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Faculty Senate Executive Committee Minutes 6_22_11

Executive Committee Meeting of June 22, 2011 @ 11:00 A.M.

Present: President Farish, Provost de Abruña, President Bosco, Vice President Alfieri, Vice President Moskowitz.

Regarding the University budget presented by Jerry Williams:

President Farish said that he believes that people should see what is going on in the University and that the university should be transparent in its procedures.

Provost de Abruña said that Jerry Williams presented that information to the Faculty  Senate before its approval by the Board, but now that it has been approved it should be released to the rest of the faculty.

Regarding the teaching excellence awards:

President Bosco mentioned that President Champagne had instituted a distinguished award recognition wall to feature the names of outstanding members of the University community, including faculty.   The Faculty Development Committee of the Senate made recommendations, but what is the plan for this wall?

President Farish asked about the timeline on how long names would remain on the wall and their relevancy as time passes.   He asked how many names had been recommended.

President Bosco replied that up to this date we have given out three awards.

President Farish replied that he saw no problem with the process, but needed to consider it further before continuing.

Regarding the 20 credits hours without fees:

President Farish said that in effect students taking 15 credits are paying as much as those taking 20; but, since he did not have enough information to start a debate, he would accept the policy.

Regarding Academic Integrity:

The president said our proposal pertains only to students, but there should be a policy concerning the faculty. He said that he was not implying that there should be faculty policing on this matter, but remembered similar issues during his tenure as assistant dean at URI dealing with faculty complaints about plagiarism and cheating by students, and indicated that on occasion faculty needed guidance on following proper policies and procedures relate to student cheating so as to avoid placing themselves at personal risk from lawsuits from students alleging that a given faculty member failed to follow university policy, to the detriment of the student.

He said that he likes the centralized information system to keep track of offenses across different departments and schools, and he supports the revised policy.

Regarding Students’ Evaluations of Teaching:

President Bosco said that the evaluation procedure is covered under the contract but the actual tool is not. The union will not comment on the evaluation instrument because it is not part of the contract. Therefore, the Senate Steering Committee reviewed the instrument and proposed a pilot of the new instrument. President Farish supports the pilot in order to compare the results of the old and new SETs before the new SET replaces the old SET (he mentioned that he would not change out an instrument that has been used for 20 years without first piloting the replacement).

President Farish said that he is mainly interested in the point that the University should be on a solid footing, and that we should be concerned about how we maintain the number of students coming to us, and how faculty quality affects a positive student body flow.

The president said that the Provost will have his support in leading an academic strategic plan.  The President continued saying that we should start with an academic master plan, and, if we have one, we should review it and make changes as needed.

He does not want the budget to drive the academic piece.

He would like to put out the word about what we do as a University to the outside community and to the rest of the campus.

Regarding the Guidelines for RWU Faculty-Led Programs Abroad:

The Provost said that she is putting together a group that would include herself, Asst. Provost Wang, and faculty members to discuss this process.

The President said he is continuing to review the many responses from his survey that he received along with the Faculty Senate document to learn more about the University.

The meeting adjourned at noon.

Submitted by,

Peter Alfieri, 1st Vice President

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