I. Approval of the Agenda for the April 18, 2007 Meeting
II. Approval of the Minutes of the April 4, 2007 Meeting
III. Report of the Faculty Senate President
V. University Curriculum Committee
VI. Admissions and Standards Committee
VII. University Faculty Affairs Committee
VIII. Report of the Provost
IX. Report of the President of the University
X. New Business
PRESENT: Barrow, Bathala, Beasley, Belovich, W. Bowen, J. Dean, Doerder, Duffy, Ekelman, Elkins, Gelman, V. George, Gross, Hollinger, T. Humphrey, S. Kaufman, Keshock, Lehfeldt, Loovis, Lundstrom, K. Mason, McNamara, O’Neill, Rashidi, Rom, Spicer, Steinberg, Visocky-O’Grady, Welfel, Weyman, Ziolek.Bonder, Droney, Hanniford, Heinrich, Jeffres, Margolius, Markovic, Mills, Nuru-Holm, Sadlek, M. J. Saunders, Thornton.
ABSENT: Berlin Ray, Cagan, Finer, Gao, Gorla, Hansman, Hoffman, Hoke, Martins, McCahon, Murray, Nelson, B. Ray, G. Ray, Reichert, Robertson, Sparks.
Barlow, Boyle, Bufford, Dillard, Ghorashi, B. Green, Humer, Mass, McLoughlin, Mearns, Mooney, Muscatello, L. E. Reed, Rosentraub, Scherer, M. Schwartz, Spiker.
ALSO PRESENT: Forte, Meiksins, A. Smith, Sutton.
Senate President Sheldon Gelman called the meeting to order at 3:05 P.M.
Senate President Gelman mentioned that under item (II) Approval of the Minutes of the April 4, 2007 meeting, there weren’t any Minutes prepared. The Senate Office has really been overwhelmed in an unusual amount of committee work and Violet is the Secretary to the standing committees. There has been an above average amount of Senate work besides which, as you may have noticed, at this time of the year, the Senate meets every two weeks and the Steering Committee meets in alternate weeks so the Senate staff is on for Senate every week which is a lot. Senate President Gelman apologized but said that it was unavoidable.
Senate President Gelman noted that in connection with item (V) Proposed Revision of the General Education Requirement at CSU, the Steering Committee has recommended that there be 25 minutes of discussion on this proposal assuming that there are people who want to discuss it that long before any votes are taken. This is a departure from our usual practice so it would require approval and he was asking for that approval as part of the Agenda approval.
Finally, Senate President Gelman noted that item (VI B) is going to be withdrawn by the committee but that will happen when Rosemary Sutton presents her report. So with those amendments, Senate President Gelman asked for a motion to approve the Agenda. It was then moved, seconded and the Agenda for the April 18, 2007 meeting was approved as amended.
As noted above, the April 4, 2007 Minutes have not been prepared.
Senate President Sheldon Gelman reported that on May 11, 2007 the new Chancellor, Eric Fingerhut, will be appearing at a meeting of the Ohio Faculty Council. On that day the second OFC representative, Brian Ray is unable to attend the meeting. He noted that it would be a very good thing if the Chancellor saw two representatives from Cleveland State University besides which it promises to be a very interesting occasion. He asked for a volunteer to attend the meeting with him.
Senate President Gelman referred to item (IV) Coming Elections. First, under D of the attached announcements, it calls for election of one “Faculty Advisor” (Violet tells me that we have been using the term “Advisor” for many years). He believes that the correct term is “Observer” and that the Board of Trustees lack a faculty advisor although he hasn’t had a chance to check the Board Bylaws. He is pretty sure that the term is “Observer.” He then strongly encouraged Senators to seek out interested colleagues who can be nominated at the next Senate meeting for these positions and to ascertain ahead of time whether the nominee is willing to serve.Related to that, Senate President Gelman noted that at its next meeting, the Academic Steering Committee will be appointing various members of other committees. Some committees are constituted through Steering appointment, others through Senate election. Nominations and self-nominations are solicited from the entire faculty. We have the names of faculty members who are interested in all committee positions with the exception of the following standing committees: The University Curriculum Committee – we will need a representative of the College of Engineering, a representative of the College of Law and a representative of CLASS from the Social Science area. We have no self-identified nominees for those positions. The Graduation, Convocation and Assembly Committee – we have no self-identified nominees from the College of Business, the College of Science and the College of Urban Affairs. Finally, the University Judicial Board requires a nominee. Happily anybody at all can serve on the Board without regard to College affiliation.
- Proposed Revision of the General Education Requirements at CSU (Report No. 26, 2006-2007)
Professor Peter Meiksins, chair of the University Curriculum Committee, stated that he has one item for the Senate’s consideration which is a proposed revision to the University’s General Education Requirements. Everyone should have several documents related to this in the meeting packets. First there is a memo from the Curriculum Committee itself conveying it to Senate and then noting a couple of minor changes that need to be made in the document. He indicated that those changes have not yet been incorporated in the document before Senate but they are technical footnotes and not substantive changes. He noted that there is also the suggestion that the name for the “beast” should be created. A name has not yet been developed. Professor John Donoghue believes that “COMPASS” would make a nice name although what that stands for is somewhat less attractive sounding than the name itself. In addition, there is the proposal itself which represents the work of the Task Force that he has chaired for the last 18 months or so. There is an additional memo from the General Education Task Force to the UCC which summarizes the changes that the Task Force made between the draft that it presented to the various colleges and the final version that was presented to UCC and explained what the Task Force changed and what it chose not to change and attempts to explain each case. Finally, there is a brief sketch for a Plan for Assessment of General Education which the UCC worked out with Dr. Rosemary Sutton’s office. Because this is a very complicated project and because there is a lot of implementation work yet to be done, we are not really in a position to have a fully developed assessment plan but we thought we would figure out a process by which a plan could be developed and so that is part of the proposal – that some version of this be pursued.
Dr. Meiksins spoke about the proposal and its origins and its gestation. He continued stating that the proposal represents the work of an all-college committee that was appointed way back in 2005 and most of the people who were involved in that are present at today’s meeting. He then pointed them out: Gregory Lupton, who for a while was the co-chair of the committee and then subsequently became a department chair and withdrew. He was then replaced as co-chair by Robert Bast from BGES who had been on the committee all along and agreed to step into the chair’s position. In addition, Kenneth Mayer from Business, Mittie Olion Chandler from Urban Affairs, Glenda Thornton from the Library, John Donoghue from Engineering, Mekki Bayachou from Chemistry from the College of Science, and Elizabeth Lehfeldt from CLASS. He noted that there were a couple of other people who served on the committee – Brian Mikelbank for Mittie Chandler when she was on leave and Helen Takacs pinch hit for Ken Mayer when he was on leave and they were very important members of the committee so he wanted to acknowledge them.
Dr. Meiksins noted that the main effort the committee tried to make was to achieve a few simple objectives here. First, was to make the best education requirements as clear cut and straight forward as we possibly could and to avoid very complicated check sheets which confuse students, advisors, and everyone. He stated that the proposal tries to eliminate, as much as possible, courses that count for several different things and that’s the reason why the committee went in that direction to try to make one course satisfy one requirement so that it was clear what the course was attempting to do and so that the requirements would be comprehensible to everyone involved. The second thing the committee tried to do was to make the Gen Ed requirements more attractive to students and the principal way they tried to do that was to create the option of Learning Communities in the proposal called “Clusters” of courses so that students could choose if they wanted to satisfy their General Education requirements by taking groups of courses linked around a central theme or some other common element so that there would be some cohesion to their curriculum. The Committee also tried, as much as possible, as a third objective: to try to break down the wall that exists between major programs and General Education. Speaking about general education at CSU, there has always been talk about getting them “out of the way” which was a usage the committee talked about early on and found objectionable. It was suggested that they were irrelevant and unnecessary and an obstacle to education and the Task Force’s sense was that if we are actually making these requirements, they should be linked to the students’ education. So the Task Force tried as much as they could to both design a curriculum which we could explain to somebody, about which we could say this is why we are requiring this, and to try as much as possible to develop both an intellectual and institutional mix between the general education requirements and the requirements of the majors and there are a variety of ways in the proposal where we have attempted to do that.
Lastly, Professor Meiksins stated that the Task Force tried very hard not to create a political document. General Education Requirements are like budgets – they are about politics, not about money and the Task Force was aware of that and they know that everybody looks at General Education Requirements and starts counting student credit hours. While that is an understandable approach, the Task Force tried as hard as they could not to think that way. The Task Force tried to develop a set of requirements that made intellectual sense, that seemed to fit with our students’ profiles, that seemed to fit with what we’ve heard about what other institutions are doing with General Education Requirements, and that seemed to fit with what we hear about what graduate programs and employers and others who are the recipients of our graduates expect in a student. Undoubtedly there are people who will find the proposal affects them in one way or another and that they are not comfortable with but that wasn’t the Task Force’s intent. The intent was to frame a set of requirements that made sense to the Task Force and made sense we thought in a university like this one and so it is hoped that Senate will approach it in that spirit.
Professor Meiksins stated that the idea was that Senate was to have a free-for-all discussion for twenty-five minutes or less. Then at that point, it doesn’t mean that the discussion ends but it means that at that point, if people think that it’s time to vote, then formal action can be started. We need to have some discussion first so that people can get things on the table, ask questions, have them answered, etc.
Senator Eric Ziolek noted that he had a question. His colleague Senator Barbara Hoffman couldn’t be here today, but he asked to read her memo to Senate. First of all, Professor Ziolek asked Professor Meiksins to tell him as clearly as he could how this proposal is going to attract students who are currently going to community colleges. Professor Meiksins responded that he didn’t know that. He is personally a skeptic on the subject of whether General Education Requirements are what attracts or repels students from schools. The best research he read on that subject is that students chose schools largely for social and for personal reasons and not for curricular ones. One can say that this requirement is somewhat easier to understand than our present set of requirements which are Byzantine and one thing that the Task Force also tried to do is to explain more clearly why we’ve made these requirements. One of the things he was told when he first became chair of the Task Force was a senior member of a department in his building said, “We don’t need a new requirement, we just need a new explanation of what the requirement is and why we have it because nobody can explain it to anyone; nobody knows why.” Professor Meiksins noted that he didn’t agree that we didn’t need a new requirement but he did agree that we needed an explanation that’s persuasive for whatever requirement we do have. He stated that the “Clusters” concept may attract some students. There are many students who come here who are not going to fit into “Clusters” either because their curriculum won’t work with it or because they need to do other things that prevent their taking that many courses at once but it’s a feature of our curriculum that we haven’t had and the community colleges don’t have it. We can legitimately say that this is a more stimulating kind of intellectual experience that a student could get taking X101 and Y101 at Tri-C or Loraine and so maybe we will attract the kind of student who likes that kind of thing – that’s the Task Force’s hope.
Senator Eric Ziolek stated that he had mentioned this in a CLASS faculty meeting regarding the requirements under Social Sciences and Arts and Humanities that mandates one course be taken in some culture outside of the United States. He noted that he argued against it being included in Arts and Humanities because he doesn’t think that western art is a significant part of most of our students’ culture as it is and this sort of precludes them from really being involved in the great works of western art and music and literature and things like that. Lastly, Senator Ziolek read Senator Barbara Hoffman’s memo: “My principle concern is that the most significant curricular modifications this proposal offers could easily be accomplished through mechanisms that would avoid dismantling the current set of requirements and putting every current Gen Ed course through a lengthy review process while establishing two new administrative positions. The report proposed the institution of Cluster courses or learning communities. The development of learning communities is already underway independently in the issue of Gen Ed reform. Secondly, speaking across the curriculum courses as an alternative to the WAC courses seems like a pretty good idea but could be implemented as an adjustment to the current set of requirements. Thirdly, issues of staffing, focus and standardization of syllabi with basic writing courses of English 101 and 102 are the purview of the department and college that offer them and should be dealt with on that level. The proposed decrease with quantity of Gen Ed is not well justified. In looking at the chart on page 25 of the report, it is clear that the proposed configuration in fact delivers less general education to our undergraduates than the current requirement does. Why would we want to reduce the number of hours we have to offer a liberal arts education to our students? Students in fields that don’t require any other courses in the Arts and Humanities and Social Sciences beyond the Gen Ed will leave this institution with less training in these subjects than such students have been receiving. Is that what we want? Another questionable component of the proposal is that it reassigns History to both the Arts and the Humanities category where it currently resides, and Social Science where it currently has only one course approved for Gen Ed purposes because the course is co-taught with Political Science and Anthropology. On what grounds is this disciplinary extension justified? The proposal removes logic from the quantitative requirement which seems frankly illogical. Quantitative literacy does not depend on being able to just do math, it also crucially requires a solid sense of how to measure the truth values of the claims being made through numbers.” Can you address that in your remarks? I believe questions should also be raised about the manner in which the reporting was made from the Gen Ed Task Force to the UCC. The CLASS College voted on two matters concerning the wording of some of the proposed requirements. The results of those votes and the Gen Ed Task Force’s responses to them were differentially reported to UCC. Only information about one of those votes was included in the report. The same procedure was followed for both votes. Why was only one of them included in the report to UCC? Instead of including the report on that vote, the Task Force elected to adopt wording proposed by the Department of History on what constitutes a course about a society other than the U.S. The issue to be raised is only secondarily a question of History’s proposal. The primary question involves the privileging of History’s proposal over the proposal voted on by the attendees of the CLASS faculty meeting. The CLASS faculty conducted business according to its habitual procedure. The proposal was circulated via email to the entire College faculty before the meeting and raised as a business item, discussed, and voted upon at a regular college meeting. The voice of the college that delivers the bulk of the Gen Ed courses should be fully heard.”
Professor Meiksins stated that he regrets that Senator Barbara Hoffman is not here to pose those questions herself. What he would say in response to several of them is first of all, the idea that English 101 and 102 are owned by CLASS is false. Insofar as there is a requirement by the University that those courses form part of the General Education Requirement, the University has to approve them as satisfying those requirements and any changes in those courses of any significant nature should be and particularly have been brought to UCC and eventually in some cases to Senate for approval. On the assignment of History to Social Science, it’s the policy of the State of Ohio and not the policy of this university in particular that History is defined as both a Social Science and/or a Humanity and the Task Force simply brought our practices in keeping with that. The History Department can choose to locate its courses where it likes. If they want to be a Humanities, which as he understands it they by and large do, they can continue to do so but the Task Force is simply making the language symmetrical with the State of Ohio’s. The total number of hours in the requirement is he believes three fewer than the current requirement. The Task Force didn’t get into the business of counting hours so much as they did get into the business of starting from zero and figuring out what requirements can be absolutely justified asking our students to complete. When the Task Force got done with the process, they tried to eliminate overlapping requirements and complicated formulas, and they wound up with the number before the Senate. There was no intent to reduce the number of hours but simply to create a requirement that’s logical and made sense to them. On the logic and math issue, he would say, however, that the requirement is not that students take math. It is a quantitative literacy course, one of the features of which, in contrast to our present requirement, is that students can satisfy at least part of their quantitative literacy requirement by taking quantitative courses in their disciplines. So for example, for a statistics course in Psychology – there are many ways in which one could imagine such a course being developed and we in fact had talked in both the Gen Ed Task Force and the UCC about logic being defined or developed as a quantitative literacy course if appropriately organized. Dr. Meiksins stated that the intention is not to privilege Math – it’s to insist on the importance in a society such as ours of students being quantitatively literate just as we insist that they be literate in the ability to write. That was the intention. He went on to say that there were other elements in the question. The vote in CLASS was a vote at a CLASS college meeting at which these items were new business. Although it is true that the proposal was circulated, the attendance of the meeting was poor because there were no agenda items and so faculty ignored them. The ultimate vote was 26 to 4 he believed on one of the proposals which is less than a quorum in the College. No one called the quorum but one has to sort of reflect on exactly whether it’s meaningful to say the College voted in that context. That didn’t mean we disregarded the proposals; the Task Force in fact took them both quite seriously. They talked at length about the logic proposal and in the end determined that they didn’t support that proposal. There was a vote making a recommendation to the Task Force but not a vote which they felt bound by since they have to deal with six and not one college. The Task Force also had to think about the curriculum from the University perspective not simply the perspective of one group of faculty.
Professor Meiksins commented that the foreign culture proposal that Senator Barbara Hoffman referred to was actually never formally transmitted to the General Education Task Force unlike the logic requirement proposal which was sent to him by the Philosophy Department chair and which he duly copied to all members of the Task Force. He learned about the actual content of the foreign culture proposal through Minutes that were circulated and then subsequently requested to be corrected by Senator Barbara Hoffman after the General Education Task Force had made its final report. The Task Force did talk about it but the proposal would have required delegating approval of foreign culture courses to a committee which does not exist and which currently operates only out of the Provost’s Office and is not a committee of the Senate. The Gen Ed Task Force really felt very uncomfortable with this approach. They had from History a proposal which had been voted on by the Department and approved unanimously and which was circulated again among the faculty, an alternative which the Task Force thought met the spirit of the thing. We had heard a great deal in the CLASS faculty meeting about the concern that students would not learn about cultures really radically different from their own. History suggested this language. The Task Force thought that it was an appropriate compromise among the various positions they heard so the Task Force adopted that one. It was not because the Task Force disregarded or treated unequally any proposal, it was simply that the Task Force thought that was a better suggestion.
Senator William Bowen asked, "How big is this?" What’s this going to do around the university?” He said that he has heard people around the university say that it is a sea change. He asked, “Is it a sea change?” Professor Meiksins responded that he doesn’t know that it is a sea change. He thinks that Senator Hoffman is right in one sense that there’s much in this proposal that is continuous with what we had in our old proposal and that’s inevitable given that we live in Ohio and the State places various restrictions on what we can and can’t do in terms of inventing a completely novel general education requirement. What he does think is that the issue of simplicity will help and we do have a problem now with students finding the General Education Requirement confusing with faculty having great difficulty explaining to students what requirements they have and have not met with advisors making errors, not because they are bad advisors, but because it’s a very complicated thing to check off. It will make the requirement more transparent to people and in that sense, it’s an improvement. He also thinks it’s an improvement because it is more clearly explained to people what this is for. It’s not a menu of options that was composed because that’s how we always did it but we really did try to say, “Well we want a writing requirement because, we want a quantitative literacy requirement because” and to try to say what our reasons were and whether you agree with those or not, that was the Task Force’s objective. That’s something that we haven’t done here before. We’ve had check lists rather than stated objectives and so in that respect it’s a sea change even if the actual content of the requirement overlaps substantially with the one we had before.
Senator Beth Ekelman stated that she was trying to be proactive in Health Sciences in trying to develop a capstone that she could apply to all of the tracks in Health Sciences and learned that adding a capstone requirement will put one of her tracks over the already approved credit hours. She noted that they are going to go back and look at that and see if there is anything they can adjust so that they don’t have to go through a million steps to change this. She asked Professor Meiksins if the Task Force has looked at other departments and are they going to be flooded. Her understanding is, if it changes the credit hour, it has to go to the college Curriculum Committee, UCC, Faculty Senate and the Board of Trustees. Professor Meiksins responded that it doesn’t have to go to the Board. Senator Ekelman inquired if anybody is going to expedite it. Professor Meiksins replied that they have looked at it in this sense and the Gen Ed Task Force explicitly said this out loud repeatedly and the UCC essentially concurred that the part of the proposal that will have to be phased in the most slowly is the capstone requirement because we are actually asking programs to change major programs. That’s both a bigger job and it’s a bigger imposition. The assumption is that whatever the implementation date for the requirement as a whole will be, the implementation date for that part of the requirement will undoubtedly be further down the line. If it takes two or three years to get this up and running, it will take another couple of years at least before we get every department in compliance with that. There is not as much work as everybody thinks because a fairly high percentage of the programs around the university already have capstone requirements. The principal places where there aren’t capstone requirements are in the College of Science and in CLASS. There it is a little bit more uneven. There are some programs that do and some programs that don’t. The Task Force acknowledges that there is going to be work and they acknowledge as well that there are situations which make implementing this in a straight forward way difficult. The Task Force actually talked quite explicitly both about programs that have large numbers of hours in them such as Senator Ekelman’s and about programs like Psychology and for that matter his own which have large numbers of majors and relatively small numbers of faculty where the logistics of doing a capstone for every student in the program is not so straight forward. He noted that those are implementation problems and we can work through them and the University Curriculum Committee, which he will not chair next year, will be open-minded and flexible on these matters because the intent was not to punish departments by making them do unpleasant things.
Senator Ekelman commented that she is happy that’s on the record.
Senator Diane Steinberg noted that in the Task Force memo to the Curriculum Committee one of the reasons given for discounting the Philosophy Department’s proposal on changing the quantitative literacy requirements was also ignored by CLASS. Is it that no other unit on campus commented in any way on the need to offer logic as an option for general education? She noted that it seems to her that most other units on campus, i.e. most other colleges, all of them are going to require their students to take at least two math courses so this change would have affected almost exclusively students in CLASS. What it would have done is made the requirement more flexible. In other words, we proposed that deductive logic be allowed to count as one of those courses that would satisfy the quantitative literacy requirement. She understands that they are saying that logic can apply to the “Q” course so students would have the option of taking it if it were approved as a “Q” course but Philosophy’s proposal was for deductive logic to become part of the requirement just as it is now part of the math and logic requirement. To say that logic can apply to become a “Q” course, if the people who are approving the “Q” courses have the narrow conception of mathematical or quantitative literacy which is being proposed here, where quantitative literacy seems to her to be primarily being able to use statistical methods, they were talking about a logic course that would be vastly different than a deductive one. She thinks deductive logic is mathematical in the broad sense, and she feels that most people would agree with that, but she feels that they are putting Philosophy off saying, “Well logic can apply to be a “Q” course because the logic course that might be a “Q” course by this narrow criterion is going to be a different logic course.”
Professor Meiksins said that he didn’t agree that the criteria are narrow or tied to statistics. If you look at national literature on quantitative literacy, the whole point of quantitative literacy is to extend the understanding of a quantitative education beyond math departments and into programs in which quantitative ideas and methods are used regularly but which don’t teach them as math. An example which he was talking about the other day in a meeting that illustrates the point is that he was told about a quantitative literacy course in some university in the drama department which involves scenery building and was focused on geometric principles and angles and perspectives and things of that sort and they developed a quantitatively oriented course that served their majors by incorporating quantitative ideas that were actually of use to their majors. So, there are lots of ways in which we could define how this requirement could be satisfied and he personally may be involved. He intends to use the statistical examples simply because he comes from a department where that’s normal but that may be an unfortunate thing of his but that’s not intended to limit quantitative literacy to the understanding of statistics. The feeling on the Task Force was that students irrespective of their major as part of general education should be quantitatively literate and to make the kind of asterisk next to that from one college involved them actually questioning their own initial starting point. The Task Force talked about it and in the end decided to retain the requirement more or less as was for that reason that they strongly believed from the beginning and nothing had happened during their discussions which were numerous on this subject to dissuade them that quantitative literacy was important. If the logic course is quantitative literacy, then they are happy with it and if it’s not, it’s something else. It’s a different requirement for a different competency, and then a separate argument needs to be made about why students should have that. That was their thinking about it. Now as for the implementation issue, the intent is that since small groups will be established to translate this document into guidelines and forms and processes, then the Task Force’s explicit intention is that these groups should not be the monopoly of any particular department. The Task Force talked, for example, about information literacy as an area that is part of this program where we need some additional language. Their idea was that a librarian should be part of that but it should not be a committee of the librarians. He would take the same position on quantitative literacy which is that it’s obviously an area where somebody who is in math training and background is required but it should not be a committee of mathematicians just as a committee dealing with writing should not be a committee of the English Department. If we pursue that philosophy, that will increase the odds and certainly increase the chances that the committee will be open-minded and flexible in its approach.
Senator Steinberg commented with respect to Professor Meiksins’ last remark that quantitative literacy by the author’s own admission here is based almost exclusively on documents from the Mathematical Association of America. So it is coming just from mathematicians. Professor Meiksins remarked that that is not true. He cited that in his report but he actually made quite a lot of use of it as did the committee in the National Numeracy Network which is an interdisciplinary group which brings together social scientists, mathematicians, scientists and others so there is actually an interdisciplinary movement nationally to build this kind of requirement. The Mathematical Association has good language about it so we used that when we referred to it but it wasn’t intended that we were simply appealing to a math authority.
Senator Steinberg said that she did look at the Mathematical Association of America documents that they used. It was here that they are advocating mathematics and writing across the curriculum and the document does sound very much like the quantitative literacy.
Senator William Bowen asked to invite the comments of Professor David Forte. It seems to him that this is a pretty significant kind of decision we are making. Whether it’s large enough to be a sea change and needs to go in front of the entire faculty, he wasn’t sure, but he felt that we ought to have a person who is on the Steering Committee who is here and wants to speak about it to speak about it.
Senate President Gelman said that he prepared a note to Professor Meiksins on this subject. He commented that perhaps Professor Forte should speak. If he understands the rules correctly, the chair of UCC, Peter Meiksins, the chair of UFAC, David Forte and the chair of the Admissions and Standards Committee, Rosemary Sutton, are voting members of Steering, and they have speaking privileges in Senate on matters that their committees are concerned with, but, on the other hand, Senate very often recognizes and allows to speak anybody who is in the room. We have done this over the years. He certainly thinks that it would be consistent with our precedent if David Forte was allowed to speak and if he wasn’t allowed to speak, someone including Senate President Gelman could speak recounting the remarks made at Steering and he assumes call on him the way one might call on an administrator to expand on those remarks. It is a point well taken but Professor Meiksins is presiding and it is up to him. Professor Meiksins remarked that he thinks that was a “yes.”
Professor David Forte thanked Professor Meiksins and Senate President Gelman and Senator Bowen. The reason why he asked to speak is that he did have some critical remarks in Steering and so he just wanted to lay them out. It is not small politics he is talking about; it is actually big politics he is talking about and he has some concerns with the role of our own culture and what we say is important for us and what we use to learn. When the revised motion came before the Steering Committee, he was at first a little dismayed to see that there were new motions saying that at least one of an art requirement has to be non American and one of History has to be non American. They didn’t even include European in the non American. So he asked himself, “What is it that we are teaching our students that come from our very own culture. What do we think is important that they need to know fundamentally and there are only two courses that we say are so important they need to know fundamentally. One is the African American Experience and the other is the Diversity Experience and the description of the Diversity Experience is to think about differences to allow students to analyze inequalities that are manifested upon racial, gender, disability, age, or sexual orientation. The African American component by definition because of our sorry history has to have a large component with criticism of what we are. The Diversity one is plumped in there intentionally as being critical of what we are. Now these forces are valuable. Any course that gets passed through the Curriculum Committee and our entire curriculum is valuable. The question is: What are we saying to our students as to what’s valuable for you to learn about your American Experience? If nothing else, we want you to know the problems we have with African Americans and we want you to know about the problems we have with Diversity and inequalities. We have no required course on the founding, we have no required course on progressiveness, or any other of the movements that help make us Americans what we are. So what we are telling our students is the minimum we want you to leave here with is a critical almost anti-American view of your heritage. Now two years ago, people in the Senate, and we pushed this aside in the State Senate, were critical of universities, and ours included, as having an ideological bias. Now they are going to look at this and it’s going to be proven that we think that an ideological bias is intentional for students to learn. Now this may not attract any students as Bill says, but it sure will repel a number of other observers. There have been study after study that show how ignorant our students are with the fundamentals of American history or the fundamentals of American culture or American art and this is a sad thing that we think that these two things are the only things that we want our students to make sure to leave this university with. He said that he really wishes this had been rewritten in a different way.
Professor Peter Meiksins said that he will simply repeat what he said in Steering Committee in reference to Professor Forte’s remarks which were that our thinking on this was in part that we found it rather awkward and unacceptable to alter the requirements so as to remove what is currently an existing requirement in this area from our curriculum. What does that say about us in Cleveland in a city as diverse as this to eliminate or to reduce the university requirement? Is that the message we want to be sending to our potential students? We also were trying to eliminate the idea that general education is remedial. The State of Ohio currently requires a substantial amount of education in American History, constitutional principles, and the like. They have upped the ante allegedly at least in the new high school graduation requirements and, as such, we thought the sort of course we would likely be to require is a very introductory level American Government or American History course with either repeat material that students are supposed to have already learned or it would be a more advanced course getting into more complex issues that get beyond knowing the basic kinds of issues of American Government and American Politics and so we felt that this was really not something that we could justify. There is nothing in this requirement that says the other courses in the curriculum cannot be focused on the United States or contain content on that point and many of the courses which are currently part of the General Education Requirement in both the Social Sciences and the Humanities are in whole or in part focused on the United States so while he agrees that our students don’t know a great deal about American culture and history, there are a lot of things they don’t know much about he fears and we have to choose which things we can meaningfully accomplish in the General Education Requirement without simply repeating things that they are supposed to have already gotten elsewhere.
Senator Eric Ziolek noted that Professor Meiksins had said that his committee did not consider the number of credit hours as they relate to specific programs. Professor Meiksins replied that they did consider a maximum. Senator Ziolek commented that he had spoken to Professor Meiksins personally about this before but in almost every major in CLASS, you can major in a subject with 36 semester hours in that discipline. The National Association of Schools in Music which accredits the Music Department mandates 76 credits in music which means that particularly in music education where the State Education Department has licensure mandates and other such things, our Music Ed people can’t get out of here without taking 150 credit hours and almost all of the other Music majors are crowded. Some institutions have sort of a scalable Gen Ed to accommodate programs of this nature because we don’t all award the same degree.
Professor Meiksins replied that the Task Force is aware of that and they did look carefully at that issue because there are a number of programs including Senator Ziolek’s but also including education generally. The College of Education has this problem across the board and Nursing has issues of this kind and Science approaches it. There are none in Engineering. This is another area where there is almost no leeway. The Task Force had actually looked to see how our requirements compared to other area institutions and other institutions in the State of Ohio and this requirement places us somewhere in the middle. There are a number of institutions including Akron, he may be wrong about that, which require more hours. There are some that require fewer but this is not unusually high or unusually low. Again, the Task Force’s feeling was that this is not an unreasonable set of requirements to make for an educated person. A number of programs, including education he might add, have been pretty creative about working with departments in other areas to develop courses that both satisfy General Education Requirements and work in their major. The Task Force’s suggestion to departments and programs that have this issue is that they pursue it if they can and that it’s consistent with the philosophy that we are supporting here which is that General Education and majors aren’t separate – they are not competing; they ought to be complementary.
Following up on Professor Forte’s comments, Senator Ekelman asked why Europe is off the list for other countries. Professor Meiksins responded that she was asking the wrong person because he favored leaving Europe in there and he bristled when somebody in CLASS said, “Take a course on Canada.” Having been an American in Canada, he knows that Canadians can spot an American at 20 paces. He noted that the Task Force heard from a number of different groups and different departments, again primarily in CLASS, who felt very strongly about this and there were enough people in the Gen Ed Task Force who agreed that it was important that students know about something other than Western tradition, for lack of a better word, then we agreed with that. If Senator Ekelman were to ask Professor Meiksins personally what he favored, that was not his position. He asked if somebody wanted to speak to the point since he can’t defend it terribly effectively.
Senator Michael Spicer also spoke in favor of Professor Forte. He stated that his son went through the high school system in this county and frankly the American History he got in high school was pretty weak tea. American History in high schools generally is not toward historians and quite frankly, they don’t get a very good grounding in our traditions. They need sufficient grounding in our traditions that would enable them to reflect upon a critical analysis of those traditions in an intelligent fashion. It does seem to him that an appreciation of American History is terribly important only because it helps Americans realize the essential contingency of their values, essential contingency of their culture, and the ways in which it is different from other cultures.
Professor Meiksins stated that he didn’t have anything to add in response other than he doesn’t agree that A) a course in American History is not what we are going to require or are we going to require a course in American Culture and there seems to be a technical issue here that needs to be resolved were you to go in that direction and, B) whatever the limitations of the American high school system are, and they are considerable, he doesn’t agree that asking a student having had several years of high school education focused on the American Experience, to again take an introductory level course at the college level to remedy the deficiencies of the high school. That isn’t a particularly constructive approach to improving our students’ skills. It’s like making them take math over. If they didn’t learn it by now…
Senator Spicer said his response would be on the bases of his experience with his son’s history in education in this county. He has not been there and has not done that. Professor Meiksins replied that he should have been there and he should have done that. Senator Spicer said that you can say that until kingdom come but... Professor Meiksins stated that the Task Force’s position was that if we were to attempt to remediate every single problem the students entered the university from high schools with, we would have a General Education Requirement larger than the music major. Senator Spicer stated that he was suggesting that Professor Meiksins’ comment that somehow a high school education is adequate to provide the appreciation of one’s history and culture is not a well-rounded one. Professor Meiksins responded that he did not say it is, he said that it should be.
Senator Sanda Kaufman stated on the part of her colleagues here, on remediation not having had certain information at college is not going to improve through remediation and so she is thinking of this point as well as the quantitative skills in algebra. It doesn’t matter if you remediate people in algebra, they can go through high school and not have it. Professor Meiksins responded that the Task Force’s attempt was to build a General Education Requirement that begins where the State’s high school requirements end. It was clear to the Task Force that the State’s high school requirements mandate a fairly extensive amount of coverage of American History, American Politics, whatever. We may not like what they do and we may not be satisfied with it. He would wager that virtually every discipline has a similar criticism of what goes on at the high school level in their discipline but the Task Force did not see, given the limited number of courses we could require and the large number of things that we thought were important, that something which had been covered as extensively in high school as that should displace some other things on our list which we also felt were terribly important. Some choices had to be made. It’s not that he thinks that American History is unimportant, it’s simply that the Task Force had to choose among various options and these were the ones that we thought had not been adequately addressed even in theory at the high school level and which were absolutely essential to the students’ needs. He stated that he would be happy if students took American History.
Senator Bowen stated that he would like to make a motion that it gets put before the entire faculty. The change is not more attractive than the previous one or at least has questionable attractiveness. Professor Meiksins asked what Senator Bowen’s evidence for that is. Senator Bowen noted that Professor Meiksins had said that earlier himself. Professor Meiksins replied that he didn’t say that. The question was whether he thought it would attract students to CSU. He said he didn’t think General Education Requirements, period, attract students to a university. Senator Bowen stated that this one won’t attract any more than the other one so arguably what we are doing is making a change here that is contentious along the math and logic lines, it’s contentious along what belongs in the history and government lines, it’s apparently a very political document so that it fails on the political criterion, and it seems to him that if we are going to have this kind of change that’s going to be contentious and going to split things the way they are, the one compelling argument he hears is that it simplifies things. The one very clear effect from everything he has heard is that this is going to simplify things but if it is going to be such a contentious document, why not put it out in front of the entire faculty and let everybody decide on it.
Senator David Elkins disagreed with Senator Bowen. He said that the process that was put in place was a long and careful deliberative process by a committee of faculty from all of the colleges, that they have gone to extraordinary lengths to reach out to the faculty itself to respond to this document and that we are a deliberative body. As the Faculty Senate, it is our responsibility as elected representatives of our college to make this decision. It is not something that we should again shoot back to the faculty and ask them. Every piece of this proposal has something that can be broken off and by sending it back to the faculty, folks will vote against what they dislike he fears and not for an overall comprehensive plan. He doesn’t think that sending this back to the faculty is a proper way to go.
Professor Meiksins remarked that Senator Elkins said what he was going to say.
Senator Tomas Humphrey stated that as written, the document does not preclude people from taking an American History course. Professor Meiksins said, “No.” Senator Humphrey said that he would counter the arguments of Professor Forte and Senator Bowen by saying that inserting a specific agenda, any agenda, makes the document political so moving it back or pushing it more, American is the agenda and he is an American in search of a different kind of ideological slant so by pulling it back the way he suspects he would like to pull it, would be pushing it in a different direction. He suspects the person to his left would also like to push it. That gives it a different political agenda in a very powerful way which we have to realize and the document in and of itself does not keep people from taking an American History class as it is.
Senator Bowen concurred and said that because it is a political document, that is the reason why it should go to the faculty overall and he appreciates the work that the Task Force has done. He agrees that the Task Force has reached out to people a lot but at this current point, because it is political and because whatever statement we make will be the political statement that this university makes overall – there will be a political statement in this somewhere. Whatever political statement that will be it seems to Senator Bowen should be one that has the buy-in of the whole faculty as far as possible. Up to this point, there has been an awful lot of deliberation about it and people have talked an awful lot about it and now we are going to make a decision and that decision is going to have a basically political element to it that will represent the entire faculty here. It seems to him like now that we’ve got this document, it makes sense to put it out and let the entire faculty vote on it.
Professor Meiksins reiterated what Professor Forte said that there is democracy in having the entire faculty vote on something. That politicizes. The State of California discovered what does sometimes happens when you take legislative procedures and have the entire State population vote on it is that you wind up with tax legislation that didn’t really work very well.
Senate President Sheldon Gelman stated that Senator William Bowen has made a motion. If there was a second, it would be a motion to amend the Task Force’s proposal. Senator Bowen stated that his motion is to send the Task Force’s proposal out to the entire faculty for a vote as it is written.
Senate President Gelman said that he didn’t know what to do about this proposal at this point but he assumes that there will be a second to the motion. He is not sure under the Greenbook we can do that. Bylaw amendments are to be submitted to the entire faculty. One could ask that there be an advisory vote by the faculty. He didn’t see why that couldn’t be done. He is guessing that if the entire faculty rejected a proposal, that would be influential. He is just not aware of any mechanism under the Greenbook that leaves any avenue in the University Governance for the Faculty Senate to formally refer a decision to the judgment of all of the faculty members. We have elections that are all-faculty elections. Bylaw amendments sometimes are submitted to the entire faculty. He is just not aware of any authority the Senate has to submit this to a binding vote so that’s one reservation that needs to be considered.
Senate President Gelman then asked if there was a second to Senator Bowen’s motion. The motion was seconded by Senator Walter Rom.
Senate President Gelman stated that now the question is what kind of motion it is. If it is a motion to amend, we would discuss it and we would then vote on the motion. If it were accepted, it would then become part of the proposal by the Curriculum Committee. He asked Senator Bowen if he would be willing to say it’s an advisory vote. Senator Bowen responded that he would. Senate President Gelman noted then that there wouldn’t be any point of order or Greenbook violation. He commented that there are Roberts Rules motions for referring things to a committee, but there is no committee that Senator Bowen wants this referred to and it is already coming from a committee so unless Senator Bowen objects, he (Senate President Gelman) is assuming that this is a motion to amend the proposal or perhaps it is a motion to postpone consideration of the proposal until we have the results of an all faculty advisory vote. He asked Senator Bowen if that would be a fair characterization. Senator Bowen said that it would be. Senate President Gelman said that if it was that, we would vote on it, we could discuss it, and if it passed, that would be the end of consideration of this proposal. The proposal would come back only after we had the results of the advisory vote. If we rejected it, then we would proceed and consider the Curriculum Committee’s proposal. He then asked if anybody objected to that parliamentary understanding of where we are. There were no objections. Senate President Gelman noted that we now have a motion which is discussable.
Senator Elizabeth Lehfeldt stated that she would speak against the motion because we risk shirking our responsibility as a Faculty Senate. We are entrusted to engage in these deliberations by the faculty who elect us to this body. We routinely make big decisions, controversial decisions, policy decisions that admittedly do ripple out to the rest of the university, but that’s the very function of this body and she felt that the Senate would be shirking its responsibility and actually she would argue almost taking a kind of uncourageous stand in the sense that we just need to stand up and take a vote on this proposal.
Senator Kathy McNamara said that she would also suggest that a discussion that takes place in various pockets of the university among faculty, if there were to be such a referendum, would not have the advantage of the various viewpoints that are represented in Senate given that all of the colleges are represented so that several of us sitting together in the Psychology Department discussing this wouldn’t have the benefit of the input that she has heard from other folks from other colleges today. She doesn’t know if that vote would be really instructive or actually what it would be representing in terms of input.
Senator Ekelman inquired if colleges have been given an opportunity to comment on the final proposal. She knows that Professor Meiksins came to her college. Professor Meiksins responded that either he or other members of the Task Force or all of them met with each college in an all-faculty meeting and, in each case, faculty were invited to submit comments in writing or by email or in any other form that they saw fit as long as it wasn’t lethal so that it could be transmitted to the rest of the committee. There has been a substantial amount of discussion and that generated quite a bit of correspondence of one kind or another, all of which was shared with the Task Force prior to the formulation of the final proposal. Prior to that the Task Force also met with the entire curriculum committees of each college with the first iteration of the proposal and got feedback from them as well. The whole thing has been posted on the Senate web site for a substantial number of weeks. Each faculty member received both a paper and an email announcement that it was there so there has been plenty of opportunity for people to review it.
Senator Jennifer Visocky-O’Grady stated that she would just like to reinforce that she personally thinks that the process and procedure has been followed to a “T” for a very long time very carefully. So, she worries that we set precedent for any contentious issue coming to Senate to go out to a faculty vote and everything that Senator McNamara just mentioned, it starts to make the Faculty Senate less of a body of importance if we throw it back to the faculty seeing that all of the procedural issues have been met.
Senator Andrew Gross stated that he has high respect for Senators Bowen and Spicer but he wishes to speak against this motion. When he got to go to Canada and studied general and specific education and he hates to bring the news but it is true that most graduates find that getting through is the key. There are different ways and this will not be a sea change and he agrees with all of those who have said that we have a responsibility as a body to vote on this and not to send it out for a faculty vote.
Senator Diane Steinberg asked if there was any possibility, instead of voting on the entire new curriculum proposal, that we could vote on parts of it. Professor Meiksins stated that his feeling about it is that this was worked out as an organic proposal. We thought about not a list of requirements but a set of requirements that we thought fit together, complemented one another, and complemented major programs. His personal view would be that we should not take it apart and vote on it piece by piece. If there are serious concerns with the proposal enough that people can’t support it, that’s one thing but if there is this or that part of it that they don’t like, we need to make our peace with the whole and not with the individual components of it.
Senator Steinberg noted that Professor Meiksins didn’t want to do that, but there is a way that we could do it if that is what this body thinks. Professor Meiksins replied that he is not a parliamentarian so he is not certain that he knows but he believes that motions can be divided.
Senator Jeff Dean commented that the answer is to make an amendment to change a particular point in the proposal as it stands and not essentially doing what Senator Steinberg seeks to do. Professor Meiksins agreed that this is certainly a less radical parliamentary approach.
Seeing no further discussion of the motion, Senate President Sheldon Gelman stated what we have before us is Professor Bowen’s motion to postpone consideration of the University Curriculum Committee’s Gen Ed proposal pending the outcome of an advisory all-faculty vote which he assumes would be conducted by the Senate Office. He doesn’t think under the Greenbook that we could bind the Senate in any way. He would add that what could well happen is that we will get ballots from one third of the faculty which could go any way at all. In any case, we are voting on Senator Bowen’s motion. If the motion succeeds, our consideration of the Curriculum Committee proposal is over. Senate President Gelman then asked Senators to vote on Senator Bowen’s motion to postpone consideration of the proposal pending an advisory vote of the entire faculty. The proposed motion was defeated.
Senate President Gelman noted that we are now back to considering the University Curriculum Committee’s proposal.
Senator Jeff Dean said that he had three things he would like to ask about. One is, in the Natural Sciences there is language that a laboratory course would have to meet at least two class hours. Is that meant to preclude something that might be on the internet or may not be physical? Professor Meiksins responded that the Task Force didn’t actually talk about an internet-based lab. He said that he was not sure how that would work but he doesn’t see any theoretical reason why they couldn’t.
Senator Jeff Dean said that two, he is interested in some of the background as to why upper division courses were explicitly excluded. Isn’t it ever the case that a person could go outside of their discipline at a higher level? Professor Meiksins replied that the basic approach there is that under the State’s rules which mandate the transferability of courses for General Education, the State will not recognize an upper level course as part of the university’s transfer module and our approach is to try to make the requirement as similar to the transfer module as possible.
Senator Jeff Dean noted that his third issue was that there is a statement about finding ways to reward faculty who teach large classes. That seems to him to be kind of at odds of what you really want to encourage with the rest of the proposal by encouraging learning communities and the sort of instruction that he would think would be very efficient. Professor Meiksins agreed and said that obviously it would be desirable were we able to have a larger number of small section courses for first and second year students. The Task Force is simply being realistic. At present we currently have a very large number of large section classes at the lower division and the staffing levels are unlikely to change in a meaningful way in the short term. So if that is the case, if you want instructors to do a good job and really do some of the things in large courses that they do in smaller sections, like assigning writing and doing other things, that there may be some way of recognizing the fact that they are doing something more than giving a multiple choice test ought to be developed.
Senator Dean said that his fourth question would be whether there’s comparative data or research on the efficiency of having an administrator for this General Education. Professor Meiksins confessed that this was something he actually proposed and he initially proposed it for two reasons. One, he went to the American Association of College and Universities national meeting which was focused on General Education and discovered that almost every institution in the country has someone in charge of General Education including in some cases as in Portland State, which we always hold up as an example, did not only have someone in charge, they had an office with a budget of seven figures and several people working there which is partly why they have such a remarkable program. The second reason was that he has been chair of the UCC for longer than he cares to remember and one of the things he found is that the UCC is the administrator for General Education on this campus. No one is in charge of it except the UCC and the UCC cannot do a good job of doing that. It can approve courses and approve policies but it cannot initiate and it cannot administer the day to day business of making sure courses are offered, making sure that courses exist, making sure that instructors are aware that they are teaching General Education courses, and providing training for people who are teaching in those areas, so the Task Force thought it would be a good idea to have someone whose job that was. We explicitly said it should be somebody with faculty status and somebody who teaches General Education so that it wouldn’t simply become an administrative role – somebody who has at least a foot in the trenches. But, based on his experience now, this is his fourth year as chair of the UCC, it’s more than the UCC can handle.
Senator Humphrey noted that Senate has talked for more than 25 minutes on this issue and he was worried about losing a quorum for the vote so he asked if the process could be expedited. Professor Meiksins said that if there is no more discussion, Senate could have a vote or somebody could call the question. Senator Humphrey then called the question. Professor Meiksins said that if the question has been called, there has to be a vote whether to call.
Senate President Gelman noted that there has been a motion to end the debate and if this motion passes, Senate will vote on the Curriculum Committee proposal as it stands. He then asked for members to vote on ending the debate and the motion was approved. Senate President Gelman then said Senate members would proceed to vote on the University Curriculum Committee’s Gen Ed proposal. He then asked members to vote. The University Curriculum Committee’s proposed revision of the General Education Requirement at Cleveland State University was approved.
Professor Meiksins stated that he appreciated the seriousness of the discussion and members may disagree, but at least we have come to resolution.
A. Proposed Course Repeat Policy and Honors Gen Ed Courses (Report No. 27, 2006-2007)
Professor Rosemary Sutton, chair of the Admissions and Standards Committee, stated that she had only one item which is relatively simple. This is a proposed policy for Honors Gen Ed courses and actually this originally arose from Gregory Lupton the chair of the Mathematics Department. It turns out that we have a course repeat policy that applies in general across the university but a situation arose where a student was doing an honors course and failed the honors course and, therefore, the student was dismissed from the Honors Program and then could not redo a course repeat option because now the student cannot take another Honors course – cannot repeat the honors course so the proposal is for parallel courses like Math 182 or Math 182H. When there is a parallel course, if this has happened to them, students will be able take the parallel course and do the course repeat policy which allows them the most recent grade to be used. The Committee talked to the Director of the Honors Program and made a pretty restrictive policy. It only applies to lower division courses and it only applies to courses that have parallel honors and non-honors sections – not all of them do and some students do honors courses in what are called contract courses where they take a regular course and they do a contract with a faculty member to do additional work for honors. It would not apply to that as well. So it is a relatively narrow option that we think makes sense to give beginning honors students a break if they get themselves in some trouble at the beginning of the program.
Senate President Gelman noted that the Admissions and Standards Committee has a proposed Course Repeat Policy for Honors Gen Ed Courses. He asked members to vote. The proposed Course Repeat Policy for Honors Gen Ed Courses was approved unanimously.
B. Proposed Religious Holy Days Attendance Policy (Report No. 28, 2006-2007)
Professor Sutton stated that, as it turns out, the Committee didn’t talk to enough lawyers before approving the policy so the Committee is going back to the drawing board but does expect to bring this proposal back again in the near future. Professor Sutton noted that the Admissions and Standards Committee is therefore withdrawing the proposed Religious Holy Days Attendance Policy distributed from the Admissions and Standards Committee
Proposed Revisions to the Bylaws Sections 8.2.2, 8.2.3, 8.3.8 (Report No. 29, 2006-2007)
Professor David Forte, chair of the University Faculty Affairs Committee, noted that members have a number of motions from the Committee before them. The first four are revisions of the Bylaws of this body and in the Greenbook, 8.2.4, it states the following: “Any proposed amendment to these Bylaws approved by the Faculty Senate and determined to be substantive by the Faculty Senate shall be submitted to the members of the faculty for a mail ballot.” Professor Forte stated that as he reads these, the default is that the motions are non-substantive and that if it is determined that any one be substantive by motion, it can go to the faculty as a mail ballot. To make their position clear, the UFAC took at look at these revisions and they do seem to be relatively minor and so UFAC is asserting that they are non-substantive completely subject to Senate’s change on any or all of them to be substantive. If there be no motion to make any of these revisions substantive, then he will bring them forward now.
Professor Forte noted that the first revisions are changes to the committee structure which simply represents the current committees and, referring to number one, he wished to point out about the Nominating Committee of Faculty Senate which “shall nominate of its own motion up to two candidates for each of the offices to be filled…” He noted that “up to two” is the new insertion. It now states “two candidates” but previous elections somewhat resembled “Politburo elections” of the central committee in which there was only one person on the balcony waiving to cheering crowds that was put forward. If Faculty Senate defeats this proposal, then Senate is insisting to the Nominating Committee to give us two candidates. If Senate accepts this motion, then Senate is saying, if in your judgment you can only find one candidate who is willing to serve and is competent, one will be fine.
Professor Forte noted that motion two is the method of voting. The changes simply represent what the practice has been which is plurality vote for committee members. Professor Forte stated that numbers three, four, and six are revisions to committees to reflect either a committee addition – somebody they wish to have on – or somebody who no longer has a position in the bureaucracy. Again, this is all just bringing us up to date. Number five, known as the “Violet motion” is to have Violet, as any public body does, correct our bad English and punctuation. The Senate Secretary will approve that and the final version will be distributed to Senate members. The last proposed revision is a motion from the Law College. He noted that last year, the Senate and the vote of The Board of Trustees changed the status of our Clinical Professors and Legal Writing Faculty to Law Clinical Professors and Legal Writing Professors and that has been initiated into the Greenbook. UFAC is now coming forward to add that they be eligible for Emeritus status under the same restrictions and with the same provisions as 8.3.7 having the title of Clinical Professor Emeritus or Emerita or Legal Writing Professor Emeritus or Emerita.There being no discussion, Senate President Gelman stated that we have a package of Greenbook amendments from the University Faculty Affairs Committee. He then asked members to vote. The University Faculty Affairs Committee’s proposed revisions to the Bylaws, Sections 8.2.2, 8.2.3, and 8.3.8 were approved unanimously.
Provost Mary Jane Saunders said that anticipating a long discussion of the Gen Ed she didn’t prepare any remarks. She said that if there were any questions, she would be glad to answer them but otherwise, it’s been a long day.
Senate President Sheldon Gelman commented that he didn’t see President Schwartz at today’s meeting and he apparently also anticipated a long discussion.
Provost Saunders reported that President Schwartz is out of town raising money.
Senate President Gelman asked if there was any new business.
Bookstore Advisory Committee (Report No. 30, 2006-20007)
Senator David Elkins stated that he had some new business. He noted that he is one of the Faculty Senate representatives on the Bookstore Advisory Committee. Last year, the Board of Trustees selected Nebraska Book Company to operate the CSU Bookstore based upon a competitive bidding process. As the operator of the CSU Bookstore, Nebraska Book Company has the exclusive right to serve as the University’s provider for textbooks and other course materials.
Senator Elkins continued stating that programmatically, the University uses revenue from the CSU Bookstore to support other campus services. He was informed yesterday by the Bookstore’s Manager that Barnes and Noble, which was an unsuccessful bidder last year, intends to open an off-campus bookstore at 2020 Euclid Avenue. This is directly across from the Music and Communication building. It will compete directly with the CSU Bookstore.
Senator Elkins reported that the Barnes and Noble store will not have any affiliation or contractual arrangement with the University. He was informed that Barnes and Noble filed a Freedom of Information Act request for the textbook information for Fall 2007 and the University agreed to grant the request. Campus Support Services will be providing copies of textbook requests submitted and received by the CSU Bookstore to the new store on a weekly basis. He was told that if departments or faculty or staff are contacted by the Barnes and Noble Bookstore about textbook information, to refer the caller to the Assistant Vice President for Campus Support Services, Ms. Clare Rahm, at X-3673.
There being no further business, Senate President Gelman asked for a motion to adjourn. It was moved, second, and the meeting adjourned at 4:35 P.M.
Faculty Senate Secretary