Council of University System Faculty

CUSF Meeting of April 20, 2005

Council of University System Faculty

Minutes April 20, 2005


Present: Lee Richardson (Chair); Martha Siegel (Immediate Past Chair); Joan S. Langdon (BSU); Alcott Arthur (CSU); Marci McClive (FSU); John McMullin (FSU); Kim Rotruck (FSU); Anjali Pandey (SU); David Parker (SU, ExCom); Harry Womack (SU) Stephanie Gibson (UB); Patricia Alt (TU); Douglas Pryor (TU); Steve Jacobs (UMB); David A. Hardcastle (UMB); Paul Thut (UMB); John Peters (UMBC); Alan Kreitzenbeck (UMBC); Joyce Tenney (UMBC); John H. Collins (UMBI); Rose Jagus  (UMBI); Court Stevenson (UMCES); Frank Alt (UMCP); Vincent Brannigan (UMCP, Vice Chair); Denny Gulick (UMCP); Bill Stuart (UMCP); E. W. Chapin (UMES, Secretary); Emmanuel Onyeozili (UMES); John Gustafson (UMUC); Deloris James (UMUC); Adelaide Lagnese (UMUC); Joyce Shirazi (UMUC); Gertrude Eaton (USM); Terri Hollander (USM).

The meeting was called to order at ten o’clock.  UMBC Faculty Assembly President Bob Carpenter brought greetings from the campus.

The agenda was approved with the modification of moving the election slightly earlier. The minutes of the February meeting were approved as amended.

CUSF Chair Lee Richardson reported that the presentation of the Regents Faculty Awards went well this year.  The Regents also approved, in principle, the start of lower division education at UB for the fall of 2006, although questions of curriculum, faculty, equipment and funding remain. The status of the non-degree-granting campuses also remains undecided. It would appear that virtually all the USM capital budget items survived the legislative process. While there is money for merit and for a 1.5% COLA – the other 0.5% anticipated was diverted instead to cover some health costs. It would appear that the employee burden for health care will increase: two co-pays for a 90-day supply of prescription medicine (with a $700 cap per family per annum) and an increase in the biweekly deduction to reach up to 17% of the cost. Other legislation reinstates up to $400 of matching funds for some deferred compensation plans, makes technical changes in the ORP and to the trade secrets rules, but none of the “academic bill of rights” legislation passed.

Professor Martha Siegel won the election to become CUSF Chair for the next academic year.

The Senate Chairs’ Meeting with the CUSF Executive Committee on May 6 will center on shared governance and on the budget.  Chancellor Kirwan is currently scheduled to speak and answer questions.

Professor Pat Alt reported that work is proceeding in the creation of a possible faculty Drug Free Workplace document satisfying the Executive Order.  Most questions seem to relate to the ‘penalty phase’ of any such document, something that might be left to the various campuses to write.

Professor Al Raider, UMUC Advisory Council Chair assisted Professor Frank Alt in the discussion of a possible Faculty Sick Leave Bank. Some non-faculty employees are allowed to make contributions of sick leave and thereby become members of a sick leave bank (and also can take advantage of “advanced sick leave”.  It is important that, for any such bank for faculty it be possible for one faculty member to contribute for another’s sick leave.  The questions of the actual state and institutional funding of sick leave are complex, but it is hoped that by the time of the CUSF September meeting, we may have a proposal available. Chair Lee Richardson will discuss this matter with the CUSS officers.

MHEC is dealing with a survey of faculty development opportunities for adjunct faculty.  Professor Pat Alt will supply us with the appropriate web-site address.  Currently much of the input reflects the situation in the community colleges, so that it would be helpful if we could provide them with more information about USM policy and practice.

The following additional MHEC information may be helpful to members reading the minutes:

At our April Meeting Rik Karlsson presented information on a survey
being conducted by the MD Consortium for Adjunct Faculty Professional
Development.  While the questions are not the same as the survey the FAC
committee had worked on, it is a great start.  The survey is completed
online, so it is pretty easy for adjunct faculty to participate.  Some
schools have already distributed it to their faculty.  If your adjunct
faculty have not yet received the survey, please contact
Four year schools are strongly encouraged to participate even though
they may have lower ratios of adjunct faculty.

Professor Siegel is awaiting word from the Attorney General’s office concerning the wording of the CUSF policy on handling faculty appeals that come to us concerning campus non-compliance with Regents’ and campus policies.

Nominations for the remaining CUSF Executive Committee positions for the coming academic year resulted in the nomination of the following Professors:

Vice Chair: Chapin and Langdon

Secretary: Collins, McMullin, and Tenney

At Large (two to be elected): Brannigan, Gibson, Peters, and Parker.

Elections will be held at the May CUSF meeting.

The Board of Regents, in their search for information across the campuses, is considering various “dashboard indicators”, the exact set of which is currently in flux. The intention is to have comparisons between campuses and their peers and report perhaps only when such indicators fall more than two standard deviations from the mean (to avoid the current barrage of reported details).  We may be able to help in the selection of indicators that are meaningful and helpful.

Following discussion of the request presented by Professor Denny Gulick, we agreed to have the CUSF Executive Committee write a letter of endorsement of the Lilly East Conference (a conference of best practices in teaching in USM campuses have participated since 1998), thus providing system-wide support for the continuance of this conference. Similarly, we agreed to support the national effort Robust Structures to Protect Academic Freedom, giving system-wide affirmation of this project.

In the afternoon, Professor Marci McClive and her associates led us in discussion of e-learning progress and plans for the USM Campuses.  Current offerings vary from special summer and winter courses, through the supplementation of traditional courses to the pervasive use of e-learning in selective programs to its consideration as an essential strategy campus-wide. John Cris, who manages the Blackboard system at UMBC,, reports extensive use there in a few graduate programs, but most hybrid use elsewhere, a situation he does not anticipate changing quickly. According to Professor Carole O’Neal from UMB nursing, use there has grown each year since 1999 with whole programs now on-line (with the obvious hands-on practicum experiences).  At UMUC, a long-time user of e-learning, Professor Delores James told us of the extensive training and support facilities available to allow the creation of credible e-learning components (and for the evaluation of e-learning courses).  She also reminded us that e-learning is not suitable for all students and does require both academic and computer sophistication. Professor John McMullin of FSU described his own work teaching summer on-line courses in sociology, part of a plan to allow FSU students to continue taking courses in the summer while they may be far from campus on the job.  USM’s John Spicer explained the system-wide effort made to get information about the status of e-learning across the campuses and the general plans of the campuses for future activity in this area. Questions of intellectual property, of financing faculty training and work in e-learning, of library use by e-learners, etc. remain. There would appear to be something of a trend among those with good success in e-learning to be reluctant to carry on traditional classroom courses.

The meeting was adjourned at about two o’clock.