Skip Navigation

2011-2012 - March 28, 2012

Faculty Senate Minutes

March 28, 2012

Present: Emmanuel Boss, Douglas Bousfield, Ian Bricknell, Dick Brucher, Sudarshan Chawathe, Benildo de los Reyes, Janet Fairman, Paul W. Ferguson, Michael Grillo, Robert Gundersen, Gordon Hamilton, Dan Harrison, Susan Hunter, Dennis King, Judy Kuhns-Hastings, Bill Livingston, Molly MacLean, Stuart Marrs, James McClymer, Robert Milardo, Harlan Onsrud, Ray Pelletier, Andrew Reeve, Bob Rice, Thomas Sandford, Michael Scott, Scott See, Howard Segal, Kathryn Slott, Phil Trostel, Shihfen Tu, Chuck Wallace, Janet Waldron, Melvin Johnson, Anne Pooler

Absent: Richard Borgman, Jack Burt, William Congleton, Marcia Douglas, Dylan Dryer, David Dvorak, Eric Gallandt, Ramesh Gupta, Duane Hanselman, Samuel Helmke, Clarissa Henry, Deborah Killam, Steven Kimball, Kurt Klappenbach, David Marcincowski, Martha Novy-Broderick, Michael Peterson, Jay Rasaiah, Paul Rawson, Robert Strong, Claire Sullivan, Roy Turner, Mark Wells, Vivian Wu,

The meeting was called to order at 3:18 pm.


Elections are coming up and names should be submitted for President, Vice President, Board of Trustees, and Secretary.

Approval of the Minutes

Minutes from February 22, 2012 were approved unanimously.

Questions to Administrators (moved forward due to time constraints)

Q. Articles regarding USM shortfalls, will there be repercussions to UMaine? Will we be required to pick up their shortfall?
A.  Pres. Ferguson: We haven’t heard that. Chancellor Page is taking a strong role regarding discretionary pay raises and looking at the issues. He’ll do a full review before making any decision.

Q. There’s a history of UMaine being in the black and other campuses being in the red, we end up paying to cover their shortfall.
A. Pres. Ferguson: I don’t see that happening.

Q. With regard to issues of who teaches courses, faculty, adjunct, part-time, etc., any news on the issue?
A. Ted Coladarci : We will probably present results in September but will have Ted Coladarci give basic information today regarding who takes classes online and why. There are currently two studies in the works.Ted Coladarci stated that the first study will look at three years of data, student credit hours, course credit hours, lower division under graduates, upper level undergraduates, and graduate level. Looking at percentage of students offered classes by tenure eligible faculty.

The second study looks at online courses. Students surveyed about classes taken and why. An online survey was sent to students for the period spring 11 and fall 11. Questioned why they took the class; was it the only section available, was it the best-fit schedule, what was their experience. It’s a good first attempt to gather data but it will probably spur further studies.

Q. Did you look at the online classes and see if there was an equivalent course offered that wasn’t online?
A. Ted Coladarci: No, would be interesting to compare.

Q. Students take online courses from other institutions and accredited by UMaine. Did the survey ask where courses originated?
A. The question was asked and for students to compare UMaine with other institutions. University of Oklahoma seemed to be a popular college for students to take classes.

IV.   Committee Reports

BOT Rep – Robert Rice.

The Strategic Planning Committee synthesized sheets that came in and bundled them in subcategories. There were nine pathways to the future. These will be turned over to the President’s Cabinet. Some will be discussed at the inaugural and the rest will come out at a later date.

BOT – There was not a lot of information of concern. Of interest to UMaine – budget information was put on the floor and UMaine looks good. Several campus have a deficit, Fort Kent $485,000, Machias $526,000, USM $6.3million.  UMaine put forth sixteen tenure and promotion candidates and they were all approved. Over the last six years UMaine put forth 84 candidates with 70 moving forward.

Faculty representatives presented a report on the age of faculty and personnel across the system with 51.9% of faculty and 70.4% of administrators being over the age of 55.

Academic Affairs– Shihfen Tu

There are two motions under New Business. There were discussions regarding the grading system change to be put in the catalog; it will be presented to the senate next month. PEER Committees for faculty with joint appointments requires some clarification from the Provost office. There were also discussions of the tenure-line situation.

Constitution & Bylaws –Harlan Onsrud

The Faculty Handbook won’t progress before the end of the year. This is partly due to a new portal coming online, which would mean redoing any previous uploads and faculty are busy.

Research & Scholarship –Janet Fairman

Looking for feedback on the Strategic Plan for Research. (Handout)

Q. Janet Fairman: It costs money to make money. So where do we want to invest it?

A. President Ferguson – research will be integrated with the Blue Sky Project, coming out soon. In the midst of integration, and that’s what Deans heard at our meeting. Mike Eckardt said that Pres. Ferguson had said that he would like to invest some of the indirect costs in the faculty.

Q. Is it premature to implement lofty goals at this time?

A. How to balance research faculty with tenure faculty? We need to make a commitment and we’re committed to doing that.

Provost Hunter commented that the Deans saw this and commented that they now could do their own strategic planning.

Q. Does funded research make money for the university or cost money?

A. Research costs the university money.

Q. Is there a mechanism to look at grants for long term?

A. Example: AEWC, Forest Bio Prod., Aquaculture, all have faculty associates with them. MEIF funds them and staff.

Q. Are all colleges and departments losing money or are some subsidizing others?

A. Some colleges have large numbers and they’d like to keep that. The question, will the college pay for the general education courses their students take? It’s a complicated issue.

Q. When would you like comments?

A. Next week or two.

President Ferguson wants to invest in faculty through indirect cost. We’re all in this together and want faculty input.

Finance & Institutional Planning – James McClymer

Next meeting will be in late April.

There will be two motions presented to the senate. One motion ties in to Dicks question regarding a comparison of tuition dollars and number of students; is income more than expenses. The second motion will be related to how departments accomplish workload when positions go unfilled.

University Environment – Mike Scott

No report.

Library Advisory – Howard Segal

No report.

Service & Outreach  Deborah Killam &Claire Sullivan

No report.

Committee on Committees  –Roy Turner

We need two senators to volunteer for the Portal Committee

Program Creation &Reorganization Review–Scott See

Meeting next week.

One old business item will be to close out the MS in accounting. Second item will be to reaffirm the roll of faculty senate to review certificates.

General Education – Tom Sandford

Sent a draft after spring break, that closed yesterday. The committee will have a draft for the elected members and the remainder for the April 25 senate meeting.

Ad Hoc IT Advisory – Irving Kornfield & Mike Scott

There is a T4 Summit coming up in the area.

Committees of the Administration Representatives

No report.

V.     Old Business


VI.    New Business

– There are two motions from Academic Affairs.

Motion to Approve the Academic Calendars for 2013-2014 and 2014-2015

Vote: Yes 22, No 0, Abstain 0


Subject: Motion re. The Undergraduate Incomplete Grade Reporting Form From: The Academic Affairs CommitteeTo: Faculty SenateDate: March 28, 2012Discussion: The Office of Student Records proposed changes to the Undergraduate Incomplete Reporting Form based on the reasons listed below.

The changes proposed are designed to have the following benefits to students/faculty:


1) Submitting the form at the time the grade is assigned ensures that instructors don’t forget to file the form in the rush at the beginning of the following semester.2) Some adjunct instructors may not be returning to teach in the next semester, and if they do not submit an Incomplete Grade Reporting Form right away, they might never do so, leaving a lot of confusion for the student, the unit chair, and the student’s dean’s office.

3) Listing assignments to be completed helps clarify things for the student and creates a written record that can prevent later disputes about outstanding work.

4) In the event that the instructor leaves, dies, or is too ill to “teach out” the Incomplete, this listing will help a colleague to finish the course with the student and fulfill the original instructor’s intentions. It also helps the academic advisor who is working with the student to be sure that the next semester is not too heavy to ensure that the student will be able to manage with the amount of work outstanding from the previous term.

5) The grade reflecting quality of work tells the student and the associate dean/director about the grade he or she has earned to date. Deans’ offices reviewing grades between terms need to know as much as possible about the student’s current grade in order to make decisions about whether the student remains in good standing or is put on probation or suspension.

6) A line for the printed name of the faculty member was added because signatures are often very hard to read and occasionally questions come up later. Having to go into MaineStreet to research the class and find the name of the instructor is tedious for anyone involved. The signature line ensures that unauthorized persons (e.g. the student or a friend of the student) don’t file these forms. Administrative Assistants in academic units may sign for a faculty member who is not on campus when grades are posted.

7) The student’s signature (or attached email, etc.) is necessary to ensure that the student is aware of and requested the grade of Incomplete.

8)The associate dean/director of the student receives a copy in order to keep a record to ensure that the student has the best chance of finishing the course.

These rationales seem—to the committee—fair and reasonable.

Motion: The Faculty Senate approves the proposed Undergraduate Incomplete Grade Reporting Form.

Discussion:  It would be good to have the form online with a submit button to the appropriate college. It will most likely be online as a fillable form but will attempt to get it on to MaineStreet, no promises.

Vote: Yes 21, No 0, Abstain 0


–There is a Senate Executive Committee Resolution in Support of the Reinstatement of the BA in Theatre:

The Faculty Senate fully supports the reinstatement of the BA in Theatre, and thanks the Theatre Department, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Office of Academic Affairs for their diligent work in restoring this important major.

Vote: Yes 20, No 0, Abstain 1

VII. Adjourn

The meeting was adjourned at 4:31 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Kathryn Slott


Back to 2011-2012

Faculty Senate
Kimberly Junkins, Faculty Senate Office
205 East Annex, Orono, Maine 04469
Phone: (207) 581-1167 | Fax: (207) 581-2640
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469