Academic Council Minutes
Friday, April 16, 1999

Council Met on Friday, April 16, 1999 at 2:30 p.m. in the History Seminar Room.

Present:  Dr. Barry Beedle, Dr. Bob Blake, Dr. Ann Bolin, Dr. Steve Braye (presiding),
              Dr. Brian Digre, Dr. Julianne Maher, Dr. Buck McGregor, Dr. David Nawrocki,
              Prof. Fred Rubeck, Dr. Debbie Thurlow.

Approved the minutes of the March 19, 1999 meeting.

Discussed Academic Council spring retreat scheduled for May 8, beginning at  9 a.m.

Discussion of Proposal for Faculty Development Funding
     Professor Beedle asked how the funds would be distributed to the end users. For
     example,    would they be first distributed to deans according to a formula and then
     be distributed to faculty at the discretion of the deans? He expressed a desire that
     at least some of the faculty development funds would be available to every Elon faculty
     member without requiring a dean's approval for their use.

     Dr. Maher recapped how the present faculty development funds are distributed and
     indicated that she has voiced Dr. Beedle's concern in meetings with the deans. She
     indicated that the deans have expressed willingness to publish guidelines for use
     by their faculty, describing the policies for using faculty development funds.

     Dr. Blake asked about the ability to carry unused funds over to the next year in order
     to fund travel to a more distant or more expensive meeting. Dr. Braye asked that the
     amount allowed to be carried forward be at least $500 and asked for additional
     clarity on how this will be handled. Dr. Maher indicated that she will give broad dollar
     amounts to the deans and that they will communicate guidelines to the faculty.
     The General Studies component will be under the control of Dr. Tom Tiemann,
     director of General Studies.
 

Discussion of the Academic Technology Initiative
          [Point numbers in this section refer to the Academic Technology Initiative Draft
           that was distributed to Council members with their agenda packet.]

     Dr. Maher explained the Initiative as follows:
           Points 4 and 6 would be new additions to Academic Computing.
           Points 1, 4, and 6 combined represent approximately $100,000 in total which will
                 continue from year to year. Points 2, 3, and 5 are directly related to each other
                 and comprise the effort to make the freshmen year more technologically
                 intensive and help new students become more comfortable with using the
                 College's technology. The G.S. Program will be asked to set up a task
                 force to start more pilot projects in the fall.
            Point 7 will improve media access. All of Elon's Internet access now goes through
                 Guilford, and this needs to be changed.  A single T-1 line will probably not be
                 sufficient.
            Point 8 affects the registrar, Datatel, and registration.
            Point 9 will be an investment in the computer labs, beginning with the Model
                 Center lab.
            Point 10 will provide $120,000 for computers for individual faculty members and
                 $50,000 for classroom data projection equipment.

     Dr. Braye pointed out that some of the $607,000 in the initiative is not new money. It
     includes items from various existing budgets plus some year-end money. However,
     points 1 through 7 are mostly new money.

     Dr. Blake asked how the proposals would be chosen. Dr. Maher said that this would
     be done by a subcommittee of the Dean's Council, including some faculty representation.
     She also clarified point 1 by explaining that some of the funded proposals can be much
     less than $5,000. The $5,000 represents the upper limit for these proposals.

     Dr. Maher stated that we need more support that is specifically for students. That is
     the intent of point 6. For example, we need more information handouts for students,
     and we need a Power Point specialist who is accessible to students.

     Dr. Bolin suggested that Elon 101 be better used for introducing students to technology.
     Dr. Maher pointed out that two hours of the freshman orientation would be devoted to
     technology and the library.

     Dr. Braye suggested that Academic Council request feedback from ATAC regarding
     the Kaludis report. He believes more dialog is needed between Council and ATAC.

     Dr. Digre indicated that there should be greater opportunities and greater expectations
     for faculty to learn technology.  He feels that there should be many small grants,
     designed to get all faculty up to speed, including those whose grant requests
     might seem less sophisticated than others -- in fact they might be the ones who need
     it most. Drs. Digre and Bolin felt that a large number of summer stipends might be the
     best use of these funds.

     Dr. Maher summarized the discussion and indicated that she might appoint an Academic
     Council member to serve on the review committee for the Academic Technology
     Initiative.

Discussion of Department Chairs Subcommittee Report
     Dr. Braye indicated there was very little difference between the current version and
     the last draft that was seen by Council. He also said that some of the items in the
     report have already been started. Additional course releases and summer stipends
     have already begun.

     Dr. Digre suggested asking Dr. Maher to report back to Council next year regarding
     the implementation of the report.

     Council agreed to accept the report in its present form and to present it to the faculty
     but to remind everyone that the items in the report are in no way guaranteed to happen.
     The report represents guidelines, not formulas.

Discussion of Graduate Programs
     Dr. Braye asked the members to consider how much time and energy should be
     committed to graduate programs.

     Prof. Rubeck indicated that a subcommittee chaired by Dr. Maher had met with
     President Lambert. Dr. Lambert had said that we should all get together and decide
     on the appropriate place for graduate programs in Elon's future.

     Dr. Maher said that President Lambert had asked the Long-Range Planning Committee
     to draft guidelines to help in making these decisions in the future. There needs to be a
     general forum to discuss this issue, preferably before the Senior Staff retreat on June 1.
     We should not make any decision on any individual graduate program proposals until
     we have placed the issue into a larger context that will help in arriving at the best
     decision.

      Dr. Braye suggested discussing this issue at the next (May) faculty meeting. He will
      discuss this possibility with Dr. Francis.

Discussion of Academic Council s Spring Report to the Faculty
     The draft report was discussed and accepted with minor corrections.

     It was mentioned that there is still some lack of clarity as to who is and is not a member
     of the faculty.

     Council discussed the fact that Shared Governance needs representation for non-teaching
     faculty.  It was suggested and approved by consensus that Jim Donathan and Connie
     Keller be asked to represent the non-teaching faculty.

Discussion of the Committee Assignment Worksheet
     Dr. Bolin presented a slate of nominees for the various college committees. She then
     explained the lengthy and careful process of sorting out the many who had volunteered
     to serve on various committees. Each volunteer was given a committee nomination
     that was either his/her first choice or second choice, and diversity issues were carefully
     considered throughout the process.

     Council unanimously approved the slate presented by Dr. Bolin s committee.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Buck McGregor



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