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2013-2014 - December 18, 2013

FACULTY SENATE MINUTES
December 18, 2013

Present: Richard Borgman, Dick Brucher, Michael Grillo, Gordon Hamilton, Judy Kuhns-Hastings, Mary Ellin Logue, Harlan Onsrud, Michael Peterson, Andrew Reeve, Brian Robinson, Jonathan Rubin, Thomas Sandford, Michael Scott, Allan Smith, Clayton Wheeler, David Yarborough, Bob Rice, Howard Segal, Mark Wells, William Dee Nichols, Jeff Hecker, Lindsay Nutter (Stud. Gov), Melvin Johnson, Charles Rote, Peter C. Altmann

Absent: John Allen, Steve Barkan, Jason Bolton, Emmanuel Boss, Ian Bricknell, Stephen Coghlan, William Congleton, Mauricio da Cunha, Benildo de los Reyes, Charlsye Diaz, Marcia Douglas, Dylan Dryer, Scott Dunning, Janet Fairman, Thane Fremouw, Robert Gundersen, Ramesh Gupta, Steven Kimball, Dennis King, Dorothy Klimis-Zacas, James McClymer, Robert Milardo, Michael Montgomery, Paul Myer, Martha Novy-Broderick, Ray Pelletier, Jay Rasaiah, Kathryn Slott, David Townsend, Gail Werrbach, Susan Wheaton, Paul W. Ferguson, Janet Waldron, Carol Kim, Abigail Jones (Grad Stud Gov).

The meeting was called to order at 3:17 pm

I.          Welcome and Announcements:

Several will not make the meeting due to final exams.

There is a new Undergraduate Student Representative, Lindsay Nutter.

II.        Approval of November 13, 2013 Minutes

Vote: Motion approved.

III.       Committee Reports

BOT Rep – Robert Rice 
The BOT met for two days in Farmington, Nov. 17 & 18. There was substantial discussion regarding enrollment numbers. Enrollment at UMaine 9,356, USM 6,460, Machias 842, Augusta 2,713, Farmington 1,807, Fort Kent 805, Presque Isle 843. There was a substantial decline in enrollment figures but UMaine is up 3.5%. Augusta -5.2, Farmington -4.7, Fort Kent +3.4, Machias -5.1, Presque Isle -13.5, USM -6.0. The PhD in Communication was approved and Travel and Business continues to move forward at a rapid rate. The System CFO gave a presentation regarding financial projections. By 2019 there may be a deficit of $60 million.

Q.
What is the $60 million shortfall by 2019?
A.
The assumption comes from deferred maintenance, renovation of old buildings etc.

Academic Affairs –Richard Borgman & Judy Kuhns-Hastings
There are a couple motions coming up under Old Business.

Constitution & Bylaws – Mick Peterson
No Report.

Research & Scholarship – Emmanuel Boss & Mauricio de Cunha

No Report.

Finance & Institutional Planning – James McClymer & Tom Sandford
Tom mentioned that the financial analysis given by Bob is on the UMaine System website.  The information is an analysis from all campuses. There are two scenarios 1. No tuition increases or legislative increases, 2. More dynamic

Expenses go up 3-4% per year. One solution is increasing out-of-state student numbers or more competitive compensation for faculty.

Q.
Is there any discussion regarding increasing research capacity?
A.
Don’t believe so, it doesn’t appear in either scenario.

University Environment –Mike Scott & OPEN
No report.

Library Advisory – Robert Rice & Howard Segal
No report.

Service & Outreach – Martha Broderick & David Yarborough
Met with Carnegie on the grant application, making good progress.

Committee on Committees – OPEN
Requests are being run through the Executive Committee. The Provost Advisory Team on Signature and Emerging Programs had a number of people interested in volunteering. Next committee request is for Dean Ashworth Review.

Program Creation & Reorganization Review – Brian Robinson & Mick Peterson
The Institute for Leadership withdrew on 12/9/13. There are eight program eliminations coming up. January 27, 2014 is the tentative date to meet next.

General Education  — Harlan Onsrud
Report sent via email with three motions attached coming up under New Business.

Ad Hoc IT – Michael Scott & OPEN
There was a forum with Dick Thompson, Janet Waldron, and John Gregory discussing consolidation.

Committee of the Administration
Faculty Senate will be taking the lead on surveys regarding centralization of HR and IT. The surveys will ask faculty if they’re better off now or before centralization and responses can then be tracked over time. There are forums coming up; Signature and Emerging Programs, Retention and Graduation Rate, and Incentives for Faculty. Please make sure you attend these forums.

IV.       Open Comments from the Administration

Q.
How’s work coming on increasing faculty as opposed to increasing students?
A.
Its running behind but it’s considered urgent. In October Deans were asked for position requests based on budget. The contract was a factor, once that was set, cost will be a determining factor, hiring can be looked at. Hope to meet with deans on January 15.
Q.
What if enrollment increases at UMaine?
A.
It helps us a lot, equivalent to $9+/- million that doesn’t have to be cut. Bob stated that the roll of retention is changing the financial picture. UMaine is better at retention.

Q.
If retention at other institutions are down does that mean they may be transferring to UMaine and if retention is improved at other campuses does that mean UMaine goes down?
A.
Retention should probably be looked at system-wide instead of by campus.

Q.
If research dollars are not included is that because it’s a small amount of the budget?
A.
Yes, but large by comparison to other campuses.

 

V.        Old Business

To: Faculty Senate 
Date: April 3, 2013

Below please find a motion to accept revised wording for a change of grade. The current policy can be found below in the discussion.

Motion: The Faculty Senate approves the following language for the Undergraduate Catalog and, when revised, the faculty Handbook:

The Change of Grade Policy

Instructors desiring to change a grade after official posting should submit a grade change request to the MaineStreet Grade Roster. Normally, grade changes are a result of clerical errors or errors of omission. Grade changes made beyond six months of the end of a semester require approval from the Associate Dean or designee. The decision of the Associate Dean may be appealed to the faculty of the Curriculum Committee of the faculty member’s college (or equivalent academic unit) which shall be the final authority.

When entering the grade change on MaineStreet, the instructor should enter a brief written rationale containing their reasons for wanting to change the grade.

If a student wishes to improve a grade, then the option to repeat the course should be considered. For policy regarding incomplete grades, please see the incomplete grade policy in this catalogue.

Discussion and Notes

Existing policy as cited in the 1988 Faculty Handbook:

“All grades changed by an instructor should state the reason for the change, and must be approved by the Dean of the College. The only exception to this change is a change from an Incomplete to a letter grade (see section on change of Incomplete grades which follows.)

The purpose of this procedure is to assure that grade changes are clearly justified for academic reasons. A change of grade should be a rarity, made only when legitimate mistakes such as computational errors, cause the initial grade to be incorrect. Change of Grade cards (YELLOW CARDS) are available in the Dean’s Office. After the card has all the appropriate signatures, it is forwarded by the Dean’s Office to the Registrar’s Office.”

The policy has to be changed to reflect the move from cards to MaineStreet. But the new policy also allows a six-month window for a grade change by the professor with no required approval. After six months the grade change will be reviewed, but a potential denial by an Associate Dean can be appealed to a faculty group—the faculty of the College Curriculum Committee.

Q.
Was this initiated by Stuart Marrs?
A.
Yes but think it originated from Student Records.

Provost Hecker commented that he heard from four Deans with concerns regarding the policy. 1. Rationale for the 6-months, 2. Yellow cards previously used had a place for the Deans signature not the Assoc. Dean, 3. May be out of the scope of work for some College Curriculum Committee’s, 4. What if there’s a disagreement by the Assoc Dean and then goes to a Curriculum Committee, will the committee overrule the Assoc Dean? 5. Responsibility should rest with the individual, 6. Rare case of disagreement may be unpopular decision. Administrators/Deans get paid to take the heat.

A.
Six months was based on some students that may not mention the issue until the next semester, that can be three or four months. Sometimes it’s a matter of recording a grade incorrectly. Rick Borgman commented that if a student doesn’t like a grade they can present it to a dean immediately, you don’t need a policy for that.

Comment: this should be a peer issues.

Motion: The motion was tabled.

 

Subject: Military Credit: Policy Adjustment From: The Academic Affairs Committee

To: Faculty Senate 
Date: April 3, 2013

Below please find a motion to accept revised wording for policy re. Military Credit. This language has been revised to reflect faculty Senate concerns. The current policy can be found below in the discussion.

Motion: The Faculty Senate approves the following language for the Undergraduate Catalog: Military Credit:

Credit allowed will be based on recommendations of the American Council on Education (ACE) and National College Credit Recommendation Service (National CCRS, formerly National PONSI) and will correspond to subject areas offered at the University of Maine. Only courses recommended at the upper or lower baccalaureate level will be considered for transfer credit. A maximum of 15 credits will be allowed as military transfer credit (not including prior experiential learning and credit for standardized tests) and the courses will count as elective credit only unless an exception is made. The process for an exception is as follows: the student should contact his or her college or school Associate Dean who will forward the material to the appropriate department chair, unit director, or faculty member who will make the appropriate decision.

Credit for military experience: credit for learning due to duties or a position in the military is considered prior learning and will be considered in the same way as other prior experiential learning. See subsection “Prior Learning Credit” in this section.

Discussion and Notes

Current Policy

Military Credit:

Credit for military experience or corporate training programs: Normally will be allowed according to the recommendations of the American Council on Education (ACE) and National Program on Noncollegiate Sponsored Instruction (PONSI). Credit allowed in this way normally counts for elective credit only. Courses considered to be at the upper baccalaureate level will be the only courses considered for transfer credit. All military students will receive 2 credits of KPE 100X for basics/recruit training.

The revised wording removes any reference to corporate training programs, limits credit to 15 credits, and now allows for both upper and lower baccalaureate level courses to be accepted.

The credit limit protects the students in this way: these credits come in as free electives in most all cases. Having too many free electives only increases overall credits without moving a student toward graduation. This has financial aid implications.

As always, and as is now clearly stated, credits must correspond to subject areas offered at the University of Maine. This policy refers only to coursework. Credit for work experience is covered through the university’s prior experiential learning policy.

Who or what is doing the reviewing and recommending? ACE (The American Council on Education) is a nationally known and accepted organization that reviews courses to see if they are at a level of rigor and content equal to a college course and then recommends appropriate college credit. National CCRS is a similar organization developed by the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York.

Why change the policy now? A system-wide group was tasked by the Transfer Steering Committee to look into military credit. That group recommended the expansion to upper and lower baccalaureate courses. But it clearly left all specifics of policy to the campuses. This is totally our wording and our policy.

Motion: Approved

VI.       New Business

University of Maine System
General Education and Credit Transfer Working Group Progress Report and Suggested Faculty Motions on the Campuses

Background

University of Maine System
General Education and Credit Transfer Working Group Progress Report and Suggested Faculty Motions on the Campuses

All University of Maine System (UMS) Universities are required to meet the accreditation requirements of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC).

The University of Maine System has convened a UMS Credit Transfer and General Education Working Group. The immediate goal of the group’s effort is to better facilitate transparency and ease in the transfer of credit for meeting general education requirements among the UMS campuses. The members of this group are listed below in Appendix A. The group also is actively engaging the registrars and transfer credit administrative staff from each of the UMS campuses.

The group was formed partially to respond to the language of Maine LD 90 that was incorporated within the language of the last Maine budget legislation. The language in part states:

Articulation agreements for general education must be in place no later than January 1, 2014 within the system and the university separately, and by September 1, 2014 between the university and the system. Articulation agreements for the science, technology, engineering and mathematics programs must be in place no later than September 1, 2014.

The meaning of the term “articulation agreement” is unclear in the legislation and thus is left largely up to the University of Maine System and its universities to define. This UMS working group is concerned only with the first sentence in the above quoted legislation while UMS “major-to-major” working groups are responding to the language of the second sentence.

To date, the UMS Credit Transfer and General Education Working Group has documented the general education requirements on each campus. (See the draft document at http://umaine.edu/facultysenate/files/2013/11/UMSGenEdCampusRqrmnts.docx)

The working group has also identified the individual courses and/or groups of courses that meet the general education requirements on each UMS campus (See the spreadsheet document at http://umaine.edu/facultysenate/files/2013/11/UMSGenEdCourseEquivs.xlsx)

Discussion

At the outset it should be noted that while there are differences in the general education categories across the seven campuses, and while the student learning outcomes for commonly shared requirements may differ, all UMS units have identified student learning outcomes and the campuses are in compliance with the standards for general education defined by NEASC. The group believes it is essential that each campus maintain its own general education curriculum, representative of its specific mission and identity, while also reflecting our shared compliance with accreditation standards. Accordingly, this document reflects both our dedication to transparency among the requirements of our individual general education curricula as well as the greatest possible level of transferability among our campuses at this level.

In the past, determining which undergraduate courses on another campus would be accepted for credit as equivalent to a course on your campus was accomplished on an ad hoc basis, “as needed” when students applied to transfer courses to your campus. Before accepting the course as equivalent, the faculty unit teaching the course would be consulted to ensure that the course would be accepted as equivalent. The courses that have transferred in the past and their equivalencies were listed in Maine Street (See Faculty Center > Advisor Center > Transfer Course Equivalencies)

Rather than continue this ad hoc approach, the registrars and transfer credit administrators have recently looked at every course at every other UMS campus to determine whether those courses at the other campuses would be accepted as equivalents on their home campus and explicitly for which courses, if any. The academic program units are consulted in the instance of questionable equivalent courses.

An immediate goal of each UMS campus is to mark each course within PeopleSoft that meets their general education requirements. Once accomplished, anyone will be able to see whether any course on any other UMS campus meets a general education requirement on that campus and, if so, which specific general education requirement is met. As an example, Appendix B lists the General Education requirements for the University of Maine campus, the explicit UMaine courses that satisfy those requirements, and courses at the other UMS campuses that will transfer as equivalent to the UMaine General Education courses. A similar table has been prepared for each of the UMS campuses.

ASSUMPTION 1: BLOCK TRANSFER IN MEETING GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
All University of Maine System (UMS) Universities meet the accreditation requirements of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). Therefore, a matriculated student that meets ALL of the general education course requirements at a University of Maine System institution before transferring to another UMS campus is deemed to have fulfilled ALL of the general education requirements for graduation at any of the other campuses.

Thus the student need not take any further courses to fulfill general education requirements. This is true even though general education requirements may differ substantially among the campuses. It is understood that some, many or all of the courses might transfer only as 1xxx courses that perhaps count only as elective courses and would not necessarily substitute directly for another course required for graduation in a specific major. A transferring student might still be required to take some upper level general education courses because the courses are also required by the major degree program. As example, an intensive writing course in the major or a capstone course in the major might often be required by the major degree even though these courses might also qualify as general education courses for non-transfer students.

Therefore, if a matriculated student at any University of Maine System institution has completed 100% of the general education requirements at that institution, the UMS institution to which the student is transferring will consider all general education requirements completed. It will be the student’s responsibility to ask the Registrar’s Office or Office of Student Records at the UMS institution where the general education requirements were completed to verify the completion of these requirements to the appropriate office at the new UMS institution.

Note: The above block transfer practice is little different from the current block transfer practice among the UMS campuses when a student completes a degree on one campus and then transfers to another UMS campus to earn an additional undergraduate degree. Such a student is given full faith and credit for having already completed their general education requirements and need not take meet the general education requirements again assuming that the campus from which they are transferring is NEASC accredited. They need only complete the requirements of the major on the new campus plus acquire the required number of credits for graduation. The only difference with the above block transfer procedure from current practice is that the registrar at the UMS campus from which the student is transferring may now be called upon, in appropriate cases, to verify that all general education requirements of the university have been met by the student if indeed the entire degree has not been completed on that campus.

Experience has shown that very few transfer students currently complete ALL general education course requirements on a single UMS campus prior to transferring to another UMS campus for completion of an undergraduate degree. Thus for many transfer students it is necessary to determine on a course-by-course basis if they have met specific general education requirements that they need not fulfill again.

ASSUMPTION 2: COURSE-BY-COURSE TRANSFERS TO FULFILL GENERAL EDUCATION CATEGORY REQUIREMENTS

The assumption is made that if a course on the campus to which a student is transferring meets a general education requirement AND the academic unit in consultation with the instructor(s) of the course on the campus to which the student is transferring deems that the course previously taken by the student at another UMS campus is equivalent, the student obtains credit for both the course as being equivalent and gets credit for meeting that general education category requirement on the receiving campus. This is true even if the course did not fulfill a similar general education requirement on the campus from which the student is departing and/or fulfill similar student outcome objectives.

Note: This assumption matches the current practice supported among all of the UMS campuses.

ASSUMPTION 3: COURSE TRANSFER ARTICULATION DATABASE: AUTOMATION TO PROVIDE CLARITY AND TRANSPARENCY

The assumption is made that PeopleSoft and/or MaineStreet will be enabled to allow students, faculty, administrators and the general public to readily see what courses taken on any UMS campus will fulfill the general education requirements on any other UMS campus. An example of all courses taken at other UMS campuses meeting the general education requirements on the University of Maine campus is shown in Appendix B. Similar simple course transfer charts for all of the other campuses are accessible at the General Education links at https://umaine.edu/csit/transfer-of-course-credits-among-the-university-programs/.

While the examples shown at the above link were compiled by hand as examples, the assumption is that similar tables will be generated on the fly by drawing from the up-to-date database for course transfers whenever a member of the public wants to see which courses will transfer to other UMS campuses to meet general education requirements. Thus, general education course transfer tables, whether expressed in html online or as a pdf file for download, will always be up to date. The general public will have the same access to the detailed course transfer information on the web as that provided to a student currently enrolled at a UMS campus, a potential new student or transfer, a parent, a legislator or a faculty member.

Motions Recommended for Faculty Senates on the UMS Campuses to Accommodate the Mandates of the Maine Legislature

Faculty Authority:

The responsibility for the determination of the requirements which students must meet to be eligible for an academic degree rests with the faculties of each of the several units of the University of Maine System. (Board of Trustees of the University of Maine System, Policy Manual, Section 303 Academic Degrees) As with all respected Universities across the nation and globe, credentialed faculty members are involved intimately in credentialing on a course-by-course and curriculum-by-curriculum basis each successive generation of university graduates. In its Constitution approved by the Chancellor of the University of Maine System pursuant to Board of Trustees’ Policies, it is clear that in regard to matters concerning student academic standards and performance, recommendations of the Faculty Senate become University policy except when explicitly disapproved by the President of the University.

Motion Discussion:

Motion 1 as listed below is likely to have very little practical effect currently on course transfers at most UMS campuses. The motion will allow however each UMS campus to state that they grant full credit for completion of general education requirements by a student on any other UMS campus. It is very similar to the current practice of granting block transfer credit for fulfilling general education requirements for a student that has completed a degree on another NEASC accredited UMS campus. Motion 2 represents the status quo on how credits for general education courses are accepted for transfer currently to each of the UMS campuses but describes the current practice as one involving course-by-course articulation agreements in order to accommodate the legislative mandate. Motion 3 concerning the course transfer articulation database will allow course-to-course articulation agreements among the UMS campus units to always be up-to-date. Addition of publicly accessible transfer tables to be automatically generated on-the-fly will greatly enhance transparency for students when investigating the transfer of courses among the campuses, allow them to plan ahead and will make transfer processes far more efficient.

Motion 1: Block Transfer in Meeting General Education Requirements

If a matriculated student at another University of Maine System institution has completed 100% of the general education requirements and assuming that the campus from which the student is transferring is accredited by NEASC, our campus will provide 100% reciprocity and acceptance of that student’s completion of the General Education requirements such that the student transferring is deemed to have completed all general education requirements. It will be the student’s responsibility to ask the Registrar’s Office or Office of Student Records at the UMS institution where the general education requirements were completed to verify and certify the completion of these requirements to the appropriate office at our campus. It should be noted that a transfer student might still be required to take some upper level General Education courses because the courses are also required by the student’s major degree program or are required of all students earning a degree at the institution.

Motion: Approved with amendments

Motion 2: Course-by-Course Articulation Agreements for Transfer of General Education Courses

A student completing only some general education requirements on one or several University of Maine System NEASC accredited campus’s before transferring must meet all of the general education requirements on the campus to which they are transferring. However, if a course on the campus to which a student is transferring meets a general education requirement AND the academic unit on the campus to which the student is transferring (in consultation with the instructor(s) of the course) determines that the course previously taken by the student is equivalent, the student obtains credit for both the course as being equivalent and receives credit for meeting that general education category requirement on the receiving campus. Such a determination constitutes a course-by-course articulation agreement for further transfer students until the faculty unit decides otherwise.

Motion: Approved with amendments

Motion 3: Development and Maintenance of a Course Transfer Articulation Database and Generation of User Friendly Course Transfer Tables
Technology shall be enabled by UMS to allow potential and existing students to readily see what courses they may take on any UMS or Maine Community College Campus that will transfer to and fulfill specific general education requirements on any UMS campus to which they might eventually transfer. That is, the table shown in Appendix B should be generated for each UMS campus and then regenerated automatically on-the-fly from the database whenever a user seeks access such that the course transfer tables are always up-to-date.

Motion: Approved with amendments

Adjourned at 4:45 pm

Respectfully submitted

Kathryn Slott

 


Back to 2013-2014

Faculty Senate
Kimberly Junkins, Faculty Senate Office
205 East Annex, Orono, Maine 04469
Phone: (207) 581-1167 | Fax: (207) 581-2640
E-mail: kimberly.junkins@umit.maine.edu
The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469
207.581.1865