1. The meeting was called to order at 11:10 am on Monday, March 29, 2010 in the President's Conference Room in Green Hall, Chairperson Swallow presiding. All members were present except for Senator DiCioccio. Ms. Grubman was absent as she had a broken foot.
2. The committee briefly discussed the President's request that the Provost's office be included in the review process for centers, and returned to the topic later in the meeting.
3. The committee discussed the allocation of royalties as outlined by the Research Policy. Some 1998 changes to the diagrams and the text of the manual that illustrate the distribution of royalties and were not updated in the online version of the manual. More recent updates from the Board of Governors at the time of the creation of the position of Vice President for Research are also not reflected in the Manual. The committee recommends that there should be at least one print copy of the Manual available in case the online version is not updated.
4. Chairperson Swallow reported on a meeting he attended with the Council for Research. The FSEC agreed that the money the University received should be used to pay for future research.
5. The committee reviewed the most recent draft of the proposal for the Joint Committee on Academic Planning (JCAP). It was noted that the student representatives were accidentally omitted from the current draft, and will be re-inserted. Some discussion of the membership ensued, and it was determined that the chair and vice chair of the committee should both provide the report to the Faculty Senate that is required by the charge. Given the importance of the committee, there was brief discussion of how to ensure that faculty do read the proposal in advance of the April meeting.
6. Updates regarding the Academic Plan Task Forces were provided. Lists of task force members were circulated, and are available on the web at http://www.uri.edu/provost/planning/staffandcommittees.html. The Research, Scholarship, and Innovation task force held a forum on March 18th, which Chairperson Swallow and Senator Izenstark attended. They provided a brief report on some of the discussion that occurred before they left for the Faculty Senate meeting. Chairperson Swallow reiterated his comments at the forum that the receipt of grant funding was not the only indicator of a quality program, and that some output may not be easily counted. This led to a brief discussion of the membership of the Academic Program Review Committee (APRC), which needs an additional member. There was also some discussion of where the grants that are received via the URI Foundation are reported. It was noted that having these incorporated in a total with other grants would be helpful. Chairperson Swallow also noted that the new Academic Plan Task Force chairs had met.
7. Chairperson Swallow provided an update regarding the working committees related to the Academic Plan. He mentioned that the Strategic Budget and Planning Council (SBPC) met last week to continue establishing budgt principles and to start planning the budget for FY2012 based on deadlines provided by the State. The minutes of the March 24th meeting (and future meetings) will be on the council's web site at http://www.uri.edu/budget/sbpc.html. There was some discussion of the complementary roles of the JCAP and the SBPC, and how the JCAP and the Deans will present their information to the SBPC.
8. Discussion returned to the Faculty Senate meeting of March 18th, and comments from senators during the meeting regarding the speaker chosen for the Inauguration. The FSEC determined that no action was required at this point.
9. The committee returned to its discussion about the President's recommendation regarding the review of centers. The FSEC agreed that including the Provost's office in the review process would be beneficial. The Council for Research will be asked to involve the Provost in reviews, and to consider the status of centers that do not have funding. Discussion of the review process for the Confucius Institute ensued as it is not a research center. The Committee discussed establishing an ad hoc committee to review the Confucius Institute. The committee to review the Confucius Institute would be chaired by Vice-chairperson Ordonez. Chairperson Swallow and Senator Honhart would serve on the committee, along with additional members including a representative from the Provost's Office and Arts & Sciences, with the goal of bringing a report forward at the April 29th Faculty Senate meeting. The need for a committee to review non-research centers was discussed, and Chairperson Swallow said he would follow up with the chair of the Council for Research.
10. Senators Eaton and Honhart provided an update on the Ad Hoc Committee on 4-Credit Courses and Curricula. The committee is scheduled to meet April 5th. Senator Eaton pointed out that discussion of a switch to a 4-credit curriculum in her department was generally positive. It was noted that scheduling will be an issue if all classes opt for two two-hour blocks as opposed adding a recitation to existing MWF or TuTh classes. Senator Honhart described a system that would allow for two-hour blocks on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:10.