Minutes - October 4, 2006

Minutes - October 4, 2006

XLI, No. 5


October 4, 2006

The Faculty Senate of Southeast Missouri State University met on Wednesday, October 4, 2006, in the Missouriana Room of the University Center. The following Senators were present: Mike Cobb (Chair), Martha Zlokovich (Chair-Elect), David Smith (Membership Committee Chair), Rick Althaus, Mary Elizabeth Ambery, Mary Ann DeLine, Kim Dillivan, Beth Easter, Walt Paquin (Alternate), Kathryn Farwell (Alternate), Daniel MacLeay, Matthew Fasnacht (Alternate), Carolyn Rainey, Jayanti Ray, David Reinheimer, Sophia Scott, Marc Strauss, Lucinda Swatzell, Larry Underberg, Haohao Wang, Janice Ward, Pat Willingham, Xuesong Zhang, and Min Zou. Also in attendance were Provost Jane Stephens (Administrative Liaison) and Nelson Elliott (Student Government Liaison).

Absent, and not represented by their Alternates, were Marc Fulgham, Benjie Heu, Bonnie Stepenoff, and Rebecca Summary.


Approval of minutes Vol. XLI-04 was moved by Senator Althaus and seconded by Senator Reinheimer. The motion carried.


Provost Stephens reported that she intends to bring in a summary of past promotions at the next Faculty Senate meeting.


Student Government Liaison, Nelson Elliott, reported that the Student Government (SG) is working on changing funding guidelines and assigning goals for each individual committee within the SG.


Chair Cobb reported that the first social reception for faculty was hosted by President and Jeanine Dobbins at Wildwood on Friday September 22 and was well attended. Two more receptions are scheduled for this semester which should result in all faculty having been invited.

Chair Cobb indicated that while speaking with various faculty in regards to the use of student evaluations and grade inflation he was informed of a method which appears to address both issues. He indicated that one faculty member shared that one should give high grades during the semester until you conduct the student surveys and then nail the students during the final to keep the grade distribution down. This appears to be a win- win situation: the students are happy most of the time, the faculty gets good evaluations, and the grade distribution looks rigorous. One need only convince students that they had a bad day while taking the final. Chair Cobb added that he didn't know what upsets him more, that faculty feel they need to manipulate the system in order to get promoted and tenured while maintaining classroom rigor or that this scheme may actually work because there will be clear evidence that effective learning took place.

Chair Cobb reported that the Chair of Professional Affairs committee has agreed to establish a subcommittee. The subcommittee will work on developing a 21st century teacher certificate program. The goal would be to acknowledge faculty who embrace modern teaching tools like establishing course web pages, posting their syllabi, and using GradeA for all their courses. Certificates could then be included in one's promotion and tenure documents to demonstrate the use of proven effective teaching tools. Chair Cobb indicated that the President has previously pledged up to $300 in professional development monies for participants. Interested members are invited to join the committee.

Chair Cobb indicated that past Senate Chair, Susan Swartwout, has obtained a Funding For Results (FFR) grant titled “Multicultural Educators Lecture Series” to bring invited speakers to the campus. The first speaker in the series is David Aguilar. He is the director of Science Information and Public Programming for the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, in Cambridge, MA. David Aguilar lectured in Glenn Auditorium today during common hour with the title “The Five Mysteries Astronomers Cannot Answer”.

Chair Cobb reported that during a one-on-one with the President, the President indicated that he has approved hiring four programmers to help with Banner interface. Chair Cobb indicated that the President would like the faculty to be surveyed to find out problem areas with Banner. Those issues will be brought back to be prioritized and addressed.

Chair Cobb provided the following schedule for guest speakers/events to appear before the Senate:
Oct 18 - John Weber (IT) & Dennis Holt (Banner)
Oct 25 – New Faculty Reception (Johnson Faculty Centre)
Nov 1 - Kathy Mangels (VP Business & Finance)
Nov 15 - Sarah Cron (Dean Academic Information Services & Kent Library)
Dec 1 – Holiday Reception (UC Ballroom)
Dec 6 – Foundation


Senator Smith reported that the Membership Committee had met electronically. He indicated that he had got in touch with the unrepresented departments as Chair Cobb had requested during the last Senate meeting.

Senator Smith reported that Christie Renner, from Dennis Holt's office, contacted him about identifying three nominees to serve on the Strategic Enrollment Management (SEM) Task Force. Senator Smith indicated that the Membership Committee appointed Jim Champine, Martha Zlokovich, and Timothy Ray.

Chair Cobb added that he had asked the President for the survey that reflected that twenty-percent of Southeast's juniors say that they would not come back to Southeast MO State University. Chair Cobb volunteered to review the survey and provide more detail about the survey to the Senate.

Senator Smith reported that Arrick Jackson, Chair of the Governance Committee, had resigned from the Senate. Lucinda Swatzell has been nominated and approved by the Membership Committee to Chair the Governance Committee.

Professional Affairs
Senator Althaus, chair of the Professional Affairs Committee, reported that the Committee had met last week. A few items that they discussed were college restructuring and UI Class “ownership”. The Committee also discussed Bruce Domizlicky's comments from the last Faculty Senate meeting. Senator Althaus indicated that Professional Affairs is putting together a subcommittee that will gather information about current and proposed departmental promotion criteria, and determine possible ways to achieve compliance with existing policy at the departmental and/or college levels, and discuss later the University Committee's refusal to cooperate. Senator Althaus indicated that the Professional Affairs Committee has agreed to design and administer a brief online survey of faculty on some of the major principles surrounding promotion and tenure policies.

Academic Affairs
Senator Reinheimer, chair of Academic Affairs, reported that the committee has agreed to administer one survey to students and one to faculty on student workload and course rigor.

Senator Reinheimer indicated that Academic Affairs is working on redefining plagiarism as it is stated in the Bulletin and also looking into changing the way students document and inform professors of family emergencies.

Senator Ray, chair of the Documents Committee, reported that the committee had met last week. A few of the items discussed were the possibility of creating a faculty forum and correcting some inconsistencies within the Faculty Handbook, specifically chapters one and eight.

Senator Swatzell reported that the Governance Committee will be meeting within the month.

Senator Zlokovich asked if the grievance policy had come back from the lawyers. Senator Swatzell indicated that she had not been informed, but will make it a priority.

Senator Willingham reported that the President has asked to meet with the Compensation Committee. They have not yet been able to establish a date.

Senator Althaus reported that he has had little feedback from faculty on the Action Projects. He indicated that the AQIP Committee has met with the President by phone and has begun to narrow the list down to about four Action Projects.


There was no new business to consider.


Senator Swatzell gave an update on the planning of the Holiday Reception. Funding issues and decorations were discussed.


The motion to adjourn (Paquin/Rainey) was recognized and approved at 4:00 p.m.

The next Faculty Senate Meeting will be October 18, 2006, in the University Center Program Lounge at 3:00 PM.

Approved October 18, 2006