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Faculty Senate
Faculty Senate

2006-2007 Faculty Senate

Minutes


Wednesday, October 11, 2006, 2 p.m., MBSC Dodge Rooms

Attendees: Barnes, Betanabhatla, Bernstein, Boucher, Brown, Chundi, Corcoran, Edick, Gascoigne, Hewins-Maroney, Holley, Huq, Maloney, Mei, Miller, Mordaunt, Noble, Parnell, Randall, Reilly, Shaw, Skreija, Smith, Sollars, Stanichar, Tarry, Thorp, Wetig, Windler, Winter, Wolcott

Excused: Bullock, Ottemann

Absent: Arbelaez, Lahue, Roland, William


Presentations:

A. Ron Withem, Central Administration, Assoc. V.P. for External Affairs & Dir. of Governmental Relations, and Bill Swanson, UNO Assistant to the V.C. for Administration and Dir. of UNO Office of Career Exploration and Outreach, presented information on Initiative 423.

B. Bill Swanson then took questions about lead time necessary for making arrangements Career Exploration's "Don't Cancel That Class" program.

I. The meeting was called to order at 2:30 p.m.

II. The September 13, 2006, minutes were approved as written.

III. Officers' Reports

A. President's Report: Senator Shaw reported

1. Executive Committee and Administration met September 20, 2006. Interim-Chancellor Christensen reported on progress in the UNO Summer Scholars program. Since 1989 almost 400 students have participated, and 52% have enrolled at UNO and earned additional credits. The program has proven itself an important venue for recruiting minority students. Dr. Chistensen also distributed a report concerning Diversity Funding History. The data extend back to the 2000-2001 academic year, and they show sex, race and the amount of diversity money associated with each faculty hire. Dr. Christensen noted that UNO has tracked the money carefully, so that when a faculty member resigned the diversity money was reallocated to another diversity hire. Dr. Christensen also distributed a copy of the Academic and Student Affairs Strategic Plan and asked that the Faculty Senate review and provide comments or suggestions. We discussed the Athletics Department, focusing mainly how faculty can be more involved in the overall program. UNO will remain in NCAA Division II and pursue membership in the Mid-America Inter-Collegiate Athletics Association (MIAA).

Senator Shaw asked the Committee on Goals & Directions to look at the Academic and Student Affairs Strategic Plan and get back to him with comments. He also distributed a copy of the UNO Financial Oversight Action Plan, which was an insert in today's convocation program.

2. Chancellor's Council met September 28, 2006. Dr. Julie Totten, Interim-Vice-Chancellor for Administration, reviewed procedural changes for reporting and tracking reimbursements. UNO's financial operations remain very decentralized, so Deans, Directors, and Chairs must review their areas regularly. Requirements for receipts and explanations are now more stringent, especially for any reimbursements drawing on funds held by the Alumni Association. The internal audit has revealed some issues concerning the tax status of transactions handled by the NU Foundation and Alumni Association, so we can expect an appropriate revision to Executive Memorandum 17, the NU system's document governing this area. Athletic Director David Herbster and Interim Chancellor Christensen described progress in the Athletics Department. UNO will remain a NCAA Division II program, with hockey remaining in Division I. Dr. Christensen has contacted the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) to formally inquire about membership there. In response to a question about returning the hockey team to the Civic Auditorium, Dr. Christensen noted that both the Qwest Center and the Civic are managed by MECA, and the difference in leasing costs is now rather small. The Civic may still have an advantage in being smaller and thus fostering more season ticket sales to those who want good seats. Convocation was this morning. Dr. Christensen offered a "30-Day Report Card" on how UNO is moving forward from the resignation of Chancellor Nancy Belck. NU President James Milliken also addressed those assembled. Convocation will adjourned to the Criss Library for a dedication ceremony for the Kahn Addition. This year's ceremonies did not include academic regalia. Dr. Sheri Rogers, Acting Vice-Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs, and Associate Vice-Chancellor John Fiene previewed the new interface for the MyMapp e-Portfolio system. Departments will have much more flexibility to devise categories for reporting activities with the new interface.

President Shaw will research the difference in leasing costs between the Qwest Center and the Civic Auditorium for a specific figure and report back to the Senate.

3. Civility Forum: Senator Tarry reported that Interim Chancellor Christensen hosted a forum of faculty, staff, and students on October 4, 2006. The discussion focused on whether or not there has been a decline of civility, for lack of a better word, on campus in the last couple of years. The group agreed that there is sufficient concern to warrant further consideration of the issue and discussion of what might be done to enhance relations between and among faculty, staff, and students.

B. Treasurer's Report: Senator Tarry submitted the September 2006 budget report.

IV. Executive Committee: Senator Randall asked for volunteers for the Bell Tower Challenge, Noon, October 18, 2006.

V. Standing Committee Reports

A. Committee on Academic and Curricular Affairs: Senator Tarry moved the following resolution for the committee. The resolution passed.

Resolution 2847, 10/11/06: Graduate Certificate in Global Information Operations

WHEREAS the Graduate Certificate in Global Information Operations has the support of the contributing colleges and units on the UNO campus,

WHEREAS the program relies on existing courses and is open to all UNO graduate students interested in enhancing their knowledge and understanding of international religions, communication, politics, and security as they relate to the management of information in a complex and dynamic global environment,

WHEREAS the program supports interest in global information operations in the broader community and fosters improved working relations between UNO and the federal government,

BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate supports the approval of the Graduate Certificate in Global Information Operations.

B. Committee on Educational Resources and Services: Senator Wolcott reported the meeting was held on September 26, 2006. Those present were: John Thorpe, Lisa Boucher, Peter Wolcott, Lanyce Keel, Christopher Stanichar. Student evaluations were discussed. Senator Wolcott moved the following for the committee. Both resolutions passed, the first resolution passed as amended.

1. Resolution 2848, 10/11/06: Role of Course Evaluations

WHEREAS there is a perception among some faculty that some units on campus use student course evaluations as the primary means of assessing teaching effectiveness, and

WHEREAS student course evaluations only reflect student perceptions of a course and do not directly measure teaching effectiveness, and

WHEREAS research has shown that a reliable and thorough evaluation of teaching effectiveness should be based on a combination of different kinds of assessments,

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Faculty Senate directs that student course evaluations be used primarily for improvement of classrooms and instruction, and never as the sole or principal measure of teaching effectiveness.

The question of the nature of student course evaluations is distinct from the question of their use. The committee unanimously agreed that the following resolution should also be presented to the Faculty Senate.

    Resolution 2849, 10/11/06: Common Base Course Evaluation Form

    WHEREAS no fewer than 12 different course evaluations forms are currently used on campus, and

    WHEREAS these evaluations vary widely in questions posed to students and in answer scales used, and

    WHEREAS some of these forms elicit little information that could be used to improve teaching, teaching materials, student learning, or class environments, and

    WHEREAS campus-wide efforts related to assessing student learning benefit from common assessment tools used across campus, and

    WHEREAS individual colleges/divisions have distinctive course evaluation and assessment needs,

    THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Faculty Senate recommends that the administration constitute a campus-wide committee with faculty representation from each college and division to

    • investigate current research and practice in student course evaluations, and
    • take steps leading to the eventual use of a common base course evaluation instrument across all colleges/divisions, that can be extended according to the needs of individual colleges/division.

C. Committee on Faculty Personnel and Welfare: Senator Skreija reported the committee met September 27, 2006. Present: Barbara Hewins-Maroney, Elaine Lahue, John Maloney, and Andris Skreija (Chair). Excused: Stuart Bernstein, and Samuel Brown. Senator Brown had previously informed the Chair that:

  1. he had contacted Mr. Kevin Epperson, the IRB administrator, who informed him that the proposed questionnaire to UNO faculty did not have to be cleared by the IRB. And
  2. Mr. Jerome Deichert had suggested that there are ways of administering questionnaires via web sites with almost certain anonymity. The qualifier refers to the fact that nothing transmitted electronically can ever be completely secure.

The Faculty Questionnaire on Campus Climate, Fall 2006:

The Personnel and Welfare Committee of the Faculty Senate is interested in the recruitment and retention of the UNO faculty. The information you provide will assist the committee as it plans several focus groups to address the issues associated with these issues.

The questionnaire should take about 5 minutes to complete. Using a Likert-like scale (1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree), please answer the following questions.

 
Disagree
Strongly
Disagree
Somewhat
Neither Agree
Nor Disagree
Agree
Somewhat
Agree
Strongly
1. My time spent at UNO has been professionally rewarding
1
2
3
4
5
2. My time spent at UNO has been personally rewarding.
1
2
3
4
5
3. My teaching is respected by my departmental colleagues 
1
2
3
4
5
4.My research is respected by my departmental colleagues.
1
2
3
4
5
5. My service is respected by my departmental colleagues.
1
2
3
4
5
6. I feel I am a respected member of the UNO community.
1
2
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5
7. I would recommend UNO as a good place to work.
1
2
3
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5
8. I would recommend UNO as a good place for women faculty to work.
1
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5
9. I would recommend UNO as a good place for male faculty to work.
1
2
3
4
5
10. I would recommend UNO as a good place for people of color (minorities) to work.
1
2
3
4
5
11. I feel my salary is competitive with others in my discipline.
1
2
3
4
5
12. I feel my compensation package is competitive with that of others in my field.
1
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5
13. I am supported by my departmental chair.
1
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5
14. I am supported by my dean.
1
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5
15. I am supported by my colleagues.
1
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5
16. Collegiality is practiced in my department.
1
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5
17. Collegiality is practiced in my college.
1
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5
18. My workload is commensurate with others in my department.
1
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5
19. I am consulted about my workload assignment each semester.
1
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5
20. I am supported in my efforts to enhance my pedagogical skills.
1
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5
21. I am supported in my work on collaborative research projects.
1
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5
22. I am supported in my research as much as others are in my department.
1
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5
23. I am supported in my service activities at the university.
1
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5
24. I have a mentor in my department.
1
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25. The climate toward male faculty is supportive at the university.
1
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5
26. The climate toward female faculty is supportive at the university.
1
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5
27. The climate toward disabled faculty is supportive at the university.
1
2
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5
28. The climate toward people of color (minorities) is supportive at the university.
1
2
3
4
5
29. The tenure and promotion process is clear and easy to understand.
1
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5
30. The tenure and promotion process is equitable.
1
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5
31. I am adequately supported in the promotion and tenure process.
1
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5
32. If I had to do it again, I would seek a position at UNO.
1
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5
33. I plan to remain at UNO throughout my professional career.
1
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5
34. I plan to seek employment outside of UNO.
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5
35. I plan to seek employment outside of academia.
1
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5
36. My career at UNO has been satisfying.
1
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4
5

Demographic Information

37. Gender 1. Male ___ 2. Female ___  
38. Tenure Status 1.Non-tenure track ___ 2. Tenure track, untenured ___ 3. Tenured ___ 
39. Academic Rank

1. Lecturer/Instructor ___

2. Assistant Professor ___ 3. Associate Professor ___
4. Full Professor___
40. College: 1. College of Arts and Sciences ___
2. College of Business Administration ___
3. College of Communication, Fine Art, and Media ___
4. Colleege of Education___
5. College of Information Science and Technology ___
6. College of Public Affairs and Community Service
___
7. Criss Library
___
41. Years Employed at UNO ___ 1 - 5 years
___ 16 - 20 years
___ 6 - 10 years
___ 20 - 25 years

___ 11 - 15 years
___ over 25 years.

42. Ethnicity/ Population Group ____ African American / Black
____ American Indian and Alaska Native
____ Asian American
____ Caucasian / White
____ Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander
____ Hispanic/Latino
____ Other __________________________________

43. In the available space, please comment on any personal experiences at UNO that you believe are pertinent to the survey.

 

Thank you for completing the survey.

There was discussion in committee on how to persuasively reassure the faculty that their responses to the would remain confidential. The committee also considered the "Diversity Funding History", forwarded by the Interim Chancellor Christensen. Senator Lahue noted that for the sixty members of faculty covered by that report the attrition rate was six per cent. The committee decided to seek further information on this topic.

D. Committee on Goals and Directions: Senator Reilly reported the committee met September 27, 2006. The meeting was attended by Saundra Wetig, Robert Smith, Hugh Reilly (Chair) and Lyn Holley. Ziaul Huq was unable to attend but submitted a large amount of information he had gathered on outreach activities in the College of Business. We are still gathering info from the different colleges on campus regarding all of their outreach activities. We will also be working with Deb Smith-Howell and Linda Mannering to gather more research in this area. At the last Senate meeting, we were tasked with trying to find a viable alternative to the small visitor parking hangers that are given to professionals that are visiting our classes. It has been expressed that even with the visitor's passes, many guests have a very difficult time finding parking spaces, especially during peak days and times. Campus Security informed us that people can contact them and get a code, for the mid-level of the parking garage, that will work for a day or even a week. This should alleviate much of the parking problem for visitors.

E. Committee on Professional Development: Senator Bullock submitted the following report, read by Senator Corcoran. The committee met on September 27, 2006. Those present were Senators Bullock, Corcoran, Mei, and Noble. Senators Winter and Rowland were absent. We discussed briefly the general structure and content of the FACONNECT website and created a list of items to share with the Faculty Development Advisory Committee (FDAC) during their next meeting on October 3. The major recommendations regarding FACONNECT dealt primarily with attempts to integrate the website more fully into campus culture. The committee also began a dialogue about pre-tenure sabbaticals and assigned each member the task of researching the policies at peer institutions to begin determining the advisability of such a policy at UNO.

F. Committee on Rules: Senator Barnes reported the committee met on September 27, 2006. Those in attendance were: Maria Arbelaez, Paul Barnes, Holly K Miller, Amanda Randall, John Windler. Parvathi Chundi was absent. During this meeting the committee counted and certified ballots electing two representatives to serve on the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee. 499 Ballots were sent to UNO faculty, 266 were returned, 263 were counted (not counted were one unsigned ballot and two delivered after the deadline). Senator Barnes moved, for the committee, that Resolution 2842 be completed with the election results. The motion passed.

Resolution 2842, 9/13/2006: UNO Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee (completed with UNO Faculty Ballot Vote):

BE IT RESOLVED, that in accordance with section 6.1 of the Faculty Senate Bylaws the following nominees for the Academic Freedom and Tenure Committee are brought forward by the Rules Committee for senate nomination. The ballot will be presented to the UNO faculty. One tenured faculty member will be elected from the following two nominees to serve three-year terms from October 16, 2006, through October 15, 2009, to replace retiring member, Michael O'Hara:

  • Michael O'Hara (tenured faculty)
  • James Carroll (tenured faculty). ELECTED

And one non-tenured faculty member will be elected from the following two nominees to replace Peter Szto, from October 16, 2006, through October 15, 2009:

  • Nancy Kelly-Gillespie (non-tenured faculty) ELECTED
  • Tatyana Livschultz (non-tenured faculty).

VI. Non-Senate Committee Reports

A. American Association of University Professors (AAUP): Senator Shaw reported that the AAUP Board approved a motion to urge defeat of LB 423.

VII. New Business

A. Senator Shaw noted that the Faculty Senate Executive Committee & Cabinet will discuss the myMAPP e-Portofolio, particularly discussing the time it takes faculty to work on e-Portfolio.

VIII. The meeting adjourned at 3:15 p.m.