Excused: E. Bailey, D. Beaumonte, R. Cambreleng, D. Conley, C. Ellis, L. Fuller, R. Horner, M. Vitulli, J. Wasko, P. Watts, P. Wright, R. Zimmerman
Absent: M. Bayless, D. Dugaw, J. Earl, M. Holland, J. Hosagrahar, S. Jones, L. Kintz, M. Partch, J. Raiskin, J. Schombert, S. Shauger, S. Stolp
Senator Maram Epstein, East Asian languages and literature, asked if there was a specific mechanism in place to insure departments comply with the recommendations made concerning the salary compression issue and salary equity regarding gender. Provost Moseley responded saying the guidelines developed by the SBC for the department heads should be forwarded to them on an annual basis. Keeping the guidelines in front of the department heads and deans when it comes time to make salary adjustments regarding these issues is the best way to insure the recommended guidelines are heeded - they must be absorbed into the general consciousness of the university. The Senate will need to wait for the statistics on the issues of equity and gender to evaluate the situation objectively when the SBC reports their findings in the spring.
Update on the governor's OUS budget reduction request. The projected shortfall in the state general fund is $720 million, of which 6.3% is from the general fund. This is within the 6% range planned for. The State Board of Higher Education has approved and forwarded to the governor a series of proposed budget reductions at the 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10% levels. The reduction at the 6% level overall for higher education translates directly to UO reduction of 3.9%. OUS and the Board of Higher Education chose to frontl oad the cuts in programs that do not directly affect instruction. Up to the 6% level there is little dilution of the cell values used in developing the budget. Budget items that are more directly affected are statewide public services, engineering and a portion of our research funding that comes in centrally.
The provost noted that only 40% of the university's education and general budget comes from the state general fund. The remaining 60% of our funding is covered by tuition, which is healthy considering our good enrollment figures. The previous year .6% was kept back from the education and general budget units to fund the reserves. If next year's OUS budget reduction is at the 6% level, the university will be working with about a 4% reduction that will translate into a 2% cut at the unit level until we have expended the reserves we have this year. A 3% tuition increase may be sufficient to make up part of the anticipated reduction, depending on the level of the cuts. The provost went on to say that the university is committed, to the best of its ability, not to perform any program reductions and to stay with the Senate Budget Committee salary plan. A reasonable salary increase is anticipated next year although the exact percentage will depend on resources and the best judgment of other universities in comparison.
Responding to a question from Senator Dave Soper, physics, concerning the Bend campus and how the UO programs might be affected, Provost Moseley reported that the UO programs in Bend are moving forward and doing well. The UO has the largest number of FTE students in all three upper division programs, with a total of 80 students (head count) resulting in 50 FTEs. Financially, the UO's presence in Bend is solid for the next two years regardless of these budget issues because we depend on RAM model funding (or its equivalent), tuition, and a place to teach the classes solely for this endeavor. Numbers that have been relayed in the past may be quite inflated as they reflect students who are not only taking courses at COCC, but have declared an interest in moving into a 4-year program. There are currently less then 150 FTE in upper division courses.
Senator David Strom, physics, asked how research would be affected by the anticipated budget reductions. The provost responded that in the new budget model there was a specific line in the algorithm based on the combination of research grants and FTE faculty that drove a modest amount of state funding into research. At the 6% level of budget reductions, research funding from state sources would be reduced approximately 20%. The UO's intention is to continue the current level of funding that various units receive by finding other funds. Current planning is such that if the overall cut is kept at the 4% level, research should not be specifically cut. The board has made explicit recommendations that the campuses be given full autonomy regarding how they allocate cuts and use of the funds received. The amount of funding the UO receives for research from state resources is extremely modest in comparison to our peers.
Online grading system Registrar's Office. Ms. Sue Eveland, associate registrar, said the online grading system is doing well and any problems forwarded by the faculty or staff have been resolved. Feedback regarding the online grading system is being solicited to help improve the system. Faculty currently have entered 11,000 grades for students, including 500 class rosters. The staff is working on improving Duck Web response times. She reminded the senate there are several different ways to input into the system using the mouse, tab key, or alpha characters on the keyboard, all of which are explained in the brochure and are on Duck Web.
Senator Soper suggested incorporating the ability to upload spreadsheets into the system, to which Ms. Eveland responded that she is currently exploring the possibility. Senator Julie Novcov, political science, asked if GTFs teaching large lecture classes can see class rosters online. Ms. Eveland said that a faculty member can view the class lists and grade rosters; also, GTFs can see the discussion class lists and the discussion roster as well as being able to add grades to the rosters. The faculty member of record for the class retains final control by approving and committing those to the registrar.
Ms. Eveland stated they are working on a system that can help clear up missing grades and incompletes electronically which may include uploading grades and supplemental grade reports online. Currently the "Gold Sheets" are still in use for this. Several other issues were raised including class lists for multiple sections, incomplete grades, and inability to submit dissertation credit for Ph. D. students, to which Ms. Eveland replied work is being done to improve the system for the next grading cycle. Senate President Tublitz closed the discussion suggesting that although the new system is still in transition, it provides true advantages over the previous system
Energy Conservation Efforts ASUO. Senate President Tublitz advised this was an issue brought up by students, but noted no student senators were in attendance. Energy conservation became an issue due to an increase in both usage and charges. The UO and sister institutions instituted a temporary surcharge of $30 per term. Due to the student conservation efforts the surcharge has been reduced for the upcoming term from $30 to $20.
Several senators expressed concern due to office lighting being on at seemingly unnecessary times throughout the mornings. Provost Moseley responded by saying the university has taken many steps toward conservation and the addition of motion sensors, decrease in natural gas prices, and student efforts allowed the university to reduce the surcharge, which is a win-win situation for both students and the administration.
Mr. Dan Williams, vice president for administration, added that many technical changes have been made to our energy usage, reducing the total bill by 19% in 18 months, while at the same time the university's total building square footage has increased by 25% and student body size by 10%. EWEB also has offered numerous awards allowing approximately $1 million saved in energy expenses. Provost Moseley concluded by saying although the usage has gone down, costs do continue to rise. It is through administration, faculty, and student partnership that the university has been able to make these positive changes.
Mr. Paul Engelking, chair of the Committee on Courses, presented the Preliminary Fall 2001 Curriculum Report (see http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/~uosenate/dirsen012/f01cur.html). He noted a newly instituted policy has been instituted in which course descriptions may now cover a classification of courses. For example, if a department has several faculty members that could teach ceramics, but only one instructor that specializes in pottery, the pottery course was listed separately in the past. If for whatever reason that faculty member is unable or unavailable to teach the pottery course, the course may have been dropped. (The committee has been instructed by the Senate to drop any course that has not been taught for three years.) However, if the course had been listed by a broader classification, say ceramics, it would help eliminate the constant adding and dropping of courses as the faculty available to teach specific courses changes. The goal is to keep the catalog more established and less in fluctuation.
Senator Chris Phillips, mathematics, suggested that for departments such as mathematics where the expectation is that each course contain the same material, regardless of who is teaching it, any changes to the standard syllabus could be noted in the course descriptions as "topics vary". Additional corrections to the preliminary curriculum report include: English 414 and 514, 447 and 547 will be taught this year; Germanic Languages 450-550, and German 666 will also be taught; Swedish 301, 303, and 304 will be taught this spring.
Several requests were made from the floor including removing Sociology 646 from the "drop list". This course has not been taught due to an open faculty position, which will be filled this year. In addition, History 442 and 542 will also be taught this spring. Mr. Engelking advised that any deleted course could be reinstated at any time, and to contact the respective department heads with the course information.
Secretary Steigelman reminded everyone that when the corrections are completed, the final version of the curriculum report will be posted to the web. (Final Fall 2001 Curriculum Report is now available at http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/~uosenate/dirsen012/f01curFIN.html). A motion to approve the preliminary fall curriculum report, as amended, was unanimously.
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