September 2012 Minutes

Faculty Senate Meeting


The Faculty Senate met on Thursday, September 20, at 3:40 pm in Reynolds 205.  Senators in attendance were Scott White, Sam Riner, Jan Duke, Dan May, Tim Schroeder, Shannin Schroeder, Svetlana Paulson,  Stacy Clanton , Karen Ferneding, Denise Moseley, Chrisanne Christensen, Mary Armwood, David Sanson, Vikram Bhadauria, Hong Cheng, Abdel Bachri, Jennifer Logan.

The following senators were absent with proxies: Pat Clanton served for Neelie Dobbins.


Dr. Trey Berry, Paul McLendon

Visitors included

 Brad Stout, Sandra Smith

Call to Order

Pres. S. White called the meeting to order at 3:40 p.m.  Proxies read.

Approval of Minutes

Motion to approve the minutes by S. Schroeder, A. Bachri seconded.  The motion passed.

Special Orders of the Day

Elections to Standing Committees of the Senate

Senators self-selected onto the 3 committees by college.  Pres. S. White then formally appointed these Senators to the respective committees as volunteered.  The committee members for each are listed below.  Handbook Committee: J. Logan, K. Ferneding, S. Clanton, D. Sanson.  Budget Committee: S. Riner, D. Moseley, T. Schroeder, C Christensen.  Parking Appeals Committee: V. Bhadauria, Neelie Dobbins, J. Duke, M. Armwood.

Faculty Senate President Report

  • Pres. White reported that the Faculty Senate officers have begun meeting monthly with the VPAA over lunch to discuss faculty issues/concerns.  Topics of discussion include issues such as faculty hiring, recruitment, facilities, student retention, and the expansion of programs.
  • At a recent university board of trustees meeting, administrators from SAU and SAU Tech expressed concerns regarding the upcoming performance funding requirements.  Pres. White explained that we must be mindful and sustain our current programs to ensure long run growth for the university.
  • As AQIP continues to involve the efforts of many faculty and staff, there is an increasing emphasis on “action research” in which the focus in on the process rather than the product.  Accreditation allows us to perform for performance funding and provides an opportunity for growth.

Senator S. Clanton expressed his concern at a statement made in the Board of Trustees meeting that “no state had gone to a performance funding system without 100% of the funding formula first.”  Pres. White agreed to look further into the matter.           Senator S. Clanton also explained that having attended several AQIP events, many other schools involved are community colleges and other 2 year institutions.  These institutions tend to have little if any shared governance.  One of the things we as the Faculty Senate must be careful about is making sure that we, as a faculty governing party, remain involved in the decision-making channels of the university.

Appointment of Senate Liaison to University Standing Committees

Appointments were provided via email and are available on the SAU website.  S. Clanton moved to accept the faculty appointments for the standing committees of the Senate as well as the University standing committees.  M. Armwood seconded the motion.  The motion passed.

Unfinished Business

Report from Ad Hoc Committee on Academic Integrity

K. Ferneding reported the following

  • There is an ongoing discussion regarding the coverage of basic information on academic integrity in Freshman Seminar classes.
  • There is a new database for academic integrity violations in the VPAA office.
  • Five modules of the Academic Integrity course are now available for review.
  • The committee needs feedback and guidance from the senators regarding how to progress.

T. Schroeder moved to accept the committee’s report as presented.  J. Duke seconded the motion.  The motion passed.

Turn-It-In Update

S. Clanton reported the following

  • SAU has agreed to fund a 1-semester trial of Turnitin.  S. Clanton has been selected to serve as administrator during the trial period.
  • This Turnitin program is more robust than Safe Assign, with a much larger database and supportive services.
  • Turnitin can act as a deterrent for some students because it allows the student to submit the document and review the results.
  • Senators should encourage their colleagues to use the program and provide feedback so that a recommendation can be given to the administration at the completion of the semester.

Discussion ensued regarding Blackboard, maintenance concerns, and support services.

University Ethics Policy

Mr. Roger Giles was not present at the meeting and will provide his report at the meeting in October.

New Business

University Administration Report

  • Dr. Berry reported that the university is currently looking at properties in Texarkana to expand our programs.  More information will be provided at the meeting in October.
  • Mr. McLendon reported that the Fringe Benefits Committee is currently looking into health insurance options.  The state insurance plan was not cost effective after a thorough review of the policy.  The committee is still considering various option to find the best deal for SAU.

As May Come Before the Senate

Merit Pay and Promotions – The issue of merit pay and promotions was tabled from a previous meeting.  Discussion ensued on how to proceed.  S. Clanton moved to take the issue off the table.  T. Schroeder seconded.  The motion passed.  J. Duke motioned that the issue of pay raises outside of the cost of living adjustments be referred to the Budget Committee for further discussion.  D. May seconded.  The motion passed.

The next meeting will take place on Thursday, October 19, 2012 in Reynolds 205.


The motion to adjourn was made by T. Schroeder and seconded by J. Duke.

Submitted by Jennifer Logan, Faculty Senate Secretary, October 19, 2012.