January 9, 2015

MEMBERS PRESENT: Barraco (by phone), Burrell, Cotter (New Brunswick Faculty Liaison), Dy, Gould, Meggali (by phone), Oliver, Otto, Puhak, Swalagin (Executive Secretary), Thompson, Velan

MEMBERS EXCUSED:  Boikess, Borisovets, Joshi, Langer

ALSO ATTENDING: Edwards (New Brunswick Chancellor), Rabinowitz (Representative to the Board of Governors), Spiegel (Representative to the Board of Trustees)

The regular meeting of the University Senate Executive Committee was held on Friday, January 9, 2015 at 1:10 p.m. in the Executive Board Room of Administrative Services Building-III, Cook Campus.

1. Chair’s Report 

Senate and Executive Committee Chairperson Ann Gould called the meeting to order at 1:13 p.m. Gould's Chair's Report included comments on the following:
Discussion and comments related to the Chair's Report included the following topics:
2.    Secretary’s Report - Ken Swalagin, Executive Secretary of the Senate
3.    Administrative Liaison

Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Richard Edwards presented an administrative report, which included comments on:
[Later in the meeting, Edwards made additional comments related to recent emails to the Rutgers community regarding deaths of students, as well as the decision to email reports of crimes that occur off-campus in surrounding New Brunswick wards.]

4.    Standing Committees

Committee Reports:

University Structure and Governance Committee (USGC) Response to Charge S-1309 on Senate Election Procedures  - This report was not yet available at the time of this meeting. USGC Co-chairs Jon Oliver and Robert Puhak said the USGC should be able to have the report ready in the next several days, and would send it to the executive secretary to circulate to the Executive Committee members for review before docketing it for Senate action or introduction at the upcoming Senate meeting. [Note: Unforeseen complications with the report and issue prevented finalization of the report in time for docketing at the January Senate meeting.]

Issues/Proposed Charges:

Proposed Charge to University Structure and Governance Committee (USGC) on The State of Shared Governance at Rutgers, submitted by Jon Oliver, USGC Co-chair: The following proposed charge, submitted by USGC Co-chair Jon Oliver, was discussed:

Consider the state of shared governance at Rutgers including its strengths and challenges. Recommend any changes based on our aspirant AAU and Big 10 peers and on the basis of the foundational element of "Robust Shared Governance, Academic Freedom, and Effective Communication" in the university strategic plan. Consider how such an improved model of shared governance could assist the university in its mission to become a tier 1 institution in the AAU.

Oliver said that the intent is to improve how the Senate serves an active role in the functioning of shared governance at Rutgers. The Executive Committee asked that the language of the charge be refined so that it can be issued with a deadline of January 2016.

Proposed Charge to University Structure and Governance Committee or Executive Committee  on Amending the Research, and Graduate and Professional Education Committee (RGPEC) Standing Charge: The Executive Committee discussed the fact that the RGPEC's standing charge currently states that "The Senior Vice President for Research and Graduate and Professional Education shall be asked to serve as an ex officio member of this committee." Since the 2010 creation of the RGPEC, the title of the position formerly held by Michael Pazzani has changed to Senior Vice President for Research and Economic Development, and is now held by Chris Malloy. The standing charge therefore requires amendment. The Executive Committee decided to act on this matter after the upcoming RGPEC meeting, at which Christopher Malloy, Senior Vice President for Research and Economic Development, will be in attendance, and will be asked if he or another administrator would replace Pazzani.

Proposed Charge to Academic Standards, Regulations and Admissions Committee (ASRAC) on Modifying Academic Calendar and Exam Times for Online Courses
: The Executive Committee discussed the following proposal, submitted by James Massachaele, Executive Vice Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) -New Brunswick:

"I write in my capacity as Executive Vice-Dean of SAS to ask the Senate to consider a proposal for making an adjustment to the University's exam schedule. A number of faculty in SAS have asked for an improved process for scheduling final exams in online courses. Currently the University makes no provision for this. Many faculty who teach online courses feel that in-person final exams are the best way to ensure the integrity of the exam. To make the scheduling of final exams for online courses more effective, we propose that the University set aside and advertise certain time slots as standard exam times for online courses. You can find details of the proposal on the attached document. Please let me know if you need more detail or if there is a different avenue I need to pursue to have the proposal considered by the Senate."

Following discussion, ASRAC Chair Martha Cotter volunteered to consult with Instruction, Curricula and Advising Committee (ICAC) Chair Natalie Borisovets regarding the ICAC's ongoing discussions of best practices for administration of exams for online courses, and that Cotter and/or Borisovets will address this issue at the following Executive Committee meeting.

5.    New Business

There was no new business.

6.    University Senate Agenda for January 23, 2015

The January 23, 2015 Senate meeting agenda was discussed and established.

7.    Old Business
Proposed Merger of Newark and Camden Law Schools: Ken Swalagin was asked to contact Newark and Camden Law Schools Acting Deans Ron Chen and John Oberdiek to facilitate meetings with Gould, Cotter, and USGC Co-chairs Jon Oliver and Robert Puhak, at which the merger timeframe could be determined.

8.    Adjournment

The meeting adjourned at 3:22 p.m.

Minutes written and submitted by,

Ken Swalagin
Executive Secretary of the University Senate