Draft to be approved 4/24/13

Metropolitan State University of Denver

 Faculty Senate

Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

3:20pm – 4:50pm

Tivoli 320 A, B & C

 

MINUTES

 

Attendees:  Balogh, Beery, Butnor, Carnes, Collette, Cook, Davis, DelCastillo, Denn, Duburguet, Dyhr, Ethier, Evans, Flemon, Forgash, Ghosh, Gibson, Giordano, Glatz, Hallam, Hasley, Hernandez-Julian, Hill, Hoffman, Holloway, Huang, Hutto, Izurieta, Jackson, Jacobs, Jayasanker, Johnson, Klimek, Komodore, Krasner, Lamb, Liu, Londen, Lubinski, Lyons, Malpass, Matthews, McKenzie, Medina, Monico, Mowder, Murphy, Odell, Ortiz, Pantos, Pleis, Preuhs, Pytlinski, Reimer, Rogers, Ropp, Rother, Rucki, Sahami, Saxe, Schatz, Sgoutas, Sidelko, Stephens, Svonkin, Szypulski, Tollefson, Vogt, Wagner, Weber, Worster, Yeh, Zajdowicz, Zhu   Guests: Ayesse, Golich

 

 

I.                      The Senate was Called to Order at 3:37:00 pm.

 

II.                  Approval of Previous Meetings Minutes (at Senate Website), VOTE.

                         A Vote was called to approve the minutes of 3/20/13.   

 The Minutes were approved with a vote of 41:2. 

 

III.               Announcements/Updates

-           The Faculty Senate and the Union are holding a Tenure Rights Town Hall meeting on Wednesday, April 17 at 3:30pm in St. Cajetan's. Senators were asked to share this information with their department faculty.

-           The Distinguished Service Awards committee are still taking nominations until May 3rd . There is information at the Faculty Senate website. Please take the opportunity to nominate a colleague.

-           President Sahami welcomed Michael Kilpatricks, the university’s new Ombudsman. His office is in CN 306.

-           The Online Learning Task Force needs one faculty senate representative. If interested, please contact President Sahami.

-           The Veterans/Military Affairs Task Force needs one FS Representative. This is another great opportunity for service and to build policy that affects veteran students.

-           The May 18th Commencement Program needs Faculty marshals. Please contact President Sahami or Brooke Gerber to sign up. Regalia is provided as well as a $50 gift card.

-           The Faculty Senate Diversity Committee has finished the climate survey and the results should be ready next fall.  President Sahami thanked the committee for helping to establish the survey as a tri-annual event and all participants for the good response rate.

 

IV.              Committee Report:  - FS Curriculum Committee http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/FSCCReportApril102013.pdf

               Senator Hernandez presented his last report for the year.

 

Report to Metropolitan State College of Denver Faculty Senate

Faculty Senate Curriculum Committee

April 10, 2013

 

 

Unless otherwise noted, packets are approved unanimously.

LAS 121333b CAS

Modifications to courses in Broadcasting.

 

SPS 121326a RECR

Creation of a Certificate in Outdoor Recreation

 

SPS 121329 TED

Teacher Education now divided into three departments, and some minor revisions

 

   Discussion was called. There was none.

 

Curriculum approved unanimously by the Faculty Senate Curriculum Committee is automatically approved by the Senate unless there is a question posed by a Senator on the Senate floor.

 

   President Sahami accepted the report on behalf of the Senate.

 

   President Sahami recognized the Faculty Senate Curriculum Committee for the truly outstanding work they have done this year. He asked the member to stand so that the Senate could show them their appreciation.

 

V.                 PRESENTATION, DISCUSSION and VOTE:  CAPP Adjustments for Senior Experience Courses. - FS Welfare Committee (http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/032013/SrExpDesig.pdf )

 Senator Matthews, Faculty Welfare Committee Chair, confirmed that the committee decided to stand by their recommendations made at the last meeting and they have not changed them. The Committee wished to allow them to be debated, considered and voted on by the Senate. The vote would be in two parts: a) Should CAPP adjustments remain the vehicle to make senior experience changes; and b) all faculty CAPP adjustments should be co-signed by the department chair.

 

 A discussion was opened for the general assembly.

 

 Senator Hernandez, Economics, spoke from the Curriculum Committee perspective to Motion #1 and the email he had sent earlier to the Senate. The Committee believes that senior experience should be modified through the Base Petition process rather than CAPP adjustment process much like a multicultural or general studies designation that is a graduation requirement. He commented that BASE petitions are going through faster than CAPP adjustments.

 

In answer to President Sahami’s question that after the BASE petition is approved, a CAPP adjustment is still required, Senator Hernandez agreed that it did but what he did not know was if the approved BASE petition change would go to the top or the bottom of the CAPP adjustment pile.

 

 Senator Svonkin, English, said that his department faculty expressed concern to him that any faculty member can make these CAPP adjustments so there would be no way to control or normalize the decision making and overturning it or not. He would like to hear more on the rationale of that.

 

 Senator Weber, English, also served on the Curriculum Committee and commented that there seemed to be a fair amount of discussion on what the senior experience is and what should be done with it and whether or not it should be the way it is but that as it currently is it is a university requirement which means that it should be adjusted by means of a BASE appeal. It is concerning that this aspect is being addressed in a way that is avoiding the basic discussion about the feelings on senior experience and potentially eroding it by suggesting it is acceptable to simply alter it by a CAPP adjustment.

 

 Senator Worster, Music, asked a question about Motion #2 and the signature line on the CAPP adjustment form that requested the department chair’s or authorized signature and that he had always believed that the authorized signature was the department chair and regarding Motion #1 he and his department feel that changes for senior experience should only be made through BASE petitions.

 

 Senator Balogh, Engineering Technology, commented that in her department Program Coordinators and full-time faculty are eligible to sign. The Registrar was sent a list of names of those who could sign. She added that she was a member of the Curriculum Committee and that she agreed with Senator Hernandez’s comments. What had not been mentioned was accreditation review and that Engineering had a very rigorous senior experience CAPstone course criteria and putting that kind of discretion in the hands of faculty was problematic.

 

 Vice-President Ortiz, Journalism and Technical Communications, asked if there was any discussion on what kind of courses could be adjusted for senior experience. Where it would not make much sense to adjust a 1000-level course but a 4000-level course substitution would be comparable.

 

 Senator Klimek, History, asked that if the Curriculum Committee viewpoint is supported by the vote she wanted to know if students who had been told their course would be accepted would be ‘grand-fathered’. The question was referred to Senator Hernandez.

 

 Senator Hernandez spoke to the communication sent out by AVP Thompson that if 4000-level courses met the university’s senior experience criteria they should be granted through the BASE petition. The Curriculum Committee working with the General Students sent back over 100 packets last year and if the process was approached pro-actively the need for the bulk of these could be eliminated.

 

  The vote was called. Senator Matthews read the motion into the record:

 

 Motion 1: Senior Experience requirement fulfillment should be able to be modified via CAPP adjustment.

 

      A = Approve Senior Experience requirement fulfillment via CAPP adjustment.

B = Oppose Senior Experience requirement fulfillment via CAPP adjustment.

 

 The motion passed by a vote of 31 to 27.

 

 Motion 2: In order to protect faculty, all CAPP adjustments done regarding senior experience should be co-signed by the faculty member as well as the department chair.

 

 Vote was called.

 

 The motion passed with a vote of 53 to 4.

 

VI.              PRESENTATION, DISCUSSION and VOTE:  Timing of Completion of General Studies Requirement. -FS General Studies Committee (http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/GSTimelineCompletion.docx

 Senator Wagner, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, General Studies Committee Chair, provided the rationale of scaling back and adding flexibility to the policy that was approved by the Senate last year. With the new General Studies curriculum, enforcement of the long-standing policy that written, oral communication and math needed to be completed within 30 hours was relatively weak. Consequently, if, after 45 hours, these requirements were not met, students would only be able to enroll in these courses. The Curriculum and General Studies Committees see this as an issue and this proposal is a way to make it more flexible by moving it to 60 hours where students would be required to take and complete at 45 hours.

 

 A discussion was opened for the topic.

 

 Senator Davis, Math and Computer Sciences, commented that if this change was made suddenly, there would be thousands of students coming to fulfill their General Studies math courses and her department does not have the manpower to cover it and could the change be done gradually.

 

 Senator Wagner replied that this change will only apply to students under the new General Studies policy. This need had been address and there is a commitment to make those courses available.

 

 President Sahami clarified that when the General Studies package was passed approximately two years ago there was a rule that all the skills courses had to be done by 45 units and Dr. Ruch shared his calculations of the impact on the Math Department. This current proposal is helping to address some of that issue and moving the absolute enrollment deadline to 60 units with an advising component as well so that at 45 units, students are strongly encouraged and given top priority to sign up. This was the response to Dr. Ruch’s concern.

 

 Senator Wagner commented that this is different from other new policies that take effect for all students, i.e., the NC policy, but this language is specific to the new General Studies program. Quantitative Literacy does not apply to the old General Studies because that was a General Studies Level I Mathematics requirement. This policy will only apply to those in the new program.

 

 The vote was called and President Sahami asked Senator Wagner to review the highlights.

 

 Senator Wagner reviewed the changes.

 

      A = Approve General Studies Timeline Completion proposal

                        B = Oppose General Studies Timeline Completion proposal

 

 The motion passed with a vote of 60 to 4.

  

VII.           ELECTIONS: Faculty Senate Representative to the Post Tenure Review Committee     

 

 Senator Ropp, Psychology, Elections Committee Chair took the podium to conduct the vote.

One candidate for the position is Senator Hernandez.

 

 A call for nominations from the floor was made. There were none.

             Senator Hernandez was appointed by acclimation. 

 

VIII.        PRESENTATION and DISCUSSION: Majoring and Minoring in Different Disciplines in the Same Department. -FS Academic Policies Committee

  Senator Izurieta, Modern Languages, Academic Policies Committee Chair, acknowledged the contributions of the Curriculum Committee on this proposal.

 

The Academic Policies Committee suggestion was a simple solution to the current Catalog language that causes the most confusion of what a discipline is found in the second half. An involved solution could be that departments would have to include in a substantive curriculum change the information about how they are housing more than one discipline in their department and list which combinations would not be allowed. This list would be included in the student catalog. The alternative is to erase all language about ‘different disciplines’ completely. Concerns were expressed but the language that states that a student cannot use a course for both a major and a minor would alleviate and all majors and minors are already listed in the student catalog. The only other option students would have would be to go through the Individual Degree program which already has an approval process.

 

 A discussion was opened.

 

 Senator Pytlinski, Art, wanted to re-verify that if a student majors and minors in those disciplines but there are courses required in both would it be okay to substitute a different course in its stead.

 

 Senator Hernandez, Economics, commented that students are already allowed, to a degree, to major and minor in the same discipline by having an extended major which is an option in the way that is allowed by the present curriculum process. The weakness of this proposal is that CAPP adjustments can address course overlap but it should not be a huge problem.

 

 President Sahami asked the Senate to share this proposed language change with their departments.

 

IX.             PRESENTATION and DISCUSSION: Administrative Drop Policy. -FS Academic Policies Committee (http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/AdministrativeDropPolicyProposal.docx )

 Senator Izurieta, Modern Language, Academic Policies Committee Chair, presented their Administrative Drop proposal that allows students registered in a course but are not present the first week of class and do not demonstrate participation in the Add/Drop period for online courses may not be guaranteed enrollment in the class. This policy will not be obligatory but does provide faculty with the mechanism to drop absent students.

 

 Senator Izurieta reviewed the highlighted areas of the proposal which included that there was no requirement to drop but students should check on ConnectU for status; departments should use waitlists or whatever system they use to manage student attrition, and take attendance at least for the first week of class; and then to include information about this procedure in class schedule notes that should be put upon the webpage of each department.

 

This should be included in the syllabus and would also apply and be coordinated to co-requisite classes. Instructors must send the request to the appropriate office or department which has not yet been determined and must be completed prior to the date of full tuition refund which is typically the first day of the first week of class.

 

 The discussion of the proposal was opened.

 

 Senator Worster, Music, asked if the committee had considered the financial aid ramifications of this policy change and how faculty who use the option may not be held responsible for the repercussions.

 

 Senator Schatz, Psychology, confirmed that the drop mechanism can be used against a student’s will.    

 

 Vice-President Ortiz, Journalism and Technical Communications, asked if the university would be willing to send out a notice in advance if this policy was passed. Students who did not attend the first week may not have seen a syllabus.

 

 Senator Balogh, Engineering, asked if there is a way to put this in the university catalog.

 

 President Sahami asked that any modifications to the proposal by the committee be highlighted in the new document to be circulated to the Senate for the next meeting.

 

X.                 PRESENTATION and DISCUSSION: Purple Book Revisions. -FS Curriculum Committee(http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/SectionVDProposal.docx and http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/Proposed SectionVD-G.docx )

 Senator Hernandez, Economics, Curriculum Committee Chair, introduced the proposal that follows the section that was changed regarding the Federal Credit Hour regulation inclusion into the Purple Book. This proposal covers the subsequent section that lays the ground work for rules for courses that do not exist under the typical regular course syllabus process.

 

 Senator Hernandez reviewed the outline of the areas in Section V D, E, and F that have been revised to be V D and E.

 

 Motion 1 Adopt the proposed changes and to align the rest of the Purple Book to reflect them.

 Motion 2 That since the co-op language is being removed from the Purple Book that departments with in programs or courses to replace that term with internship without going through the substantive curriculum process which would normally be required.

 

 The topic was opened up for discussion.

 

 Senator Wagner addressed the language of co-operative education and how this proposal will bring alignment. In the last few years the name of the Co-operative Education was changed to the Office to the Internship Center and then to the Applied Learning Center.

 

  A discussion was called but there were no questions or comments from the General Assembly. This item should return to the Senate for a vote on the two motions.

 

XI.              PRESENTATION and DISCUSSION: Handbook Language for Category II and III Faculty. -FS Welfare Committee (http://www.msudenver.edu/senate/assets/pdf/attachm/2013/041013/CategoryIIandIIIFaculty.doc

  Senator Matthews, Music, Welfare Committee Chair, remarked that the committee sent comments to the Provost regarding who has the ultimate hiring authority. The wording in the document they received states that the chairs do the hiring but the committee were not sure that that is actually what takes place when it is the Dean who decides if there is enough money to hire and a response has not yet been received from the Provost on this question. So the document is not entirely complete but the committee was asking departments to discuss and return with comments. The main impetus for the change was due to the new law that was passed that will allow for the university to offer multi-year contracts to Category II faculty. The gist of the law is that after three years of teaching and if faculty were not in a retreat position, the Category II faculty can apply for a three year contract and renew every three years.

 

 Discussion was turned over to the Senate floor.

 

 Senator Butnor, Category II Faculty Senate Representative, represents 85 full-time, non-tenured faculty. She reported that this change was not brought to their attention by the Senate’s Welfare Committee and she expressed her disappointment and she heard about it on March 22nd when President Sahami forwarded the document to them all. Since Spring Break she has been working on getting feedback, and setting up a task force and she will be meeting with the Welfare Committee on Friday. She asked for the Senate’s patience and she pointed out that this was not a tweaking of language but was all new language.

 

 She pointed out two areas of concern at the bottom of page 2 which spoke of the annual comprehensive review which is redundant on the department level. The institution of a review process across the board may be problematic when the very definition of Category II was, what she considered, a demotion from a Visiting Assistant Professor to a Lecturer, default workload from four to five classes, stripped of any responsibility for service or scholarship, and no increase in pay but increase in workload. Since the position was defined as teaching she was wondering what the need was for the annual review including a narrative and annotated CV on top of a teaching evaluation.

 

 In point #6 she pointed out that this would be tracked by AAVP and HR and that the level of bureaucracy above and beyond the department level was concerning. Additionally, the lack of any due process with no appeals protection for Category II was quoted.

 

There was further discussion with Senator Matthews.

 

             Senator Svonkin, English, commented that when the Category II faculty option was first entertained he spoke against it because he felt that a permanent second class citizenship was not healthy. He felt most Category II should be converted to tenure-track. He wanted to know statistically what has happened with the 4/4 vs. 5/5 workload and service load. He knows of four Category II faculty who are the main advisor for their club, have put on a major undergraduate conference every year, etc. and they teach 5/5. He spoke about their burnout factor, morale, how the workload decisions are made and if there is a transparency to this system. Before he votes on this he requested a survey of this group. He believes that, if faculty think this is a good thing, they are deluded and that the possibility remains of an additional class begin added to all faculty workload.

           

 Brandon Matthews commented on the surveys that have already been conducted over the last two years. The response was approximately 75% the first year and 50% for the second survey and roughly half of those respondents reported that they taught 5/5s. The benefits of this new document were that it outlines how Category II can transition to a tenure-track.

           

 Senator Svonkin, English, responded that he did not want to place blame but this system could be very political, felt the current permanent sub-class system is inhumane, wants to see the two new survey results from the climate survey and to hear from the Provost on how these decisions are made. He needs more information and to perhaps revisit this issue because he thinks a mistake has been made.

 

 President Sahami clarified that the way the document came to the Senate was that it was sent to the Handbook Committee for a vote and he pointed out at that time to the Handbook Committee that the faculty had not vetted it. He sent it to the Welfare Committee and contacted the Category II and III faculty to protect due process.

 

 Senator Beery, Journalism and Technical Communications, looked at the document under Category II Faculty B V and III regarding Student Ratings of Instructions. She represents the Affiliate Faculty and Category II and she explained a problem that she had with SRIs. She believes SRIs are too powerful a tool if there was no check for them and the check should be faculty. She would like to see the chair of her department, a tenured professor in her department and then two professors outside her department review her SRIs. If two of them (50%) can say it was an off-the-wall comment, vindictive, and not indicative of a systemic problem with the faculty, it could be redacted.

 

XII.           Adjournment

 A Vote was called for adjournment.

 The Senate was adjourned at 04:59:00 pm.

 

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