Faculty Senate Meeting
November 30, 2011
Founder’s Room, Lovett Hall
Call to order; announcements
II. Speaker’s Report
- Proposed pet policy
- Rice 2032 faculty lunch/workshops
- Proposed charge for Working Group on Non-Tenure
- Activity update from University Committee on
- Activity update
from Graduate Council
- Course caps implementation and process
A. Motions to establish a Program in Writing and
B. University response to Enrollment Growth Report
V. New Business: Draft Open Access Policy
present: David Alexander, Randy
Batsell, Kate Beckingham, Carl Caldwell, David Caprette, John Casbarian, Marcia
Citron, Danijela Damjanovic, Rebecca Goetz, Ramon Gonzalez, Jane Grande-Allen,
Mikki Hebl, Illya Hicks, Michael Kohn, David Leebron, Scott McGill, Susan
McIntosh, George McLendon, Helena Michie, Fred Oswald, William Parsons, Matteo
Pasquali, Brian Rountree, Stan Sazykin, David Scott, Yizhi Jane Tao, Ruth Lopez
Turley, and James Weston.
Senators absent: Shirine Hamadeh, Anatoly Kolomeisky, Robin
Sickles, and Moshe Vardi.
PROCEEDINGS (To listen to an audio tape of this
meeting, email firstname.lastname@example.org.)
I. Call to order; announcements
Speaker Susan McIntosh called the
meeting to order at 12:00 p.m. She introduced Rice undergraduateTawfik Jarjour,
Chair of the Rice Centennial House Project.
Jarjour stated that in honor of the Rice Centennial, the Rice Habitat
for Humanity Chapter and the Rice School of Architecture have worked together
to design and build a home that will be sustainable and affordable for a local
low-income family. Jarjour presented three slides and said that the group would
be grateful for any help from the faculty in raising funds for the project; a
total of $65,000 is needed by the spring. Please use this link for more
- The Vice President of Administration is seeking
feedback on the proposed pet policy. McIntosh asked if Senators wished for the draft policy to be
placed on the all-faculty level of the Senate wiki space or if they wished to
contact their constituents directly for feedback. It was decided to post it on
the wiki space for faculty review and comments.
Teaching: Friday, January 20, 12-2 pm
(Two of the
scheduled speakers: Rich Baraniuk and John Hutchinson)
International/Global engagement: Friday, March 9, 12-2 pm
Research: Monday, April 23, 12-2 pm
TBA – September
Senators will produce a list of
interested faculty from each constituency, from which invitees will be
determined by the Senate’s Executive Committee.
It was suggested than at least one young faculty member, perhaps an
assistant professor, be included from each school for each session.
- Proposed charge for the Working Group on Non
Tenure Track (NTT) Faculty:
To recommend criteria on which to base eligibility of NTT faculty to run
for Senate office and to vote in Senate NTT elections;
Develop a prioritized list of the most important issues concerning the
future of NTT faculty at Rice, including the rationale behind the ranking of
items. Relevant issues may include those
that affect the first issue of eligibility to participate in university governance. Additional issues may include appropriate
number of NTT Senate representatives, NTT job titles, opportunities for
promotion, range of responsibilities, employment security, and/or equitable
compensation. Since these issues may
require extensive work and research, and may therefore require a different kind
of committee (e.g. with Human Resources representatives).
- Activity update on the University Committee for
Research from chair Doug Natelson:
1) Revisions to
the revised Research Misconduct Policy (324) were announced this summer and its
accompanying procedures. These are being iterated with the Vice Provost
for Research’s (VPR) office as well as the General Counsel.
2) Working with
the VPR’s office on revised Conflict of Interest and Commitment policy (to
replace existing policies 216 and 332). This is necessary because federal
guidelines on COI have changed and an Internal Audit pointed out that we need
to do a much better and complete job at this.
3) Helped the
VPR's office shape their customer satisfaction survey.
4) Working with
VPR on Intellectual Property and other potential policy revisions.
- Activity update on the Graduate Council from
chair John Olson:
1) Working with
the VPAA on guidelines for dual degree programs; recommendations will come to
Faculty Senate for approval.
2) Proposals currently
under consideration: a non-thesis M.A.
in Philosophy and a new Ph.D. program in Physical Systems and Synthetic Biology.
development: a policy for graduate student internships that affect both
domestic and foreign students.
revisions have been made to the "Guidelines for Dismissals, Petitions,
Appeals, Grievances, and Problem Resolution" document, which is available
on the Graduate Studies website.
- A memo was recently distributed from Vice Provost for Academic Affairs Paula Sanders
and Provost George McLendon stating that in the future, seminar classes, which
were usually capped at 20 students, will now be capped at 19. The University
Committee for the Undergraduate Curriculum (CUC) will be working on the
Deputy Speaker Jane Grande-Allen
announced that the Nominations and Elections Committee (NEC) will have two main
purposes: organize the elections of new Senators for the 2012-2013 academic
year, and form a subcommittee to provide faculty members for the University Committees
for 2012-2013. Grande-Allen said that the database of faculty service she has
prepared will help greatly in committee selection. She also said that the NEC
will work with President Leebron’s office to ensure that the appointment
letters are issued much sooner.
A slate of nominees for the NEC was
Shirine Hamadeh – Art History
Scott McGill – Classics
Fred Oswald – Psychology
Jane Tao – Biochemistry
James Weston – Jones School
The slate was moved, seconded, and
Per the Senate Constitution, the
Speaker may also appoint three members of the NEC:
to be named.
A. Motions to establish a Program in Writing and
McIntosh announced that the
Student Association and the Graduate Student Association have each passed
resolutions in favor of the proposal from the Working Group on Communication in
the Curriculum which was presented in the Senate meeting held November 2,
2011. McIntosh reviewed the motions
which were tabled from the November 2 meeting:
To be implemented
by Fall 2012:
of a Center for Written, Oral, and Visual Communication
To be implemented Fall 2015, after
appropriate discussion and development by faculty:
Communication in the Disciplines component
McIntosh reviewed the revisions to
the report, which had been distributed via email prior to the meeting, and
which were the result of comments received from faculty members on the Senate
wiki space, by email, and in person at the four information sessions:
that First-Year “Writing-intensive" (replaces “Writing") Seminars are
content-based and will need to meet existing criteria for distribution credit
Modify the composition of the Faculty Advisory
Board (adding an at-large voting member and two advisory, ex officio members:
the Dean of Undergraduates and the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral
Clarify the role of the Faculty Advisory Board
to emphasize faculty oversight of the curricular aspects of the new Program and
its obligation to liaise with Departments, schools, and Senate
Clarify the upper-level "communication in
the disciplines" component
then reviewed each of the three PWC components:
1. First-year Writing-intensive Seminars (FWS):
FWS will meet the criteria for distribution
credit and will not pose an additional requirement burden for students; departments may decide if an FWS counts
towards the major
FWS will be staffed in a variety of ways
depending on interests, possibilities, and personnel in different departments
Current COMM 103 faculty (32 of 66 FWS in
Graduate students with training in writing
Additional NTT faculty hired to teach FWS
Tenured, tenure-track faculty; modification of
existing FSEM to be FWS if faculty are so inclined
While all divisions will be represented in FWS,
there is no requirement that all departments offer an FWS
No funds from departments or schools are
required to support FWS.
The provost is providing funds for instructor
salaries, tenure track faculty stipends, and TA’s.
VP for Finance Kathy Collins has budgeted $7500
(plus fringe benefits) for each of the 66 FWS.
These funds may be used for instructor or teaching assistant (TA)
salaries, tenure-track faculty incentives to teach FWS, or other needs in
support of a FWS.
for Written, Oral, and Visual Communication
Budget (figures provided by VP for Finance) for Center staffing for each
of the first three years:
Writing Center Director $60,000
Assistant Directors (2@$45K) 90,000
Undergrad tutors (3300 hours@$15/hr) 49,500
Grad tutors (3900 hours@$25/hr)
Operating costs (website,
equipment, etc) 35,000
*Expanded staffing in 2015 will
b) Facilities: build-out of space on Fondren second floor to
create offices, seminar rooms, carrels for on-on-one consultation (high
priority request in spring budgeting process)
c) Writing and communication support offered:
Training for graduate and undergraduate peer
Writing pedagogy training for faculty and
advanced graduate students
Non-credit ESL instruction (graduate and
Workshops on dissertation writing, presentation
skills and technologies
One-on-one writing consultation and tutoring,
both at the Center and in the colleges
3. Communication in the Discipline
to provide upper-level communication training pertinent to particular academic
Implementation: not until Fall 2015, and not unless
funding for expanded Center staffing support is assured.
After appropriate discussions within departments
and divisions, an upper-level Communication in the Discipline requirement will
need to be voted on by Faculty Senate by Fall 2014.
Departments or schools can structure an approach
to this requirement that best fits their needs and curriculum. Some departments already have suitable
courses; others could decide that a portfolio of writing/presentation
assignments in several existing upper level courses will fill the
Administrative Structure Chart for the
Program for Writing and Communication
Faculty Advisory Board –
appointed by the Faculty Senate
Composition: one faculty member
from each of the four major academic schools; one member from either the School
of Architecture or the Music School; a Chair (any school) and an at-large
member. The Dean of Undergraduates (or designee) and the Dean of Graduate and
Postdoctoral Studies (or designee) are advisory (non-voting), ex-officio members.
The PWC Director and the Faculty Advisory Board report to the Vice Provost for
Three main functions of the
Faculty Advisory Board:
of curricular guidelines and assessments
to the PWC Director
between the Director and the academic schools, as well as between the PWC Director and the
asked for comments during and after the presentation, which are summarized
David Alexander: Regarding distribution credit, the FWS should
be either D-1 or D-2.
Michie: The guidelines in the proposal state that
most FWS will be D-1.The Faculty Advisory Board (FAB) will not determine
distribution credit; the University for the Undergraduate Curriculum does this
task. The current distribution guidelines will apply to the new FWS classes.
Sarah Whiting: For the FAB, one representative is indicated
to serve both the Shepherd School of Music and the Architecture School, but the
Architecture School would like to have its own representative.
McIntosh: We could alter the FAB to allow a
representative from each of these schools.
Marcia Citron: The Shepherd School is a large school, but
there are only five academic faculty (the musicologists); providing
representation on academically-oriented university committees puts a great
burden on us.
Agreed, but if Architecture also wants representation, especially in the
beginning, we need to provide it.
Randy Batsell: Why are you willing to accept this change to
the proposal and not the change requested by David Alexander?
Michie: One is an un-complicated request (adding
representation), while the other (distribution credit) is complicated. In
addition, it is not up to the Senate to determine distribution credit.
Alexander: I did not exactly propose a change, but I
would like a specification as to how distribution credit will be determined and
how many FWS courses will be allowed.
McIntosh: The CUC has delegated its powers over
distribution credit to the Deans for a number of years now. So faculty proposing an FWS will apply to the
Deans for that determination. As for the
question of limiting the number of FWS that can be taken for distribution
credit, could you accept our informal
assurance that this issue will be addressed?
Linda Driskill: I am concerned that the $60,000 salary for
the Center Director will not be sufficient.
Provost McLendon: The $60,000 is just a place-holder; we can be
McIntosh: Does this mean that we
will be competitive in our recruiting?
Provost McLendon: Yes.
McIntosh: Just to clarify, we are discussing the
salary of the Center Director. The budget specifies a salary of $100,000 for
the Program Director.
Question: regarding the (advanced) Communication in the
Disciplines courses, will the departments appoint graduate students from within
their departments to teach these courses and who will pay them?
Michie: These concerns will be addressed in the
discussions that are to come over the next two years; a plan will then be put
in place with faculty input.
McIntosh then presented each of the
five motions separately.
Motion A: Motion to endorse the
report of the Working Group on Communication in the Curriculum and its
recommendations to institute a Program in Writing and Communication.
Batsell said that he wished to
remove the word “recommendations.” After
a short discussion, Alexander amended the motion, removing the “s” from
recommendations. After a second by James Weston, a vote was held, and the
motion to amend Motion A was approved, with two Senators opposed.
Amended Motion A:
Motion to endorse the report of the Working Group on Communication in
the Curriculum and its recommendation to institute a Program in Writing and
A vote was then held on the amended
Motion A, which was approved with one abstention.
Motion B: Motion to establish a graduation
requirement, for all undergraduates matriculating in Fall 2012 and thereafter,
of one three-hour First-year Writing-Intensive Seminar (FWS).
The Senate voted to approve Motion
B, with one opposed and one abstention.
Motion to eliminate, beginning Fall Semester 2012, for undergraduate
students matriculating in Fall 2012 and thereafter, the existing Communication
(COMM) 103 requirement for graduation.
The Senate voted to approve Motion
C, with one abstention.
Motion D: Motion
to recommend the creation of the Center for Written, Oral, and Visual
Communication that will begin operations in Fall 2012 to support undergraduates
and graduate students, as well as faculty who teach writing and
It was suggested that “Fall 2012”
be changed to “Summer 2012” to allow for preparation prior to the start of the
fall semester. After a short discussion,
the motion was amended to drop the word “Fall.” The Senate granted approval to
amend the motion, with three abstentions.
Amended Motion D: Motion
to recommend the creation of the Center for Written, Oral, and Visual
Communication that will begin operations in 2012 to support undergraduates and
graduate students, as well as faculty who teach writing and
The Senate then voted to approve
the amended Motion D, with one abstention.
Motion E: Motion
to recommend that a curricular requirement for upper-level communication in the
disciplines will be specified and voted on by the Faculty Senate in Fall 2014
after appropriate discussion and development by faculty and provision for
adequate funding, for implementation beginning Fall 2015.
The Senate voted to approve Motion
E, with two abstentions.
President Leebron thanked Helena
Michie and her committee. He said that this proposal will work to correct a
fundamental defect in the curriculum which has existed for a long time. He said
that the report was prepared thoughtfully, and it included items such as the
space needed for the Center. He added
that Rice can be a leader in this field.
McIntosh thanked President Leebron,
Provost McLendon, the entire working group, the previous working group from
2010, Sara Lowman, and others. She said that this process could serve as a
model for shared governance at its best.
McIntosh presented the Faculty
Advisory Board slate from the Executive Committee for approval by the Senate:
Sciences: Kate Beckingham (Biochemistry
and Cell Biology)
Leeds (Political Science)
Architecture/Music: David Ferris (Shepherd School of Music)
At Large: Tracy Volz
McIntosh said that a faculty member
from the Architecture School will be added to the FAB per the earlier request.
Citron asked if the Shepherd School will have to provide a representative each
year, and McIntosh’s reply was no; perhaps a representative will only be needed
at the beginning of the process. David
Scott inquired whether the plan for staggered terms for the FAB was in place.
McIntosh said that the plan would be forthcoming. She thus asked the Senate to
approve the slate for the coming year only, with the possibility of continuing
their terms once the plan for staggering was developed by the FAB. The FAB will need to be appointed by Senate
again a year from now. The Senate voted
to approve the above slate for the 2012-2013 year, with one abstention. After the meeting, the following three
individuals were also approved by a majority of the Senate (one opposed) via
Bill Parsons (Religious Studies)
Mark Embree (CAAM)
Neyran Turan (Architecture)
Response to Enrollment Growth Report
Provost McLendon stated that the
Working Group on Enrollment Growth Impact had recommended that he approach each
school and ask what kind of support the school needed. As a result, financial
support was provided to the Schools of Engineering, Social Sciences, and
Natural Sciences; the others did not request funds. McLendon said that Natural Sciences needed
more labs, Social Sciences needed lecturers, and some Engineering departments
McLendon said that the enrollment
target for Fall 2012 has been lowered to 935 new freshmen, and the number of
transfer students has also been reduced, so that there will not be large
incoming classes two years in a row.
McIntosh recalled that the working
group had addressed the largest pressure points that had occurred as a result
of the enrollment growth, which were the introductory classes. She said,
however, that enrollment had spiked in some other ways, and she wondered if the
approach taken by the working group was the best way to address the overall
issue. Provost McLendon discussed the
difficulty of setting ideal course sizes, and he said that he wished to set up
a broader analysis on this topic with the Senate, addressing the next three to
Business: Discussion of draft Open Access Policy
Prior to the Senate meeting, a
draft Open Access Policy
prepared by Moshe Vardi was distributed to the Senators and placed on the wiki
space for comments by faculty.
University Librarian Sara Lowman said that the purpose of the policy is
to make Rice’s scholarly information available in a free and open environment.
She said that if the Senate approved a mandate for Open Access, D-space
software would probably be used, as is used by peer universities such as MIT,
Princeton, and Duke. Lowman said that
the Fondren Library staff would input faculty documents into the system;
faculty would not be asked to do so. She
encouraged the Senators to read the white paper and also research Open Access
on the internet.
The meeting was adjourned at 2:00 p.m.