FSEC Meeting – April 27, 2005
Senate Meeting Agenda
May 10, 2005
7:30 - 9:30 A. M.
Faculty Senate Executive Committee Meeting
With President Carol Garrison
May 3, 2005 - AB1070
ACTION ITEM: This topic was placed on the agenda for the May 3, 2005 meeting with President Garrison.
ACTION ITEM: Chair Benditt will forward PDF of Schools procedures from SACS documents
ACTION ITEM: This topic is on the agenda for the next meeting of the Curriculum & Research committee; Chair Engler will present recommendation to May Senate meeting.
ACTION ITEM: Chair Benditt and Chair of C&R committee Engler will draft a response to be presented to May Senate meeting.
Topics related to Safe Zone, diversity, disability will be considered for presentations during the coming year.
ACTION ITEM: Secretary Greenup will revise the agenda for the May Senate meeting.
ACTION ITEM: Chair-elect
ACTION ITEM: Topic assigned to the Curriculum & Research committee for consideration.
ACTION ITEM: This topic was assigned to the Curriculum & Research Committee.
ACTION ITEM: Chair Benditt indicated that a special meeting of the FSEC would be called so that Chair Gary Sapp of Faculty Affairs Committee could attend.
ACTION ITEM: Topic was placed on agenda for May 3, 2005 meeting.
1. Investments in Faculty Development: The major task of the committee has been to analyze and strategize about measuring university investments in faculty development. This goal arose out of work done by the committee in the previous year. In mid-July, 2004, the chair (Dr. Engler) and former chair (Dr. Murray) of the committee, along with the President of the Faculty Senate (Dr. Benditt), met with the President and Provost to discuss how to add faculty development measures to the university-wide scorecards on “Work and Environment”. After several discussion and presentations over the course of the year, the issue seems to have been delegated to the school level. As part of his yearly evaluation of the Dean of each school, the Provost will include measures to assess how each school has contributed to and invested in faculty development within each school.
As a second aspect of this discussion, the scorecard goal “sections taught by full-time faculty” was changed to measure credit hour production (“Credit hours per FTE”) which is a more accurate representation of faculty teaching efforts.
2. The committee also met with the leaders of the draft Quality Enhancement Plan that was prepared as part of the process for the SACS accreditation process. The committee was very supportive of the plan and provided some suggestions and feedback. We also endorsed the concept of a Center for Teaching and Learning. The committee presented a resolution to the Faculty Senate, endorsing the QEP, and this resolution was passed at the December 14, 2004 meeting of the Senate.
3. In February, 2005, the committee reviewed and commented on the draft document regarding research infrastructure, prepared by the Vice President for Research. We submitted a series of comments regarding this document to the office of the VP for Research. One concern was the lack of information in the document for infrastructure needs of the non-medical schools, particularly the need for biostatistics resources in many schools. Another concern was the need for information and expertise within the Office of Grants and Contracts Administration relating to non-medical sources of funding. A third major concern was the need to update core facilities and the training of staff within them, to stay current with the latest developments.
4. The committee served again this year as the evaluation committee for proposals submitted to the Faculty Development grant program. This year, 13 proposals were submitted to the Graduate Dean’s office and were evaluated for funding using resources from the Provost’s office matched by resources from within the participating schools.
Plans for next year:
1. One major continuing task of the committee will be to monitor investments in faculty development within each of the individual schools. We will seek some public measure of progress toward increasing investments in faculty development. One means that we will pursue is to review the annual report of each school, to see how each school addresses its investments in faculty development.
2. With the adoption of the QEP and, conversely, the lack of funding for a Center for Teaching and Learning, we need to investigate ways to allow faculty to accomplish the teaching goals of the QEP. Dr. Rose Scripa, the Associate Provost for Undergraduate Programs, has been investigating using the IDEA evaluation format for assessment of the quality of faculty teaching efforts. The quality of current efforts to evaluate teaching varies greatly by school and department. Using the IDEA evaluation form for teaching would provide greater uniformity of evaluation and a standardized dataset that could be used to support faculty credentials for promotion and tenure. With Dr. Scripa’s assistance, we may also explore the use of teaching portfolios as an optional instrument to allow faculty to develop their teaching skills.
3. We will continue to work with the office of the VP for Research, to assure that research infrastructure needs are being anticipated and met. Such needs include schools beyond those of the academic medical center and we need to assure that funding of research infrastructure includes facilities useful to the broadest range of faculty research.
Governance and Operations Committee
2004-2005 End of Year Report
Below is the end of the year report from the Governance and Operations Committee. The items listed under each section as NEXT STEPS or labeled as 2005-2006 are tasks recommended for the next year.
1. Senate organization and procedures; constitution and by laws
a. The main issue addressed in regard to Senate organization and procedures this past year was that of establishing a formal Senate liaison structure for each unit represented in the Senate. This procedure was approved at the March 2005 Senate meeting.
i. NEXT STEPS – Early in 2005-2006 year, the Senate needs to work with the Provost to determine a procedure for implementation of the liaison structure. Suggestions have included that the Provost solicit the Deans’ involvement to assure there is an identified mechanism (faculty meeting, executive committee meeting, etc) in which the liaison can regularly convey Senate business to each unit.
ii. 2005-2006 – G & O Chair should work with Senate Secretary and Parliamentarian to determine if reviews of the constitution and by laws or any organizational or procedural issues need to be conducted in the next academic year.
2. Senate Attendance and Representation at the Faculty Senate Meetings
a. Attendance was reviewed several times throughout the year. Senators and alternates were emailed appropriate procedures.
i. NEXT STEPS – On-going monitoring of attendance to assure equal and fair representation for all units is suggested
3. Senate Election Process
a. The G & O Chair worked with the Senate Secretary to be sure ballots were distributed and votes were counted in a fair and timely fashion.
i. NEXT STEPS – Continue to review and update process and procedures for elections, conduct elections and report election results in conjunction with the Senate Secretary and the Administrative Assistant.
Beverly A. Mulvihill, PhD
Chair, Governance and Operations 2003-2005
ANNUAL REPORT: FACULTY AFFAIRS COMMITTEE 2004-2005
The issues that need to be carried forward into the 2005-2006 academic year are these.
The Senate needs to consider and act upon the recommendations of the FAC regarding the scope and sequence of administrator evaluations. The evaluation process needs to be fully described and further documented.
Conversations with IDEA need to begin and the fall, 2005 evaluations for the Deans and related administrators need to be scheduled. All appropriate administrators need to be identified, and the process for the distribution of the reports of the group needs to be stipulated.
The process for evaluating Department Chairs needs to be approved and funded as it will cost about $16,000. The Committee did consider an alternate process, one that would entail the revision of the Dean’s evaluation document prepared by the Acting Provost. However, it was deemed to be unwieldy. The Senate budget must be increased if the proposed process is to be carried out. Also, the monitoring process needs to be specified. There are at least two points of control here. The Provost must hold the Deans accountable for the process in their evaluations and the senior Senator from the school must poll the faculty and report the results to the Senate.
A further issue that may need to be revisited is post tenure review or career review. It is important to note that the FAC manifested a great deal on unanimity regarding this issue. The administration needs to be aware that this issue is controversial.
The Faculty Affairs Committee met five times throughout the academic year. Primary issues to be addressed by the Committee had been articulated by Senate Chair Benditt and Senate Secretary Pat Greenup. The major issue concerned the scope and sequence of administrator evaluations. One aspect of the issue concerned the type of the evaluation and the process whereby the evaluations would be conducted. While the FAC is charged under the Senate constitution with the responsibility of conducting and monitoring the evaluation process, prior issues and concerns arising from past evaluations necessitated a modification in the process. Senate leadership opted to contract with IDEA and the President and Provost were selected as the initial individuals to be assessed. The Chair of FAC worked with Secretary Greenup and members of the FSEC to implement the process. Dr. Greenup also documented the process as a model for future evaluations.
The second aspect of the evaluation process was the need to clarify its scope and sequence. This included answering questions such as who should be evaluated and how often. It was also important to identify what resources are necessary to support the evaluation process?
The first committee meeting was held on September 10, 2004. The Committee addressed who should be included in the evaluation and affirmed that the President, Provost, Vice President for Research, Vice President for Student Affairs, Graduate School Dean, All Academic Deans/Library Directors, and all Department Chairs should be included.
A second issue concerned whether the Department chairs should be evaluated by the Faculty Senate or under the direction of the respective Dean and the Provost.
There was an extended discussion regarding the frequency of the evaluation. There was strong support for evaluating administrators as often as was feasible. A number of ancillary factors impacting the evaluation process were raised. These included the cost of the process, the amount of time required to prepare and conduct the evaluation, and the fact that many faculty may have little or no contact with some of the administrators. The issue of cost was particularly troublesome as the funds for the evaluation are taken from the Senate’s budget. It was noted that 20-20% of the budget could be consumed by the process if all administrators were evaluated in a given year. Subsequently, the committee voted 8 in favor of with no opposition that all administrators would be evaluated every two years. It was suggested that all administrators be evaluated at the same time in alternate years.
Other points that were discussed concerned ways to enhance the significance of the evaluations, particularly those of the Deans, by having members of a School’s Faculty Affairs Committee, or the equivalent, to meet with the Dean and discuss the implications of the evaluation for School policies and procedures.
Subsequently, Chair Benditt requested that the FAC consider the issue of post-tenure review or career review. The FAC met on Oct 29, 2004 to consider the issue. The sentiment of the Committee was that there was insufficient support among the UAB faculty to warrant serious consideration of the issue by either the Committee or the Senate itself. It was noted that the issue was raised almost a decade ago and that it was soundly rejected by the Faculty Senate. The belief was that the faculty has not changed its opinion.
reasons for rejection of consideration were: 1) Post-tenure review is perceived
as irrelevant since sufficient procedures are in place to accomplish the same
goals. 2) Post-tenure review is not a
legislative mandate in
The Committee was unhappy with the notion of peer review. And it remained a distraction for a number of weeks.
After some follow-up discussions, Chair Benditt indicated his concern about the response of the Committee and requested a meeting to discuss its views. The third meeting of the Committee was held on Feb. 11, 2005.
Chair Benditt reviewed the background and relevant issues that motivated the Senate leadership to request that the Committee re-examine the issue. A lively discussion ensued as he maintained that advocating a system of career review, the term that he used, was a proactive response by the Senate and that it would benefit the faculty. Some Committee members disagreed, suggesting that any additional evaluation and review procedure was redundant and superfluous. A key point that emerged in the discussion was the difference in the definition of the two concepts. Chair Benditt’s notion of career review was that it should be a systematic, robust, and on-going review process that should be in place throughout the University. He did not conceptualize career review as a punitive procedure but perceived it as a way to enhance faculty development and productivity. The Committee’s notion of career review was that it was an additional evaluation procedure that occurred above and beyond an annual review, and that the procedure was often triggered by the perceived limited productivity of tenured faculty. They perceived that it was an attack on the tenure process. The discussion ended without a consensus as how to proceed on the issue. However, the Committee did support the notion of ongoing systematic faculty evaluation.
In the second half of the meeting, the Chair distributed a memorandum prepared by Secretary Greenup regarding key decisions that needed to be made which would impact the Senate’s administrator evaluation process. These decisions related to schedule and scope of the process and to what degree continuing the process in it present form strains the resources of the Faculty Senate. A discussion of these points and issues followed, but no final decisions were made given a shortage of time.
The fourth meeting of the Committee was held and March 25, 2005. A quorum was not present however the group re-examined a number of questions regarding the assessment that had been raised in a document prepared by Secretary Greenup. These points then formed the basis of the discussions held in the fifth meeting of the Committee.
The fifth meeting was held on April 22, 2005 with a quorum present. The Committee re-examined the key issues relating to administrator evaluations and offered the following specific recommendations.
All administrator evaluations
conducted under the auspices of the Faculty Senate should use the IDEA
system. All administrators should be
evaluated biannually, (exceptions noted below).
The process should begin in fall, 2005 and include all Academic Deans,
Dean of the
Beginning fall, 2006 all 92 Department Chairs should be evaluated using the IDEA system. There may be other administrators who directly supervise faculty (e.g. Associate Deans) who should be included in this group. Evaluation forms for each Chair will be sent directly to all faculties in his/her department. IDEA will compile the results and send them to the Senate. They will then be distributed to the Deans who will share the results with faculty members of each department in an open meeting. The Department Chair will not be present at the meeting, and Deans shall have 60 days to conduct meetings with the faculty. Faculty members may also make comments on the IDEA form which will be shared with the Chair by the Dean. In order to ensure compliance with the process, faculty members will be polled by the School’s Senator to ensure that it is completed. This procedure is viewed as a test process in that the Senate will prepare specific recommendations regarding these procedures to the Provost. The Provost has voiced his support for a systematic process of evaluation of department Chairs. The Senate will continue to monitor the evaluation process to ensure that it is functional.
The President has requested that she and the Provost be evaluated every three years. In an earlier meeting FAC members discussed this issue and suggested that these administrators be evaluated every two years. The Committee discussed a number of options, one of which was that the President and Provost be evaluated the second year after assuming their duties at UAB. Thereafter, they would be evaluated every three years. This process does include a meeting of the FSEC with the President and Provost in which the faculty ratings and comments are shared. This information also is shared with the Chancellor (President’s ratings only) and the Provost’s ratings are shared with President.
A critical factor underlying the discussions of the administrator evaluation process was the cost. The approximate costs of the evaluations using the IDEA system are $4500 (President/Provost), $5000 (Deans), and $16,000 (Department Chairs). If one assumes a biannual schedule for these evaluations, the Senate budget would need to be increased 20% (about $10,000 annually. We propose that Senate make a formal request to the Provost requesting this increase in the budget to cover these additional costs.
Gary L. Sapp, Chairman
Finance Committee: Annual Report 2004-05
The Members of the Finance Committee worked on several initiatives this past year.
One step that helped provide overall direction was a statement of vision. The vision is the committee members shall gather review and share relevant financial information with the Faculty Senate and when deemed appropriate the faculty.
Several activities have contributed to this vision.
In the summer of 2004, the results of a faculty survey on health care insurers and providers were presented to the Fringe Benefits Committee. As a result of the presentation, the CEO of the Health Services Foundation requested and was given a similar presentation. The survey presentation was made available on the Faculty Senate web site.
Concerns with health insurance rate increases were raised with top administration. More information on the health insurance rates trends and more time to consider alternatives were requested. In a related matter, the Faculty Senate requested and was granted another seat on the Fringe Benefits Committee. This committee recommends the annual health insurance rates to the President.
Dr. Joe Walker wrote a UAB Reporter article promoting the benefits of a Flexible Spending Account.
In meetings with top administration, additional faculty concerns about health care benefits were shared. Several problems with obtaining prescription drugs were discussed with top administration. After more information on the problems was obtained, it was shared with the members of the Faculty Senate.
A paper on distribution indices was prepared and shared with the Faculty Senate and the faculty.
For the future, more information on a comparison of SUG averages to UAB faculty salaries would be helpful. A recommendation of the use of the SUG averages as a UAB scorecard variable is planned for completion in next year.
Secretary of the Faculty
Report to Senate – May 10, 2005
During the year the Secretary with the assistance of Office Associate Stephanie Belcher, the following activities have been completed.
ACTION ITEM: Topic of teaching workload metrics was placed on the May 3, 2005 FSEC meeting.
ACTION ITEM: This topic is to be assigned to the Governance and Operations Committee for review and recommendations for any needed revisions during the coming year.
ACTION ITEM: These topics will be placed on the agenda for the May FSEC meeting on May 25, 2005.
Refer to the sections F-H above in these minutes.
Secretary Greenup indicated that the Annual Reports, the current roster with email addresses, and the Senate meeting dates for the coming year were in the handout materials for the meeting.
The meeting adjourned at 1:45 pm.