ADADEMIC COUNCIL MINUTES
February 18, 2000


In Attendance: Dr. Francis, Dr. Lambert, Dr. Redington, Dr. Bissett, Prof. Anderson, Dr. Kingston, Prof. Rubeck, Dr. Henricks, Dr. Green, Dr. Lee, Dr. Hamm, Dr. Helvey, Dr. Thurlow, Dr.  McGregor.

The meeting was called to order at 2:35 P.M. Minutes of the December meeting were approved.
 

FACULTY GOVERNANCE REPORT

Council discussed the outcome of the meetings with the Faculty Governance subcommittee.

Recommendation one remains as stated with the exception of a change in terminology in regard to the three different categories of faculty.  The document will be edited to reflect these changes before it goes out in final form to the faculty.

Recommendation 4 was changed in regard to new language. No changes have been made in content, but the recommendation now has a more general approach. Council accepted the revision unanimously. Changes will be reflected in the final document.

Recommendation 7 was discussed in regard to representation and rotation schedule for Academic Council. After discussion, Council voted to give representation to academic support staff with faculty rank, add a position for a representative from the School of Communication, and change the number of at-large members from five to four. Elections will also be for three years. A rotation schedule was established for future Academic Council elections. This change will be taken to faculty as a by-law change at March meeting.

Recommendation 9 will be changed only in wording.

Recommendations 10-14, the Curriculum Committee, were recommendations where the governance committee did not have a unanimous recommendation.  Therefore, three models were presented for discussion before Academic Council. All complied with the principles of faculty election and faculty leadership. After much discussion, a model similar in make-up to the present Curriculum Committee was approved. The composition of the Curriculum Committee will be revisited in the future.

Recommendations 15-21 were discussed in regard to language change.   These recommendations were affirmed with change.

Dr. Henricks addressed Recommendation 25 which deals with Research and Development. Under Research and Development, duty number 4 was removed since it is supported through other means.

Recommendation 27 was discussed in regard to the status of the Teacher Education committee. It was reported that this committee does not have to be a standing committee. Because of its required structure, the Teacher Education Committee will be moved to the status of an Advising Committee.

In recommendation 28, criteria for distinguishing between a standing and advisory committee was proposed. After discussion, Council approaved the criteria submitted.

Other standing committee changes were presented. All changes were approved.
 

REPORT ON BUDGET PROCESS

Dr. Hamm reported on the budget process. Two fora have been held.   Budget models were presented at the last forum. Dr. Hamm expressed his satisfaction with the process and with his inclusion on the Budget Committee.

President Lambert discussed the larger budget context. In particular, he discussed the tensions among raising tuition, raising salaries and increased hiring. The College will need to explain the value added that will come with any increase in tuition.

There was a discussion of whether more hires or increased salaries should be priority.
 

SALARY FOR 2000-2001

Both Provost Francis and President Lambert said that merit should be an important component of faculty salary increases. Provost Francis presented two possible scenarios for salary increases. The first gives an equal percentage increase for all and a percentage for merit increases. The second would give a set dollar amount increase for all and a percentage for merit. If the second scenario is chosen it will mean that employees across the entire campus would receive a set dollar increase in salary. This will correspond to a higher percentage increase for those with the lowest salaries. Council members expressed support for increasing the salaries in this way (particularly for the benefit it will afford those who work in the lowest paid jobs at Elon) but also noted that faculty salaries needed to stay competitive at each level, (i.e. full, associate, assistant).
 

NEW BENEFITS/HEALTH CARE ADVISORY COMMITTEE

President Lambert discussed his decision to have one health care advisory group reporting through Vice President Whittington.  Broad representation from the entire campus community will be solicited and the committee will elect its own chair. Council members noted that health care issues are of great interest to the faculty and that decisions should not be taken without the participation of the health care advisory committee.
 

"3 OR 1" DEAN DECISION

President Lambert asked for discussion of the "3 or 1" Dean structure.  Council members discussed pros and cons for each model and noted that there are supporters for both options among the faculty. With either model the role of the Chair and Department will be enhanced.
 

RESPONSE TO THE WINTER TERM MEMO

Provost Francis responded to a Council request for clarification on winter term. Winter term is not required. Provost Francis noted, however, that student retention rates (from freshman to sophomore year) appear to improve substantially when freshmen attend winter term.   Currently, first year students are expected to attend winter term and are asked to speak with the Associate Dean to discuss the advantages of winter term if they are not planning to attend.
 

DISCUSSION OF ON-LINE COURSES

Dr. Helvey asked that a campus-wise discussion be conducted on the broader issues associated with on-line courses. This should include a discussion of if and how on-line courses fit at Elon College. Council discussed this item and suggested that Curriculum Committee take up this issue and that a Numen-Lumen discussion be held on the topic. Provost Francis suggested that a team from Drake University come to campus to give a presentation on their on-line course program.
 

IMPACT OF CHANGING FROM PROFESSIONAL STATUS TO TENURE-TRACK

Provost Francis asked for comment on policies related to switching from a professional status position to a tenure-track position. Once a faculty member does switch to a tenure-track position, it is proposed that:

     1.     if the annual salary supplement has been chosen, it would terminate;

     2.     if a sabbatical had been completed, no action would be taken;

     3.     if a sabbatical had been chosen, but not completed, the faculty member would receive
             remuneration in the amount of  $2,000 per year for each year she or he spent in the
             Professional Status rank.

Council discussed this issue and generally agreed to the logic of this proposal.

More general issues about the transition from a professional status position were raised by Council. Further discussion may take place in the future.
 

INITIATION OF A DISTINGUISHED SCHOLAR AWARD

Provost Francis shared a proposal from the Faculty Research and Development Committee (FR&D) to establish a Distinguished Scholar Award.   Council members supported the idea enthusiastically. Council members suggested that FR&D take ownership of this award. Provost Francis will ask FR&D if they would consider an award committee made up of their own members.
 

SPRING REPORT UPDATE

Dr. Green gave an update on the spring report.
 

ELECTION UPDATE

Professor Rubeck gave a report on spring elections. Divisional representatives to Academic Council will be elected after the March 3rd Faculty Meeting. Elections for Promotions, Tenure and Professional Status Committee will be held at the April faculty meeting.  Returning members are Drs. Midgette, Barbour, Brumbaugh, Pugh.  Elon College By-laws require that at least four members shall be full professors, at least four shall be tenured and at least two shall be professional status.
 

REQUEST FOR PRIORITIES

Professor Anderson reminded Council that the Faculty will be asked for input on priorities soon. In addition, standing committee reports are due to Academic Council by March 30, 2000.

The meeting was adjourned at 6:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Laura Roselle Helvey/Linda Martindale


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