West Texas A&M University

Faculty Senate Minutes

October 27, 2006



I. Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 12:15 pm.

Members present were Bill Ambrose, Syed Anwar, Sandy Babitzke, Chuck Chase, Gerald Chen, Jeanette Embrey, Robert Hansen, Richard Harland (substituting for Mo Cuevas), Harry Hueston, Mary Jarvis, Frank Landram, Joshua Lewer, Jessica Mallard , Amy Newman , Ian Peddie, Keith Price, Helen Reyes, Mark Riney , A Michal Roberts (substituting for Bonnie Pendleton), Duane Rosa and Nagalapura Viswanath.


II. University Marketing Plan

Dr. Lewer gave an update of the work the University Marketing Plan Committee is doing. He talked about work the group has done conducting student and faculty focus groups. An outside marketing group will also be doing some work in January. Dr. Lewer questioned senators on their perceptions of WT and perceptions they think the community has about WT.


III. Dr. O'Brien's Remarks

Dr. O'Brien thanked everyone for the work that went into the Grand Opening of the Fine Arts Complex and the Inauguration. Dr. O'Brien indicated that three major initiatives are going on right now.


In terms of the newly proposed teaching schedule for fall 2007, Dr. O'Brien indicated that departments will be asked to submit schedules for fall under the current teaching schedule as well as the proposed schedule.


IV. Core Curriculum Changes

Dr. Russell Lowery-Hart spoke about the WTAMU Core Curriculum Reform. WT is currently seeking proposals for inclusion of courses in the Core. Proposal forms are available on WTAccess and are due by the departments by December 1st . The Core Curriculum Committee will then analyze and hold hearings on the data in the spring and summer and then the changes will go to the Curriculum Committee. Recommendations will be made during fall 07. One reason for this process is that feedback from student focus groups and NESSE data indicates that students are not gaining what they should from the Core Curriculum. A recommendation out of the SACS process also indicated that WT should review and reform the Core. If a course is already in the Core Curriculum, a proposal form still needs to be completed . Any course that wants to be in the Core must complete a proposal.

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V. Approval of past minutes

The minutes of October 13th were approved.


VI. Faculty reception for the O'Brien's

Thanks were extended to Keith Price, Sandy Babitzke, and Jessica Mallard for the preparation and planning of the faculty reception. It was well attended by faculty.


VII. Inauguration/reinvestiture

The inauguration went very well.


VIII. Texas Council of Faculty Senates

The October 20-21 meeting was not attended due to the Inauguration. President Chase included the agenda so that we could see what topics were covered at the fall meeting. There will be one more meeting this academic year and senators are invited to volunteer to attend as representatives.


IX. Teaching Schedule update/input

The proposed teaching schedule was discussed as well as the requirement that departments submit two teaching schedules for the fall – one under the current system and one under the proposed schedule.


X. Strategic Plan data collection update

A committee including Robert Hansen, Mo Cuevas, Mary Jarvis, and chaired by Mark Riney is compiling and organizing a response to the Strategic Plan. Dr. O'Brien indicated he would like this information from us by the second or third week in November. Dr. Riney therefore needs to get more responses from various departments by November 3rd so he can compile responses for the November 10th faculty meeting. Email comments to “mriney”


XI. Faculty Emeritus policy recommendation

Dr. Anwar conducted research on the policies of thirty to forty other institutions on Faculty Emeritus policies. Many required that they have 20 years of service to their profession and 10 to the institution, but none required a two year waiting period after leaving the institution before being qualified (like WT does).


Dr. Anwar made a motion to delete the wording “who has been retired from the University for two years” from the fourth paragraph of the Policy on Emeritus Rank. The motion was seconded and unanimously passed. President Chase will submit this change.


XII. Promotion and Tenure

President Chase shared the responses he received on the question of whether supplementary notebooks should still be compiled for the tenure process. There are two distinct camps on this issue, one that feels the supplementary folders are essential, and one that feels they are not essential. Discussion ensued on this issue. President Chase suggested that as there is so much diversity in terms of the supplemental folders that perhaps it is an issue that should be determined at the departmental level. Senators should look over the comments, think about this issue, and be ready to talk more about it more specifically at the next meeting.


XIII. Teaching “Conference”

Dr. Anwar suggested having a half-day seminar where people who have receive teaching awards over the past several years could be recognized and able to share their ideas. Senators are asked to go back to their departments to see if faculty would be interested in such an event. Dr. Anwar indicated it would be a good idea to have faculty be able to share their expertise.


XIV. Other Business?


XV. The next meeting will be 11/10/06


The meeting was adjourned at 2:12 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Jessica Mallard

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