GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY
MINUTES OF THE FACULTY SENATE
JANUARY 17, 1996
PRESENT: Blaisten-Barojas, Boileau, Censer, Chung, Conti, Crockett, Eagle, Elstun, Gantz, Hamburger, Hammond, Kaplan, Lont, Metcalf, Mose, Ruth, Sanford, Sofer, Spikell, Tabak, Taylor, Thomas, Tongren, and Wright.
ABSENT: Albanese, Black, Buckley, Carty, Clements, De Nys, Fuchs, Fulmer, Hurt, Jensen, Johnson, Manchester, Manne, Mellander, Perry, Potter, Robbins, Rossini, Sage, Todd, Torzilli, and Zoltek.
GUESTS: Randy Lytton (Individualized Studies), Cathy McCormick (MAIS), Cameron Quinn (Law), and Jennifer Lee (Faculty Senate).
I. Call to Order
The Chair, Anita Taylor, called the meeting to order at 3:03 PM.
II. Approval of Minutes
The minutes of the December 6,1995,meeting were approved as distributed.
Ms.Taylor announced that the Presidential Search Committee held an open
forum at the Law School on January 6, with another scheduled for February 5
at 2:00 in the University Learning Center Ballroom.Faculty, students, and
others are encouraged to attend and may address questions and comments to
the Committee. Those who wish to speak at the meeting should call 993-8699
to register. No closing date has been established for receipt of
Ms.Taylor announced that Mr.Scimecca had met with members of the
administration regarding Summer school salaries. The anticipated
implementation date of the policies approved at the November 8, 1995,
meeting is Summer,1997.
Ms.Taylor corrected the December 6, 1995, meeting announcement regarding
faculty salary increases. The governor's recommendation is unclear regarding
1996-97 salaries. A 5% raise is proposed for 1997-98.
Mr.Sanford announced that implementation of electronic distribution of
Senate minutes and agendas is delayed pending upgrade of the computer in the
Faculty Senate Office.
IV. Unfinished Business
A. Dean's List Requirement Change
Ms. Lont MOVED for the Academic Policies Committee that the following change
in the recognition policy be reflected in the University Catalog (Page 53,
1995-96 undergraduate catalog):
FROM: Students who take at least 12 credit hours in a semester and earn a
grade point average of 3.500 or higher for courses attempted that semester
merit placement on the Dean's List.
TO: Students in degree status who take at least 6 credit hours in a
semester and earn a grade point average of 3.500 or higher for courses
attempted that semester merit placement on the Dean's List.
Mr. Spikell expressed support for the change, as many students in the
Graduate School of Education are part-time, and their accomplishments can be
recognized if the motion passes. Mr. Hamburger suggested requiring a 3.50
GPA in twelve hours accumulated over several semesters; however, Mr. Lytton
reported that this had been considered and was not workable from an
administrative point of view. In addition, Mr. Lytton expressed the value
of the idea that students should be honored for performance during the
semester they achieved a high GPA.
The motion PASSED by voice vote.
B. Fall 1996 Calendar Modifications
Ms. Elstun reported that the Academic Policies Committee had approved some
changes in the Fall, 1996, calendar. This action is reported to the Senate
as an Information Item.
V. New Business
A. Senate Committee Reports
1. Executive Committee
Ms. Taylor distributed an Executive Committee working paper which, in final
form, will serve as an interpretive document for part of Section 1.3.2 of
the Faculty Handbook. The working paper addresses procedures to ensure
adequate consultation with the Faculty Senate when organizational changes
are planned. Ms. Taylor presented the paper to the Senate as an information
item for discussion during New Business.
2. Academic Policies Committee
Ms. Elstun reported that the Committee will meet from 3:00 to 4:30 in
conference room 243 of the University Learning Center on January 23,
February 6, February 20, March 5, and March 19. Good standing for athletes
(Ms. Todd) and policies regarding retaking of courses (Mr. Crockett) are the
scheduled topics for the first meeting.
3. Faculty Matters Committee
Mr. Boileau reported that the Committee will meet in February to discuss
consequential post-tenure review. Such review has been mandated by SCHEV.
At present, the Committee is expected to recommend approval for use of the
annual salary/merit review for this post-tenure review requirement. The
Committee is considering recommending certain policies for those few faculty
who receive an unsuccessful review. The Committee is trying to balance fair
procedures with a necessity to make efforts at remediation before current
procedures for dismissal are applied. Mr. Coffinberger, Mr. Fletcher and
Ms. Tyer are assisting the Committee on this matter.
3. Organization and Operations Committee
Mr. Spikell reported that all items before the Committee have been referred
to other committees except a request from the School of Nursing regarding
Senate representation when an elected Senator affiliates with another unit.
4. Facilities and Support Services Committee
Ms. Taylor reported for Mr. Zoltek that at least two incidents of building
access difficulty during the Winter holiday break have been reported. Mr.
Zoltek requested that others contact him if they are aware of additional
access problems. Mr. Spikell pointed out that similar problems have
occurred during other periods when the university was closed.
5. Nominations Committee
Ms. Kaplan asked whether the vacancy on the Minority Affairs Committee had
been filled. The Committee will look into this matter.
B. Other Committees
1. Faculty Senate of Virginia
Ms. Hammond reported that she will attend the Faculty Senate of Virginia
meeting with SCHEV on January 27, 1996.
VI. Other New Business
Ms. Taylor opened the floor for discussion of the Executive Committee
Working Paper regarding procedures to ensure adequate consultation when
organizational change is planned. The bracketed items indicate points of
disagreement in wording or policy. Ms. Taylor reported that the Executive
Committee is scheduled to meet with the Provost on January 31; this document
will be the primary item on the agenda.
Mr. Tongren suggested that procedures enacted in the document be applied
retroactively to the implementation of the present Faculty Handbook. Mr.
Thomas questioned the wisdom of compressing the timetable for consideration
of the Institute for Educational Transformation. This results in an
exception to the document's stipulation in its first application. Ms.
Elstun suggested deleting the clause, "If the development...about the
proposed change," in the last paragraph on the first page. Ms. Blaisten-
Barojas recommended that the document contain a reference to how the new LAU
will be represented in the Faculty Senate.
Ms. Taylor pointed out that when approved, this document will be issued as
an attachment to the Faculty Handbook. She also said that the proposal for
the Institute for Educational Transformation is currently being prepared
using a draft copy of this document.
The meeting adjourned at 3:46 PM.
James F. Sanford
Secretary, Faculty Senate