Academic Affairs / Provost
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Tuesday, August 12, 2014
The Academic Council functions as the primary organizational group for department chairs and deans. The Council functions in an advisory capacity to the Provost/Chief Learning Officer for Academic Affairs. The Council recommends actions to the Provost who either responds or directs the recommendations to the proper person or organization within the university governance structure. These recommendations will indicate the Council's majority opinion on an issue or a call for action. The recommendations will be in writing and will contain the appropriate individual or group to receive the recommendation.
I. Approval of Minutes from June 10, 2014
● Motion to approve Jean Nuernberger
● Seconded by Fanson Kidwaro
● Approved unanimously.
II. Department Chair Discussion
A. Chair compensation
● Sub-committee still working on proposal and will be visiting with individual department chairs
B. Faculty Re-Classification
● The new classification model is not directly based on the original document from the committee, but the original document was referenced.
● This proposal would help faculty retention by allowing non tenure faculty to advance.
● Many departments hire clinical faculty and experts that do not have the highest degrees and the programs rely upon them
● The proposal creates a parallel track for non tenure faculty to provide job security and a schedule of raises for non tenure track instructors.
● Instructors will be more inclined to stay if they have opportunities for advancement.
● For non tenure instructors, the expected class load would be 15 hours, but other duties may affect load. For example, Comp I instructors would not be able to teach effectively five sections each semester.
● Department Chairs would evaluate instructor performance for promotion
○ Perhaps this is part of the new definition of the Department Chair’s duties?
○ Concerns were raised that the Department Chair evaluates NT instructors for promotion without it going through the department’s P&T process. The peer review process of the departmental P&T committee would then be missing.
○ Many people would like to see an evaluation process similar for tenure-track faculty.
● This new classification does not apply to library positions.
● The model is based on 1-3 year contracts.
● Departments can request new faculty to be on either track based on what is appropriate for the situation.
● Other concerns raised:
○ 15 hours is over what the professional body recommends.
○ Since service work was mentioned for instructors, is there a certain amount now required for all faculty? Service work varies greatly between departments.
○ Will there be pressure from deans to replace tenure-track positions with more non tenure track, 1-3 year contract positions?
○ Since there is no proposed salary track yet available, it is difficult for Chairs to make a decision of support for this proposal.
○ Concerns about funding this model.
III. Questions regarding written reports
No written reports were submitted.
IV. Information Items
A. Self-Paced Blackboard Training for students (Mike Jeffries)
● The original idea was to create a full, several week, course to teach Blackboard, but problems about who would teach and monitor the classes motivated the development of these online modules.
● Modules include assessments. 100% must be reached before proceeding to the next section.
● This process is completely the students’ responsibility to complete as and when needed.
○ No course credit is earned through this model.
○ Students that complete the course will be able to receive a badge in Blackboard that professors can see, but the badges are not active yet.
○ In this orientation module, there are several suggested activities, but none are required.
○ Some students may view the test, record the answers, then take the test again to get 100% and move on to the next module.
● Chairs should make faculty aware of this course and explain the process. Faculty can then send the link to their students and encourage students to complete.
● Faculty could take this course to see what the student side looks like.
● Suggestions made by the group:
○ Would be ideal if students could complete between freshmen orientation in summer and the beginning of the semester, although Blackboard access could hinder that possibility.
○ Perhaps add it to AE 1400 class as an assignment.
○ This course be required, like Alcohol EDU.
● A similar module could eventually be created for adjunct faculty who teach online and are away from campus, but creating that module would take considerable time and effort.
● The response from the group is that this module is helpful for student success.
● Could be up for chairs to test as early as Friday.
V. Discussion Items
A. International Student Enrollment--Cultural Issues (Alice Griefe/Xiaodong Yue)
➢ Academic Dishonesty issues
● Becoming a problem because of the large numbers of international students enrolled and because of cultural differences.
● Many students coming to America experience culture shock.
○ Students often share work and/or work together in other cultures.
○ Common Courtesy varies by culture
○ Personal hygiene
○ Conversation volume in the hallway has been a problem- especially at SCS where there is no designated socializing area for students.
● Students often do not read policies, but instead rely on what their friends tell them.
● We need to emphasize academic dishonesty is not tolerated in this culture.
● Suggestions to combat academic dishonesty:
○ Zero tolerance for academic dishonesty. (minimum get a 0 on the assignment)
○ Many faculty members use multiple versions of tests.
○ All personal items must be in backpack and backpacks must be left at the front of the room.
○ Put more weight on in-class quizzes, because homework assignments are more difficult to monitor.
○ Crowded classrooms create a problem, so perhaps split into two classrooms with two proctors for exam days.
○ Seating charts for test days.
○ Don’t use multiple choice questions.
○ Change course material from class to class.
○ Promote collaborative learning instead of punishing it, by assigning homework that will not be graded, but will greatly aid in preparing for tests.
● International Student Orientation discusses plagiarism.
○ Covering the complexities of our culture is very difficult in a short session.
○ Perhaps also have an etiquette dinner for International Students. During the dinner, discuss American cultural appropriateness and promote mutual learning between cultures.
● International Center and International student clubs offer support to students.
● Indian student organization gives students a definition of what plagiarism is. Some students do not have the intention of plagiarism, but are not aware that they are plagiarizing.
● Some cultures find it insulting to paraphrase another person and think they are honoring the author by copying whole phrases.
● This topic is serious, because the students impact not only UCM, but the Warrensburg/Lee’s Summit communities.
➔ Introduction of new Chairs:
◆ Wendy Geiger - Sociology, Gerontology, and Cross Disciplinary Studies
◆ Greg Streich - Government, International Studies, and Languages
VI. Action Item
VII. Future Agenda Items
A. Admission standards, enrollment targets, and quality of students (October)
B. Composition and charge of APRC (September)
C. IRB Discussion (September Janice Putnam)
D. International student enrollment
1. Has there been a discussion about strategic recruiting from different
geographic regions? (Joseph Lewandowski)
2. Limited employment on campus (Shari Bax)
E. Data Warehouse - Dr. Skip Crooker
● General update
● How should requests for data be submitted?
● How is retention tracked? Are there data that show retention from semester to semester in a program?
F. OP pay parity
Thank you to Joseph Lewnandowski and the Honor’s College for providing the snacks and refreshments for our meeting today
Schedule for 2014-2015
September 9 2014 3:30 Union 240
October 14 2014 3:30 WDE 2020
November 11 2014 3:30 WDE 2020
December 9 2014 3:30 Union 237A
January 13 2015 3:30 Union 237B
February 10 2015 3:30 Union 237B
March 10 2015 3:30 Union 238
April 14 2015 3:30 Union 237B
May 12 2015 3:00 * Union 237A
June 9 2015 3:00 * WDE 2401