Minutes of the Auburn University Senate Meeting
March 21, 2017 3:30 pm

238 Broun Hall


James Goldstein, Chair; Xing Ping Hu, Secretary; Donald Mulvaney, Secretary-Elect; Larry Teeter, Immediate-Past Chair

Gretchen VanValkenburg, VP, Alumni Affairs; Paul Patterson, College of Agriculture; Janaki Alavalapati, Dean, School of Forestry and Wildlife Science; Bobby Woodard, VP, Student Affairs

Timothy Boosinger, Provost; Bonnie MacEwan, Dean of Libraries; Althea Tate, Staff Council Chair; Timothy Jones, A&P Assembly Chair; Lucretia Tripp, Steering Committee; Jared Russell, Steering Committee;

Absent, sending substitute:
Karen Rogers for Vini Nathan, Dean, College of Architecture, Design & Const.; Justin Smith for Jacqueline Keck, SGA President; Elizabeth Devore for Tenchi Smith, GSC President; Emily Myers, Steering Committee; Lisa Kensler, Steering Committee

Absent, not sending substitute:
Daniel Svyantek, Chair-Elect; Don Large, Executive VP; Jane Difolco Parker, VP, Development; John Mason, Research and Economic Development; June Henton, Dean, College of Human Sciences;

Senators, by Department:
Anwar Ahmed, Aerospace Engineering; Paul Brown, ACES; Dean Schwartz, Anatomy, Physiology & Pharmacology; Werner Bergen, Animal Science; Rebecca O'Neal-Dagg, Architecture; Kathryn Floyd, Art; Cliff Defee, Aviation Management & Logistics; Bob Locy, Biological Sciences; Mark Dougherty, Biosystems Engineering; Doug Goodwin, Chemistry; Cliff Lange, Civil Engineering; Ed Youngblood, Communication and Journalism; Allison Plumb, Communication Disorders; David Umphress, Computer Science & Software Engineering; Ann Beth Presley, Consumer & Design Sciences; Melody Russell, Curriculum & Teaching; Forest Smith, Drug Discovery and Development; Jung Won Hur, Educational Foundations, Leadership & Technology; Michael Baginski, Electrical & Computer Engineering; James E. Ryan, English; David Held, Entomology and Plant Pathology; Rusty Wright, Fisheries & Allied Aquaculture; Traci O'Brian, Foreign Lang & Literatures; Ming-kuo Lee, Geology & Geography; Brent Fox, Health Outcomes and Research Policy; Monique Laney, History; Daniel Wells, Horticulture; Tom Smith, Human Development & Family Studies; Jerod Windham, Industrial Design; Mark Schall, Industrial and Systems Engineering; Andreas Kavazis, Kinesiology; Gregg Schmidt, Library; Alan Walker, Management; Dora Bock, Marketing; Dmitry Glotov, Mathematics and Statistics; David Crumbley, Nursing; Michael Greene, Nutrition, Dietetics, & Hospitality Mgmt.; Chippewa Thomas, Outreach; Vicky van Santen, Pathobiology; Spencer Durham, Pharmacy Practice; Eric Marcus, Philosophy; Michael Fogle, Physics; Cathleen Erwin, Political Science; Ken Macklin, Poultry Science; Tracy Witte, Psychology; Marilyn Cornish, Special Ed. Rehabilitation Counseling/School Psych; Roshun Steele, Maj., ROTC Army; Kristrina (Kriste) Shuler, Socio/Anthro/Social Work; Annette Smith, Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Adrienne Wilson (theatre)                                              

Absent, sending substitute:
Patricia Duffy for Michelle Worosz, Agricultural Economics & Rural Sociology; Bob Ashurst for Allan E. David, Chemical Engineering; Di Tian for Charles Chen, Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences; Michael Stern for Liliana Stern, Economics; Lee Colquitt for Justin Benefield, Finance; Rajesh Sawant for Latif Kalin, Forestry & Wildlife Science; Anne Duraski for Matthew Hoch, Music;

Absent, not sending substitute:
Robert Cochran, Accountancy; Mark Taylor, Building Sciences; Daniel Mackowski, Mechanical Engineering; Jeff Welborn, Lieutenant Colonel, ROTC Air Force; Captain, Willie Billingslea, ROTC Naval;


At 3:30 PM James Goldstein, Senate Chair, called the meeting to order, asked the Senators to sign-in in the back of the room and pick up a clicker, and substitutes to initial in the 2nd column by the name of the senator. He reminded senators of the rules of attendance and the rules for speaking at the microphone. A quorum requiring 44 senators was established.

The minutes for Senate meeting of February 14, 2017 were approved without modifications.

Remarks and Announcements

Office of the Provost: Timothy Boosinger, Provost

A few comments from President Gogue: The new budget model is in progress; the budget for the coming year is expected to be leveled; there is a concern about declining in international student enrollment, the declining is minor compared with previous years; ongoing internal search for vice dean of enrollment service.

University Senate Chair, James Goldstein
Dr. Goldstein spoke on the news that Dr. Steven Leath has been selected and approved by the Board of Trustees to be the new president of AU. Some faculty are disappointed and had hoped for more transparency and a chance to learn the finalists’ identities and to ask them questions during the final stage of the search process, though the chair also expressed his gratitude that the search committee was broadly representative of constituent groups. He thanked Larry Teeter and Laura Plexico for serving on the committee as the faculty’s representatives and the BoT for selecting a new president with a strong academic background.

Dr. Goldstein explained the background that motivated his request to Dr. Drew Clark to present the 2nd Information Item today. The AAUP’s Statement on Academic Analytics and Research Metrics . http://www.auburn.edu/administration/governance/senate/agendas/2016-2017/Mar17/AcademicAnalytics_statement.pdf

Questions: None

All the presentations are posted on Senate website agenda for the meeting.

Action Items

1. Voting on Rules Committee members, presented by Xing Ping Hu, Senate Secretory

Three new members were approved for Senate Rules Committee with a vote of 55 to 3. The three new elected members are: Jung Won Hur, Ming-Kwo Lee and Anwar Ahmed.

2. Resolution on Schedule for Promotion and Tenure Candidates, Presenter: W. Robert Ashurst, Chair, Faculty Research Committee

Resolution (word)

The motion of Senate resolution was passed with a vote of 48 to 13. The resolution changes the norm in the tenure calendar for new assistant professor to complete 5 years before applying for tenure and promotion.

Information Items

1. Update on Strategic Budget Initiative (SBI), presented by Kelli Shomaker, VP Business & Finance/CFO.

VP Shomaker remarked on Historical Review, Implementation (hierarchy) of SBI, and Future of SBI. The SBI went into effective for FY2017 and will be now a 12-month process for the goal of a 5-year budget plan.
Question: None

2. Report on NTTF contribution to percentage of SCH; report on the uses of Academic Analytics, presented by Drew Clark, Director Institutional Research.

Dr. Clark first represented on the shares of teaching responsibilities, and outlined the role of non-tenure track faculty vs. tenure and tenure-track faculty at the request of the Senate Chair. He then explained what kinds of data are collected by the Academic Analytics (AA) database, and how it collects data. He discussed its limitations and merits. Auburn University also acquires information from the Delaware Study database.

Bob Locy (Biological Science) questioned and expressed concerns how the incomplete database may be used at AU, particularly for faculty tenure and promotion.

Dr. Clark replied that the data have not been used for faculty evaluation and promotion.
Provost Boosinger indicated that the main use of these data is to compare AU departments to other departments at peer institutions.

Michael Baginski (Electrical Engineering) asked what is the cost to Auburn, and why do not acquire data by simply using Google Scholar.  Even though the data are collected on individual faculty, AU faculty cannot edit our data like in Research Gate or Google.

Dr. Clark responded the cost for a particular software is about $50,000 per year. His office can make individual faculty member’s data accessible per request.

Rusty Wright (Fisheries and Allied Aquaculture) commented that federal grants are not the main source of external funding for agriculture, and so AA misses other kinds of grant. He also was concerned about the biases in the data set (e.g. only the main PI is credited for grant but there are grants having multiple PIs).

Dr. Clark explained briefly the collection of data by Delaware Study.

3. Report from the Office of the Ombudsperson, presented by Keven Coonrod, Ombudsperson.

He spoke on his office’s mission, outlined his job responsibilities and things he does not do, categorized accomplishments since 2013. His office is independent from all other offices at AU and is available to negotiate conflicts.

Questions: None

4. All Access, presented by Russell Weldon, Assistant Director of AU Bookstore.

The bookstore has been working on digital delivery of textbooks into Canvas, free access for students for the 1st two weeks of a semester, and lower price for AU students. The bookstore also helps faculty produce course specific content that may then become AU intellectual property for academics. He will present at All Access day scheduled on March 23 from 10 - 1PM as a come and go event.


Unfinished Business: James Goldstein, Senate Chair

New Business: James Goldstein, Senate Chair

James Goldstein, Senate Chair, adjourned the meeting at 4:50 pm