The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)
Regular session – September 13, 2010 – 3:30 p.m. – Jacobson Faculty Hall 102
office: Jacobson Faculty Hall 206 phone: 325-6789
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org web site: http://www.ou.edu/admin/facsen/
The Faculty Senate was called to order by Professor LeRoy Blank, Chair.
PRESENT: Adams, Asojo, Atiquzzaman, Ayres, Baer, Bergey, Blank, Bradshaw, Chang, Chapple, Chiodo, Cox-Fuenzalida, Deacon, Devegowda, Gibson, Gramoll, Hahn, Jean-Marie, Kimball, Kosmopoulou, Lauer-Flores, Leseney, Lifschitz, Marsh-Matthews, McPherson, Minter, Morrissey, Morvant, Moses, Muraleetharan, Natale, O’Neill, Palmer, Park, Ransom, Sadler, Sandel, Stock, Strauss, Tabb, Verma, Williams, Wyckoff, Xiao, Yi
Provost's office representative: Mergler, Heiser
ISA representatives: Cook, Hough
ABSENT: Dial, Moxley, Taylor, Vehik, Weaver
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Senate members for 2010-11 and schedule of meetings
Faculty Senate and Regular Faculty parliamentarian
2009-10 annual council reports
Faculty membership on committees
Disposition by administration of Senate actions for 2009-10
Art museum exhibit
Human Research Participant Protection office
Senate Chair's Report:
Senate actions for 2009-10
Teaching Scholars Initiative
Meetings with Vice President for Research and with Graduate Dean
Retirement fund record keeper, health insurance rates
Unit representation on Faculty Senate
Liaison with other organizations
Academic Integrity Code
Issues for 2010-11
The Faculty Senate Journal for the regular session of May 10, 2010 was approved.
A. A list of the Faculty Senate members is attached. The new members were introduced at the meeting.
B. The regular meetings of the Faculty Senate for 2010-11 will be held at 3:30 p.m. on the following Mondays in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102: September 13, October 11, November 8, December 13, January 24 (tentative), February 14, March 21, April 11, and May 9.
C. The Senate Executive Committee elected Prof. W. Murray Tabb (Law) as parliamentarian of the Faculty Senate and Regular Faculty.
D. The compilation of the 2009-10 annual reports of University councils was e-mailed August 24 to the Faculty Senate members and to chairs, directors and deans to make available to the general faculty. The reports are available online at http://www.ou.edu/admin/facsen/cnclrep10.htm.
E. The 2010-11 list of faculty appointments to committees is available on the Faculty Senate web site at http://www.ou.edu/admin/facsen/commem10.htm.
F. The summary record of the disposition by the administration of Faculty Senate actions for September 2009 to August 2010 is attached.
G. The Faculty Senate is sad to report the deaths of faculty member David Etheridge (Music) on July 21 and retired faculty member Jay Smith (Educational Psychology and 1991-92 Faculty Senate chair) on August 10.
H. Beginning fall 2010, instructors are required to post course syllabi on learn.ou.edu. Information on how to upload a syllabus is available on learn.ou.edu or the College of Arts & Sciences web page: https://casweb.ou.edu/ascs/tutorials.html. For additional help, call 325-HELP.
I. The opening weekend of the Bruce Goff exhibition (October 9-10, 2010) features a symposium with special guest speakers, a panel discussion, opening reception and a bus tour of four Goff landmarks in Oklahoma. For more information: http://www.ou.edu/content/fjjma/home/main/exhibitions/upcoming_exhibitions/fall_20081.html.
J. The Office of Human Research Participant Protection/IRB has moved off campus to 1816 W. Lindsey, Suite 150. It is on the CART route, and free parking is available. Researchers may continue to submit IRB materials through campus mail or deliver materials at the new office from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday.
K. In May, the Faculty Senate proposed that the University provide free use of University recreational facilities (Huston Huffman Center and Murray Case Sells Swimming Pool) for faculty and staff. The President responded, “We will reduce the membership fee from $20 per month for faculty and staff for Huffman and Sells to $10 per month to show our appreciation for faculty and staff in these difficult financial times. It is not possible budgetarily to go to complete free admission at this time, but I hope that our faculty and staff will sense our deep appreciation for them by me and all of the OU leadership.”
Elaborating on Announcement F, Prof. Blank noted that 12 items were sent forward to the administration from the Faculty Senate the previous year. Basically, nine were approved. One (tobacco-free campus) is still being considered, pending input from students. The President concurred with the Senate’s resolution opposing firearms on campus, and he reduced the fee from $20 to $10 for both the Huffman Center and Sells Swimming Pool (Announcement K). The Senate had a fairly successful year in terms of the things it tried to accomplish. The Budget Principles document was very important because it calls for a major amount of input into budget decisions.
The University’s accreditation process has started and will be concluded in spring 2012. Prof. Michael Scaperlanda from Law will serve as the chair. At the request of the Provost, the Senate Executive Committee reviewed an HERI faculty survey instrument and agreed that it would be useful for gathering faculty input for accreditation.
The Teaching Scholars Initiative will hold a workshop on November 5 with the theme of Technology and the University. Dr. Michael Wesch will be one of the presenters (see http://ksuanth.weebly.com/wesch.html). For further information contact Prof. Darren Purcell at email@example.com or 325-9193.
Major budgetary concerns are coming up this academic year. The administration estimates a five percent cut; however, several major issues could have an overwhelming effect on the budget. State Question 744 would require the state to fund public education to at least the per-pupil average of neighboring states. If it passes, it could have a major negative impact on higher education because large amounts of additional funds would be required to support K-12. It would take away a lot of flexibility from the state legislature. State revenues appear to be slightly ahead of what they were in the past year, but it may be four or five more months before we know where that will stand. If state revenues increase too much, though, an automatic tax cut will go into effect. Another question is how oil and gas revenues will affect the budget. We should know more in January or February. In the meantime, the Budget Council, Faculty Compensation Committee, and Faculty Welfare Committee are considering various scenarios.
Prof. Blank reported on several meetings he had during the summer. One was with Vice President for Research Kelvin Droegemeier, who plans to attend Faculty Senate meetings. He is moving forward with Aspire 2020, a strategic plan for research and creative activity. Prof. Blank talked with Graduate College Dean Lee Williams about the changes that occurred concerning the graduate status for various deans. Dean Williams will appoint a committee to reexamine this aspect of what was approved last spring. Since the research vice presidency was separated from his position, he is able to spend more time working on graduate student problems. He may address the Faculty Senate sometime this year.
The Faculty Senate had major input last spring into the retirement plan management. Prof. K.K. Muraleetharan, a member of the Senate Executive Committee, was added to the retirement management committee. Representatives from Human Resources may come to the October Faculty Senate meeting to discuss that issue as well as health insurance issues. In the coming 2011 calendar year, the Blue Cross Blue Shield PPO plan rates are expected to go up 4.3 percent and the HMO 11.1 percent because of higher utilization. University support is based on the PPO plan, so employees on the HMO plan need to be aware that they will pick up the difference and will need to start planning for that.
Faculty Senate is a conduit to the faculty and the units as well as a conduit from faculty in units. Senators should take issues to their constituents and bring their concerns to Faculty Senate. Faculty Senate has four standing committees and has major input into various councils and committees that exist on campus. Prof. Blank wants to increase the connection that the senators have to the individual units. Assuming there is no objection, he would like all units to be represented. That means if a unit has two members on the Senate, one of the members will be asked to communicate with a unit that that is not represented. He said he will try it this year and see if it works out.
Prof. Blank introduced the members of the Senate Executive Committee. For this year, he has invited the three past Senate chairs and Budget Council chair to serve as active ex officio, non-voting members of the Executive Committee. The committee meets once a month with the president and independently with the provost. Guests representing various areas of the university are invited to meet with the Executive Committee to answer questions. In addition, the committee has regular contact with Oklahoma State University and the Health Sciences Center, along with the University of Oklahoma Student Association (UOSA) and Staff Senate. The Senate office is continuing to maintain a Big 12 listserv to communicate with faculty leaders at other schools. Prof. Blank said he welcomes ideas from the senators.
Prof. Blank introduced Associate Provost Greg Heiser, Assistant Director of Academic Integrity Systems Breea Bacon, and student members of the Integrity Council Elizabeth Miracle and Zekiel Johnson, who were invited to come to the meeting to discuss a proposal for a new Academic Integrity Code (attached).
Dr. Heiser began by reporting statistics on academic misconduct cases for 2009-10. Out of 218 cases, slightly more than half were admonitions. The other 95 went through the academic integrity system. About half of those were for plagiarism. The rest ranged from improper collaboration to cheating off a neighboring test. Dr. Heiser said he had noticed that as some disciplines move to more and more collaboration of students, it seems that students are unclear about what is proper collaboration. Plagiarism is still a difficult area. We continue to subscribe to the plagiarism detection service, turnitin.com. Of the 218 cases, four were expulsions. Dr. Heiser said his impression is there used to be more expulsions on this campus in the 1980s, but that fewer expulsions seems to be a nationwide trend. Last year, we had 22 suspensions, some only for the summer term. The spot of brightness is we now have an integrity instructional class called DYUI -- Do You Understand Integrity -- up and running. Instead of performing community service at the library, students get instruction on what integrity is and why it matters. There are more academic misconduct cases among seniors than freshmen, and ten percent come from graduate students. Mr. Heiser said he could provide data for specific disciplines upon request. For the most part, the numbers are fairly stable. Last year, there were considerably more contentious cases. More students are inclined to feel a disservice has been done, even in cases where the plagiarism was quite obvious. Concern about that was the basis for the proposal on the table. Instructors often notice misconduct first and are then put in a position to be the prosecutor. Faculty members are uncomfortable with that role. Typically, about ten percent of the cases end in hearings. Students and faculty should have confidence that the institution is doing everything it can to encourage integrity and to have student input to the system. The student Integrity Council has 42 members and has the tasks of encouraging integrity, serving on panels, advising the provost on cases, and serving as peer educators in the DYUI program.
Ms. Miracle, chair of the Integrity Council, said last year she had mentored a student who went from being very suspicious of the system to giving presentations to high school students about the academic misconduct system. Mr. Johnson, vice chair of the Integrity Council, said DYUI is meant to be rehabilitative. Dr. Heiser pointed out that some students do not understand plagiarism, so we need to pay attention to both the disciplinary element and the educational element. We must make it clear that integrity matters for this institution. The system we have has been in place since the mid-1970s. A number of schools have a more student-run system. Dr. Heiser said he would like our system to be less confrontational. We should have a system that encourages student buy in and creates a broader spectrum of educational options. The proposal is a distillation of student-run systems that seem to work best. It is quite short. The current system is a regents’ policy. The idea is to have the regents approve something like a constitution and leave the procedural matters up to potential refinement. The proposed document is similar to the systems at Kansas State, Colorado, and Texas A&M, in that there is significant input from students and it is a less adversarial process that takes faculty out of the prosecutorial position. The proposal would not be in effect until the necessary procedural elements are in place. Ms. Miracle pointed out that the council is also talking to the various branches of the UOSA to try to get a unified response from the students.
Prof. Blank called for a motion to approve the proposal so it could be discussed this time and voted on next time. Following approval of the motion, Prof. Blank asked the senators to share the proposal with their colleagues, either by distributing copies to them or by directing them to the web reference.
Prof. Strauss asked, “Why make a pledge that is only a reminder and not an actual pledge?” Dr. Heiser said that part of the proposal had not changed from what we currently have. The language was taken from a student government resolution that was passed after considerable effort by a lot of people. The problem with a pledge that is binding is someone who perhaps inadvertently violates some code can be nailed for perjuring themselves by signing a pledge he did not fully understand. The feeling when it was discussed with UOSA about five years ago was the pledge could be more important as a reminder of shared community values than as a “gotcha.” He asked, “Do we kick anybody out for refusing to sign a pledge, for example?”
Prof. Tabb said it would be helpful for the document to include definitions of some of the terms and phrases. Dr. Heiser agreed that some things need to be considerably more defined but maybe not in a constitutional document like this. Prof. Muraleetharan noted that cases could still become adversarial between a student and a professor in the proposed process. Dr. Heiser responded that we have to honor due process, so someone would have the right to vigorously oppose a charge. However, the professor would be something more of a witness than a prosecutor.
Prof. Strauss said he would like to see the changes between the current academic misconduct code and the proposal. For academic misconduct hearings that he sat on in the past, there was a well-defined process. For example, how would the faculty member know if a student had received other admonitions? Dr. Heiser replied that the Faculty Senate would be approving a set of principles. Currently, any procedural change must have regents’ approval. The idea is the detailed procedures would be in another document that would be approved by the President and Provost. Nothing would happen until we have a set of procedures that had input from faculty and the student body. Furthermore, the proposal provides for an oversight board.
Prof. Gibson asked whether data from other institutions indicated that a pledge like ours accomplishes anything. Dr. Heiser said he has talked to a number of instructors who say they use it all the time. It is another way to remind students of the values that the community holds. It is hard to say whether it works as a scare mechanism because institutions do not freely share their data about academic misconduct. Provost Mergler commented that social science research suggests that a warning or a reminder is sufficient to deter lots of folks. Including the pledge on exams is an effective deterrent for most of us. Dr. Heiser said the pledge is one way to advertise integrity. Prof. Gibson remarked, “… does this become another thing to ignore?” Mr. Johnson noted that the pledge is used mainly on exams. Ms. Bacon added that some professors also use it as a cover page for major papers. Mr. Johnson said it is up to the professor to determine how he wants to use it. Mr. Heiser explained that when the pledge was created, the preference was to leave it as a reminder.
Prof. Palmer said the college she went to had an honor code, and people had a lot of respect for it. Mr. Heiser said it is one tool, and it is something that works. Prof. Ayres said students are more willing to hold other students accountable when there is an academic integrity pledge. Evidence from corporate America shows that the kind of message that is sent out does make a difference. Students need to know that we care about this. Prof. Muraleetharan suggested that in addition to DYUI, we may want something that explains what integrity is. Dr. Heiser responded that the academic misconduct code, a student’s guide to academic integrity, description of systems, and forms for faculty were on the provost web site but have now migrated to a new web page, http://integrity.ou.edu/, which is student run.
Mr. Johnson noted that part of the mission of the Integrity Council is to promote a culture of academic integrity on campus. The integrity pledge is supposed to be used as a tool by professors to remind their students of our community values. Dr. Heiser explained that the basic principle, scope, and definition are largely what we have now. The Integrity Council exists but would be given regents’ approval. The integrity pledge has existed in the past in the form of a UOSA resolution. The admonition, section 3, is identical to what we have now. The main changes are in sections 2, 4 and 5 – how misconduct gets reported and adjudicated. Adjudication is similar to the current policy, but the point is to remove the professor from the prosecutorial role and instead have the case pass through a sort of board of inquiry. Sections 6, 7, 8 are the same. Prof. Blank said the proposal will come up for a vote at the next Faculty Senate meeting.
Prof. Blank announced that any concerns about issues may be reported to him.
The meeting adjourned at 4:35 p.m. The next regular session of the Faculty Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, October 11, 2010, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.
Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator
Amy Bradshaw, Faculty Secretary