JOURNAL OF THE FACULTY SENATE

The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)

Regular session Ė April 12, 1999 - 3:30 p.m. - Jacobson Faculty Hall 102

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

e-mail: facsen@ou.edu web site: http://www.ou.edu/admin/facsen/

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

PRESENT: Abraham, Badhwar, Beasley, Benson, Brown, Cline, Deming, Durica, Edwards, Eliason, Emery, Engel, Ferreira, Fleener, Gilliland, Greene, Gross, Holmes, Houser, Joyce, Karriker, Knapp, Kudrna, Kutner, Lancaster, Mau, Murphy, Newman, Okediji, Osisanya, Pailes, Patterson, Ratliff, Rosenthal, Russell, Scherman, Schwarzkopf, St. John, Sutton, Watts, Weston, White

Provost's office representative: Mergler

UOSA representatives: Shankle

ABSENT: Agrawal, Bert, Blank, Butler, Kunesh, Leigh, Norwood

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Senate Chair's Report:

Research professor position 1

Student athletic fee committee 1

Faculty Awards and Honors Council recommendations 2

Charges of Faculty Compensation Committee and Faculty Welfare Committee 5

Preliminary nominations, councils/committees/boards 5

Health benefits 5

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APPROVAL OF JOURNAL

The Senate Journal for the regular session of March 8, 1999, was approved.

 

SENATE CHAIRíS REPORT

The Provostís office made some revisions in the Research Professor document (see 2/99 Senate Journal, page 2) to make it consistent with the language in the Faculty Handbook. The Senate Executive Committee discussed the revisions with the Provost and recommended a few changes. The final version will be presented to the Faculty Senate.

The Senate Executive Committee was asked to appoint three faculty to an ad hoc committee to consider a student fee to fund the Athletic Department. The committee will also include staff and students. Professors Trent Gabert (Health & Sport Sciences), Doug Gaffin (Zoology), and Joe Rodgers (Psychology) will be the faculty representatives. A proposal will be put forward in the fall. According to the President, the Athletic Department is near budget this year.

 

FACULTY AWARDS AND HONORS COUNCIL RECOMMENDATIONS

For background information, see 3/99 Senate Journal, page 5. Prof. Holmes explained that the University Council on Faculty Awards and Honors is one of only three regent-created councils. The other two are the Publications Board and Athletics Council. If approved, the recommendations of the Faculty Awards and Honors Council would go to the administration and then to the regents. Four recommendations were proposed under item 3 of the councilís report (Appendix I). Prof. Holmes suggested that the recommendation be considered individually. The chair of the Faculty Awards and Honors Council, Lora Rikans (Pharmacology and Toxicology at the HSC), and next yearís chair, Jane Magrath (Music), were present to answer questions.

(1) Nominators should be allowed to nominate a candidate for only one specific award.

Recommendation (1) was approved on a voice vote.

(2) In keeping with the eligibility criteria for Presidential Professorships and Amoco Foundation Good Teaching Awards, persons currently holding a distinguished professorship (David Ross Boyd, George Lynn Cross, Presidential and Regents' Professors) or a named endowed chair or professorship should not be eligible for the Regents' Award for Superior Teaching, the Regents' Award for Research and Creative Activity or the General Education Teaching Award.

Prof. Murphy asked what would happen to faculty members when they reach the level of success of a distinguished professorship. The University would have no awards to recognize someone who continued to be productive. Prof. Rikans said the philosophy of the council is that there are so many talented faculty members, that there is good reason to distribute the awards. Last year, there were 69 nominations, all worthy of receiving an award. Rather than giving awards to the same handful of people, the council would rather see the awards distributed. Often, the same people are nominated year after year for different awards. The council would rather see a progression from less prestigious awards to more prestigious awards. Prof. Holmes asked whether prestige had to do with specific criteria. Prof. Rikans said, generally, the more prestigious awards carry more money. Provost Mergler said she was concerned about stipulations that donors make concerning requirements for an endowed chair or professorship. She suggested that these positions should be kept distinct from requirements for who gets an award or honor. Prof. Rikans pointed out that the criteria for the Presidential Professorship and Amoco Award currently exclude named endowed chairs or professors. Named chairs and professors would still be eligible for other awards such as distinguished professorships. Prof. Russell said he thought it was appropriate to reward people who continually do well. Prof. Badhwar suggested that a sentence be added to indicate the awards for which they would be eligible. Prof. Rikans said the distinguished professors and named chairs and professors would be eligible for other distinguished professorships. Prof. Schwarzkopf asked whether those were one-time awards. Prof. Rikans said the recipients now receive a permanent salary increase. Prof. Schwarzkopf said he hated to remove the additional ways the University could reward excellence. He said he would be more comfortable including a list of the class of awards for which named chairs were ineligible plus a list of awards for which everyone is eligible. This way, someone who received a David Ross Boyd Professorship 15 years ago and is suffering from salary compression could be recognized with some financial benefit. Prof. Holmes asked the Provost whether there were any named professorships with no financial benefit. Provost Mergler answered that it ranges from no benefits to quite a bit. Prof. Holmes remarked that this proposal would eliminate people from awards with a financial gain simply because they have a title. Prof. Osisanya said there is a disadvantage if the same person gets an award every year. He said he would favor sharing the awards. When asked how many people had at least two distinguished professorships, Provost Mergler said she thought there were about two. Prof. Holmes remarked that the statistics show that one person has not been walking off with a bag full of goodies. Prof. Schwarzkopf said the worst way to accomplish the goal of distributing awards is to write a law. A better way is to indicate that preference will be given to people who have not received previous awards of a similar sort. Prof. Rikans said she liked that suggestion and that this is the informal policy under which the council has been operating. However, some of the council members have been uncomfortable because the rules do not specifically say that certain people are excluded.

Prof. Schwarzkopf suggested the following language for recommendation (2): "It is acceptable for the Faculty Awards and Honors Council, in its call for nominations, to indicate additional criteria it will consider in making awards, including previous awards." Prof. Benson said the wording would allow the council members to have any preferences they want. Prof. Schwarzkopf said he offered this alternative because the council did not feel it had the mandate to add conditions. He moved that the following language be substituted for recommendation (2): "In publishing the call for faculty awards, the Faculty Awards and Honors Council may add additional preferences for candidates who have not received specific previous awards or chairs in whatever time period it deems appropriate." Prof. Schwarzkopf said it is appropriate to distribute awards, but it is also appropriate to give the council some flexibility to identify certain groups to whom an award should not be distributed. Prof. Benson said he was sympathetic to the spirit of the motion but was worried that it did not answer the question of whether these awards were career or individual year awards. The criteria could change on an annual basis. Another problem is that the council would have to meet to determine the criteria before the Provost sends out the call for nominations. Prof. Rikans commented that this has been the philosophy of the council for several years. The preferences would probably remain in place year after year. Prof. Eliason remarked that peer review means we want to have the best people on the council and trust them to present their ideas as to the recognition of faculty accomplishments. Prof. Holmes asked whether the council had been operating on the principles articulated in the recommendations. Prof. Rikans said some members operate strictly under the guidelines, and others use their judgement. Prof. Schwarzkopfís motion was approved on a voice vote.

(3) Previous winners of Regents' Awards should not be eligible for the same award at a later time. Instead their nominators should consider them for other awards.

Prof. Kutner said he thought this recommendation was covered in the previous motion. As there was no motion to adopt (3), the recommendation was deleted.

(4) An award for team teaching should be considered. The Council recommends that a committee be formed to investigate the possibility and practicality of setting up such an award and that one or more of the members of the Award Council be appointed to this committee.

Prof. Badhwar asked why the same procedures could not be applied for team teaching as for other teaching. Prof. Rikans replied that faculty who team teach often are not evaluated in the course if they do not teach enough hours. This would be an award for the team, not necessarily a monetary award. Prof. Badhwar asked how someone could be considered for a teaching award when there were no student evaluations. Prof. Rikans said some individuals are evaluated as well as the course as a whole. The amount of teaching varies. Prof. Abraham asked whether many people would be eligible for this kind of award. Prof. Rikans said almost all of the classes at the HSC are team-taught except at the graduate level. Prof. Scherman noted that Liberal Studies courses are team-taught. Provost Mergler added that examples of team teaching on the Norman campus, where both faculty members are present the entire semester, would include the honors colloquium, liberal studies, and interdisciplinary perspectives on the environment. There are other examples of sequential teaching. Prof. Fleener asked whether a group could be considered for an existing award if the individuals are working collaboratively. Prof. Rikans said she was not aware of any such awards. Prof. Badhwar questioned whether a special award should be given for team teaching if there is very little team teaching overall. Prof. Rikans responded that a committee could decide that such an award is not feasible. Prof. Beasley said he did not see any harm in having such an award considered. Prof. Sutton suggested that language be added to indicate that a report would come back to the Faculty Senate. Prof. Holmes accepted that suggestion as a friendly amendment. Recommendation (4) as revised was approved on a voice vote.

Prof. Holmes noted that the charge of the council states that members who have been nominated for awards should be replaced or withdraw their names from nomination. Item 2 of the report mentions that the Council has been recusing members during selection for particular awards. He asked whether the Faculty Senate should admonish the council. Prof. Patterson said another option is if a member is selected for an award, s/he cannot have it. Prof. Gross said a simpler way, in order to follow the existing rule, would be to submit the names of the council members to the unit chairs/directors and remind them that the members are ineligible for awards that particular year. For them to be eligible, the Faculty Senate would need to change the rules. Prof. Benson noted that this would not be as much of a problem in light of the motion just approved. People who are willing to serve on the council are likely to have already received awards and will presume they will not get any other awards. Prof. Schwarzkopf asked whether this council made recommendations on the George Lynn Cross and David Ross Boyd professorships. Prof. Holmes said the Research Council made the recommendations concerning the George Lynn Cross professorship. He said he was concerned about the conflict of interest. The rules are very clear. Recusal does not have the impact of separating oneself from the actions of the council. Prof. Rikans said this had happened the last three years. The council was not aware of the rule and so had turned to the Provost for help. The Provost gave the council permission to proceed this way. The council has some suggestions for taking care of the problem, but those ideas need to be more fully developed. One possibility is to have alternates, such as previous council members, fill in for nominated members during the year(s) in which they are nominated. This usually happens at the last minute, when there is not enough time to ask the Faculty Senate for a replacement. Prof. Abraham suggested that the council be admonished to go forth and sin no more.

The approved motions read:

(1) Nominators should be allowed to nominate a candidate for only one specific award.

(2) In publishing the call for faculty awards, the Faculty Awards and Honors Council may add additional preferences for candidates who have not received specific previous awards or chairs in whatever time period it deems appropriate.

(3) An award for team teaching should be considered. The Council recommends that a committee be formed to investigate the possibility and practicality of setting up such an award and that one or more of the members of the Award Council be appointed to this committee. The recommendation of the committee shall be presented to the Faculty Senate.

The Faculty Senate objected to the Councilís departure from the rule that states that members nominated for awards should resign from the Council or withdraw their names from nomination.

 

CHARGES OF FACULTY COMPENSATION COMMITTEE AND FACULTY WELFARE COMMITTEE

Next month, the Senate will vote on a proposal to transfer the fringe benefits responsibility from the charge of the Faculty Compensation Committee to the charge of the Faculty Welfare Committee. This is a result of the natural evolution of the two committees.

 

NOMINATIONS FOR COUNCIL/COMMITTEE/BOARD VACANCIES

A preliminary list of Committee on Committees' nominations for end-of-the-year vacancies on university and campus councils/committees/boards was distributed at the meeting and will be voted on at the May meeting. Nominations can be made from the floor with the permission of the nominee. Prof. Benson, Chair-Elect of the Senate, said the Committee on Committees was composed of Chair-Elect Benson, Richard Gipson (Music), Barbara Hillyer (Human Relations), Victor Hutchison (Zoology), Roy Knapp (Petroleum & Geological Engineering), and Cal Stoltenberg (Educational Psychology).

 

HEALTH BENEFITS

Prof. Beasley said he had received a message that health benefits had been modified to eliminate some red tape. He asked whether last fallís Faculty Senate debate had anything to do with the change. Prof. Sutton said he would find out at the Employment Benefits Committee meeting April 15.

 

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting adjourned at 4:30 p.m. The next regular session of the Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, May 3, 1999, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.

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Ruth Okediji, Secretary

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Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator

 

Appendix I

UNIVERSITY COUNCIL OF FACULTY AWARDS AND HONORS

1998-99 REPORT TO THE FACULTY SENATE

1. The University Council of Faculty Awards and Honors met on Friday January 8, 1999 to consider nominees and recommend awards recipients. The following Council members attended the meeting:

Donald Pisani, History

Jan Winn, Allied Health

Martin Powell, Alumnus

Leonard Slater, Medicine

Willis Owen, Public Health

Kenneth Blick, Medicine

Lora Rikans, Pharmacy, Presiding

Professors Penny Hopkins (Zoology), Nandu Nayar (Finance), Feng Lai (AME) and Jane Magrath (Music) could not attend the meeting due to scheduling conflicts or hazardous driving conditions. Professors Hopkins, Magrath and Nayar forwarded their evaluations and comments, which were included in the deliberations. Shannon Wooster, the student member of the Council, did not respond to any communication from the Chair and was not present at the meeting. The difficulty in scheduling this meeting on a day when all Council members could attend was discussed, with no satisfactory resolution to the problem.

2. The Council considered an outstanding group of 69 nominees in seven categories. Two members of the Council who were nominees for awards were not present during selection of candidates for that award. The Chair forwarded the Council's recommendations for awardees to the Provosts for Norman and Health Sciences Center campuses.

3. Council members discussed several matters of continuing concern to present and past Councils. Based on this discussion, the Council formulated several recommendations to be made to the President of the University, through the Faculty Senates and Provosts of both campuses. The recommendations are as follows:

(1) Nominators should be allowed to nominate a candidate for only one specific award. Rationale: nominators should be encouraged to determine which award is most appropriate for their candidate, rather than using a shotgun approach.

(2) In keeping with the eligibility criteria for Presidential Professorships and Amoco Foundation Good Teaching Awards, persons currently holding a distinguished professorship (David Ross Boyd, George Lynn Cross, Presidential and Regents' Professors) or a named endowed chair or professorship should not be eligible for the Regents' Award for Superior Teaching, the Regents' Award for Research and Creative Activity or the General Education Teaching Award. Rationale: Eligibility criteria for the Regents' awards and the General Education Teaching Awards should be consistent with those for the Presidential Professorship and Amoco awards. Moreover, recipients of distinguished professorships and endowed chairs are deemed to have already achieved unusual distinction in teaching, research or service.

(3) Previous winners of Regents' Awards should not be eligible for the same award at a later time. Instead their nominators should consider them for other awards. Rationale: because of the large number of outstanding nominees for these awards and the difficulty in distinguishing among the top candidates, Regents' Awards should be given to faculty who have not received the same award previously.

(4) An award for team teaching should be considered. The Council recommends that a committee be formed to investigate the possibility and practicality of setting up such an award and that one or more of the members of the Award Council be appointed to this committee. Rationale: some faculty members do all of their teaching in team-taught courses; in this format teaching excellence often goes unnoticed.

4. The Council also discussed the nomination process. Based on this discussion, the Council recommended some changes in wording for the "Guidelines for Nominations" and "Guidelines for Nomination Materials Submitted for University Awards" which have been forwarded to the Provosts.

5. As the last item of the meeting, the Council elected Professor Jane Magrath (Music) as the chair of the Council for the year 1999-2000.

Respectfully submitted,

Lora E. Rikans, Chair

University Council of Faculty Awards and Honors

March 5, 1999