The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)

Regular session - November 9, 1998 - 3:30 p.m. - Jacobson Faculty Hall 102

office: Jacobson Faculty Hall 206 phone: 325-6789 FAX: 325-6782

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The Faculty Senate was called to order by Professor Alexander Holmes, Chair.

PRESENT: Abraham, Agrawal, Beasley, Benson, Brown, Butler, Deming, Eliason, Emery, Engel, Fleener, Gilliland, Greene, Gross, Hobbs, Holmes, Houser, Joyce, Karriker, Knapp, Kudrna, Kunesh, Kutner, Lancaster, Mau, Murphy, Newman, Norwood, Okediji, Pailes, Patten, Rosenthal, Russell, Scherman, Schwarzkopf, St. John, Sutton, Van Gundy, Watts, Weston, White

Provost's office representative: Mergler

PSA representatives: Iselin, Pyle

ABSENT: Badhwar, Bert, Blank, Cline, Durica, Edwards, Leigh, Osisanya, Patterson, Ratliff




Programs Outcome Assessment Report 1

Class start date 1

Senate Chair's Report:

Health benefits 2

Intellectual property 2

Research professor title 2

Remarks by President Boren 2

Tenure vote 4

Faculty appeals 5




The Senate Journal for the regular session of October 12, 1998, was approved.



A copy of the 1997-98 Programs Outcome Assessment Report is available in the Faculty Senate office.

In a memo dated October 19, President Boren said the Academic Regulations Committee approved the Senate's proposed calendar, and he is hopeful that this measure will be approved by the State Regents (see 9/98 Senate Journal, page 4, and 10/98 Senate Journal, page 2).



Prof. Holmes reported that Senator Sutton was at the Employment Benefits Committee meeting, where they are evaluating bids for the health care package. Last time, Prof. Kunesh asked for a comparison of benefits. Prof. Fran Ayres (Accounting), who chairs the Faculty Welfare Committee, will look at peer institution comparisons.

The intellectual property task force was formed to look at the copyright and patent policies. Prof. Pat Weaver-Meyers (University Libraries), chair of the task force, will present a copyright proposal at the next meeting. The copyright policy defines ownership of creative ideas of faculty, such as textbooks and journal articles. Work on the patent policy has been on hold pending the outcome of state questions 680 and 681. These questions, which have now been approved, have to do with the conversion of public money to private purpose. The issue of ownership of patentable items will be addressed by the Senate in the spring.

At the next meeting, the Senate will receive a proposal concerning the title of research professor for individuals on research contracts but not in a tenure-track position. Issues being addressed include faculty governance. Prof. Barbara Greene (Educational Psychology) is chair of the committee. Other members of the committee are listed in the 10/98 Senate journal, page 2.



In his State of the University address, President Boren noted that the Senate Executive Committee meets with him regularly. Those discussions are really helpful. He said the four years he has been here have been extremely satisfying.

The Board of Regents has embraced the idea of long-range planning. The five-year goal for cost-of-living adjusted faculty compensation was to get to the mid-point of the Big 12. We started in the eleventh position. We have since increased that goal. The goal for the library was to meet the library expenditures of the University of Kansas, but we passed that goal. President Boren's intention is to set out clear priorities based on our educational mission. Each year, he reports our progress to the Regents to see if we need to revise the goals.

We began the fall with an increase in our admission standards. We now have a four-tier system of higher education in the state. This step underlines our desire to move us beyond the state as a peer group and into the handful of outstanding public universities. This is what the state needs. The new standards make a statement about ourselves and to students. This will encourage students in secondary school to do better and will help us in the long run with remediation.

We moved up one tier--to the second tier--in the U.S. News and World Report, placing OU in the same ranking with Texas A&M and the University of Texas-Austin. Our goal is to be in the first tier. We ought to bring in the kinds of people who fit in tier one institutions.

Our endowment is at $430 million. We now rank 16th among public universities in private endowment per capita and should be able to move into the top 12. It is not unreasonable to look at an endowment in excess of $500 million in the next two to three years. We rank number one in the increase in the number of donors; 56,000 individuals have given to the Reach for Excellence campaign. A $5 million gift from Max Weitzenhoffer put the University over the $250 million goal of its Reach for Excellence campaign. Rather than announce a new goal, we will lay out a list of $100 million in needs. Three years ago, the library endowment stood at $600,000. With a recent $1 million gift, $3.1 million has now been raised. Increases in private giving and public support have made possible a 4.6% increase in faculty compensation. We have moved into fourth place in the Big 12 in terms of total compensation, including fringe benefits and cost of living. Our goal now is to move into the top three in the Big 12. We have had three good years in a row with the legislature. The President is guardedly optimistic about this year.

OTRS has been unlinked from the natural gas tax revenue and will instead receive a percentage of the state's general revenue. The employer contribution only will go up to 7%, instead of 12%, over the next seven years, which will save the University close to $10 million. The employee cap will still come off in 2002, but since the cap continues to move up, by the time we reach 2002, it will not be such a terrible situation.

More than 50 FTE faculty have been added in the last four years, which brings us to over 800 tenure-track faculty. We also have the highest enrollment for the Norman campus in its history, so we have to continue to push to make progress. In the past four years, we have gone from 107 to 219 endowed positions. Faculty turnover is the lowest we have had in many years. Faculty attrition for the last fiscal year was only 35, 10 due to retirements. The library was given a $1 million increase this year, and we will continue to work hard on additional funding.

We have passed the $130 million mark in externally funded research this year. Since 1990, total research expenditures have grown by 86%. Administrative costs have been reduced to 6.0%, which is lower than any other institution in the state by two to three percentage points. We probably are down to the bone now. Athletic Director Joe Castiglione has brought in experts to provide suggestions on the structure and reorganization of the Athletic Department. The University did not have to make a short-term loan to the Athletic Department this year. Mr. Castiglione has projected a balanced budget for the Athletic Department.

On the student side, we are continuing to attract more and better students. OU has enrolled 251 State Regents Scholars, students who rank in the top one-half of 1% in the nation in test scores. We had an 81% retention rate from last year. Undergraduate enrollment has grown to record numbers. We hope to hold where we are. We have over 3100 traditional first-time freshmen, but we plan to stay at about 3000. Endowed scholarships in the $3-4 million range will help the law school shrink in size and continue to improve quality. Graduate student enrollment went down somewhat, so we need to watch that. We should strengthen the quality and resources available to graduate students. Ten more graduate fellowships will be added in each of the next three years. This year, teaching assistants received full medical insurance coverage and salary increases of about 4%.

Where do we look for the future? Our first priority must remain faculty compensation if we are going to retain and recruit the best faculty. We should be lodged solidly in the top three of the Big 12 and in the ballpark of tier one institutions. We have to continue to improve our library by providing more funds for the acquisitions budget and electronic improvements. Additional research space needs to be provided. Our bonding capacity is virtually nil. Unfortunately, it looks like the $171 million bond issue will be allocated to all state institutions instead of to four or five important projects. We need $50 million at a minimum to build the research facilities we need. Our plan is to develop a scientific research park on the south base, where the land is contiguous to the campus and does not have the restrictions that north base has. Continuing to grow the faculty and to endow more faculty positions is important even if we achieve a stable enrollment. Some areas are in desperate need of additional faculty. Restoration of Holmberg Hall needs to be completed. The law school has a $5 million fund-raising campaign under way to build its new addition, with over $1 million raised already. We should look at the entire curriculum to see if we have one that exposes students broadly to a full range of study, with more interdisciplinary opportunities. We won the Templeton Foundation Award for creating a community on campus. In most colleges, we are moving the advising process away from faculty in order to use faculty for mentoring. There are many exciting opportunities. This year we are going to try to advance a proposal in the legislature to have the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education, rather than the legislature, set tuition so that tuition is in a less politically charged forum.

During the question and answer period, Prof. Norwood said he was disappointed to see the administration use as a comparison the Big 12 schools, which consist almost entirely of mediocre to inferior institutions. We should establish a higher goal. President Boren said he agreed. Now that we have moved ourselves up, we need to compare ourselves to upper tier two and tier one schools. Prof. Norwood asked about the appropriation per FTE student. The President replied that we are ranked 39th. Prof. Norwood voiced his concern about the reported 35% salary increase and $600,000 package given to the men's basketball coach when compared to the salaries of many of our most distinguished senior scholars. President Boren said his priority is the academic mission. Some individuals have suggested that OU should give central University funds to the Athletic Department to bail them out. He said he is at a loss to understand, nor does he approve of, the national compensation picture when it comes to collegiate athletics, but it is there. There are supporters of the University who want to give to the Athletic Department. We just won the CHAMPS award for having the best all-around programs for student-athletes. We try to put together packages that rely as much as possible on private money as opposed to state funds. It is a balance.

Prof. Russell pointed out that not everyone is upset about how much is spent on athletics. A lot of Oklahomans like OU because of its success in athletics. He said he was glad President Boren is pushing for faculty salaries but thinks we need to make more improvement. He said he was very happy President Boren has been serving the University these four years. President Boren said he has no political ambitions and would like to stay here as long as the students, faculty and Regents want him to stay. Prof. Patten noted that we need to do more to retain our gifted students in the graduate program. President Boren said he was trying to get graduate fellowships endowed. The Regents also understand this issue.



At last month's meeting, the Faculty Senate discussed a recommendation to add language to sections 3.7.5(f) and (l) of the Faculty Handbook to provide the numerical result of the department's tenure vote and the Campus Tenure Committee vote to the candidate. The Senate approved an amendment to add "at the candidate's request" to both sections (see 10/98 Journal, page 2).

Prof. Patten noted that some departments vote on tenure and promotion simultaneously and do not make a distinction between those votes. He asked about the possibility of adding some clarification that only the tenure vote is being made available unless the intent is to make the vote on both tenure and promotion available. Prof. Holmes said the language strictly addresses the tenure question. Following a brief discussion as to whether to include promotion votes, Prof. Holmes offered to have the Senate Executive Committee research the promotion sections of the Faculty Handbook and at the next meeting, propose comparable language for promotion votes.

Prof. Newman asked whether the Committee A vote also would be disclosed to the candidate. Prof. Benson noted that under the current procedure, the candidate knows only whether the Committee A vote was favorable or not. Prof. Holmes noted that section 3.7.5(g) addresses the Committee A recommendation on tenure. Prof. Kunesh said he would like to decide the issue on the floor first. The proposed revisions in sections 3.7.5 (f) and (l) (Appendix I) were approved on a voice vote.

Prof. Benson suggested that a change to the Faculty Handbook with respect to Committee A should be on the floor a month. Prof. Van Gundy said to fill in the rest of the process after the department level, the Senate also should consider the college vote. Prof. Kunesh observed that the candidate is informed of the recommendation for or against tenure beyond the department level. It already is litigious to be on Committee A. A requirement to reveal individual Committee A votes will open up lawsuits. Prof. Newman urged that some specification for disclosure of the Committee A vote should be included so candidates will know what they are entitled to. Provost Mergler explained that another section states that the recommendation will be given in writing. Prof. Holmes pointed out that there might not be a formal vote. Provost Mergler noted that a Committee A member could write a dissenting opinion. When Prof. Schwarzkopf moved to reveal the Committee A vote to the candidate at the candidate's request, Prof. Holmes ruled the motion out of order and said the Executive Committee would review the issue and report at the next Senate meeting.



At last month's meeting, the Faculty Senate considered some proposed revisions in the faculty appeals sections--3.9.1(g)(1) and (h)(1)--of the Faculty Handbook, and a question was asked about the definition of a classroom day (see 10/98 Journal, page 4). Drawing from the definition of a regular class day in Section 1.2.6 of the Academic Misconduct Code, the Senate Executive Committee proposed that the following language be added as a footnote: "Classroom days are defined elsewhere in the Faculty Handbook as any day, Monday through Friday, on which the University holds regularly scheduled classes or regularly scheduled final examinations." The proposal revisions (Appendix II) were approved on a voice vote.



The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m. The next regular session of the Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, December 7, 1998, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.


Ruth Okediji, Secretary


Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator


11/98 (Appendix I)

Revisions in Faculty Handbook - Tenure Vote

(additions underlined)

3.7.5(f) Formal consideration for tenure shall originate with the polling by secret ballot of all tenured members of the candidate's academic unit including, when practical, those who are on leave of absence. If it is proposed to consider a tenure recommendation prior to the candidate's sixth probationary year, the tenured members of the unit shall hold a preliminary vote on whether or not to do so, and consideration of early tenure will proceed only if a majority of tenured faculty members favor such consideration. Subsequently, in any formal poll of tenured faculty taken prior to the candidate's sixth probationary year, no tenure recommendation will be forwarded unless a majority of those polled favor granting tenure. Whatever the result of the faculty poll taken during the sixth probationary year, it will be forwarded. In all cases, the result of the vote must accompany the recommendation. The numerical result of the formal secret ballot polling shall be provided to the candidate at the candidate's request.

3.7.5 (l) The Campus Tenure Committee will attach its recommendations to the tenure materials and forward all materials to the Senior Vice President and Provost with supporting reasons and will notify the candidate, the chair of the unit, and the college dean of its recommendations. The numerical result of the Campus Tenure Committee recommendation shall be provided to the candidate at the candidate's request.


11/98 (Appendix II)

Revisions in Faculty Handbook - Faculty Appeals Process

(deletions crossed through; additions underlined)

3.9.1(g)(1) Selection of Hearing Committee. The Chair of the Faculty Appeals Board immediately will notify the respondent(s) of the grievance and will provide the parties with a current roster of the FAB members schedule a meeting of the parties within 5 classroom days to select the Hearing Committee. The Hearing Committee, which shall serve at the pre-hearing and at the formal hearing, if convened, will be selected as follows:

a. Within 10 classroom days1 of receipt of the roster, the complainant and respondent alternately each shall select three names from the Appeals Board pool.12 If there are multiple respondents who cannot agree or if a party fails to respond, the FAB Chair may request the Faculty Senate Chair to select the remaining Hearing Committee members by lot. Following selection of the six names, the FAB Chair is responsible for ensuring that those selected choose within 5 10 classroom days a seventh name from the Appeals Board pool to serve as chair.

1Classroom days are defined elsewhere in the Faculty Handbook as any day, Monday through Friday, on which the University holds regularly scheduled classes or regularly scheduled final examinations.

12No members of the Faculty Appeals Board may be eligible for selection for a hearing committee if they currently are serving on another ongoing hearing.

3.9.1(h)(1) At least 20 classroom days before the hearing Within 10 classroom days following receipt of the Hearing Committee's pre-hearing conference determination as provided for in Section 3.9.1(g)(2)b, the complainant shall present to the respondent and the Chair of the Hearing Committee: