1. Immediately following a meeting of the General Faculty-Graduate Faculty, the regular meeting of the Faculty Senate was called to order at 3:08 p.m. in the Cherry Auditorium, Chester Kirk Building, Chairperson Rice presiding.
All members were present except Senators Beauvais, Carroll, Dholakia, Echevarria, Hara, Gold, Kogut, Krajeski, Lauzon Clabo, Rossby, Shim, Sun, Taggart, Thiem and Welters; Vice Presidents Beagle and Weygand; Vice Provost Swift (Vice Provosts McCray and Pasquerella were represented by their designees); Deans Bonn, Farmer, Joseph, Letendre, Mazze, Nassersharif and Richmond (Deans Brownell and Seemann were represented by their designees); Mr. Freeman.
2. Chairperson Rice asked if there were any additions or corrections to or questions about the Minutes of Faculty Senate Meeting #7, March 23, 2006. There were none.
Chairperson Rice ruled that in the absence of additions or corrections, the Minutes were approved as distributed.
3. REPORTS OF OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
B. Vice Chairperson Martin said that the Minutes of Executive Committee Meetings #25, #26, and #27 appeared on pages 4-13 of the Agenda and asked if there were any questions. There were none.
C. Vice Chairperson Martin said that the Minutes of the January 23, 2006 and February 26, 2006 meetings of the JSPC appeared on pages 14-17 of the Agenda and asked if there were any questions.
President Carothers and Provost Swan responded to questions about the Minutes.
D. On behalf of the Executive Committee, Vice Chairperson Martin introduced the following recommendations:
E. Senator Kowalski announced that the heads of all of the subcommittees for the NEASC Self-Study had been appointed. He said that the subcommittee chairs were scheduled to meet with Provost Swan and a representative from NEASC on Tuesday, May 9. He said that the summer would be spent organizing the committees and determining what information was needed and that he expected the subcommittees to begin their work in the fall.
4. REPORT OF THE PRESIDENT
A. President Carothers reported that, as noted on the Agenda, he had approved all of the legislation forwarded to him after the last Faculty Senate meeting.
B. President Carothers congratulated the following Senators who had been recently promoted to Associate Professor and recommended for tenure: Senators Naomi Mandel, Keykavous Parang, Karen Ramsay and Bryna Wortman. He also congratulated Senator Ginette Ferszt who will be recommended for tenure and Senator Linda Welters who was promoted to Full Professor III.
President Carothers reported that the University had made significant progress in reducing expenditures and indicated that the Board of Governors might be willing to reconsider an increase in tuition beyond the amount they had set in the fall. He said that the numbers for the freshman class appeared to be stronger than expected and expressed his appreciation to the faculty and students who participated in the phone-a-thons with potential students.
President Carothers then answered questions about budget difficulties and noting that the University would know more after the May revenue projections are announced.
5. REPORTS OF STANDING AND SPECIAL COMMITTEES
A. Senator Luebke introduced the Four Hundred Forty-Second Report of the Curricular Affairs Committee, which appeared on pages 25-33 of the Agenda.
She said that Section I was informational and asked if there were any questions about Section I. There were none.
Senator Luebke said that she had one correction to the report before moving forward and announced that item B, 1. a. in Section III had been removed from the Report at the request of the Graduate Council.
Senator Luebke said that Section II required confirmation and moved approval of Section II.
During discussion, an editorial correction was brought to Senator Luebke's attention and she indicated that the report would be corrected as noted.
Senator Luebke said that Section III was a joint report of the Curricular Affairs Committee and Graduate Council on 400-level courses. She said that part A of was informational and asked if there were any questions. There were none.
Senator Luebke announced that Section III part B as amended required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval. The motion carried.
B. In Vice Provost Pasquerella's absence, Dean Beckman introduced the Curricular Report No. 2005-06-7 from the Graduate Council to the Faculty Senate, which appeared on pages 34-36 of the Agenda. She said that Section I was informational and asked if there were any questions.
Dean Beckman said that Section II required confirmation by the Faculty Senate and moved approval of Section II. The motion carried
An editorial correction was brought to Dean Beckman's attention and she indicated that the report would be corrected as noted.
C. Professor Honhart introduced the University College and General Education Committee Report #2005-06-4, which appeared on page 37 of the Agenda and moved approval. The motion carried.
D. Professor Loy introduced the Academic Standards and Calendar Committee Report #2005-06-4: Proposed New University Manual Section 8.26.13 and Amendment to Section 8.56.10, which appeared on pages 38-39 of the Agenda. He moved approval of sections 8.26.13 and 8.56.10.
Following discussion, Senator Roworth moved to amend the sixth sentence in section 8.26.13 by replacing "include" with "consist of faculty from the instructor's department or discipline and."
Following discussion, the amendment carried.
Following discussion the word "shall" was substituted editorially for "may" in the ninth sentence. Discussion resumed.
During discussion, it was agreed that colleges with departments may also choose to use a college appeals committee rather than a department appeals committee.
Following discussion, Senator Roworth moved to amend the ninth sentence by adding "in writing" after "shall recommend."
After discussion, the motion carried.
Following discussion, Senator Boudreaux-Bartels moved to amend the sixth sentence by adding "balanced representation of" after "consist of."
Following discussion, the amendment failed.
After discussion, Senator Kowalski moved to insert "at least three members jointly acceptable to the instructor and department chair after "consist of" in the sixth sentence.
Following discussion, the amendment failed.
Senator Roworth moved to terminate debate on the main motion.
The motion to terminate debate carried.
The Senate voted immediately on the main motion.
The main motion carried.
Following are the approved sections 8.26.13 and 8.56.10:
8.26.13 Faculty members bear responsibility for the evaluation of students and their professional judgment in this regard is to be respected. Undergraduate and graduate students who object to a recorded grade in a course should discuss the matter initially with the instructor. If the issue remains unresolved, students should make their case in writing to the instructor's department chairperson or immediate administrative supervisor. If the chairperson/supervisor thinks the appeal has merit, she/he should so inform the instructor. If this still fails to produce resolution, the chairperson/supervisor should refer the matter to a departmental or college appeals committee for a recommendation. (The latter would be appropriate in colleges lacking departments; otherwise, the case would go to a departmental committee. For petitions concerning grades, appeals committees at both levels shall consist of faculty from an instructor's department or discipline and include a faculty member from a closely allied department or discipline.) If, after investigating the appeal, the committee concludes that compelling reasons exist to modify a grade, it will give the instructor a written explanation of its decision and ask that person to make the change. If the instructor still declines, he/she must provide the committee with a written explanation of the reasons for refusing. If, after considering the instructor's explanation, the committee agrees unanimously that it would be unjust to let the original grade stand, it shall recommend in writing to the chairperson/supervisor that the grade be changed over the instructor's objection. The chairperson/supervisor will then initiate the change, notifying the instructor, the student, the instructor's dean, the student's dean, and the Office of Student Affairs of this action. The only exception to these guidelines shall be in cases where the instructor can no longer be consulted (e.g., that person has died or moved to an unknown address). In these circumstances, the appropriate chairperson/supervisor can act in the stead of the absent instructor and modify a student's grade if a departmental or college appeals committee unanimously recommends such action in writing. In general, grades under appeal should not be considered when evaluating students for continuance in an academic program or for scholarship eligibility. (See section 8.56.10 concerning time limits for changes to recorded grades. Regarding cases involving cheating and plagiarism, see sections 8.27.10 through 8.27.21. For cases involving harassment/discrimination, see University Manual Appendix G, Policy #85-1.)
8.56.10 Changes in Records. No grade (including that of NW) shall be changed after it has been reported to and recorded by the Office of Enrollment Services except in the following circumstances. First, a grade may be changed upon written request by the instructor. Second, following an appeals case an instructor's department chairperson or immediate administrative supervisor shall act on the advice of the appeals committee (see 8.26.13) and change a grade over the instructor's objection. Third, in the event that the original instructor can no longer be consulted (e.g., having died or moved to an unknown address), the instructor's chairperson/supervisor can act in the missing person's stead and initiate a grade change, including the removal of inappropriate NW grades. This shall only happen, however, if an appeals committee has recommended such action in writing. All grade changes must be authorized by the appropriate dean. Entries to a student's academic record shall not be changed after two years for the undergraduate student and after three years for the graduate student. (See sections 8.26.10 through 8.26.13 for appeals procedures.)
E. Professor Loy introduced the Academic Standards and Calendar Committee Report #2005-06-5: Proposed Amendment to Section 8.51.16 of the University Manual, which appeared on page 39 of the Agenda and moved approval
Following discussion, Senator Ruemmele asked to replace editorially "final examination" with "any examination" in the fourth sentence.
There was objection to accepting this change as editorial.
After discussion, Senator Boudreaux-Bartels moved to replace "final examination" with "end of the semester examination."
Following discussion, the amendment carried.
The main motion as amended carried.
Following is the approved section 8.51.16:
8.51.16 All final examinations, with the exception of take-home examinations, shall be administered during the final examination period and in accordance with the final examination schedule prepared and distributed by the Office of Enrollment Services. A faculty member cannot change the date, time or place of a scheduled final examination without the approval of the Office of Enrollment Services. In courses where no final examination is to be administered, a faculty member cannot administer any other examination during the last five days that classes are in session; instead, he or she must administer that examination according to the final examination schedule. In courses where a faculty member wishes not to administer an end of the semester examination, or instead wishes to administer a take-home final examination, then that faculty member must seek a waiver from the original schedule through his/her department chairperson or immediate academic supervisor so that the Office of Enrollment Services is made aware of the room vacancy.
F. Senator Glen Ramsay introduced the Annual Report of the Teaching Effectiveness Committee for 2005-06, which appeared on pages 41-42 of the Agenda. He asked if there were any questions. There were none.
G. Senator Luebke introduced the Final Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on Early Course Registration, which appeared on pages pp. 42-43 of the Agenda. She moved approval of the report, which recommended a two semester trial period.
The motion carried.
6. UNFINISHED BUSINESS
Chairperson Rice asked if there was any unfinished business. There was none.
7. NEW BUSINESS
Chairperson Rice asked if there was any new business.
Senator La Luna moved approval of the following resolution:
Whereas, the University of Rhode Island is the State's public research university, and
Whereas, vibrant public research universities throughout the United States are demonstrably major economic engines within their states, and
Whereas, the University of Rhode Island is committed to enriching the lives of Rhode Islanders through its Land, Sea, and Urban Grant traditions of research and outreach to the public, and
Whereas, the University of Rhode Island has a long and distinguished history of research accomplishments in such fields as potato disease control, poultry disease control, turf grass breeding, aeronautical engineering, industrial engineering, underwater acoustics, fisheries science, textiles science, electronic engineering, pharmaceutical science and environmental science that have catalyzed economic growth in Rhode Island, the nation and the world, and
Whereas, the University of Rhode Island has a long and distinguished history of cooperative extension or outreach programs such as farm demonstrations, environmental protection, transportation and community planning, industrial pilot projects, teacher education, social science outreach, community health programs and artistic programs that have enriched the lives of all Rhode Islanders, and
Whereas, the University of Rhode Island is well positioned to continue boosting Rhode Island's economy in the areas of marine science and engineering, biotechnology, pharmaceutical sciences, forensic sciences, transportation systems and information sciences, and
Whereas, the 2003 Partnership for Prosperity Report commissioned by the University of Rhode Island Research Office concluded that the University of Rhode Island generates nearly five dollars in economic activity in the State for every dollar of State support, and
Whereas, the professors and professional researchers at the University of Rhode Island are extremely successful in the pursuit of federal funding for research, outreach and training projects that carries a requirement of non-federal matching funds,
BE IT RESOLVED, that the Faculty Senate of the University of Rhode Island pledges its full support of An Act by The Rhode Island House of Representatives 2006 H-7092 by Representatives Naughton, Shanley, and Crowley that authorizes the appropriation of state funds as cash matching funds for federal research, extension and training grants, and
FURTHERMORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Faculty Senate of the University of Rhode Island respectfully requests the support of President, and the Board of Governors for Higher Education for 2006 H-7092 and respectfully urges passage by the Rhode Island House of Representatives, and the Rhode Island Senate and signing into law by Governor Donald L. Carcieri.
Following discussion, Vice Chairperson Martin moved to postpone consideration of the resolution definitely until the May 11, 2006 Faculty Senate Meeting.
Following discussion, the motion to postpone definitely carried.
Chairperson Rice said that the time for the meeting had expired and declared the meeting adjourned. He invited everyone to the gallery area outside the auditorium to the reception sponsored by Dean Mazze.
The meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.
Sheila Black Grubman