The Arts and Sciences Faculty Senate (ASFS), 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm, Zoom
Representatives Present: Robert Rupert (PHIL), Julie Lundquist (ATOC), Sebastian Casalaina (MATH), Paul Romatschke (PHYS), Mike Zerella (RAPS), Joe Bryan (GEOG), Andrew Cowell (LING), Annje Wiese (HUMN), Juan Pablo Dabove (SPAN), Stephanie Su (AAH), Shelley Copley (MCDB), Matt Jones (PSYC), Kieran Murphy (FRIT), Cecilia Pang (THDN), David Paradis (HIST), Christina Meyers (SLHS), Robert Parson (CHEM), Rebecca Flowers (GEOL), Svetoslav Derderyan (PSCI), Jennifer Schwartz (HONR), Robert Kuchta (BCHM), Aun Ali (RLST), Daniel Kaffine (ECON), Zachary Kilpatrick (APPM), Nicholas Villanueva (ETHN), Matthias Richter (ALC), Matthew Burgess (ENVS), Nichole Barger (EBIO), John Stevenson (ENGL), Liam Downey (SOCY), Irene Blair (PSYC), Lorraine Bayard de Volo (WGST), Elspeth Dusinberre (CLAS), William Taylor (ANTH), Christopher Osborn (CINE), Anthony Abiragi (PWR)
Representatives not present: Rebecca Wartell (JWST), Doug Seals (IPHY), Anastasiya Osipova (GSLL), Benjamin Brown (APS)
Also in attendance: James White (Acting Dean), Bud Coleman (Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs and Initiatives), Mitchell Ingraham (PWR), Mary Long (SPAN), Janet Casagrand (IPHY), Katherine Eggert (Senior Vice Provost and Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Planning), Suzanne Magnanini (FRIT), Daryl Maeda (Dean and Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education), Jeffrey Cox (ENGL), Nathan Pieplow (PWR), Dimitri Nakassis (CLAS), Pei-San Tsai (IPHY), Keller Kimbrough (ALC), Linda Nicita (PWR), Ann Schmiesing (Executive Vice Provost for Academic Resource Management), Anne Becher (SPAN), Avedon Raggio (GSLL), Garrett Bredeson (PHIL), Leonard Martinez (ENVS), Sandra Firmin (CUAM), Wei Zhang (CHEM), Julie Graf (MCDB), Helanius Wilkins (THDN), Bruce Bergner (THDN), Joe Jupille (PSCI), Laura Michaelis (LING), Cathy Comstock (RAP)
Katherine Eggert & Daryl Maeda, Common Curriculum Planning Committee
Katherine Eggert explains that the Common Curriculum Planning Committee started work last September and is finishing this academic year with a draft of learning objectives and outcomes. They are asking for feedback.
Daryl Maeda says the committee’s job was to sift through data from faculty and create a framework that could unite everything. In addition to faculty data, they were interested in knowing what students expect to learn, as well as data from employers/alumni to inform them about what the public expects CU Boulder students to be able to do after graduation. They also looked at examples of common curricula from institutions around the country.
The committee discussed whether it was possible to unite the diverse experiences undergraduate students have under a common framework of understanding, which led to the shaping and crafting of common themes and values identified throughout this process. The committee then drafted learning outcomes for each objective.
Eggert says the committee set out to answer the following question: What is the purpose and distinctive nature of a CU Boulder education? Eggert says students will gain an understanding of the interdependence of individual, societal and environmental wellbeing and of the necessity for stewardship and solutions to advance balanced and equitable futures for all. Throughout their CU education, students will cultivate skills and habits of mind that enable them to thrive and contribute to a thriving world.
The common curriculum consists of three habits of mind: discovery (being a life-long thinker), reflection (self-understanding) and engagement (participating in a diverse democracy). Essential skills include critical thinking, communication and information literacy.
Maeda says the common curriculum will not be a core set of classes that everyone takes. Eggert encourages everyone to think of it as something that can organize and bring structure to the educational experiences that already exist.
During the spring and fall semesters of 2022, the committee will conduct discussions and open forums with the CU campus, revise based on input, then submit a proposal to the Provost. This will be followed by faculty approval and finally, an implementation group.
Eggert includes two links in the chat: one to the website for common curriculum and another for the draft of learning objectives and outcomes. Eggert and Maeda ask that feedback be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A faculty member says their department recently completed program learning outcomes for ALC and asks if this will replace current program learning outcomes.
Eggert says the process will not be asking everyone to re-do program learning outcomes but will be asking how a certain degree from a unit and an Arts & Sciences degree as a whole map onto the common curriculum. The mapping may find gaps that will need to be addressed.
Maeda says this is building another layer onto structuring our understanding of what students are learning.
Rupert asks if it is possible that an exam or portfolio will be used to demonstrate that students have met these goals. Eggert says this is to be determined. Portfolios of work are perhaps the best way to assess, but then they would need someone to evaluate the portfolios. Eggert says the campus will trust that schools will be covering the learning objectives.
Acting Dean White is out of town, so Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs Bud Coleman is speaking in his absence.
Coleman thanks everyone for their work with faculty governance and congratulates them for a successful transition from the Arts & Sciences Council to the Arts & Sciences Faculty Senate.
Coleman points out that we are in the fifth semester of a pandemic. He thanks everyone for all their work to make accommodations and asks for more grace with colleagues, students and staff as we navigate fires, shootings and an ongoing pandemic.
The Dean’s search is underway. If you’ve had the opportunity to visit with candidates, please respond to the questionnaires that were sent out. Reach out to Coleman if you haven’t received the link.
Rupert thanks everyone for their hard work and welcomes two new members to the ASFS: Jeff Cox (ENGL) and Keller Kimbrough (ALC)
Rupert explains that a Qualtrics vote will be sent to the ASFS later. It was realized at the last minute that schools and colleges were supposed to vote on the rules referred to in the Qualtrics survey. This is being done in a bit of a hurry, but everyone should receive an email soon from the administrative support for Boulder Faculty Assembly. There will be more information in there about the poll and proposed changes. Look over the changes and consult with your faculty. If this body votes against changes, the process for reconciling that result with campus and system policy will be determined later.
ALC’s representative expresses reservations over the fact that this was already implemented and they are now asking for a vote. Rupert agrees and says this was presented to him as an effort at thoroughness. If this body votes against this, it will have to be taken seriously.
Vote on chair
Andy Cowell, member of ASFS executive committee, received one nomination, for Robert Rupert to serve another term.
Nominations remain open, so Cowell asks if there are any additional nominations today. There are none.
Cowell asks Rupert to communicate his interest in the position. Rupert says he has been involved in faculty governance for about 13 years. If elected for this current term, his goals will be to work with the incoming dean to move restructuring forward and do what he can to continue to support the work of standing committees. Additionally, it would be a good idea to revisit the bylaws to work out any kinks and re-vamp the ASFS website to improve communication with faculty.
Rupert is put into a virtual waiting room by the ASFS administrator. A poll is launched asking voting members of the ASFS to indicate their vote for ASFS chair, AY 22/23 and 23/24. Thirty-seven vote in favor of Rupert for ASFS chair, zero vote against and five abstain.
Reports from standing committee chairs
Budget Committee, chaired by Andy Cowell:
Cowell says the committee produced a faculty education document on the college budget. They worked closely with the dean and CFO to consult. The Committee had questions regarding administrative structure and hiring practices, which led to fruitful conversations.
The campus is moving to a model where net tuition revenue determines the amount of money each division receives. For the coming year, we have a “hold harmless” year- whatever people had in terms of budget this year and budget to cover other needs are covered. In addition, there will be two further years after next year in which those same supplemental funds will be held steady. This means that the effects of this net tuition revenue will be dampened and we won’t see significant changes in the near future. A&S does provide net supplement to some other units on campus. In principle, that’s okay. At the same time, A&S is paying $25 M or more. Important to think harder about: what are the principles behind those supplements?
The Provost will determine the amount of supplement after this three-year period. Cowell says this is a huge responsibility. As a college and campus, we need to press the provost about what principles will determine this.
Cowell says that either he or other members of the budget committee would be happy to go to divisional councils to explain and discuss all of this information.
A faculty member asks why A&S supports Engineering, a college that makes more money.
Cowell says that information will be released eventually. This model does provide transparency in that regard. Certain divisions in the college are in the red or black. It is important to ask: what are the principles of the subsidy?
At the college level, Cowell says the committee came up with a model on how to divide up money between the three divisions. Moving forward, those divisions will control their L&R funds. This means the divisions will have more budgetary discretion. The bad news is that the college is losing budgetary discretion.
To solve this issue, the budget committee is proposing money be taken out of the discretionary funds for the divisional deans and held at the college level to replace money that in the past would have been swept.
Cowell says the budget committee identified four priorities for the college budget: infrastructure, staff retention, held funds that can be used on a temporary basis and teaching professor salaries. This will be addressed with the money that is already in the system after the budget cuts. When the college receives new money, the budget committee believes the college should hire tenure track faculty. This means the college is still effectively in a faculty hiring freeze. The budget committee will come up with priorities for how to spend new money that might come in.
Curriculum Committee, chaired by Robert Parson
The committee spent the majority of its time examining courses nominated to satisfy US/Global Diversity requirements. They have have had discussions surrounding writing something to guide the departments on this process.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee, chaired by Cecilia Pang
Pang thanks committee members, Acting Dean White and Assistant Dean Patricia Gonzalez for their support. This semester, the committee chose winners of the second annual ASCEND Awards: Emily Frazier-Rath (faculty), Claudia Numan (staff), Irfanul Alam (graduate student) and Jordan Lee (undergraduate student). They also instituted their first DEI passion project award, which the Honors Residential Academic Program won.
Grievance Committee, chaired by Daniel Kaffine
The original goal was to take on the “professional affairs” addition since ASFS adopted a new set of bylaws. This includes issues arising from PRR and unintended consequences, primarily on staff, of policy changes proposed by ASFS.
The committee met with the staff advisory committee to discuss collaboration, but that got put on hold for a bit because of the Equal Pay for Equal Work Act and cases they had to address. The committee discussed preparations for the fall semester; expect to see cases related to EPA/more $$ in salary pool
Personnel Committee, Robert Kuchta speaking for chair Juan Pablo Dabove
The committee had nine members across three divisions, reviewed 26 cases this semester and a few more hire with tenure cases are trickling in.
Planning Committee, chaired by Shelley Copley
The committee focused almost entirely on issues related to teaching faculty, particularly to issues raised by the instructor task force in 2019. They focused on issues of workload and respect for teaching faculty and came to recommendations on various issues related to those topics. This will be discussed shortly.
Motion from the Planning Committee
The motion from the planning committee is to hold a vote to select among four options on the table. After the presentation, ASFS will come to a vote on whether or not to vote. If it carries, the further vote on the four options will be held by email. This will be a ranked choice vote.
Copley explains that the college has recently implemented new working titles for teaching faculty. Current instructors will be Teaching Assistant Professors, current senior instructors will be Teaching Associate Professors, and there will be a few Principal Instructors who will be Teaching Full Professors.
The Planning Committee discussed how to handle promotions within this new system. The Dean’s Advisory Committee proposed the idea of a personnel committee that runs parallel to the tenure track personnel committee. Their motivations were to parallel the tenure track promotions and increase respect for teaching/clinical faculty stemming from an arm’s length decision on promotions.
The Planning Committee moves that the Arts and Sciences Faculty Senate vote on the following options for evaluation of promotion cases for teaching and clinical faculty:
- Establish a Teaching/Clinical Faculty Personnel Committee (TCFPC) as a standing committee of the ASFS that would be constituted of experts in teaching and chaired by a Full Teaching Professor
- Establish a TCFPC as a standing committee of the ASFS that would be constituted of experts in teaching and chaired by the Chair of the existing tenure and tenure-track Personnel Committee; an Associate Chair of TCFPC, a Full Teaching Professor, would be appointed to share workload
- Split the existing Personnel Committee into Divisional Personnel Committees that would handle promotions in both the tenure track and teaching/clinical track
- Continue the existing practice of handling promotions within departments
Three recommendations came out in the most recent Planning Committee meeting. These include augmenting the description of process for teaching faculty promotions on the Faculty Affairs website, instituting emails from the college informing teaching faculty when they’re eligible for promotion and instituting a workshop in the fall for teaching faculty.
Before they can vote on the options, the ASFS must first vote on whether or not to take a vote.
ANTH’s representative feels as though it would be a mistake to take a few minutes of feedback and then move forward so close to the end of the last meeting of the academic year. This representative believes that on an issue such as this with divided preferences, a ranked-choice system where one option is much different from the other three might influence the outcome in an unfair way. The representative queried his department on this issue. All of the instructors and junior faculty were in favor of supporting option four to keep the process as it is. Ultimately, this would be additional service for our most over-worked demographic. This representative feels this requires more discussion.
Copley points out that this has been discussed during the February and March meeting. This idea came from the dean’s advisory committee, which is made up primarily of teaching faculty.
Rupert says they face a complex situation. They cannot postpone this definitely, but they can postpone indefinitely. This would kill the motion and in the fall, this can be brought forward as a new motion. ANTH’s representative makes a motion in the chat to postpone this indefinitely. CINE’s representative seconds. Rupert asks voting members of the ASFS to use the raised hand reaction to support the motion of postponing indefinitely. The motion carries by an overwhelming majority. Rupert thanks everyone for their hard work this academic year.
The meeting is adjourned at 5:02 pm.