shorttop.jpg (1907 bytes)


April 20, 1995
Signal Mountain Room
University Center

ELECTED MEMBERS PRESENT: Valarie Adams, Tom Bibler, Mary Brabston, Martha Butterfield, Ken Carson, Prem Chopra, Neal Coulter, Lloyd Davis, Robert Duffy, Aniekan Ebiefung, Howard Finch, Nick Honerkamp, Larry Ingle, Doug Kingdon, Renée Lorraine, John Lynch, Jim Macomber, Anna Panorska, Tom Payne, Loretta Prater, Mike Russell, Greg Sedrick, Maria Smith, Jim Stroud, John Tinkler, Jeannette Vallier, Ling-Jun Wang, David Wiley, Sally Young

ELECTED MEMBERS ABSENT: Jim Avery, Betsy Cook, Ahmed Eltom, John Garrett, David Levine, Jim McDonell, Katherine Rehyansky, Margaret Trimpey

EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS PRESENT: Richard Brown, Charles Renneisen, Grayson Walker

AMONG THE GUESTS PRESENT: Ron Cox, Ray Hall, Kennith G. Hunter, R.E. MacDougall, John Phillips, Roger Thompson, Dorothy Williams

Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 3:20 p.m.

Approval of Minutes

On page 2, paragraph 10, Professor Larry Ingle noted that "seconded" should be "seconder" and that President Bibler said that he would try to have a report about the Honor Code matter by the next Council meeting. The minutes were approved as corrected.

Report of the General Education Committee

Professor Martha Butterfield, Chair, passed out a summary of the General Education Committee’s actions. She explained the reasoning behind the "Suggested Format for Course Syllabus" document. When the committee was considering courses for recertification, they were surprised to find important information about the course lacking, such as the name of the course or instructor. She moved approval of the report. Professor Greg Sedrick seconded the motion. Professor Renée Lorraine said that Music 311 will be cross-listed not only as Humanities 311 but also as Anthropology 311. When Professor Mike Russell asked if the restructuring of engineering general education requirements was a part of this report, Professor Butterfield explained that it was a part of the Curriculum Committee’s report instead.

Professor Ken Carson had a question about the note which appeared by the ADA statement which says, "Faculty must comply with the ADA. This statement MUST be in the syllabus and faculty MUST accommodate the student." He said that there are certain disabilities that he would not be able to accommodate. If he has a blind student, what does he have to do? Professor Butterfield said that the University has resources to help and that Dean Charles Renneisen could probably elaborate. Student Affairs provides readers, and Tom Losh’s office sends out letters advising professors that they have a student with a disability at the beginning of each semester. Professor Ling-Jun Wang asked if students were aided through the CAP office, to which Professor Butterfield replied, "Only if they are CAP students."

Professor John Tinkler observed that there are students we cannot really help, for example blind students in a color theory course or deaf students in a phonetics course. Professor James Stroud asked if we had to put the ADA statement on our syllabi. Discussion ensued. Although there is a recommended statement, faculty have never been told that the statement must appear on syllabi; many thought the statement was only recommended, not required. Professor David Wiley believed that a mandate must come from the Chancellor if it is to be required.

Professor Mike Russell is concerned that some such students probably fall through the cracks. He suggests that if a professor has several such students in a class, the students must be referred to the Dean of Students.

Dean Charles Renneisen said that we are under federal mandate to comply, and that Student Support Services and Vocational Rehabilitation Services help. Professor Carson said that the law requires that teachers make "reasonable accommodations."

Professor Carson moved to delete the second sentence from the note; Professor Stroud seconded the motion. Professor Butterfield noted that when the committee saw syllabi and tried to make a list of what should be on syllabi, the ADA statement seemed like one of the items that should be there. Professor Stroud responded that he did not really want to be told what ought to be in a syllabus; to him, it is a matter of academic freedom. Professor Nick Honerkamp suggested that he might pay for his freedom with a lawsuit and called the question.

Professor Doug Kingdon said that the syllabus is only suggested. People going before the Curriculum Committee must put all of these items in their proposed syllabus anyway. He believes professors still have options. Professor Stroud asked if ADA required that the syllabus contain the ADA statement, but no one had the answer. The motion passed by voice vote.

The motion to approve the General Education Committee’s report without the second sentence in the NOTE by the ADA statement passed by voice vote.

Report of the Graduate Council

Professor Greg Sedrick, Chair, reported that the Graduate Council did approve Political Science 540 at its April 13, 1995, meeting with a 10-0-0 vote. An earlier cover sheet was inadvertently attached to the copy of the report for distribution.

Professor Doug Kingdon moved approval of Computer Science 597r; Professor Martha Butterfield seconded the motion. There was no discussion, and the motion passed 27-0-0.

Professor Greg Sedrick moved approval of Political Science 540; Professor Renée Lorraine seconded the motion. Professor Ken Carson said that there was an oversight in calculating the grade; it amounts to more than 100%. He also questioned the statement that "students must earn a grade of C or higher in order to pass the course." He thought that was unusual terminology for a graduate class. Professor Kennith Hunter explained that THEC permitted passing a student with a marginal C who takes the course instead of a comprehensive exam. Professor Larry Ingle moved to change the requirement to a B. Professor Hunter would not agree with that idea. A student could have an A to offset the C.

Professor David Wiley asked how THEC was involved. Do they set grade levels? Director of Graduate Studies Deborah Arfken explained that this program has the prerogative to drop a comprehensive exam and substitute a capstone course. THEC approves this change. Professor Wiley asked what happened if the student did not have the required GPA. Professor Hunter said that students must have a B average to graduate.

Professor Stroud asked if this was a three-hour course. Wasn’t that information supposed to appear in the course description? Dr. Arfken said yes, it was required.

The motion passed 23-3-1.

Report of the Curriculum Committee

Professor Ken Venters brought five items before Council. Professor Doug Kingdon moved and Professor Lorraine seconded the motion to approve the report.

Discussion centered around the Structured General Education for Engineering Majors proposal. Professor Mike Russell said that he approves what engineering is doing generally, but he wonders about the role of the history department. He was not informed that this was going to occur. Are there alternative courses? He believes that History 203 and 204 might satisfy category B requirements for engineering as well as the proposed History 101 and 102.

Dean Ron Cox said that substitutions remain a possibility, but these courses are what came out of discussion with the History Department and the General Education Committee. Although engineering wanted an international flavor, nothing automatically excluded other courses. Professor Lorraine asked if engineering students could take other courses. Professor Cox said perhaps, but students would have to petition. He realizes that there may be problems with transfer students.

The motion passed 23-4-1.

Report of the Departmental Honors Committee

Professor John Phillips presented the report of the committee. In it he asked for approval of twenty-five honors projects, twenty-three for May graduation and two for August graduation; approval of twenty-three new proposals; permission to have a quota of five over the summer; and permission to approve further projects for August graduation without Faculty Council approval. Professor Greg Sedrick moved, and Professor Nick Honerkamp seconded the motion to approve the report.

Professor David Wiley said that he found Cynthia Chandler’s title "Music Defined the Vietnam War as Well as Any Novel" interesting, but unprovable; he does not understand it as an academic title. Professor Phillips said he believed it was meant to be provocative. Professor Nick Honerkamp said that we had approved a similar topic for a previous student.

Professor Larry Ingle wondered how many more August graduates there might be that Faculty Council would not have an opportunity to vote on. Professor Phillips believed there might be two more; in addition, there might possibly be a couple who were approved for May graduation who did not quite finish their projects on time.

The motion passed unanimously.

Report of the Handbook Committee

Professor Nick Honerkamp, Chair, reported that they had made wording changes to clarify the confusing statement concerning the first full faculty meeting; added maternity, paternity, and sick leave benefits to page 56, section 6.11; and rephrased the section concerning the chair of the Faculty/Administrative Relations Committee. Professor Larry Ingle moved and Professor Renée Lorraine seconded the motion to approve the report. The motion passed unanimously.

Professor Honerkamp said that his year-end report will show that they wanted to be able to include the statement on Sexual Harassment, but that it is still stalled in Knoxville. The issues raised by the Provost with respect to reappointment will be passed on to next year’s committee.

In previous action, Council approved a two-year term for the Faculty Council President and also voted to exclude administrators from Rank, Tenure, and Promotion meetings unless invited by the faculty. Further, Council approved making the Death Benefits Committee an Ad Hoc Committee of Faculty Council.

Report of the Admissions Committee

Professor Ray Hall, Chair, reported on the action of the Admissions Committee. There were 424 conditional admissions. Of these, 402 were admitted by the Office of Admissions, twenty were admitted by the Committee, and two were admitted by the Chancellor. Professor Hall observed that conditionally admitted students have about the same success rate as the regularly admitted students.

Report of the Academic Standards Committee

Professor Roger Thompson, Chair, said that his committee had accomplished three things: They had clarified the language concerning the granting of a double degree; it will now be a paragraph instead of a 1-2-3 list.

He reminded the Council that they had adopted a resolution concerning courses taught through Distance Learning. That resolution required courses taught by this method which had been approved previously by the Curriculum Committee to be brought back to the Curriculum Committee and then to Faculty Council for approval as DL courses. He wanted the announcement reissued because he believed many people did not know of it or had forgotten.

He also noted that the Academic Standards Committee had last year approved raising continuation standards; Faculty Council endorsed their motion that the standard be raised to 1.5 with a 1-23 hours; 1.8 with 24-39 hours; and 2.0 with 39 or more hours. The UT System had concerns about it which they are trying to answer; the issues go beyond the purview of the Standards Committee and affect admissions, financial aid, retention, and the like. In raising standards, we are in effect discriminating. Do we want to do this? Professor Thompson recommends that we form an Ad Hoc Committee with representatives from several committees which would involve recruitment, support services, and retention.

Professor Martha Butterfield questioned whether Ray Fox’s Ad Hoc Committee could handle Academic Standards’ concerns. Provost Grayson Walker said he thought that committee could expand its charge a bit. He further explained that the proposed higher continuation standards had a negative impact on our Affirmative Action efforts. The Trustees wondered why we were trying to increase our percentage of African American students and proposing something to decrease their numbers simultaneously. He wants support services to be in place before any change is made. Although Ray Fox’s committee is not charged to do this now, they could be asked to look at the issue.

Professor Butterfield suggested that before we appoint another committee, we should see if an existing committee could do the work. President Bibler promised to explore that possibility.

Professor James Stroud moved that the Provost expand Ray Fox’s committee and add a member from the Standards Committee. Professor Doug Kingdon seconded the motion, which passed unanimously.

Professor Thompson believed that including the reminder in the Faculty Council minutes about the recertification of courses which are to be taught through Distance Learning would be sufficient. They are to be resubmitted to the Curriculum Committee and to Faculty Council.

Professor Martha Butterfield observed that this would mean that the Curriculum Committee would have to deal with this early in the Fall semester for the Spring semester and would mean reapproval of previously approved courses.

Professor Doug Kingdon reminded the Council that the issue arose over the lack of appropriateness of some courses for teaching in this medium. It is more of a format question, not really a reexamination of the course itself.

Professor Greg Sedrick did not recall that the motion passed. Professor David Wiley expressed his concern that this is a sensitive issue; a chancellor in Maine is stepping down over a DL problem.

President Bibler said he would accept the report of the Standards Committee and have the Executive Committee look into the vote on the DL question at the April 21, 1994 meeting, and report at the joint Faculty Council meeting on Reading Day.

Professor Larry Ingle thinks that the Committee can remind people of the deadline if the motion did pass. The machinery should be set in place by the Chairman of the Academic Standards Committee.

Professor Renée Lorraine asked if there was a motion about that, to which President Bibler responded no.

Professor Larry Ingle then asked a procedural question. He said that most reports had attached recommendations we have not seen before but were expected to vote on. He would like to have advanced warning.

President Bibler said that he had taken committee chairs at their word that they were presenting reports, not recommendations. He admitted we may have handled the situation in a lax manner. Professor Ingle asked President Bibler to rule on any other recommendations that might come up.

Report of the Budget and Economic Status Committee

Professor Jim McDonell, Chair, could not be present; Professor Dorothy Williams presented the report. The committee recommended three actions, which are attached to these minutes.

From the wording, Professor Ingle believed that the recommendations are made to the committee. On the other hand, Professor Robert Duffy suggested that item #2 needs a determination, perhaps by Faculty Council. Professor John Tinkler observed that item #3 specifically asks for a Faculty Council response.

Professor Renée Lorraine wondered about the amounts paid for speakers. Professor Stroud said no amount need be named. Professor Williams said they just wanted a policy about honoraria; it was not necessary to suggest a limit.

Professor David Wiley said he thought there was a budget line for subscriptions. Provost Grayson Walker said that there was a policy about journals; are we ignoring it? The policy had to do with departments subscribing to journals. Scholarly journals are to be ordered through the library; if you order a scholarly journal for your own department, it is a violation, but it is all right if you order it through the library. President Bibler said that perhaps their committee is asking the administration to enforce this policy. Provost Walker observed that it is very hard to track, but that most people are observing the policy. President Bibler said we would publish the report in the minutes.

Professor David Wiley moved and Professor Nick Honerkamp seconded the motion to approve the report. Professor Ken Carson asked about guest speakers. Would they speak in class or out? Professor Williams was not sure. Professor Wiley believes there is a policy already and that it is the same as the one Speakers and Special Events uses. Is it suggested that non-speaker budget money was going for speakers? President Bibler observed that it seemed as if department heads should oversee this.

Professor Anna Panorska asked for clarification about books and journals. Can they be ordered through the library but housed within a department? Provost Grayson Walker said yes. We will get that one-page item to be included with the minutes. Professor Wiley thought a certain amount of flexibility is necessary. The motion passed by voice vote.

Report of the Classroom Technology Committee

Professor Greg Sedrick passed out the report to Council and asked that they vote on the recommendations next time.

Report of the Faculty/Administrative Relations Committee

Professor Bill Butterfield said that he cannot report particulars because many of their proceedings are confidential. He submitted his report and asked that the recommendations be considered at the Tuesday meeting.

Professor Ingle asked if questions were permitted at this time. President Bibler said yes. Professor Ingle said that the only time he had heard TQM mentioned was when the previous provost was here. He wonders what TQM is; three-letter acronyms such as MBO and EDO frighten him. "TQM," Professor Butterfield explained, "is Total Quality Management."

Professor David Wiley said that we have had discussions of having "chairs" instead of "heads" before. It has many ramifications and cannot be discussed in a reasonable length of time on Tuesday. President Bibler asked if we should defer this to next year’s President for consideration in the Fall.

Professor Stroud asked if departments could have both a chair and a head who is just a spokesperson for the faculty. Professor Mike Russell said it sounded like a two-headed monster. Professor Bill Butterfield noted that heads have a line of command already; but perhaps such a person could get an administrative ear.

Professor Renée Lorraine said that item #3 should be separated; but items 1, 2, and 4 should be discussed Tuesday. Her committee and others have made similar recommendations before. Professor Lorraine moved to discuss items 1, 2, and 4 at Tuesday’s meeting and defer item 3 until the Fall. Professor Nick Honerkamp seconded the motion.

Professor Martha Butterfield said that many faculty members are unable to attend the Instructional Excellence Retreat. Could we perhaps have a University in-service day for a speaker like the one suggested in the report?

The motion passed by voice vote.

Professor Larry Ingle had a question about #4; he wondered what the subject of the item is. Other items are similarly lacking subjects. Professor Bill Butterfield said that the "university" is the understood subject; the report is addressed to the administration. Professor Ingle observed that Faculty Council has no control over how administrators view other administrators.

Report of the Faculty Rating of Administration Committee

Professor David Wiley, Chair, said that 58% of the rating forms had been returned. Many of the items on Bill Butterfield’s list are on the administrative survey and you can address them. Next year’s committee needs to examine the instrument again.

Report from the Honor Court

Professor Judy Miler, Chair, submitted her committee’s report, which is attached to the minutes. Dean Charles Renneisen also distributed a two-page handout.

Professor Larry Ingle asked about item II.B. The students had two charges against them, but were tried on only the first. The Court did not act on the possible unlawful entry. Dean Renneisen said that the students claimed to have entered through a door which was ajar. Although they were in an "unauthorized place," they did not "break and enter."

Dean Renneisen went on to say that the Honor Court is an honorable body composed of eight excellent students and four faculty. Usually faculty and students agree. Furthermore, either side in the case has an opportunity to appeal. When determining punishment, the Court frequently looks at the student’s overall record. In hindsight, they probably should have divided the questions and had two hearings on Item II.B.

Professor Ingle inquired as to whether the second charge was still open since it had not been acted on. Dean Renneisen said that the Honor Court had heard it, but did not take action. Professor Ingle persisted: Was it still open? Professor Miler said that the Honor Court did not consider the second charge within their jurisdiction.

Old Business

President Bibler said that an Ad Hoc Committee composed of the Executive Committee, Doug Kingdon, David Levine, Richard Brown, Bob Ratchford, Mary Rehyansky and Katrina Beets from the Echo met. Dean Renneisen has reported most of the discussion. President Bibler said that the main concerns expressed were about the make up of the Honor Court, the lack of sentencing guidelines both for the Honor Court hearings and the hearings before Dean MacDougall, the lack of public announcements of the actions taken. Before making further announcements, we need to seek the advice of legal counsel on what it is possible to do in these three areas.

New Business

The joint meeting of the old and new members of Faculty Council will take place in the Raccoon Mountain Room on Reading Day, Tuesday, April 25, at 3:15 p.m.


There were no announcements.


The meeting was adjourned at 5:20 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Sally Young


top.gif (189 bytes)