Index of Topics –  November 7, 2005

Shift of responsibility re review of podium design:  discussion

Revisions to Faculty Handbook re retirement age:  motion

First Year Experience (FYE) – Discussion and Report

 

 

WESTERN WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

FACULTY SENATE MINUTES

Regular Meeting – November 7, 2005

 

 

Bill Lyne, President called the 2005-2006 Faculty Senate to order at 4:01 p.m.  Thirty-one (31) people were present including twenty-seven (27) Senators, two (2) ex officio members, and one (1) recorder (See attached roster).  

 

Approval of Minutes of October 24, 2005

Senators approved the minutes of October 24, 2005 with minor amendments. 

 

Items from the Chair

President Lyne reported on several matters: 

·    A first draft of the Parking and Transportation Services Mission Statement, prepared by George Pierce and the Transportation Committee was distributed to Senators for review.

·    As a result of discussions with George Pierce, Lyne confirmed that an advisory committee of faculty, staff and students will recommend parking fees in a document that comes first to the Senate before going to President’s Council; after-hours parking is also under review.

·    Jerry Boles will keep the Senate updated on national appeals underway to the Justice Department about the extension of a wiretap law.  Attempts are being made to extend the phone wiretap to include email messages, and Justice Department is attempting to demand that people make email as accessible as the telephone in terms of “wire tapping”.  American Council on Education and other non-profit societies involved in advancing higher education have filed a petition with the U.S. Ct. of Appeals in D.C. to get Higher Ed exempted from application of this ruling.  Lyne and Lorraine Kasprisin will keep the Senate informed.

·    Boles reported that high long distance telephone charges currently help subsidize certain departmental data lines.

 

Items from the Administration

·    University President Karen Morse confirmed her meeting with the Bellingham Business Forum this week at which one of the speakers will discuss the kinds of changes Whatcom County is seeking economically and population wise, as well as the impact of waterfront development on Western and on the county. 

·    Morse expressed her appreciation to faculty who participated in Western’s “Really Big Weekend”, an event that served as a showcase for Western. 

·    Morse reported that EEOC’s training on sexual harassment was extremely informative.

·    Provost Bodman delivered a report on his rationale for tying the creation of a FYE seminar to the allocation of new faculty positions within departments.  Bodman responded to Senator’s questions during an extended discussion on the topic later in the Agenda.

 

AGENDA - ACTION ITEMS

Reading of Standing Committee Minutes (Exhibit B):   

The following minutes were reviewed and accepted by the Senate: 

Academic Coordinating Commission, 10/18/05

Academic Technology Committee, 10/12/05

Senators plan to vote at the next Senate meeting on a motion which shifts a responsibility from University Planning Council regarding the design of classroom podiums.  The Executive Council will suggest language to the effect that “the Academic Technology Committee’s charge will include responsibility for the review of the design of classroom podiums, including the technology component.” 

University Planning Council, 10/12//05    


 

 

MOTION FROM THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL:  REVISIONS TO THE FACULTY HANDBOOK:

The Faculty Senate unanimously passed a motion from the Executive Council to revise page 28 of the Faculty Handbook, XIV. D. to eliminate phrasing defining retirement age (deletions struck-through, new material underlined):

XIV.    Retirement  (Faculty Handbook, page 28)  

          A.    , B., C. (no change)

          D.    A faculty member retires at the end of the academic year in which he/she reaches the age of 70.  However, aA faculty member may elect to retire at the earliest age specified for retirement by Federal Social Security Law.  Likewise, a faculty member may be retired for reasons of health and/or disability at an earlier age.  Before making a decision to retire or to retire early, before age 65, a faculty member should check what benefits he/she will receive.

          (remainder unchanged)

 

DISCUSSION

GUR Discussion – First Year Experience (FYE)

o   Senators asked about the deployment of resources to support GUR revisions, particularly in the light of significant national higher education reports which have focused on the failure of students to transition from the first to the second year. 

o   Senators reviewed FYE history:  in 1998, Marie Eaton chaired committee to look at FYE and attempt to provide a small class environment wherever possible for first year students.  The local response was the creation of Freshman Interest Groups (FIGs) in 1999.  Today’s question is how can we improve on the FIG?  Emerging first of all from that discussion was the possibility of improving the First Year Experience (FYE) by providing First Year Seminars, and the second idea was the possibility of developing Second Year Writing (SYW) courses.

o   Provost Bodman has opted to fund the First Year Seminar approach in tying these to the new position allocations as he believes freshman year is the most critical year of existence in the university.  The FYE attempts to provide an enriched intellectual environment in the first year rather than warehousing students in large classes. 

o   Bodman has attempted to fund the FY seminars in a practical incremental manner by placing a “tax” on new position allocations. If a department would prefer to develop a SYW, that is okay too, but Bodman believes the FY Seminar is a greater priority. 

o   Bodman emphasized that it is not intended that the newly hired faculty member will teach the course.  It is a matter for the department or the college to decide how to develop this.

 

Senators respond:

Ø Challenges:  CBE never sees freshman -- they see only the 200 and 300 level student.  Students have to take 90 credits before being admitted to CBE.  However an FYE could still be offered.  Discussion in ACC will create a new “117 “.  Why is it so difficult to get the FYE information out there?  Because up to now done purely on the good will of the departments, and may be similar to the discontinued Liberal Arts Option.

Ø Courses for Frontline Faculty:  How will this be different?  Bodman responded that the funding for Lib Arts option generated 8 courses taught by adjuncts.  The intention is to get tenure and tenure track faculty in the classroom.  He emphasized that the allocation of new positions was in no way related to funding.  As for guaranteeing that such a course will be taught by frontline faculty, that is part of the agreement with the Deans.  Bodman emphasized that he does not accept the premise that judgment is based on the number of FTE.

Ø Accountability:  Will there be some type of accountability that these classes are accomplishing their goals?  What about the shift of faculty in large departments?  How can FYE be impacted with so few new lines?  Bodman emphasized the cross-subsidy which goes into areas; very few new resources will need to be diverted.

Ø Students get advisement: Bodman suggested that one of the flaws in the way that we operate is, for example, that a student will want to declare as a major but may not see anybody from the program for over two years.  It would be healthy to create something in the first year so they know what the major entails.

 

Ø Flexible Plan:  We are about to test market this way of creating FYE courses, and may reach 750 out of 2000 students.  We can leave it for a couple of years to see how it works.  If we want we can shift new resources into 2d year writing courses.  We are not focusing here on retention.  If we wanted to we could do that simply by bringing in better students.  The intention is to improve the quality of first year experience and connect students to the academic environment.  We have Honors already for extremely high achievers; and we have the FIGs in place for approximately 300 students; now we will have the FYE for many of the rest of the freshman.  Around 50% of students will have one of those 3 opportunities.  High risk students are not in the forefront of this focus.

Ø Not related to SCH.  Bodman emphasized again that he has never said that SCH is the “coin of the realm”, so has no idea why that is being taken as the be all and end all.  That is only one factor.  He believes in a much more qualitative indicator rather than a quantitative indicator.  Bodman reported that other factors that are considered in allocating positions devolve to the deans, and include strategic objectives, and accreditation objectives, or filling holes prior to accreditation.  There is no single metric, and may vary from dean to dean and college to college. 

Ø How Students Find FYE:  Kris Bulcroft will actually determine how students are directed into these classes; there are potentially 10 sections next fall, with fewer than 30 students each. With the FIGs it has been “first come first served”.  One Senator suggested that having a type of “pre-enrollment” where students indicate the ideas of the classes they would like to take in their second year might help solve the logistic nightmares connected with enrollment and be a way of boosting retention rates.  Bodman agrees completely and noted we are the only one of the 6 baccalaureates in WA that does not pre-enroll.  Why can’t we do it, and why is there a great deal of departmental resistance?  Seems to be a perpetual catch up with not enough faculty to meet the demand, particularly with scheduling. 

Ø Interest Level High:  President Lyne reported that the GUR stuff is pretty new, and that the chair of ACC thinks we are going to have a flood of people wanting to do these courses, once the word gets out about 117, and that you can turn courses already on the books into these.  There appears to be a lot of interest around the university.  This is still pretty brand new.  Tying it to new positions will get it moving.

Ø Hold Discussions First:  Lyne also asked Bodman that future initiatives similar to this be presented first for discussion prior to putting into place.  This decision appeared to be a “fait accompli”, although it was the Senate and ACC that produced GUR reform, and Bodman came up with the ideas on how to implement. 

Ø Financial Support for 2d Year Students.  Senators raised the question of financial support in the second year.   It appears that plenty of funding is available in freshman year, but very little offered in the second year or the third year.   Have we done anything to focus on that problem?  Why do students come back in the second year?  Is it financial?  Is it the quality of education?  Have we ever studied the proportion of financing that first year students receive; there is no financial resources for the second year.  Bodman will check on this.  Local resources appear to be getting students here, but this disappears in the second year, including scholarships, and financial resources to meet living and tuition expenses.  There appears to be a lot of local money to encourage students to come here, but then it disappears. 

 

Constituent Concerns

Senators brought forward concerns from constituents, which included:

·    A request to provide a drop box for library books on the edge of campus;

·    A request for a report on the costs of parking enforcement during off hours such as evenings and weekends and a comparison to revenue gains during the same period;

·    A request for faster police response to campus alerts;

·    A request to make student photos available on class rosters;

·    A report from faculty who are monitoring the numbers of available parking spaces in 17G since requests have been denied;

·    A request to check into prospects for a mechanism to extend special faculty skills to interested students via free classes;

 

Senators recessed at 5:35 for a 5-minute break prior to returning for a Faculty Caucus. 

 

Adjournment

Senators moved to adjourn at 6:05  pm. 

Written by Rose Marie Norton-Nader, Recorder, 11/7/05

 

 

                                                                                                            _______________________

                                                                                                            Lorraine Kasprisin, Secretary

 

 

Roster 2005-2006 Senate

 

Term

 

Senators

Area

Roll

 

2005-2006 Senate President

Bill Lyne

 

 

06

1

Bover, David, Ch, ATC 04-05

A

P

 

Vice President and Parliamentarian

 

 

06

2

Buckley, Patrick

G

P

 

Ira Hyman

 

 

06

3

Ramona Chauvin

H

P
 

 

 

 

07

4

 Crowder, Kyle, Library Senator

B

P
 

 

 

 

06

5

Currier, Deb (for Greg Pulver)

D

P
 

 

 

 

07

6

Daley, Chris

A

P
 

 

 

 

07

7

Fewings, David, UPC Senator

E

P
 

 

 

 

06

8

Emory, Steven

A

    P
 

Ex Officio

 

 

06

9

   Henson, Steve

E

P

1

Karen Morse, University President

P

06

10

Hodges, Hart

E

P

2

Andrew Bodman, University Provost

    P

06

11

Howard-Snyder, Frances

C

P

3

Brad Smith, Dean of Huxley, Provost’s Rep

--

06

12

Hyman, Ira, PresElect 06-07(EC)

B

P

 

 

 

06

13

Hyatt, Keith

H

P

 

Guests

 

07

14

Kasprisin, Lorraine, Secretary(EC)

H

P

1

 James Sanders, ASVP Academics

--

07

15

Laffrado, Laura, At Large(EC)

C

Exc

 

 

 

07

16

Larner, Daniel

F

    P

 

 

 

07

17

Liao-Troth, Matthew

E

P

1

Legislative Liaison: Sara Singleton

P

06

18

Lyne, William, President 05-06(EC)

C

P

2

Recorder:  Rose Marie Norton-Nader

P

06

19

Madsen, Leza

I

P

 

 

 

07

20

Meehan, Michael, ACC, ATC Senator

A

P

 

Monday, November 7, 2005

 

06

21

Meyer, David

D

P

 

 

 

06

22

Newcomer, Jeff, Appts&Elect (EC)

A

P

 

 

 

07

23

Ousselin, Edward

C

P

 

 

 

07

24

Parris, Kristen

B

P

 

 

 

06

25

Slentz, Kris

H

Exc

 

Total Senators Present

27

07

26

Stewart, James, Pres. pro tem, ACC

A

P

 

Absent or Excused

(3)

06

27

Stout, Karen

C

    P

 

Ex Officio Present

2

07

28

Symons, Lawrence

B

P

 

Recorder and Legislative Liaison

2

06

29

Thompson, Roger

C

P

 

Guests

--

07

30

Van Boer, Bertil

D

Exc

 

TOTAL PRESENT

31

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Article III.  Faculty Senate

The Faculty Senate is empowered to speak and act for the Faculty in University affairs with particular responsibility in the areas of curriculum, academic programs, Faculty salary, Faculty status, scholarly activities, and all matters relating to the welfare of Faculty, the education of students, and the academic mission of the University.

The Faculty Senate is limited to 30 voting members elected by the Faculty, and the President of the University, the Provost/Vice President for Academic Affairs of the University, and a college dean appointed by the Provost serving as Provost's Council representative as ex officio non-voting members.    (Faculty Handbook, page 55)