University of North Carolina at Asheville


Minutes, November 5, 2009




Members:   C. Bell, R. Berls, L. Dohse, G. Ettari, V. Frank, G. Heard, J. Konz, B. Larson, A. Lanou,

                  K. Moorhead, L. Nelms, E. Pearson, K. Reynolds, M. Sidelnick; J. Fernandes.


Excused:    G. Boudreaux, B. Haas, D. Pierce, L. Russell.


Visitors:      G. Ashburn, L. Friedenberg, S. Haas, E. Katz, K. Krumpe, R. Pente, J. Pierce, A. Reagan,

                  A. Shope, T. Tieman.




I.       Call to Order, Introductions and Announcements

         Dr. Dohse called the meeting to order at 3:16pm and welcomed Senators and guests. 


II.      Approval of minutes

         The minutes of October 8, 2009, were approved with editorial corrections.    


III.     Executive Committee Report

         Dr. Lothar Dohse reported for the Executive Committee. 

         Finance and Campus Operations Annual Report

         Vice Chancellor John Pierce reported on Finance and Campus Operations.  The report is available:


         Vice Chancellor Pierce responded to the following questions:

·      Ms. Nelms asked if there were existing positions that are unfilled in his area.

o    There may be one position that is budgeted that has not been filled.   

·      Dr. Sidelnick asked about the pros/cons to the Craft Campus project. 

o     The administration took a hard look at the finances at the landfill site.  While the methane was free, the operational cost of bringing it out of the ground and providing it for the campus was not free.  There were also costs associated with having a remote location.  With the exception of moving the site, the project is moving forward at this point.  . 

·      Dr. Reynolds said the cool thing about having it at the landfill was the use of the methane.  Is there still going to be this tremendous use of electricity to power the kiln? 

o     There will be some use of natural gas.  When we looked at the cost of the natural gas compared to the cost of the methane, it was much more efficient to use natural gas.  Natural gas will be piped into whatever site is chosen. 

·      Dr. Dohse asked if there would be a construction site on a dormitory soon.

o     Governors Village will be renovated to accommodate 100 beds.  The cost of renovating Governors Village is approximately $40K per bed versus $50K in a new dorm setting.  A committee is looking at having a new dorm located on the old facilities site. 

·      Dr. Larson referred to the money losing operations that were shut down (Convenience Store, Leadership Asheville, Central Stores) and asked to what extent mission considerations were part of that discussion.    

o     They factored in.  Consideration was given to bringing in someone from the outside to run the Convenience Store.  Losing Leadership Asheville was a more difficult decision.  We were happy to have Leadership Asheville continue within the university but there was a fund raising conflict.  It was not acceptable to have, every year, a $50-60K subsidy to Leadership Asheville and to have fund raising with a lack of clarity.  It was a mutual understanding that Leadership Asheville needed to be a stand alone 501c3 to be viable.  He continues to serve as the university representative on the Leadership Asheville Board.    

·      Dr. Larson commented on the improved relationships between UNC Asheville, General Administration and NC state government.  How did this happen?

o     It is good old common sense.  It is building relationships, paying attention to specifics, being honest, being transparent and being open.  General Administration has been very supportive with the land use money to acquire the Rhoades property, the Zeis internal loan, and receiving counsel on the continuing budget last year. 

Dr. Dohse thanked Mr. Pierce for his report.


         Report from Faculty Assembly

         The Faculty Assembly report has been postponed until the December meeting. 


         Meeting with the Chair of the BOT

         Dr. Dohse, Ms. Nelms, Dr. Heard, Dr. Konz and Dr. Fernandes met with Mr. James Buckner, Chair of the Board of Trustees, for dinner last month.  Dr. Dohse thanked the Provost for inviting the group to a dinner as it was a pleasant way to hold a discussion.  He also thanked the Chair of the Board of Trustees for speaking to them.  Dr. Dohse said he asked the Chair two questions:

·      Is the role of the Board beginning to change -- becoming more proactive? 

o        Mr. Buckner’s response was yes, the Board is changing – but not its role.  They are going into a more committee-structure and plan to do more work.  He does not see the Board as being any different from the past in terms of its decision making. 

·      Why did the Board remove the phrase “Small by choice” from the university Mission Statement?

o        Mr. Buckner response was that the Board felt the phrase was not appropriate.  “Small by choice” was not a mission and those words should not be in the statement.  He does not see the Board as being proactive in making the university larger. 

o        Dr. Konz quoted Mr. Buckner: “It is not our mission to be small.”  Size is a means for delivering the mission but it is not our mission to be small.  That is why it was removed.    


The Senate discussed its relationship with the Board.  Dr. Dohse said years ago the Chair of the Faculty Senate addressed the Board of Trustees for 5-10 minutes during its meetings.  The current Chair of the BOT does not believe that is appropriate.  The contact person that he likes to work with is the Chancellor.  Dr. Dohse said in his experience, the role of the BOT changes as the personalities on the Board rotate.  It is the Senate’s responsibility to be proactive. 


         Senior Grades/Academic Calendar

         Dr. Dohse serves on the Academic Calendar Committee.  A student representative also sits on the committee.  Four criteria have emerged for the Spring calendar for next year.  He requested feedback, particularly on the fourth criteria.

·      Have each semester be 15 weeks long (State requirement) and have a final exam week.

·      Equally represent all days of the week.

·      Include a reading day. (Strongly endorsed by students)

o     Because there is an official Monday holiday during each semester class instruction will end on a Monday.  The following Tuesday is a reading day and exams start on a Wednesday.

·      Have senior grades due after Final Exams (Strongly endorsed by faculty)   

o       As a consequence, the Commencement Program would list the graduates and degrees but it might not include Latin honors.  It may or may not include Departmental Distinctions, depending upon when final grades are submitted.  Students could still be recognized in the ceremony the day before commencement. 

o       This year, final grades for seniors will be due as early as possible.  Ms. Shope will want the grades submitted the day after final exams are taken. 


IV.     Faculty Welfare and Development Committee Report

         Dr. George Heard reported for the Faculty Welfare and Development Committee.

         FWDC has been discussing ideas on delivering the curriculum, specifically reassigned time and professional development leave.  

Committee Reassignment

         The Senate approved the following committee reassignment: 

·      Dr. Lanou will replace Dr. Trautmann on the ILS Topical Cluster Subcommittee for term 2009-12.


         First Reading

         The following documents were distributed for First Reading:


         FWDC 2:  Revision to UNC-Asheville Phased Retirement Policy

                        (Revision of SD2098S; Faculty Handbook 2.11.2)


         General Administration now requires that universities mandate the number of years that phased retirement is permitted.  Previously it was allowed to the faculty member’s discretion of one to three years.  FWDC 2 mandates that phased retirement will be for a three year period. 


         FWDC 3:  Proposal to change term of Faculty Athletics Representative

                        (Faculty Handbook 10.5.11)


         Currently, the faculty athletics representative serves a three year term with the possibility of one reappointment.  FWDC 3 extends the term to four years.  Dr. Pearson spoke with the Athletic Director and she supports the proposal.  


V.      Institutional Development Committee/University Planning Council Reports

            Ms. Linda Nelms reported for Institutional Development Committee and University Planning Council.

         First Reading

         The following documents were distributed for First Reading:


         IDC 2:      Proposal to Establish a New Degree Program in Anthropology

         IDC 3:      Proposal to Eliminate the Institutional Effectiveness Committee

                        (Revision of SD4002S; Faculty Handbook


·      Institutional Development Committee (IDC)

            The Role of IDC in Assessment

               Dr. Friedenberg met with IDC where she gave a presentation and discussed assessment and accreditation.  IDC received affirmation that faculty governance in the form of the IDC will be involved in oversight of both the policies and the processes associated with the university assessment. 


·      University Planning Council (UPC)

            UPC discussed the dashboard (a form of assessment) and accepted a proposal to use a color system to indicate the status of goals:  green = has achieved goal; red = has not achieved goal; yellow = close to achieving goal.  UPC will have annual meetings with the work group leaders who set these goals to get a better understanding of what they are doing and to provide input.  

            The Provost gave a presentation on assessment and accreditation.  She will report on this during the administrative report today.


VI.     Academic Policies Committee Report

         Dr. Chris Bell reported for the Academic Policies Committee.

         APC Review of 2009 Perceptions Survey   


APC Report of 2009 Faculty Perceptions of ILS


In Spring 2009 APC distributed a survey to full and part time faculty with the intention of measuring perceptions of the Integrated Liberal Studies (ILS) curriculum (see Senate Document SD0808F).


It is APC’s intention to work towards the goal of improving ILS and general education at UNC Asheville in collaboration with the ILS Oversight Committee (ILSOC). APC is charged with ultimate responsibility for curricular changes and development, but APC recognizes that ILSOC has primary responsibility for overseeing the development and administration of ILS.


On October 2nd and 21st 2009, APC Chair Chris Bell met with Archer Gravely to discuss the statistical significance of the findings of the 2009 survey. Archer Gravely performed a number of statistical analyses of the results. First, he created correlation matrices. Next, he identified statistically significant correlations.


The following conclusion was drawn:


1)       Respondents who expressed satisfaction with particular elements of the program were more likely to express satisfaction with others, and vice versa.  Psychologists have a name for this -- the Halo Effect -- and it was clearly present in survey responses.


On October 22 the Academic Policies Committee met to discuss the survey results.


The following conclusions were drawn:


1)       There is a notable level of concern about the clusters and the variation in faculty collaboration that seems to exist today, everything from loose or non-existent confederations to highly formalized links. APC recognized that the clusters were initiated intentionally with broad expectations to invite faculty involvement. APC further recognizes that defining a set expectation for faculty coordination is problematic. If the expectations for coordination are set too high, the clusters will generate an unreasonable amount of work for faculty. The “Food for Thought” cluster sets a high standard, but may not be practical for all groups. Still, most respondents indicated that the clusters needed more management, oversight and clearly stated expectations. APC recognized that ILSOC has also identified the clusters as the component of ILS with the most need, and that ILSOC committee members are developing criteria and procedures to tighten this element of ILS.

2)       Concern about the complexity of ILS relative to the general education system it replaced may be related to the clusters requirement. The clusters requirement is by far the most complex of the various ILS components (choices restricted to course categories, science course meeting cluster requirement can't also be used to meet lab science requirement, etc.).

3)       The writing intensive requirement has perhaps had the biggest impact on classroom practice at the university, insofar as it encourages teachers to engage students on several levels through their writing process. At the same time, this application process was repeatedly cited for its difficulty. Streamlining the application process, especially for renewals, should help alleviate these concerns.

4)       While the overall response rate of the survey was good, APC had concerns about the low participation rates in the survey for junior and part-time faculty.

5)       The survey was rich in useful criticism, and these critical comments demand response and consideration. APC recognizes the need to “close the loop” by addressing specific faculty concerns through a range of communications (senate minutes, formal reports, etc.) that outline ILSOC and APC responses and initiatives.

6)       The survey revealed some discrepancies between perception and reality. For example, the numbers of petitions for ILS components has reduced dramatically, and transfer students are having fewer problems completing requirements, yet respondents consistently identified these areas as problematic. APC will need to disseminate information to the university about how things are changing in the course of ILS implementation and development.

The following actions steps were established:


1)       APC has invited ILSOC chair Patrick Bahls, cluster coordinator Kim Brown, and Dean of University Programs Ed Katz to meet and discuss specifically how ILSOC is addressing the issue of clusters and to help formalize the response to the faculty.

2)       APC will continue to monitor expressions of faculty concern regarding ILS complexity.  Evolution of the cluster requirement and greater familiarity with ILS may resolve the complexity question.  If not, future action should be discussed.

3)       APC will administer the ILS Perceptions Survey spring semester every other year.  APC will consider adding incentives to encourage participation (e.g., a drawing for a consumer electronics product limited to those who have responded to the survey).

4)       APC commends the Cluster Coordinating and the Writing Intensives Committees for initiating efforts to address the concerns raised by the survey and encourages them to continue doing so in the future.

The faculty perceptions survey results are available at:[1].pdf

VII.       Administrative Reports 
            Academic Affairs 
Assessment Process
Jane Fernandes discussed three documents related to assessment and reaccreditation.  Highlights of the discussion follow:

      Third draft of the university-wide Student Learning Outcomes, and Assessment FAQs

·      We expect all of our students to achieve all of these objectives but we do not expect each department to address each of the objectives.  This suggests that we are going to have to be very attentive to the ways that the ILS program achieves these objectives to ensure that all of our students achieve these.

·      In the interest of brevity and to not call attention to a specific area of the university, edit the last sentence in the Preamble to read:  “These provide the basis for our student learning outcomes.” 

·      Outcome 2: edit to read: Students develop mastery of a specific major and an understanding of the connections among disciplines.  

·      Outcome 6: “Students engage in lifelong learning.”  For assessment purposes, think about learning outcomes as being manifest over the lifetime of our students.  We can work with Alumni and Development to assess careers, but it will eventually be necessary for departments to follow alumni more closely than they do now.   

o       Dr. Friedenberg said Student Affairs is involved in important kinds of learning.  Part of the lifelong learning emphasis might be assessable now through the co-curriculum outside of the classroom.  It can be used with two populations of students: current students through co-curriculum activities, and then through graduates.  Perhaps there should be two clauses to better address what we do. 

·      The verbs as are broad and generic as possible so that departments can tailor them to their particular environments. 

·      It will be difficult to assess lifelong terming in the life of our students.  It is a methodological problem.  Be careful that we can show that students have the foundation that lasts a lifetime. 

o       Dr. Friedenberg has met with the Alumni Office to refine the procedures for the distribution of the alumni survey.  It has different items on it that would be germane to this outcome: continuing formal education, informal education, participation in workshops and conferences, and continuing education credits for professionals.  We are not going to track people for their lives.  The goal is to move to 3-5-10 year cycle – rotating across different cohorts of graduates so we can get a ten year cycle on graduates.  

o       Dr. Fernandes said the purpose of the outcomes is to get information that will help us to improve our programs.  We must derive the outcomes from the mission.  We have learned through this process that we will end up with something that reflects the learning in the mission.  Outcome 5: “Students demonstrate that they are responsible, engaged citizens” may cover lifelong learning.  It is possible that we do not need Outcome 6.   

o       Dr. Friedenberg noted that there are substantive differences in Outcome 5 and 6.  There are people outside of Academic Affairs who feel strongly about Outcome 6 and she would be uncomfortable making any further commitment here, now, to strike it.  

·     Dr. Friedenberg said the goal is, after today’s meeting, to distribute the third draft to the campus community.  Senators have an opportunity to give feedback today that could change what is sent to the rest of the campus.  Dr. Fernandes added: if Senators are generally comfortable with the document, it would go to the campus and also to the Executive Committee.  The Senate committees could discuss it further.  Her hope is that APC will bring it forward as a document to the Senate for consideration in February. 


            Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Timeline

            Dr. Larson reported on UNC Asheville’s preliminary preparations for the reaffirmation of accreditation process with SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.)  He has learned that UNC Asheville is a Track B Institution (a school that has at least one masters program) and the timeline has consequently moved forward five months.  Several activities are scheduled during spring semester.  New to the process is a Compliance Audit.  This formal draft statement of where we stand with regard to the various dimensions of certification for SACS will tell us what we need to work on for the formal report. 

            The Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) process will start in 2011.  A QEP is a carefully designed and focused course of action that addresses a well defined topic or issue(s) related to enhancing student learning.  This will connect with the Student Learning Outcomes.  It will have many opportunities for people to be involved and share their ideas. 


            Student Government

   Mr. Stephen Haas reported for the Student Government Association.

            No bills have passed in SGA Student Senate, other than the commonplace bills, which include: resignations, appointments, and allocations.   


            Dr. Dohse asked for clarification on two issues from the SGA Academic Affairs (AA) Committee. 

            Mr. Haas explained that AA is looking at the consistency of the senior requirements overall between departments.  It is also looking at how the advising system works for faculty so that they can address student concerns.

            Beginning next month another member of the SGA will report to the Faculty Senate as Mr. Haas will begin student teaching. 

            Dr. Fernandes noted that it was important for SGA to send student comments on the Student Learning Outcomes to Dr. Friedenberg and herself soon. 


IX.     Old Business

         There was no Old Business.


 X.     New Business

         There was no New Business.


XI.     Adjourn

         Dr. Dohse adjourned the meeting at 4:45pm.


Respectfully submitted by:        Sandra Gravely

                                                Executive Committee