineering for endorsement, or suggestions for revisions. The modified proposal could then be resubmitted to the committee. No revised proposal has been resubmitted. However, the topic was raised again at a recent meeting of the Research Council. As it stands now Wichita State has no research faculty position, but in the past year people have been hired with that position title. Bill Hendry, chair of biology, provided his opinion to the Research Council in support of the creation of the new faculty category.
V. Committee Reports
A. Rules --Senator Caruthers, standing-in for the chair of the Rules Committee, provided the following list of nominations from the Rules Committee for additional members to fill vacant positions:
Academic Affairs - Nick Solomey, LAS Math/Natural Sciences, 2013
Honors -- Holger Meyer, LAS Math/Natural Sciences, 2012
Scholarship & Student Aid -- Douglas Parham, Health Professions, 2012
Undergraduate Research -- Steven Oare, Fine Arts, 2014
SENATORS; Denise Celestin, At Large, 2012
Ray Hull, Health Sciences, 2013
Gary Toops, LAS Humanities, 2013
The entire slate was accepted unanimously.
VI. Old Business
1. Proposed changes to Section 4.13 Policies and Procedures (3rd reading) – Section 4.13 had been discussed at great length in the previous meeting of the Senate and two modifications regarding the “granting of tenure to new faculty hires” and the term “adoptive placement” had been agreed upon. In the time since that meeting during the course of including the new language in the section, it was determined that perhaps the section needed substantial revision. Senator Hemans presented the proposed major revision of section 4.13 that essentially would be a verbatim addition of the KBOR Tenure Policy as well as a link to the KBOR website containing their policy. After a great deal of discussion the mood of the Senate appeared to be to included the proposed link but to modify Section 4.13 in such a way to remain a Wichita State Policy that would be in alignment with the current KBOR policy on tenure.
2. Hire-a-Shocker: Following lengthy discussions of the matter, Senator Lewis offered a motion that the Office of Career Services (OCS) could obtain the data base of faculty emails and use that to alert the faculty of activities that are pertinent to the students of their programs. Once the OCS receives the database they will email a broadcast message to all faculty members announcing the fact that they will receive these updates and that they can opt-out of the system; then or at any time in the future. The President suggested that “The Senate requests that Carrier Services send an email to all faculty, asking them to opt-in to the Hire-a-Shocker mailing list, with the understanding that whomever opts-in can opt-out any time later” The Senate accepted the proposal and the President will notify Career Services.
VII. New Business
1. Senator Caruthers presented a report on the activities of the University IT Strategic Planning Committee. The committee has been formed to determine the long range vision for technology at Wichita State. Mike Woods chairs the committee. The committee is currently developing a set of questions for a technology survey that will go to everyone on the campus. It will conduct a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis relative to technology. The committee report on the long-range goals is due in March or April of 2012.
2. Proposed changes to the Section 4.14 of the University Policies and Procedures were distributed prior to the meeting. This section will be considered again at the next meeting.
VIII. As May Arise
1. It was pointed out that the extraneous wording contained in the University Policies and Procedures Section 2.15 that was corrected by the Senate in a previous meeting, remained in the revised version of the document. President Skinner said that he was aware of the oversight and that corrective action had been taken.
2. The question was raised as to why the University was no longer publishing a telephone directory. It seems that the University administration has chosen to go with an online directory as a way to save money.
The meeting of the Faculty Senate was adjourned at 5:03 pm.
Submitted by Walter Horn
Secretary of the Faculty Senate