January 14, 2000
Visitors in attendance: Deborah Barton, Christine Austin, Jenna Brown
The meeting was called to order by President Arthur Best at 12:10 p.m. Since Executive Secretary, Deborah Grealy, was not in attendance, approval of the minutes from the November 19, 1999, meeting was postponed.
Jack Donnelly, Chair of Academic Planning, was called on to lead discussion of the Honor Code. In the last Senate meeting, a version of the Code was presented as notice of motion. A revised draft (dated January 12, 2000) that included changes made in response to faculty concerns at that meeting and during the past week was distributed to Senators. In response to input from Arthur Best, wording had been changed to redirect the focus from prohibiting "behavior that could be construed as misrepresentation" (in the previous version) to "intentional misrepresentation or deception". Jack Donnelly moved to endorse the University of Denver Honor Code in its revised form.
During discussion, Gordon Von Stroh asked about student input. Deborah Barton clarified student involvement in the process through the Honor Code Student Board, GSAC (Graduate Student Association) and student organizations. This is a consensus document between faculty, students and staff.
Diane Waldman voiced concern about the last sentence in the first paragraph (Intent to misrepresent or deceive may be inferred from the facts and circumstances surrounding any act charged as a violation of this Honor Code.) that seems more a punitive or legislative statement rather than a statement of policy. Robert Urquhart also did not see the reason for the enforcement statement. Deborah Barton stated that legal counsel has recommended a statement leading to the procedural document. Les Goodchild supported leaving the statement in. The living document can be changed at a later time. Legal advice will over-rule recommendations of the Senate. The last statement seems logical. Other Senators supported moving all statement of enforcement policy into the enforcement documents. When the question was called, the Senate voted unanimously to strike the last sentence in the second paragraph and move enforcement guidelines to other documents.
Antonia Banducci voiced concern about the statement that "Every member of the University community ... must insure that he or she does not commit any intentional misrepresentation ..." After several suggestions and real efforts to avoid negative language, along with a lively debate about the significance of agreements and insurance in an ethical setting, the motion was passed that new wording will read: "Every member of the University community ... must not commit any intentional representation..." Ved Nanda suggested wording that describes the Provost's discretion as "his or her sole discretion" to remain gender-neutral for future administrative leaders. In addition, under the Authority section "such descriptions do not authorize or condone conduct prohibited by or inconsistent with this Code." Ved Nanda moved to table the discussion (approved by majority vote), but discussion continued and the first line of the document was edited to read: "All members of the university community are entrusted with the responsibility of observing certain ethical goals and values ..." There was unanimous approval.
During discussion, Sandy Dixon asked about enforcement for administrators. Responses clarified that they will fit under either faculty or non-faculty staff guidelines. Les Goodchild mentioned that the American Association of University Administrators also offers ethical guidelines for administrators. Deborah Barton mentioned that policy and procedures relating to administrators can be written into the procedural guidelines, too.
An additional point was raised concerning whether the document covers or should cover conduct by University Trustees. After brief discussion, it was decided that this topic was beyond the scope of the notice of motion and should be raised at some future date if any senator wishes to do so.
Jack Donnelly reminded the Senate that it does not have decision-making power. It only makes recommendations. Further suggestions can be presented to the Board of Trustees if they are not incorporated into the document. [The January 14, 2000, revision of the Honor Code did include all recommendations from the Senate floor.]
Leon Giles, Chair of Financial Planning, offered a report of a meeting with Craig Woody (Vice Chancellor for Business and Financial Affairs) and Janet Allis (Associate Provost - Budget and Planning Office) during the previous week. By meeting with the Senate sub-committee before going to the Trustee's table, this meeting marked a distinctive change in procedure in the budget consideration process. With a projection for Fall enrollments (based on present applications) and a restructuring of financial aid, a significant tuition increase is being proposed to address infrastructure issues and supply additional funds for the Provost's office. The proposed tuition increase is higher than in the past several years. Faculty concerns will be taken to the Board of Trustees sub-committee next week.
In response, Bill Zaranka remembered an 11% tuition increase in Dan Ritchie's first year as Chancellor. He recounted that in recent years tuition increases have been just above the consumer price index. Comparisons have been made between DU and cross-admit Colleges and Universities. We have been on the lower end of the tuition range and our average increases have been below other schools, too. In addition to projected revenues, the projection of higher application pools will allow higher selectivity in acceptance of new students.
Les Goodchild expressed a concern for Athletic Budget deficits. The full Senate has not received a report on the Athletic short-fall projected during the Division I ramp-up period. Susan Sadler suggested that this information may be available through the Faculty Athletic Committee.
Susan Sadler, President-Elect, led a discussion of issues involved with faculty response to the present ad hoc process for Core curriculum development and a possible forthcoming proposal for changes in the Core Curriculum. A briefing paper (to be posted as an electronic Faculty Forum) was provided to Senators as a basis for the discussion. This briefing paper details the history of governance procedures related to the Core that were approved by Senate vote in 1992 (as a "Proposal for a Vice Provost Administrative Model and Curriculum Governance System"). Consideration of the 1995 "Core 2000" model followed this Vice Provost model and policy statement. The Senate voted and recorded a faculty vote after a notice of motion was forwarded to the Senate from the Undergraduate Council. This Senate vote was reported to the Undergraduate Council. After a vote by the Undergraduate Council, a recommendation was forwarded to and endorsed by the Provost.
It was noted that the 1992 statement of principles for approval and administration of the Core has become out-dated in the sense that it makes numerous references to aspects of the University's administrative structure that are not consistent with the University's current structure. The Provost agreed that the document no longer accurately represents our structure, and agreed with a suggestion that developing a new version of the document would be helpful. The Provost expressed a concern, however, that a long period of work on new procedures might cause an undesirable delay in putting new Core courses and a new Core organization into place.
Discussion then centered on which members of the faculty ought to participate in a vote regarding changes in the Core. The following ideas were expressed, among others: 1) a record of view of faculty in units that will be most involved in the Core is highly desirable; 2) an issue that must be decided is whether a defeat of the proposals in any single unit should preclude adoption of proposals that receive a majority endorsement overall; 3) participation in the approval process by faculty members from units that might in the future participate in the Core may be desirable; 4) allowing for abstentions in any voting may be desirable.
It was the sense of the Senate that on the basis of the discussion, the Executive Committee and the Academic Planning Committee should work on updating the curriculum governance guidelines with the cooperation of the Provost and the Undergraduate and Graduate Vice-Provosts.
The meeting was adjourned at 1:35 p.m.
- Respectfully submitted by Susan Sadler and Arthur Best.