Transcript Senate Meeting
April 18, 2017
James Goldstein, chair: I call the meeting to order. Welcome to the eighth meeting of the University Senate for 2016–17. First, some reminders. If you are a senator or a substitute for a senator, please make sure you sign in at the back and pick up a clicker. If you are a substitute, please remember to print your name clearly in the second column so that we can read your name. Senators only need to initial beside their name on the sign-in sheet. Here again are the Senate rules about speaking. If you’d like to speak about an issue or ask a question, please go to the microphone, wait to be recognized, then state your name, whether or not you are a senator, and the unit you represent. The rules of the Senate require that senators or substitute senators be allowed to speak first. After senators have had a chance to speak, guests are welcome to speak as well.
I also want to remind everyone that this is our last meeting of the year in Broun Hall because of the construction. The May and June Senate meetings will take place in Lowder 113a.
The agenda today was set by the Senate Steering Committee and posted on the Senate website in advance. It is now up on the screen. First we need to establish a quorum. We need 44 senators present for a quorum. Please press A on your clicker for the count. Quorum is established. For the motion on the agenda to amend the Senate Constitution, we will need the approval of 58 senators, which is 2/3 of the total number of senators.
The first order of business is to approve the minutes for the meeting of March 21, 2017. The minutes have been previously posted on the Senate Web site. Are there any additions or changes or corrections to these minutes? Do I have a motion to approve? Second? All in favor please say aye.
James Goldstein, chair: Opposed? (no response) The minutes are approved.
Under Robert’s Rules of Order, members of an assembly are allowed to speak twice on the same question for a total of ten minutes per speech. However, this body has from time to time adopted a more restrictive time limit at the request of the chair. Before we proceed any further, if there is no objection, the chair proposes that we adopt a special rule of the day to limit speaking times for all speakers to five minutes per speech. Hearing no objection that will be the rule for the day.
(If there is an objection, the chair will call for a motion, which requires 2/3 vote in favor of adoption.)
We begin Remarks and Announcements with President Gogue. [3:37]
Jay Gogue, President: Thank you. I appreciate all of you being here today. I wanted to first of all go over Board items. We had a Board meeting since we last met and there were a number of items that were on that agenda. We had 3 facilities that are in the area adjacent across the street from the museum, I think 2 are poultry buildings and one a fisheries biodiversity facility, the Board approved not relocation but the demolition of those and the creation of new facilities in north Auburn, the fisheries and poultry area. A fourth item was the small animal teaching hospital in which there was a build-out area in which the Board had to give final approval to create some clinical and research space. Leach Science Center was on the agenda with an increase in budget as they got into to the addition, as I recall, the physics department. The linkage of the new building to the old building required some additional health and safety related issues, so that was approved as an additional budget item on the Leach Science Center.
Mell Street, a number of public meetings have been held, and the plan will be when the Library/Classroom Building is reopened the street will be closed with a pedestrian corridor through there.
There were several academic programs, 2 in Nursing and both of those were approved. They also approved a 3% tuition increase for 2017 as well as another 3% increase for 2018. There were some changes in terms of the federal loan programs, the federal programs that support students in which you have to have your tuition agreed upon much earlier. So as I understand, correct me Don, next year you will approve 2019 for tuition.
Don Large, executive vice president: Yes, that’s correct.
Jay Gogue, President: Compensation committee has met several times looking at permanent increases of 2 and 3 percent, and looking at one time increases again in the same range. In the last day or two you may have seen an announcement, the Culinary Arts Building was approved, it will be there on the corner of College and Thach. The completion time is somewhere around 2020. We’re excited, it’s not a new academic program per se, but an option within Hotel and Restaurant Management.
The final thing I’ll mention is I think you saw the news last week, we lost the chair of our Board of Trustees and we have a new one, governor Kay Ivey, she’s an Auburn graduate. I talked to her several times, she’s excited in her new role.
There’s been some interest on the speaker that’s been discussed and I think the Provost is going to mention that in his comments. Thank you.
James Goldstein, chair: Thank you Dr. Gogue. Now some remarks from the Provost. [6:55]
Timothy Boosinger, Provost: First I’d like to extend an invitation to all of you to go to commencement. That’s coming up in 2 weeks, it’s hard to believe. The first 2 sessions are on Saturday the 6th and Leah Atkins will be the speaker. Second session of course is on Sunday the 7th and it will be David Housel, and on Monday morning the College of Liberal Arts speaker will be Mark Winn, a long time reporter for WSBTV in Atlanta and is a 1979 graduate in Journalism. So we look forward to that. We have 3 days for those commencement exercises and then we have Veterinary Medicine and Pharmacy on Tuesday. So actually our commencement exercises at Auburn will not be over until 8 or 9 o’clock Tuesday evening.
AS Dr. Gogue said there’s been a lot of discussion in our office and around campus, a numer of communications have gone out and I just wanted to make it clear that our primary concern is always about the safety of our students and the security of our campus. A decision was made this afternoon that I am going to ask Mr. Armstrong to address. [8:20]
Mr. Armstrong, general council attorney: Thank you Tim. You will get notice very shortly. This morning, late morning, Mr. Spenser’s council (the scheduled speaker for tonight) filed a request for a temporary restraining order with federal court in Montgomery about 2 o’clock this afternoon the judge granted that TRO request. The speech will go on tonight as originally scheduled. We encourage everyone to be careful and to be respectful of the rights of those that are around you. That’s about all I can tell you at this point in time. He made his announcement from the bench, I don’t have an order in hand yet.
Timothy Boosinger, Provost: Any questions, comments?
James Goldstein, chair: I have one brief remark today, which is an unusual day at Auburn University. It’s not every day that we become the topic of a New York Times opinion page column. I hope that everyone—students, faculty, and staff—will remain mindful of the special attention that the university will receive at this challenging time, and I hope that everyone acts in a civil and mutually respectful manner. This is especially important when we disagree with one another. Auburn has chosen to make an institutional commitment to diversity and inclusion. As a public university, we are also committed to intellectual debate and the exercise of free speech. However, public safety must always be of the utmost priority, so I can only repeat the cautions to everyone, please stay safe today.
I also have a few brief announcements. I have been collecting the names of volunteers to be the Senate representative to join the Bias Education Response Team (BERT). I have more than enough names already, but it’s not too late to contact me. The Rules Committee will make its selection on Thursday. I also have been asked to inform everyone that the Copyright Policy has been updated online in the policy database, with the addition of the Policy on Use of Copyrighted Material and the Policy on the Creation of Copyrighted Material. These policies were approved by the Senate a few months ago. Does anyone have any questions for the chair?
We now turn to our first action item, which will be presented by Xing Ping Hu, Senate Secretary. [11:25}
Xing Ping Hu, Secretary: Good afternoon. On the screen is highlight the name of Michael Tillson. He is a professor of the department of clinical science of Veterinary Medicine. He was one of the two candidates running for the Senate Secretary this year. He has a broad experience in serving different Senate and University Committees and has a keen interest in University service. Rules has elected him to be a member of the Senate Steering Committee. I look forward today for your approval.
Get your clickers, if you approve press A, otherwise B. A=53, B=2. It’s approved, thank you.
James Goldstein, chair: Our next action item is a proposal from the Curriculum Committee to change the membership of that committee. Because this would require a constitutional amendment, the Steering Committee has chosen to make this an action item for today instead of a pending action, since we may not have enough members present in the May meeting.
Presenting this will be Sara Wolf of the Curriculum Committee.
Sara Wolf, Curriculum Committee: Good afternoon. So the Curriculum Committee is proposing that we add an additional member to the committee to represent the Honors College. Nothing else in the charter is changing and the highlighted portion indicates that addition, up on the screen that you can see. The rational behind this is that with the increase in Honors courses in terms of straight up Honors prefixed courses as well as discipline based suffix 7 classes across the campus the Honors College needs, or should have a voice in the say of the approval of those courses. For the past several years the assistant provost for undergraduate studies and Director of the Honors college has been at the UCC meetings as an ex-officio member and has been able to voice the opinion and represent the interest of Honors, but has not been a voting member. Your Curriculum Committee would like to include that individual or a representative from the Honors College as a voting member of the committee. [14:58] Any Questions? Yes we do have a question.
Constance Relihan, Assoc. Provost for Undergraduate Studies, not a senator: Just a clarification. This is to add a representative from the Honors College and also a representative from the University College.
Sara Wolf: Oh, I’m sorry, yes, two members. But also for the same reason for the University College. We’ve got courses that they…the UNIV the INDSC classes, plus sustainability, aviation, as well as the exploratory courses that the University College would like to have their representation as well. My apologies for that omission.
Vicky van Santen, senator, Pathobiology: Since there might be a possibility that there might not be enough people to pass this, I was wondering if it is necessary. Is the Honors College and the University College are they not academic colleges?
Sara Wolf: I can answer this part, right now they do not have voting membership on the committee. I have no idea of whether they are academic…
Vicky van Santen, senator, Pathobiology: Well it says from each academic college or school so why do we need the…
James Goldstein, chair: The chair will remind the Senate that this body recently approved revisions to the Faculty Handbook including the constitutional part within it clarifying the definition of academic college and school. And by that newly approved definition, neither the Honors College nor the University College would meet the 3 criteria that are now clarified. Just like the School of Communication and Journalism also would not, but that’s a different kind of case. So that’s why we are doing this.
Sara Wolf: other questions or concerns?
James Goldstein, chair: Thank you. We hope there are enough people with clickers in the room. Remember the target is 58 for approval. (Since the motion comes from a standing committee of the Senate, there is no need for a second.) If there are no more questions or comments, if you approve this revision press A, if not press B. [Exciting activity with the voting-very close to the total number and the equipment timed-out, start again, then got a senator with a malfunctioning clicker (out of battery power) so replace the clicker and start again.] The chair thanks the assembly for its patience. One more time with fresh clicker in hand.
A=57, B=3. The motion fails because it requires two-thirds of all senators whether they are here or not, so that would have been 58. We will bring it back on a future agenda. [20:29] (request) The chair rules that we will stick to the order of the day.
We turn now to our one Pending Action Item, which comes to the Senate from the Student Academic Grievance Committee, a University Committee. Normally the Senate does not have jurisdiction over the procedures of a university committee, but the current Student Academic Grievance Policy includes a provision that changes must be approved by both the SGA and the University Senate. The proposal will be presented by Robert Agne, Chair, Student Academic Grievance Committee.
Robert Agne, Chair, Student Academic Grievance Committee: Hi, I’m Rob Agne from the School of Communication and Journalism. This fall I’ll be starting my third year as chair of this Student Academic Grievance Committee. While I’ve been chair, myself, the committee, Dr. Relihan have been getting a sense that the policy has been looking a little clumsy and a little difficult for students to follow. This is mostly a sense we are getting from those who have helped students through the process and faculty and staff who have been part of the process.
So Dr. Relihan put together an Ad Hoc Committee of the following people: Dr. Relihan as chair, Dr. Godwin from Business Administration, Susan Hubbard from Human Sciences, Scott Enebak from Forestry and Wildlife, myself, and Brandon Honeywell from SGA. Our charge was to simply clarify the minimum number of faculty in a quorum. A quorum was 5 people in our committee. And we needed to clarify the minimum number of faculty members in a quorum. We increased the deadline for filing a grievance from 20 class days to 30 class days. Now of the semester following that in which the grievance occurred. The policy that you’ll look at will have business day and work day kind of sprinkled throughout so between the time we posted the proposed revised policy and now the Steering Committee recommended, and the committee agreed, that we would be consistent with using the language of class day rather than work day.
We reorganized the policy by putting the committee membership requirements at the end of the document and we created an online form for students to fill out. The faculty responded would have access so he or she could respond, the Grievance Committee would have access and currently we’re working on getting that process up and running through Campus Web Solutions.
We included a step-by-step summary of the grievance policy with a diagram. This is put at the beginning of the document and it goes like this: should a student have a grievance that student should first consult with the faculty member involved and hopefully resolve the process that way. If the student is not satisfied with the result and doesn’t feel comfortable or doesn’t feel comfortable approaching that individual instructor the student can meet with the faculty member’s department chair or head and hopefully resolve it that way. If it’s not resolved then the student can take the complaint to Associate Dean of the school or college and hopefully resolve the process that way. If a resolution is still not achieved then the student may begin the formal grievance process online. The Committee then reviews the case and makes a decision as a recommendation to the Associate Provost of Undergraduate Studies by way of dismissing the case with no hearing or proceeding with a formal hearing. This is no change from the original policy, we just included this diagram to make it easier for students.
Are there questions? Thank you.
James Goldstein, chair: We will vote on that at our May meeting in Lowder.
We now turn to our two information items. The first is an overview of a Faculty Salary Study, Presented by Drew Clark, Director of Institutional Research.
Drew Clark, Director of Institutional Research: Thanks James and hello everybody, I’m glad to be here this afternoon. The information item that I am going to present in a moment grew out of Auburn’s participation in the so-called COACHE survey of faculty job satisfaction. As you know, perhaps, Auburn has participated in that survey from time-to-time, it began in 2005. And I hope you know that Auburn is participating in that survey again this year. It comes out of the Harvard Graduate School of Education and is the leading survey of faculty job satisfaction in the country. [27:10]
The survey is now closed for this year so I want to begin by thanking all of you and your colleagues who you represent for taking time to complete the survey. It is given us a lot of important and actionable information.
Turning now specifically to the information item, I’ve been asked to update the Senate on the recent study of faculty salaries that Provost Boosinger asked the Institutional Research Office to conduct. That study was one part of a broader effort to understand and if possible to improve factors that affect the job satisfaction of Auburn University faculty and in particularly of Auburn University female faculty.
Just as a reminder, our 2014 COACHE data showed that Auburn faculty members generally speaking are well satisfied with their jobs, whether they are male or female, whether pre-tenure, whether they are tenured, whether they are white or whether they are faculty of color. However, on a number of survey items our female faculty were reported with lower levels of satisfaction than their male colleagues and in fact, more troubling, lower levels of satisfaction than what was reported by female faculty at other participating institutions.
Areas of concern relative to those 2 reference groups included personal and family policies for example childcare, spousal/partner hiring, but also areas like mentoring, tenure and promotion, particularly promotion, and departmental life, including departmental collegiality.
So in response to these data as a part of a multi-faceted response Dr. Boosinger appointed a commission on women in academic careers at Auburn, chaired by Professor Beth Guertal. [29:02]
In focus groups that commission heard and was able to explore topics certainly those included in the COACHE survey, but also some beyond what that survey covers. Among the formal recommendations this group made to the Provost was that a study of faculty salaries be conducted looking for evidence of salary inequity based on gender. This is not a study of salaries relative to other institutions only with salaries within this institution. So Dr. Boosinger asked the IR Office to conduct that study and we were happy to do that. I would like to take just a moment here to acknowledge the work of my associate director for analytics, Dr. Rena Johnson. Rena would you stand? She was the principle author of the study, and if I could make her ears burn for just a minute, I’ll explain to her later what that means in English. Dr. Johnson is a two-time winner of the Association for Institutional Research annual prize for best paper in the field. She has a strong history of scholarly publication and peer review journals concentrating on the use of statistical models to understand a phenomenon in higher education. Next month she’ll be leading a workshop nationally at the annual meeting of the Association for Institutional Research. The topic of that research workshop will be conducting faculty salaries surveys or studies.
Our research question was whether there was reason to believe that there are at Auburn salary inequities between male and female faculty members that cannot be explained by other factors. I’ll start with the take-away. Our study examined records for full-time faculty and librarians as of fall 2015. I will describe our research design in a moment and how it controlled, but we found no evidence to conclude that there is gender based salary inequity at Auburn when multiple factors that can affect salary are controlled for.
Among the things that we control for, and I’ll go over that in a moment, are both person level or individual level and department level characteristics. She used a technique called hierarchical linear modeling.
Our data set. We included full-time instructional faculty and librarian who are on faculty appointments as of fall 2015 snapshot date. That count was just over 1,200 faculty members. We did exclude from the study visiting faculty, we excluded current deans and associate and assistant deans, we also wound up excluding former deans who are now serving in faculty roles. And had we conducted this study a year from now we would probably also have to exclude former presidents who are serving in faculty roles for obvious reasons. Otherwise we included everybody.
The dependent variable, that is what we were trying to study was faculty salaries obviously. We put all salaries on a 9-month basis, it’s common in the field, and because of skew in these salary data points we actually used a logarithmic transformation that allowed us (for the technicians in the room) to interpret parameter estimates as a percentage change in salary, rather than as a change in terms of absolute dollars. That’s a more plausible approach, we felt. We followed the recommendations of a 2002 study conducted at the behest of the American Association of University Professors in considering multiple factors or independent variables that could affect faculty salaries. These independent variables can be grouped into 5 sets. Some are academic, some have to do with appointment type, some are related to time, a couple are related to special or unusual circumstances, and then finally demographic variables.
The academic variables that we included in the modeling were obviously the department of discipline in which the faculty was nested. We also included a salary benchmark for assistant professors in that discipline on average SREB institutions, a set of 24 institutions in the southeast that we use for benchmarking. We included rank at hire, current rank, highest degree earned at time of current rank. We included a set of flags, in other words, a 1 or 0 (on or off) variables for each person in the data set. They were either tenured or on the tenure track, they were either lecturer or not, clinical or not, research or not, extension or not; so 5 appointment type flags. We have 3 time related variables. Two of them have to do with time elapsed. The first is time elapsed between the date of the person’s highest degree and the date they obtain their current rank. Also time elapsed between the date of current rank and the start of fall 2015 semester, again following AAUP guidance, technical note again, we added quadratic terms for our 2 time-elapsed variables, in other words we counted time in both years and years squared. The third time related variable is contract length, whether 9- or 12-months.
As I mentioned there were a couple of special circumstances we had to take into account that would presumably have an impact on salaries. The first is whether or not a person was a current or former department chair or head or administrator presumes to have an impact on salary. Whether or not that person holds a titled professorship, and we added interaction effect in cases where people have both, they are both a former department head or chair or administrator, and they hold a titled professorship.
In passing, let me note one limitation of our data that we would like to have treated differently, but the data quality were not good enough to support it. First of all the category current or former administrator is fairly porous category, it’s tough to know when somebody is in it or not in it. Second of all we weren’t 100% certain in every case that we knew the duration of that time of service as an administrator. This could have a cumulative effect or compounding effect on any salary increase, but we wound up having to code both of these as a one or zero, either yes or no. Similarly, with the titled professorships we were not able to build in a dollar figure associated those. It was either yes or no. Under the 2 demographic variables we considered were ethnicity and finally gender.
The analytical approach we took, we employed a multi-level approach, because data on faculty salaries involves at least 2 levels of hierarchy. There’re data about individuals such as the year in which I was hired as an instructor in the department of English (I’m not going to reveal that year, it would embarrass me). Then there are also data about the departments in which those individuals are nested. And those data independently affect the outcome. So it is possible to study multi-level data using a single-level technique by ordering these squares by progression, but multi-level models like hierarchical linear modeling are able to account for the nesting of persons within departments by introducing residual components at each level of the data. Individual person level would be something unobserved about a person that could have affect that person’s salary. And as a second major limitation or observation about the study, I would want to add that probably the most important unobserved variable in the equation that we use is performance. We had no variable in the equation that went to how well someone had been doing the job. [37:39]
Department level residuals represent unobserved departmental characteristics that affect salary too and tend to produce correlation amongst salaries for faculty in the same department. Second advantage of using a multi-level approach was it allows us to deal efficiently with affects of given variables that might vary across different departments so having a different impact on one department than another.
I won’t go into much more technical detail here, your agenda is long and you all have places you want to be, however Rena and I would both be happy to stay after this meeting and hold out technical discussion for anybody who wants to.
I do want to say something about how we model the data. We basically built a series of models. We began our work by estimating a baseline or unconditional model without any predictors added to it. We then began to add predictors and varying effects of predictors seeking the model that would reduce errors in prediction from the original model. We eventually chose a model with random slopes for a few indicators and in our final modeling we added the variables for gender and ethnicity. Again, I’ll be happy to stick around while we talk about it.
We go to our findings and that will be end of what I have to say. We found that when we control for individual and departmental level characteristics some independent variables were associated with either high or lower salaries for full-time faculty members. None of these will surprise you. Associated with higher salary; higher current rank, higher rank at hire, whether or not someone has or has had an administrator appointment, whether someone does or does not hold a titled professorship, terminal degree, and years of service at current rank.
Associated with lower salaries. If someone had an appointment type of research faculty member or someone had an appointment type of instructor or lecturer that too was associated with lower salary. Finally, controlling for all independent variables we mentioned before our study found no association between the following variables in faculty salaries; appointment type of clinical faculty, appointment type of extension faculty, 9-month appointment, ethnicity, or gender.
We did apply one further test, we used a two-way analysis of variance to analyze differences between expected and actual salaries. For faculty this time grouped by gender and college, this analysis found no statistically significant effect by gender, by college, or by the interaction of gender and college. I did through in 3 significant tests for those of you who are interested.
So I began the presentation by mentioning that there are several dimensions of faculty job satisfaction that our 2014 COACHE results and indeed prior COACHE results had told us were worthy of our best efforts to improve. Those efforts are still there, they are still worthy of effort. The fact that this study did not find statistical evidence for gender-based salary inequity does not mean that we’ve concluded our work to improve the job satisfaction of our female faculty.
I’d be happy to field questions. [41:19] Thanks.
James Goldstein, chair: Thank you Drew, and I wanted to point out that the study itself is also linked to the agenda if you want to look at more detail including some statistical formula that make my eyes water.
Our final item is an Update on Mell Classroom, presented by Wiebke Kuhn, Learning Spaces/Faculty Development Coordinator.
Wiebke Kuhn, Learning Spaces/Faculty Development Coordinator: Good afternoon everyone. What I want to talk to you briefly about is where we are with the Mell Classroom Building, why we are doing what we’re doing with the Mell Classroom Building and how we are preparing both faculty and students to teach and to learn in that space.
So the 2 important dates for you to keep in mind are number one, the building will be open for fall classes. August 18 is the moment of time when, a soft rollout, let’s call it that because it is no serious thing. The September 15 will be the formal opening. So classes will be there August 18, some amazing celebration, September 15. That does mean what you hear earlier about the Mell Corridor being built, that will not be by August. So it may still continue to look like a construction zone, but inside it will be fabulous.
So why are we doing this? Many of you have been involved in course redesign out of the Biggio Center and other faculty development areas, so we are advancing our teaching and learning through engaging active student learning or EASL. What we are doing in these spaces, fostering students diverse skill sets, replacing old (?) classroom spaces. Because of the location we are actually connecting very nicely the formal learning spaces of classrooms with the more informal learning resources that we have in the Library.
We started the process of this at the end of 2011 with planning for the first EASL classroom on campus that opened its doors in 2013. This is what this one looks like in Haley 2213. Then in fall 2014 we opened the second one in the Science Center Classroom building 118. And I see some of you have taught in these spaces and you are familiar with them. The first one has 45 seats, the second one 72 seats. This one, the one in the Science Center Classroom building is very much the model for what we’re doing in the Mell Classroom Building with similar kind of furniture, similar sharing technology, so what you see on the screen there are 4 classrooms like that and then some smaller spaces as well with fewer seats.
Many of you, I would wager most if not all of you are doing active learning in your classrooms, but you don’t have all of the classroom spaces easily laid out, like this one for example (referring to 238 Broun Hall). Active learning happening in here? Kind of tricky right? So that’s one of the reasons we are building these spaces so we make the active learning easier for you to accomplish, easier for the students to accomplish. You already do a lot of these things, Structured exercises, team projects and a lot of that stuff also happens outside of the classroom, which is where a lot of the informal learning spaces are coming in that we’re building spaces for lots of study area.
What we already see with just the couple of spaces that we have on campus available is that we see improved content retention, higher grades, and some of the subsequent courses that we see are actually 6 point increase on the final grade and we see enhance communication, collaboration and leadership skills. All things that I think our student will definitely benefit from.
So, what do we get then in Mell? We get 29 EASL classrooms, we get a couple of dining venues. If you’ve been to some of the Mell corridor discussions, you know that one of them will be inside of the Library and some of them outside of the Library. Considering what it is like already in April, we’ll see how that goes. Two lecture halls, lots of informal learning spaces, we are essentially going to be doubling the study spaces that we currently have in the Library with what we are adding to this in lots of nooks and crannies where students can hang out. Also lots of digital signage throughout the building that we will use for both way finding and for other kind of event information, but if you have student work that you think would show off nicely on digital signage, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me so that your students and I could work through what it would take to get their work displayed in the Mell Classroom Building.
We already have 5 different colleges who have classes scheduled in the rooms and some university programs, so we are already over 64 classes. Earlier today a couple more snuck in. 102 different sections, so this now moves us to how are we getting people ready to function well in this space? We have been doing a lot of faculty development because redesign has been happening for the last 3 years and this year we have a full group of people, 72 faculty, we actually have had to turn a couple of them away for the 3 week course redesign because we’ve got so much excitement about it. But we also offer some pre-term workshops and the week before the semester starts we will be in the building not only doing new faculty orientation but also offering short seminars to faculty to remind them how to teach in these spaces, to remind them how the technology works. [48:16] We will have learning consultants and graduate students who will be helping faculty not only during that first week but also throughout the semester as needed. We will have a wonderful Web site that has all of that information.
Potentially more importantly because we already have by the end of the summer, we will have over 300 faculty members EASL certified. They have gone through enough faculty development that they know what they are doing in these classrooms, but at this point our students may not be quite so ready yet. So the other thing we are doing in the week prior to the semester starts (during welcome week) is doing similar workshop opportunities for the students. They will get an e-mail from me if they have a class in the Mell Classroom Building saying, if you want to check out your space, if you want to learn where your classroom is, feel free to come to sessions. And during those sessions not only will we show them what the space does, how the technology works, but also offer them some opportunities to learn about strategies, how to study when you are in this kind of space, how to prepare for these kinds of classes and then how to behave in that kind of a classroom space, how to actively engage with what’s happening.
We are also working with student services and other areas so that for example VSI instructors use similar vocabulary and similar strategies when the work with their students and that the UNIV courses also use similar vocabulary, similar strategy so that we are sending sort of a coherent message to all of those students that this is the way you are successful in these kinds of spaces.
That’s all that I’ve got. Questions? Thank you.
James Goldstein, chair: Thank you Wiebke. That concludes our business for the day. Is there any unfinished business? Is there any new business? There is some new business.
Tim Boosinger, Provost: I just wanted to share since we are all together; my office has been getting a large number of e-mails and phone calls from parents asking us to cancel class. We made the decision not to do that, but for students that do not feel safe to walk across campus this evening we will support excuses from those classes and handle that in a reasonable way. We have already missed one whole day out of our calendar. So that is the best way to handle it and leave it up to the judgment of the faculty and my office will support the student excuses. Just wanted you to know.
James Goldstein, chair: Any questions for the Provost? In that case we are adjourned. [51:26]