Summary of Minutes – Faculty Senate Meeting – August 12, 2003


Chair of Faculty Report – Chair Smith reviewed the preparations for the planned Forum on Tax Reform sponsored by the UAB Faculty Senate. This forum is scheduled for August 19, 2003 at noon in the Green & Gold Room of Bartow Arena. Speakers will be President Garrison, Bill O’Connor, and Gordon Stone. All faculty members are encouraged to participate. Look for the yellow flyers being distributed by senators. A rally and picnic is planned for August 27, 2003 from noon to1:30 pm. The location will be announced on UAB homepage and in the Reporter. Governor Riley is scheduled to speak.

Chair Smith summarized information from the Academic Programs Council related to planning activities and implementation of the strategic plan at the unit-level and linkage to university-wide activities. Topics included: organizational chart/management at the dean and departmental levels in each academic unit including policies on use of reserve funds, and identification of school peers for performance comparison; past year achievements, faculty changes, school goals, proposed school scorecard metrics. The APC is addressing the preparation for SACS accreditation review and the emphasis by SACS “ what we do for the students.” Provost Capilouto has distributed the Senate approved proposed revisions to Faculty Handbook Section 2.0 and Appendices A, B and C to the Deans and Academic Unit Directors for comments. The proposed revisions will be addressed at a later APC meeting prior to the President’s decision about the proposed revisions to the UAB Faculty Handbook and Policies.  Chair Smith summarized the process for requests for FY 2005 federal funding proposals to be presented to President Garrison. The Faculty Senate has received a request to appoint a representative to the Council for Academic Advising Steering Committee.  A request for a volunteer from the faculty senate as a representative to the Steering Committee on Academic Advising was presented to the senators.


Chair-elect Ted Benditt Report from the Executive Committee Meeting with President Garrison on August 5, 2003 – Dr. Benditt summarized the discussions related to the issues identified by academic units at the July 8, 2003 Senate meeting. Teaching load, class scheduling, administrator evaluations within schools and budget transparency within schools were discussed and related to activities that are linked with the implementation of the strategic plan across academic units.


Presentation of Plaque and Resolution to Past Chair of the Faculty – Dr. John Smith presented the plaque with the senate approved resolution to express the Senate’s appreciation to Dr. Tim Heaven for work for the faculty and service to UAB.


Update on Athletics Programs – Brian Mackin Senior Associate Athletic Director summarized information about the contributions of the athletics programs and the student athletes related to quality of the student athletes, national exposure for UAB, and tactics for generating revenue. A film promoting the UAB student athletes is being used to encourage faculty to join Blazer Club and to help faculty to contribute to making a difference for the athletics programs at UAB.



Academic Unit Reports – Reports were presented from five Academic Units

Senator Gary Sapp, Education summarized concerns about these issues: quality of teacher graduates preparation and the need to improve the perception of the quality of the UAB graduates, CHP as an indicator of quality of programs, and infrastructure problems for the academic unit including external perceptions for the need for adjunct faculty and facilities for faculty to fulfill teaching and research activities that permit the faculty to contribute to the unit and to UAB.

Senator Alan Eberhardt, Engineering summarized issues of concern in three categories: (1) research – reward mechanisms for co-PI and team based research, lack of reward system to include industry funds as comparable to other sources of research revenues, space for research, and concern about the use of and lack of appropriateness of impact factors for publications; (2) teaching – selection of metrics to evaluate the performance of faculty in courses and programs with large contact and hands on laboratory time for faculty working with students, and impact of time and tasks related to ABET and SACS accreditation requirements and the lack of a reward system to account for the demands on faculty time that limits research and achievement of promotion and tenure guidelines; and (3)money – salaries for faculty are not competitive and the impact on recruitment and retention of faculty and the ability of programs to recruit and assist first year graduate students.

Senator Bill Ogard, Health Related Professions summarized issues about the need for infrastructure support for web-based learning courses and programs to include development time, technical support, instructional designer support and the listing and linking of available web-based offerings to the UAB homepage to enhance marketing of available courses and programs. The second issue is faculty salaries and concerns about comparisons with regional averages, equity and salary compression with inter and intra-departmental variances of concern for faculty and programs.

Senator Martha Verchot, Lister Hill Library summarized the need for assistance to move the LHL to less reliance on one-time money to support library activities and move forward with planning activities to support UAB teaching and research activities. The LHL faculty members are seeking assistance as to how to better inform the UAB faculty about intellectual property, copyright, contract law and fair use versus licensing issues. Publishers view faculty as the customer base and the LHL is seeking assistance how to best meet faculty needs. Additionally, the LHL is seeking suggestions how to inform the campus community about available services and how to market the LHL services through Liaison Programs and other tactics.

Senator Jim Martin, Natural Sciences and Math summarized these concerns from the NSM faculty: (1) lack of space for research and teaching capacity, (2) infrastructure for continued support for research momentum and need to retain successful researchers, and (3) goal for NSM to transform teaching to match research accomplishments and Strategic Planning visions to include ability to have access to lecture facilities across campus that are equipped with educational support systems and equipment to assist faculty who are scheduled in facilities across campus and need for more scholarships and funding support for teaching assistants.


Fringe Benefits Committee Report – Dr. Linda Reed presented an update on health benefits premiums and issues about the proposed three-tier plan and the structure of the OB-GYN panel for VIVA-UAB subscribers. The committee’s recommendations have been presented to President Garrison. The President will make decisions prior to the October open enrollment period.

Senate Committee Reports - Faculty Policies and Procedures Committee – Past Chair of Senate and Representative to FPPC – Tim Heaven presented a request from the FPPC to the Senate to consider revisions to the Policy Review Guidelines for Faculty-related UAB-wide Policies – Summary – last revised March 23, 1998. The Executive Committee for the Senate proposed additional revisions. The recommendations and concerns of the Senate were discussed. The policy review guidelines will be returned to the FPPC for consideration of the Senate’s recommendations and concerns.


Announcements – Dr. Rose Scripa announced that the 2000 paper version of the UAB Faculty Handbook and Policies is not the current version. Dr. Scripa requested that faculty and academic administrators use the current administratively approved version located at using Internet Explorer. A letter has been sent to Deans requesting that the paper version not be used for recruitment of faculty and policy decisions within academic units.

Secretary of the Senate announced that the academic units scheduled for presenting issues at the September meeting are Medicine, Nursing, Optometry, and Sterne Library.


Summary submitted by Pat Greenup, Secretary of Faculty for August 12, 2003 meeting. For a more complete record of the minutes see the Senate web page: