THE UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE AT CHATTANOOGA
FACULTY COUNCIL MINUTES
March 5, 1998
Signal Mountain Room
Elected Members Present: Tatiana Allen, Ralph Anderson, Jim Avery, Boris Belinsky, Mike Biderman, Martha Butterfield, Prakash Damshala, Joe Dumas, Fritz Efaw, Marvin Ernst, Gene Ezell, Phil Giffin, Diane Halstead, Jim Hiestand, Renée Lorraine, Deborah McAllister, Jonathan Mies, Greg O'Dea, Laurie Prather, Verbie Prevost, Farhad Raiszadeh, Marea Rankin, Rebecca Rochat, Mac Smotherman, Ann Stapleton, Felicia Sturzer, Larry Tillman, Jim Stroud, John Trimpey, Margaret Trimpey, Bruce Wallace
Elected Members Absent: Karen Casey, Valerie Copeland-Rutledge, Judy Miler, Vicki Steinberg, Randy Whitson
Ex-Officio Members Present: Bill Berry, Jane Harbaugh, Bill Stacy, George Ross, Tim Summerlin
Among the Guests Present: Betsy Darken, Brenda Davis, Bill Gurley, Joel Harrell, Bruce Hutchinson, Leila Pratt, Gene Schlereth, Greg Sedrick
Executive Committee: President Ezell
President Ezell announced that this year's retiree's dinner will be held April 13. He reported that the Executive Committee had been discussing or addressing Tennessee/ Georgia tuition reciprocity, Faculty Council and Administrative Committee structure, TIAA-CREF cashability, and the status of past UTC maternity leave and sexual harassment proposals (both seem to have fallen into a "black hole" in the UT system. Professor Hiestand observed that the issue of maternity leave was a pregnant one.) President Ezell also expressed the concern that more input should be sought from departments before those departments are moved to a different building or area. On the topic of General Education Implementation, he reported that although the Executive Committee and Gen Ed Committee had made recommendations for individuals to serve on a Gen Ed Implementation Committee, it had been decided to consult with Provost-elect Bill Berry (who will be on campus in March) before the Committee is appointed. President Ezell asked Professor Martha Butterfield to report on a recent Board of Trustees meeting. She relayed that the Board had passed the Master's Degree in Physical Therapy. She warned that one Board member is seeking to have student technology fees discontinued after two years, assuming that the fees will have served their purpose by that time. She has strongly expressed her hope that the new UTC technology building will be first on the list of construction priorities next year, and thanked those who have assisted her in communicating the need for this building.
President Ezell then reported that the Council had voted in the past not to use reading days as make-up days for snow days. Professor Lorraine expressed the concern that many students do not know that they should report to, for example, their 9:25 classes at 10:00 when the University opens at 10:00 AM on a snow day. It was suggested that this information could be stated in the Stars or in course syllabi. Professor Betsy Darken asked why we don't open the University on Tuesdays and Thursdays when classes actually start. The rationale, according to Acting Provost Tim Summerlin, had been that from an educational perspective, some class time is better than no class time at all. Professor Joe Dumas moved and Professor Bruce Wallace seconded the motion that late openings on snow days coincide with the beginning of a class period (9:25, 10:50, etc.) Professor Jim Hiestand suggested that some of the media might find it difficult to report such times accurately. Professor Darken stated forcefully that no matter what we do and how hard we try, there is no way we can count on students showing up for 9:25 classes at 10:00. They will not show up. The motion passed by voice vote with 3 nays and one abstention.
Curriculum Committee: Professor Gene Schlereth
Professor Schlereth moved that several curriculum items be passed by the Council. He presented an addendum to the materials he had sent in advance and asked that the proposals on the addendum be addressed at that time. The Council voted unanimously to do so. (See addenda). Professors Farhad Raiszadeh and Diane Halstead moved and seconded that the course proposals ECON 201 and 202 be considered separately, and the motion passed 16-5-4. A vote was then taken on approval of the remaining curriculum proposals, and the motion to approve passed unanimously. Moving on to the Economics proposals, Professor Ralph Anderson noted that there was no "approval" or "disapproval" indicated by administrators on the cover sheet of the proposals. Professor Schlereth indicated that Professor Larry Ettkin had marked "disapprove," that Professor Bill Wright had marked "approve," and that Professor Steve Kuhn had marked "neutral." Professor Raiszadeh then argued that with due respect to his colleagues in Economics, the new statistics courses proposed by Economics would be unnecessarily duplicative of statistics courses already offered in the School of Business. The syllabi and the textbooks used would be quite similar, and the textbook currently used in the School of Business is entitled Statistics for Business and Economics. (He noted that although Economics has expressed a desire for more multi-variant regression analysis in their courses, the School of Business textbook includes three chapters on regression analysis.) Professor Raiszadeh continued that having different statistics courses in the two areas could create scheduling problems for students whose majors are undeclared. The prerequisites of ECON 101-102 could also cause scheduling problems. He added that the proposed courses would include only around fifteen students per semester.
Professor Phil Giffin asked why the School of Business would be in a better position than Economics to determine what is best for Economics students. He noted that statistics courses in Business used to be taught by an Economics professor. Professor Bruce Hutchinson commented that separate courses are needed because although different statistics courses are basically the same (a mean is a mean), the proposed courses will use economics problems most helpful to those planning to enter graduate school in or work in the field of Economics, and will use data bases and statistical software specifically designed for Economics. The software the School of Business uses in statistics courses is somewhat awkward to use in Economics. Economics students are simply not getting enough of what they need in their current statistics courses. Professor Hutchinson added that class size in the courses is likely to average around 60, and that the new courses will present absolutely no scheduling problems.
Professor Diane Halstead asked who from Economics had taught statistics in the School of Business in the past, and was informed that Professor Leila Pratt had taught such courses. Professor Halstead then asked why Economics had not asked for separate statistics courses when the Department was part of the School of Business. Professor Hutchinson responded that Economics was a small minority in the School of Business, and it was felt that any effort to create separate courses within the School would have been politically naive. He added that Economics had had to face six opponents of the proposed courses from Business in the Curriculum Committee, and that there had been strong efforts made to kill the proposals. Professor Halstead stated that she saw no significant differences between the present and proposed courses, and added that she frequently uses examples from economics in her Management courses. Professor Ralph Anderson asked what the impact of the proposed courses would be on enrollment in the School of Business, and if this was not in fact the "bottom line." Professor Raiszadeh responded that the problem was not enrollment but redundancies and repetitions. Professor Marvin Ernst indicated that it is important in statistics courses to use examples from the discipline in question. A statistics course in sociology, for example, is better for sociology majors than a statistics course from psychology. Professor Raiszadeh responded that while he understood Professor Ernst's point, the situation in Business was somewhat different in that the courses and texts in Business are designed for both Business and Economics majors. In response to a previous point, he added that students may currently use any data base they wish, and that Computer Science courses are prerequisites for the Business courses. Professor Fritz Efaw suggested that defeating the proposed courses would set a bad precedent for General Education; other new statistics courses are likely to be offered in response to the new General Education requirements. Professor Joe Dumas commented that while he had no horse in the race, he felt that the faculty in a given discipline are best suited to determine what is appropriate for their students. Professor Darken suggested that what matters in any statistics course is that the professor is competent, and that Professor Pratt, who would teach the new courses, can produce her credentials. Professor Halstead responded that no one was questioning any one else's credentials or the quality of the proposed courses. The issues are that the courses involve vast duplication, and that we need to determine how to be most efficient with limited resources. There was no more discussion, and the ECON 201, 202 proposals passed 25-2-0.
Professor Schlereth then moved on behalf of the Curriculum Committee that two representatives from the General Education Committee serve on the Curriculum Committee until General Education implementation is complete. He noted that normally course proposals intended for General Education are first sent to the Curriculum Committee and then to the Gen Ed Committee for approval. During the implementation of the General Education program, this practice may not always be the best one to follow; some courses may need to be sent to the latter Committee first. Frequent communication between the two Committees would be beneficial under these circumstances. It was asked if the two joint members from the would need to be voting members of the Curriculum Committee, and Professor Schlereth thought that this would be best. Professor Darken commented that because both the Curriculum and Gen Ed Committees tend to meet often, serving on both Committees would be burdensome for faculty. She suggested it would be preferable for the two Committee chairs to collaborate often. Professor Anderson suggested that a member of one Committee could be invited to the other if needed. Professor Stroud suggested that we should wait until problems arise and address them at that time. At the end of the discussion, the motion to have two representatives from the General Education Committee serve temporarily on the Curriculum Committee failed by voice vote.
Professor Schlereth commented that having struck out on his first proposal, he would throw the Council another pitch. He moved on the behalf of the Curriculum Committee that implementation of the new General Education Program begin no sooner than fall semester of the year 2000. This would allow for the development of new courses, the approval of those courses, various departmental and administrative changes, etc. Professor Margaret Trimpey expressed support for the motion, suggesting that waiting would give departments more time to work out difficulties with Humanities I and II. She has also been advising students transferring to UTC using the present Gen Ed guidelines, and delaying implementation would give us more time to get the word out about the new requirements. In response to an inquiry from Professor Wallace, Director of Records Brenda Davis indicated that articulation agreements with other academic institutions vary from program to program. Professor Darken thought the Curriculum Committee's motion was premature. The Gen Ed Program was passed only two weeks ago, and people are already volunteering to assist in various areas, including Humanities I and II. It is simply too soon to know when implementation might be possible. Professor Butterfield suggested we could aim for Fall 1999 implementation and then delay if problems arise. Dr. Joel Harrell of Special Systems commented that the new Banner 2000 computing system would be on line in March of 1999. If we were to implement the new Gen Ed Program in 1999, it would be necessary to integrate the Program into the old computing system and then reintegrate it into Banner 2000. This would cost $300,000-$350,000 more than waiting and integrating the Program into Banner 2000 for the year 2000. Further, if we were to implement the new Program in 1999, decisions about what to integrate into the old system would be needed by September or October of 1998. Professor Dumas noted that the implementation of new software takes time, and doing it right is better than having to do it over. Professor Wallace asked if we would be registering students for the Fall of 1999 with Banner 2000, and the answer was yes. He then suggested that some courses in the new Gen Ed program will not be needed right away. Professor Stroud asked if the Gen Ed program would be phased in or if it would emerge suddenly, like Venus in full bloom. Professor Darken responded that both faculty and courses would be phased in. Dr. Harrell reminded the Council that different implementation targets carry different resource bases, and that a set plan will be needed in advance. Professor Stroud stated that he was not willing to have academic decisions determined by technological matters. Dr. Harrell responded that only implementation dates were being related to technological issues. At the end of the discussion, the motion to implement the new General Education Program no earlier than the fall semester of 2000 failed 9-13-2. Professor Schlereth threw no more pitches to Council that day.
Graduate Council: Professor Bill Gurley
Professor Gurley moved approval of several proposals approved by the Graduate Council. There was no discussion, and the motion passed unanimously.
Administrative Report: Chancellor Bill Stacy
Chancellor Stacy invited faculty to attend the open Budget meetings held on Mondays at 3:00 PM in the Raccoon Mountain Room. He reported that technology fee proposals will be handled by the new Technology Committee. Monies for the new Technology building are being generated, and there will be continued efforts to keep the project at the top of the Governor's list of priorities. The installation of Banner 2000 is underway, and will involve a considerable amount of effort. The Chancellor thanked the campus for its hospitality at the last UT Board Meeting, and Professors Butterfield, Ezell and Verbie Prevost for their input. He noted that Professor Prevost had offered a splendid speech to the Board on the impact of a 12-hour course load on faculty lives. The Chancellor asked if he might present UTC's most recent 5-year plan at the next Council or full Faculty meeting. Permission was readily granted, and the Executive Committee will suggest where and when the plan might be discussed. In response to an inquiry from Professor Wallace, acting Dean Greg Sedrick, Chair of the Technology Committee, stated that the Committee will be setting up open forums for faculty and students. Professor Mike Biderman commented that although the proposal for a higher technology fee sailed effortlessly through the SGA, he knows some students that are adamantly opposed to the fee hike. Dean Sedrick suggested that faculty discuss this issue with students.
Old and New Business
Under New Business, Ralph Anderson expressed a concern that UTC diplomas indicate that students have graduated from "The University of Tennessee" instead of the "The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga." He has a general concern about UTC's identity being subordinated to that of UTK. Director of Records Brenda Davis noted that the city of origin is indicated on diplomas, but in relatively small print. Associate Provost Jane Harbaugh noted that our diploma is a System diploma that has been used since 1969. President Ezell remarked that he shared Professor Anderson's concern that "Chattanooga" was not readily visible on our diplomas, and that this issue would be considered at the next Council meeting.
Associate Provost Harbaugh announced that a room/usage inventory is in the works, and that Assistant Vice-Chancellor Richard Brown and his staff will be visiting every room on campus. She stressed that this procedure is routine, and is no cause for concern. President Ezell added that faculty members should not assume, if they see security officers inspecting rooms in their department, that the department is going to be moved.
President Ezell adjourned the meeting at 5:05 PM.
Renée Cox Lorraine
Cartoons dedicated to Category F and campus construction