The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)
Regular session – October 11, 2004 - 3:30 p.m. - Jacobson Faculty Hall 102
office: Jacobson Faculty Hall 206   phone: 325-6789
e-mail:   web site:


The Faculty Senate was called to order by Professor Valerie Watts, Chair.


PRESENT:       Barker, Blank, Bozorgi, Bradford, Burns, Catlin, Cintrón, Civan, Dewers, Dohrmann, Draheim, Driver, Elisens, Fincke, Forman, Frech, Geletzke, Gutierrez, Halterman, Havlicek, Hayes-Thumann, Henderson, Houser, Kauffman, C. Knapp, R. Knapp, Lai, Lewis, Liu, Magnusson, Penrose, Raadschelders, Rupp-Serrano, Scherman, Schwarzkopf, Striz, Taylor, Vieux, Watts, Wheeler, Wood, Wyckoff

Provost's office representative:  Mergler
UOSA representative:  Johnson


ABSENT:         Biggerstaff, Brown, Caldwell, Cramer, Davis, Devenport, Greene, Hobbs, Marcus-Mendoza, Ransom, Sharp






2004 Student Satisfaction Report

Reception in appreciation of Athletics Director and coaches

Senate Chair's Report:

Health insurance enrollment

Academic integrity

Faculty development award

Dream courses

Student alcohol abuse

Regents’ policy manual—placement of Financial Emergency section

Campus Tenure Committee review of hire-with-tenure cases

State of the University address by President David Boren

Post-tenure review policy






The Faculty Senate Journal for the regular session of September 13, 2004 was approved.





The 2004 Student Satisfaction Report is available in the Faculty Senate office.

The Norman campus faculty is invited to attend a reception sponsored by University Libraries and the Norman campus Faculty Senate on Wednesday, October 13, 2004, 2:00-3:30 p.m., in the Great Reading Room of Bizzell Memorial Library in appreciation of Athletics Director Joe Castiglione, Football Coach Bob Stoops, Women’s Basketball Coach Sherri Coale, and Men’s Basketball Coach Kelvin Sampson for their generous support of University Libraries.



SENATE CHAIR'S REPORT, by Prof. Valerie Watts


“I want to remind everyone that the annual enrollment for health benefits will occur from October 18 though November 5 (a list of the information sessions was available at the meeting).

“On Tuesday, October 19, Dr. Donald L. McCabe of Rutgers University will be on campus to present the results of his research on student and faculty attitudes toward college cheating nationwide and on the OU Norman campus.  At that meeting information will be shared about some demographic and trend data based on Norman Campus cases adjudicated since the mid 1990's.  The presentation, which all faculty are invited to attend, will be from 11:15 to 1:00 in Gaylord Hall 2020.  

“Greg Heiser from the provost’s office is asking faculty to fill out the survey on academic integrity that you should have received by e-mail.  The faculty response rate is less than 10 percent, to date.  Please urge your colleagues to participate in this survey.

“The Faculty Senate will be sending out a call for proposals for the Faculty Development Award later this month.  There is enough funding to grant as many as ten awards up to the amount of $2,500 each.  Proposals in the areas of teaching and research are eligible for consideration.  Please urge your colleagues to apply.

“In addition, you should have received an e-mail from the provost’s office announcing funding that is available for ‘dream courses.’  The fund allows faculty to bring in speakers for their courses.

“Finally, the nature of OU freshman Blake Hammontree’s death has been of great concern to us all.  The president asked that any suggestions you have, which might help alleviate the problem of alcohol abuse on campus, may be forwarded to either the Faculty Senate office or Vice President Nick Hathaway.”





Prof. Watts explained that a change had been made in the Regents’ Policy Manual for purposes of clarification by including the Financial Emergency section in the Severe Sanctions section, with an asterisk indicating that it was a valid reason for termination of employment but not a severe sanction.  In the final version (attached) a sub-paragraph was inserted that lists two scenarios where termination of employment may occur but are not considered severe sanctions: 1) financial emergency and 2) changes in the University’s educational function.  The motion to endorse the revision was approved on a voice vote.





The Campus Tenure Committee (CTC) recommended discontinuation of its review of hire-with-tenure cases (attached).  Prof. Watts said the CTC believes the committee need not review files when it has already been decided to offer a position with tenure.  Hires with tenure are typically senior hires.  The higher administration, department, and dean of the college must be willing to tenure when the offer to hire is extended.  CTC does not feel it has “a genuine or authentic role to play” if a decision has already been made when the dossier is presented to CTC.  These types of dossiers are often presented during the summer months when many CTC members are away from the campus.  The CTC motion was seconded. 


Prof. Knapp said he planned to vote yes but was a little concerned about taking the CTC out of the loop.  Prof. Bradford pointed out that he came to OU with tenure.  He put together all of the materials to be hired but then had to go through an entirely different process for tenure.  Because of the delays, he almost turned down the offer.  Prof. Raadschelders asked how often someone was hired with tenure in comparison with overall hiring.  Senate coordinator Sonya Fallgatter said there were about three or four hire-with-tenure cases per year.  Prof. Cintrón commented that tenure was perhaps the most crucial faculty duty.  She said she thought it was important to keep faculty involved in decisions about colleagues who will be with us for many years.  Prof. Raadschelders noted that the faculty is involved at the unit level.  The exception requested by the CTC regards people who have already made a name and have several years’ experience.  Prof. Striz said the College of Engineering sometimes hires people who come in from a company and do not have an academic background.  Prof. Penrose said she thought it was important to give units the leverage they needed to bring in exceptional candidates.  She said she had confidence in her college and thought we should trust individual departments and colleges to make those calls, particularly when these are aberrational cases.  The CTC motion was approved on a voice vote.





President David Boren introduced Stephen Bentley, Chair of the Board of Regents.  He said Mr. Bentley had been a regent eleven years and served as chair twice.  He was one of the first members of the board to ask to give comments to the senate.  President Boren said he hated to see Regent Bentley’s term end this spring because had been a tremendous, positive influence on the university.  He gives priority to faculty compensation, recruitment and retention of the faculty, the library budget, and other key academic parts of the university.  Regent Bentley thanked the faculty for his time here.  He said he appreciated what the faculty had done for the university during troubled budgetary times when we had holds on faculty salaries.  He said the regents made a good choice as the OU president ten years ago.  President Boren thanked Regent Bentley for his generosity.  On November 17, President Boren will have been at the university ten years.  Former President George Cross, who was President Boren’s mentor, told him that the continuity of the institution was the faculty.  The president’s role is to support the faculty and listen to what the faculty has to say. 


Discussing where we have come the last ten years, the president said the donor base had grown from 17,000 to 84,000.  We have reached $990 million in private fundraising since November 1994, and our endowment has increased from $200 million to $634 million.  This year, we crossed the $210 million mark in total research from outside grants.  In ten years, ACT scores of our entering class have increased an average of about three points.  Our goal was to equal the University of Kansas in library rankings; we passed them and are now second in the Big 12 in terms of the size of the library collections.  The regents adopted a ten-year goal of increasing the library endowment by one million dollars a year.  New programs include honors, expository writing, religious studies, faculty in residence, cousins, and international programs.  The Dallas Morning News reported on the recommendations of a commission studying the University of Texas.  Most of the recommendations are things OU has been doing.  Reporting on construction projects, President Boren said if we have a higher education bond issue this year, coupled with private gifts, we would be close to having a physical facility that should stand us in good stead for the next 25 years.  The concentration in private fundraising will be in other areas.  Endowed professorships and scholarships have been priorities in private fundraising already.  We still have needs in the area of classroom renovation, restoration, and modernization, which could be addressed with a bond issue.  The opening of the Journalism building on November 30 will include several distinguished speakers, the opening of the art museum on January 20 will consist of a day of learning focused on art history and architecture, and the opening of Holmberg Hall on April 4 will feature opera singers.  Price Hall (Business) will open at the end of this school year or the beginning of next school year.  The next phase of the Physics building is coming along, the Weather Center is a year off, and the Stephenson Center is open.  In faculty compensation, we had climbed to fourth in the Big 12.  Because of cutbacks in state appropriations, we slipped a notch but are still in the top half.  Our goal is to be in the top three. 


President Boren said a positive outcome on the state questions was very important to the university.  The governor committed more funding for common education to pay for teacher health insurance.  Other commitments include the Oklahoma Higher Learning Access Program (OHLAP), hospital reimbursement, trauma centers, and cancer center.  If new sources are not available to meet these commitments, it will create a huge hole in the state budget.  Forty-five percent of the lottery question (State Question 705) would go to K-12 education.  Another 45 percent could be used for other education programs, for example, endowed chairs, tuition grants like OHLAP, and physical facilities.  That means lottery proceeds could fund a higher education bond issue, which would take care of 90 percent of our physical facility list.  OHLAP now comes out of any additional money for higher education.  During 2003-04, OHLAP cost $10.3 million, this year the cost will be about $18 million, and by 2007-08, the cost is estimated to be $41.7 million.  Last year, all of higher education only received $23 million in new money.  State Question 712 (gaming) would provide about $4-5 million for OHLAP.  OHLAP is a separate state commitment and should not come out of operating budgets for colleges and universities.  State Question 713 (tobacco tax) would bring the state’s tobacco taxes to approximately the regional average.  The tax would be used for health care.  Our state has one of the largest uninsured populations in the nation.  When hospitals are not reimbursed, health costs for the rest of us go up.  The tax would provide about $7 million a year for the cancer center at the Health Sciences Center, and that project would not have to come out of OU’s share of the bond issue.  If those four state questions fail, the projects would have to come out of the general budget, which would leave little for higher education.


President Boren spoke of the tragic death of a student due to alcohol abuse and underage drinking.  He closed the fraternity involved for the rest of the academic year.  What is frustrating is we have had the most robust alcohol education program this university has ever had.  Almost 7000 students went through alcohol training sessions this fall, and our alcohol education programs are continuing.  We have been stepping up our spot checks of Greek houses.  An advisory committee has been formed to suggest possible actions.  Any suggestions may be sent in writing to the president.  The committee will report back by December 8, and President Boren will recommend to the regents a new set of rules for the spring semester.  The committee is surveying what has been done at other universities.  Some suggestions on the table are to have a dry campus, which creates a different set of problems, delay rush, tighten academic requirements for initiation, and eliminate mid-week parties.  Teen drinking in junior high and high school is 40 percent higher in Oklahoma than it is nationally.  President Boren hopes we can convince students that real friendship is not something that is defined by alcohol abuse.


One of the programs initiated late last year was dream courses, a program to bring guest speakers to the campus.  Up to $20,000 per course is provided for special visiting scholars.  Six proposals were funded last year.  When possible, a guest could share with the general community through a round-table dinner.  The course could be team taught but does not have to be.  This program is a way to provide additional academic enrichment and attract some of our best students to take these courses. 


Looking ahead, President Boren said we would continue our emphasis on new interdisciplinary programs, our new expository writing program, and dream courses and would go back to the basics.  In 1980, higher education received 18.55 percent of the state budget.  Now it is at 14.95 percent, about 3.5 percent less of the $5.36 billion in state appropriations.  From 1993 to 2005, we went up about 1.3 percent in the amount of our operating budget coming from research and about 2 percent in the amount from gifts and endowment.  State appropriations went from 35.5 percent to 20.3 percent of our operating budget.  Tuition and fees jumped 13.5 percent.  If we do not get the dollars from the state to have adequate compensation for the faculty, what is likely to happen is a continued increase in tuition and fees over the next decade.  We do not want to go downhill in terms of our standard of excellence.  Almost 3000 additional students are receiving scholarships than two years ago.  The new heritage scholarships are for students in the middle income range to help them stay at OU.  If he were given $100 million as a private gift, President Boren said he would put half in faculty compensation and support and in areas where we have overcrowding and the other half in our scholarship fund.  As he looks ahead, those are his two continuing priorities for private and public funds.  He said, “The excellence of the university depends upon the excellence of the interchange between faculty and students in the educational mission.”  He welcomes faculty input into the issues facing us in the near future.  He said he values the relationship, encouragement, and good ideas from the faculty, and it has been a wonderful and very meaningful ten years.  With Prof. Watts’ help, he plans to insert some classical music from our School of Music into our call waiting.  (President Boren’s handouts are available from the Faculty Senate office.)


Prof. Raadschelders asked whether other states had programs comparable to OHLAP and whether the program was only for Oklahoma students.  President Boren said it was only for Oklahoma students since their parents are Oklahoma residents and taxpayers.  About six or seven other states have similar programs.  Students in the program must maintain a certain grade point average in high school.  Our legislators did a very admirable thing, but they did not fund it.  Other states have a separate source of revenue.  President Boren encouraged the group to send him thoughts and suggestions.  Before January, he would like to involve a group of faculty in trying to get action out of the legislature early in the session on issues such as a higher education bond issue and a bill to earmark funds for OHLAP. 





The committee established to review the post-tenure review (PTR) process made two recommendations (attached).  One was to clarify the numerical rating system (2.0 or less on a 0-5 5.0 scale).  The other was to eliminate the requirement for a five-year review of the process.  Reasons for the second recommendation are there have been no serious complaints with the PTR process, there are procedures in place that allow the Faculty Senate to request a review of the process, and the required five-year review could invite some outside interests to critique the process, with the ultimate goal of eroding tenure rights.  The motion of the committee was seconded.


Prof. Barker asked for an explanation of the idea that some outside interest could erode tenure rights.  Prof. Schwarzkopf commented that when PTR was originally passed, there was concern that the regents would try to define a PTR procedure in such a way to make it easier to eliminate tenure.  The policy was written to ensure that it was a performance improvement program as opposed to a performance evaluation program.  When the process comes up for review every five years, there is the chance that the regents could use the occasion to make it a more stringent process.  The Faculty Senate could always request a review if any problems develop.  Prof. Barker said the regents could, by the same token, request a review and make it more stringent.  Prof. Schwarzkopf said the regents usually did not bring up a policy they had already endorsed.  Any change would have to go through the Faculty Senate.  Prof. Barker said he thought there were some design flaws in the policy that had not emerged yet.  Having the ability to deal with problems in a measured way would be an advantage, but the Faculty Senate as a body could always decide to do that.


Prof. Burns asked whether the AAUP had a position on the issue of a five-year review.  Prof. Watts said she was not sure.  She added that the PTR committee had made the point that there was no requirement to periodically review the tenure process.  The recommendations were approved on a voice vote. 





The nominations to fill vacancies on committees were postponed until the next meeting.





The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.  The next regular session of the Faculty Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, November 8, 2004, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.


Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator


Roger Frech, Secretary