volume 41, number 2
Temple UniversityFaculty Herald

Minutes

Representative Senate Meeting

October 12, 2010

Minutes

 

Call to Order:

 

Paul LaFollette called the meeting to order at 1:50 PM in Kiva Auditorium.

 

He announced a change in the agenda:  Interim Vice President and Provost Richard Englert will present his report and answer questions now, since he must leave early to attend another meeting.

 

Guest: Interim Vice President and Provost, Richard Englert

He shared the following items with the Senators and visitors:

 

· President Hart is establishing the position Faculty Fellow in her office and has opened the application process. Englert provided a copy of the position description. [Attached.]  The Faculty Fellow will advise the president on a range of academic and faculty matters and planning, and will represent the president in many discussions and on key search committees.

   Faculty at the tenured professor rank are encouraged to apply. The ideal term of                   service is three years.  Dr. Vicki McGarvey can provide additional information.

 

· Englert cited the very positive recent article in The Philadelphia Inquirer lauding the drug discovery initiatives led by Associate Dean Magid Abou-Gharbia at the Moulder Center at the School of Pharmacy.

 

· There are currently four hiring searches for deans. Three of these committees requested volunteer members, and Englert thanked FSSC and TAUP for their help in identifying faculty to serve.

The chairs are:

·        Dean Joanne Epps (Law) - Tyler

·        Dean Keya Sadeghipour (Engineering) - Health Professions and               Social Work

·        Dean Teresa Soufas (Liberal Arts) - Communications and     Theater.

 

Each college has elected five faculty for its committee in addition to those put forward by Faculty Senate. Each committee of 12 includes six faculty (one of whom is a dean) plus other students, alumni, and board of visitors’ representatives for individual schools. All three committees are ready to meet; and faculty will be kept informed.

 

The fourth search is to replace Dean Kent McGuire, who will take over his position as President of the Southern Education Foundation in Atlanta, Georgia on 8 November. Englert expressed appreciation of McGuire and wished him well. Englert will meet with faculty and staff of Health Professions and Social Work on 13 October to discuss how to move forward in filling the position.

 

Englert then encouraged questions on any current issue.

 

Gregory Urwin (CLA) asked about the freeze on faculty travel funds that require specific approval from the Provost’s office.  In particular, he wished to know if this policy is internal or external. Englert explained that TU is cooperating with the Pennsylvania legislature; deans confer with Englert, who reviews the request. He noted that in this process he is aiming to expedite but remain prudent, and that this has generally worked out quite well.

 

Art Hochner (FSBM) was concerned about the success rate of the Annual Report of Faculty Activity. Englert deferred to Diane Maleson for particulars. Of more than 1200 eligible faculty, only 18 failed to submit the report. Hochner reported that TAUP was evaluating the process and encouraged faculty comments. He then questioned whether Student Feedback Forms are to be submitted on line, and noted that pilot studies show much lower student response rates when this occurs. Hochner asked Englert to provide information about how this might affect faculty, esp. in the areas of workload, merit, promotion, etc. Englert replied that discussions about online evaluations over the past two years considered sustainability (savings of paper), among other issues.  Working with faculty groups and pilots, Peter Jones reported a return rate of 70-80% with paper, and 35-45% with the on-line initial pilot.  Other institutions show 45-50%. Our return might decline when the novelty wears off. Until now, our pilot is entirely voluntary, and no final decisions have been made.  Since so many decisions rely on this data, much more data is necessary.

 

Scott Gratson (SCT) asked how students serving on deans’ search committees are selected. Englert replied that both the undergraduate and graduate students are selected by students. The basic default is that they are elected by students within the college, according to the college’s governance document; without a structure, a formal request is sent to Student Government, who has presented undergraduates for all three search committees.  For the graduate student representation, Tyler had a graduate governance group; and the representative for the two other committees was named by the Graduate School. 

 

Bob Aiken (CST), speaking in reference to on-line SFFs, noted the importance of including adjunct and NTT faculty in discussions and decision-making. He requested specifically that all faculty already working on issues concerning evaluation and large class sections be included in all discussions.

 

Approval of Minutes of 13 September 2010:

The minutes from 13 September 2010, with one correction that appears on the document distributed at this meeting, were accepted unanimously.

 

LaFollette postponed his report until later in the meeting in order to allow maximum time for discussion.

 

Vice President’s Report: Joan Shapiro:

Joan Shapiro (Educ) reported a message from Steve Napi of the Office of Technology Transfer, thanking FSSC for its diligence in staffing its committee, which had not met recently. These are: Jan Fernback (SCT), Steven Jefferies (Dental School), Gregory Mandel (Law), John R. Williams (CST), and Feroze Mohamed (Medicine), who will serve as chair. Ken Blank, Senior Vice Provost for Research and Graduate Education has expressed his appreciation for the Senate’s timely composition of this important committee.

 

Shapiro noted that several faculty had volunteered to serve on the three dean’s search committees; and there are now enough to complete the staffing. However, the fourth search, in the College of Education, will require additional volunteers; and it should be noted that some of the current volunteers requested very specific assignments. FSSC members working on this will consult Tony Ranere, Chair of CATA. She urged volunteering for other committees as well, and encouraged faculty to consult the list of opportunities attached to the 13 September 2010 minutes, and submit names by    Friday, 15 October.

 

She emphasized the pressing need for tenured professors to complete the Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee, which, she explained, now has a significantly streamlined process.  She cited the needs of additional committees (Educational Programs and Policies Committee, University Honors Program Oversight Committee, and the Personnel Committee, suggesting that faculty consult the Faculty Senate website for comprehensive information, and emphasizing that faculty participation in committee work is essential for shared governance.

 

Shapiro then announced two conferences on gender equity presented by the Senate Committee on the Status of Women: “Achieving Equity: Women, the Workplace, and the Law,” 20 October, with Marina Angel (Law) as the keynote speaker; and “Mirages of Equality: The Changing Status of Women in Science,” 21 October, with MIT Professor Nancy Hopkins, delivering the keynote address.

Old Business

Julie Phillips (GenEd), who had been away at the time of the 13 September meeting when a report on GenEd was requested, announced that she had brought the information, and then presented statistics for the current term (Fall 2010):

· 1021 sections –8.1% do not have a faculty member identified with the course

· 35.75% are being taught by adjunct faculty

· 40.75%, by NTT faculty

· 14.3%, by tenure-track faculty   (comparable to last year).

New Business

Gregory Urwin (CLA) presented the following motion:

 

Resolved,

Temple University administrators wishing to appear on the agenda of the Faculty Senate must provide the senate secretary (or some other senate officer or functionary) with the text of a summary of their remarks and any accompanying PowerPoint presentations) two weeks before the meeting at which they wish to appear.

 

These materials will be posted on a Blackboard page (or some other Internet location) to which all Temple faculty will be granted access.

 

The names and e-mail addresses of all faculty senators will be listed on the aforementioned Internet location and grouped by college, permitting faculty from their respective colleges to easily send them feedback concerning the items the administration wishes to discuss with the senate.

 

When administrators appear before the Faculty Senate, they will keep their introductory remarks brief to provide more time for questions and discussion with the faculty’s representatives.

 

Exceptions to this policy may be granted by the Faculty Senate’s president or Steering Committee as occasions demand.”

 

 

Urwin explained that the aim of this motion is to increase the representative character of the Senate by allowing colleagues to enhance the work being done, and to reduce the “infomercial character” of some Senate meetings. Frank Friedman (CST) seconded. LaFollette noted that since the motion was presented by an individual rather than a committee, it requires a second reading before the vote.  Parliamentarian Scott Gratson declared that because the motion had been made and seconded, the floor should be open for discussion. No one answered LaFollette’s call for discussion. The motion will be discussed at next Senate meeting on 10 November.

 

President’s Report: Paul LaFollette

For Representative Senators: If you cannot attend a Representative Senate meeting, send an alternate, and forward email to the Senate address so there will be accurate statistics at end of year.

 

 FSSC has been working on ways to make Senate meetings more interesting and relevant to all faculty. To this end, LaFollette will invite committees to report and will decrease the number of visits by administrators. The President is always welcome.

 

LaFollette will meet with Senate committees. He has begun doing so with committees such as EPPC and the Committee for International Programs, and has scheduled dates for others. This is intended to be an ongoing activity which, along with presentations by committees at Senate meetings, is expected to lead to discussions of issues that are interesting, helpful, and positive.

 

LaFollette encouraged colleagues to suggest topics for Senate meetings that reflect concerns and interest across a broad spectrum of faculty. He noted that today’s issue is result of comments made to FSSC members about shared governance.

 

To begin this discussion, he presented some recent observations of the implementation of the Temple Compass.  He sees it as an open process, from initially dealing with the concept of the compass, and then involving volunteers in an open, fact-finding process. Reports were presented first in confidence, then publicly, and there was ample opportunity to edit, comment, etc. However, with the 20-20 Plan, there was not much discussion:  e.g., the location of library has not been addressed.

 

Other possible issues for discussion include the increasing reliance on the scheduling matrix and its inflexibility; and the proposition to administer placement testing, as well as the piloting of SFFs online.

 

Peter Jones (Senior Vice Provost) characterized the process as inclusive and gave examples. LaFollette pointed out that the information is not readily available to faculty.

LaFollette opened up the floor to general; discussion.

 

Scott Shall (Tyler) reported he has always been able to talk with his dean and associate dean, and that President Hart met with him about GLBTQ. He recognizes that others’ experience might not be the same, but his experience has been good.

 

Bob Aiken (CST) expressed the hope that the ongoing work to make college bylaws workable is progressing, and asked about the current status.  LaFollette understands that Diane Maleson’s office has approved and they are working with legal counsel. LaFollette mentions it at every meeting with President Hart and Vice President Maleson.

 

LaFollette asked the group in Ambler for comments.

Sue Dickey (CHPSW) wants to keep a dialogue open while evaluating faculty productivity issues for those who teach in clinical areas. LaFollette will make time at FSSC meetings for their representative to report.

 

Billie Goldstein (CST) noted that, as NTT, she is never consulted; and cannot get to talk to administrators in her college. She presented an example of the difficulty getting an appointment with administration.

 

Hochner: Faculty do not have time to participate because of increases in workloads, class size, and required record keeping.  Faculty participation is very necessary   Faculty consultation is not effective participation; for example, a brief report to a faculty committee is not the same as a discussion.  Therefore, not many are aware of what is going on; and this situation could be improved. He has restarted a practice of meeting with the President and Provost periodically, which has been successful; and he would be glad to carry messages. Many faculty feel intimidated about speaking up; NTTs in particular may fear consequences (e.g., non-approval of appointment or change in workload), but this is usually not so. When more participate, we have a better idea of the issues and more coverage.

 

Maurice Wright (Boyer) commented on the University’s use of private companies as consultants (e.g., personnel searches, planning), and pointed out that this is problematic when there is a veto at the end of the process after faculty might have been consulted. In each case he cited, the faculty input or decision was ignored.

 

Jim Korsh (CST): If faculty want shared governance, they must participate, especially representative senators, who have the responsibility to attend Representative Senate meetings. He also spoke for the value of faculty evaluations of administrators, especially deans. 

 

Marina Angel (Law) noted that FSSC had set up a recommended official slate for senate elections. This is against old procedure.  LaFollette countered that we are operating under current bylaws.  Angel noted that this not how it used to be and offered to write a motion to return to the old by-laws.

 

Deborah Howe (SED-Ambler) This person had been on the 2020 Plan committee, but has no access to the implementation plans. And she explained that we need full engagement, i.e., we need an expert to helping most processes, and there are many faculty who have expertise in fields that could be used in university planning.

 

Mark Rahdert (Law): We need opportunities for presentation, explanation, dialog, and regular communication from people who have knowledge. We do get presentations, but with only brief question-and answer periods, which is falsely considered consultation.

 

Gregory Urwin:  Departments operate differently internally, depending on personalities and practices; but on a higher level there must be more comprehensive engagement and genuine interest in the Temple community rather than successful job candidates using Temple as a stepping stone to further their careers.  Outside help is getting to be the norm in administrative searches—it should be grass roots, and geared toward choosing one who will truly be invested in us.

 

Steve Newman (CLA):  On the electronic student course evaluation forms: He supports Hochner’s view of their importance for serious personnel decisions. He asked which faculty groups had been consulted in decisions concerning their use. And if none have been, which are going to be consulted; i.e.: What kind of metrics are involved, what will it take to look at this and, if it turns out so, to be abandoned.  We need a deliberate consultative process.

 

LaFollette clarified that a faculty committee is working on this and their reports would come to EPPC, FSSC, or both.

 

John Nosek (CST):  On CATEs and the practice of doing peer evaluation of one coming up for tenure. Where should the faculty be in this process?

 

Shapiro noted that the original concept of CATES was that it is a tool for improving teaching. However, it has moved into the area of high-stakes testing. It is important for faculty to bring today’s ideas back to their collegial assemblies.

 

LaFollette asked if future Senate meetings should focus on discussions such as this, and received a very positive response from attendees.

 

Frank Friedman (CST) commented on John Nosek's remarks: Although he remembers Temple before CATES, he noted that we should review periodically why we do certain things, and also review deans. He asked whether incoming deans are educated to the ways of Temple and why there are managerial differences across the university.  Review would help to resolve this situation.

 

Scott Shall (TYL) who has been here for four years reported that, as tenure-track faculty, he considers CATEs are good for him. He added the general caution that in evaluations, we should focus on non-personality decisions.

 

Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 3:35 PM.

 

Submitted by

 

Margaret Devinney, Acting Secretary ▪