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University of Missouri-St. Louis 2004 Fall Faculty Meeting October 29, 2004

University of Missouri-St. Louis

2004 Fall Faculty Meeting

October 29, 2004

 

Introduction

  • As you know, I joined UMSL on August 16. I started as most faculty members do, with the new faculty orientation. I also participated in the teaching assistant orientation. I would like to especially recognize and thank Peggy Cohen, Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning for organizing and holding the orientations for faculty and teaching assistants  
  • Although I didn’t make it to the picnic welcoming students to the university this fall (because I was on my way back from my niece’s wedding in Georgia), I understand that new student orientations for both our first time freshmen and women, graduate students, and transfer students went very well. Many thanks to Vice Provost Curt Coonrod, John Kundel, Associate Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management, orientation coordinator Joe Flees, and the rest of the Student Affairs staff for organizing and holding the student orientations.
  • I learned a lot about UMSL during the new faculty orientation, and I’m still learning. As I give this report at the end of my 11th week on campus, I’m aware that many of you know much more about UMSL than I do, but I’ll try to bring you up to date on what I do know, and to answer questions up to the limits of my knowledge.

 

New Faculty

  • UMSL welcomed 43 new full time faculty members this fall, plus two new deans (Lucille Travis, Nursing, and Keith Womer, Business) and the new Provost (me.)
  • These new full time faculty colleagues include endowed professors, tenured and tenure track faculty, and non-tenure track faculty. This is not a net increase of 43 faculty, however, since many of them are replacements for colleagues who have retired or otherwise left UMSL. I am in the process of determining the size of the actual net increase in faculty this fall. This has turned out to be complicated in terms of both definitions and data collection. I have most of the data now, and am in the process of analyzing and trying to fully understand those data. I expect to report this information to the Faculty Senate and the campus soon, but regret that I haven’t completed this analysis in time to report it at this meeting.

 

Student Enrollments

  • Overall enrollments this fall, on and off campus including our advanced credit students are 15,512. This is 0.6% less than last year’s fall enrollment of 15,605.
  • We also welcomed 454 new first time freshmen and women students, 1,704 new transfer students, 510 new graduate students, 41 new Optometry students, 8,422 continuing students, and 750 students who were readmitted after dropping out for some period of time.
  • Total on-campus headcount enrollments include 11,881 students (not including the advanced credit students). Our student FTE total is 7,878.
  • Enrollments this fall are down 1.6% from our fall 2003 headcount enrollments of 12,073. We need to do better in our recruitment and especially our retention efforts. I’ll say more about that in a minute.
  • This fall’s data also show that statistically 60% of UMSL students are female and 40% are male.
  • 15% are African American, and 5% are members of other minority groups. International students comprise 4% of our student body.
  • 90% of our students are Missouri residents, and 85% of our students come from the St. Louis metropolitan area.
  • 60% of our students receive financial aid.
  • 41% of our students are non-traditional undergraduates, defined as 25 years old or older. Including both graduate and undergraduate students, 48% of our students are over 25. Nearly all of our students are employed either full or part time.

 

Graduate School 

  • So far this fall, the Graduate School has processed tuition remission and 25% of the basic health insurance to 305 Graduate Assistants. The growth of the GA awards is summarized in the chart below:

 

Year

RAs

TAs

Grad Instr

Total

Tuition Awards

1998-99

61

104

0

165

207

1999-00

82

127

1

210

240

2000-01

105

134

1

240

309

2001-02

134

134

1

269

347

2002-03

155

138

0

293

348

2003-04

145

141

2

288

344

2004-05

168

136

1

305

pending

 

  • Sixty-seven graduate students attended the August orientation sponsored by the Center for Teaching and Learning. The overall mean rating of all the presentations was 8.54 (out of 10 points), and the majority of participants’ comments indicated that they valued the information and resources presented at the orientation conference.
  • The Graduate School has agreed to undergo the System’s pilot program review process this year. Since the pilot is based on a quality-improvement process, the dean requests faculty feedback on the Graduate School’s activities.

 

Accreditation and Assessment

  • We are now beginning to prepare for our next North Central Association Higher Education Commission accreditation process. Associate Provost and Graduate Dean Judith Walker de Felix will be leading our accreditation efforts. Over the next two years we will be documenting the learning objectives of each program and assessment activities to measure how well students are meeting them. The Graduate Dean has invited active Faculty Senate participation in the accreditation process. Information about the North Central Accreditation is on the Faculty Senate and Academic Affairs web sites.
  • The College of Education recently completed the site visit for its NCATE and DESE reaccreditation processes. The site visit went well, and we are very optimistic that they will be fully reaccredited in both cases when we hear from these organizations in several months.

 

Faculty Opportunities for Leadership Development

  • We participate in two University of >Missouri faculty development programs. The New Faculty Teaching Scholars program provides opportunities for relatively new faculty members to improve their teaching and develop as faculty leaders. 11 first through fourth year faculty members are participating this year.
  • The Leadership Development program offers the opportunity for academic leaders including department chairs, directors, and assistant and associate deans. 6 of our colleagues are participating this year.

 

Research Activities

 

Funding

 

  • External funding for the fiscal year 2004 (July 1, 2003 – June 30, 2004 was over $23 million. 
  • External funding in the first quarter of FY 2005 (July 1, 2004 – September 30, 2004 was about $12 million.
  • Internal funding included 12 UM Research Board awards totaling about $225,000, 20 UMSL Research Awards totaling over $200,000, and 55 UMSL Small Grant awards totaling $50,000.
  • The ORA distributed about $1 million in Grant Incentive Funds to the units.

 

Technology Transfer

 

  • Seven disclosures were made, four patent applications were submitted, and one patent was granted.
  • The first commercialized product was introduced to the market.  It is expected that the university will receive $250,000 in royalty income this year.
  • UMSL scientists won the system-wide Entrepreneur of the Year award and the St. Louis Business Journal’s Technology Transfer Award.
  • UMSL and Center for Emerging Technologies hosted the Regional SBIR/STTR Tech Partnership Conference. 
  • UMSL’s Center for Emerging Technologies won the US Department of Commerce’s Best Incubator in the Nation award.

 

Building Research Capacity

 

  • UMSL recruited over 30 tenured/tenure-track faculty.  Among them are an endowed professor in plant sciences with a joint position in Danforth Plant Sciences Center; a position in Physics and Astronomy and Center for Neurodynamics. 
  • Efforts are underway to recruit Directors for Center for Molecular Electronics and Public Policy Research Center.  These recruitments will improve productivity of these centers.
  • Efforts are underway for the development of a 6-acre lot on the site of former Normandy Hospital for additional research and technology transfer space needs.

 

Collaborative Activities

 

  • UMSL along with 11 other research universities in the state formed the Research Alliance of Missouri (RAM) with the goal of creating a conducive environment for collaborative research among scientists in universities and industry.  The consortium held two conferences:  (1) a technology transfer conference was held on the campus of Washington University in November 2003 and; (2) a nanosciences conference held on the campus of UMSL in May 2004.  Each conference was attended by 65-80 researchers from across the state.   
  • CORTEX, a consortium in which UMSL is 14% equity holder, had a stellar year with $38 million in grants and contracts and tax relief.  It has acquired six properties and is in the process.

 

Academic Grievances

  • The Collected Rules on faculty grievances

(http://www.umsystem.edu/ums/departments/gc/rules/grievance/370/010.shtml) states

 (l) In October of each year, the Academic Grievance Officer (or designee) shall report to the faculty governance body of the campus the status of all grievances filed during the preceding year and any grievances from prior years where the process has not been completed. This report shall not include names of the parties or the nature of the grievance but shall include the date the grievance was filed and its current status. The status report will indicate the current stage of the grievance: informal resolution stage, before hearing committee, hearing committee report filed with Chancellor, determination made by Chancellor, appeal to President, determination made by President. The report may include an explanation of an unusual delay that has occurred or any other matter that the Academic Grievance Officer (or designee) believes would be helpful.

  • Two faculty grievances have been filed during the past year. One was resolved through the informal process. The other is at the hearing committee stage.

 

Academic Integrity

  • 200.020.B.1 STANDARD OF CONDUCT “Academic dishonesty, such as cheating, plagiarism, or sabotage.  The Board of Curators recognizes that academic honesty is essential for the intellectual life of the University.  Faculty members have a special obligation to expect high standards of academic honesty in all student work.  Students have a special obligation to adhere to such standards.  In all cases of academic dishonesty, the instructor shall make an academic judgment about the student’s grade on that work and in that course.  The instructor shall report the alleged academic dishonesty to the Primary Administrative Officer.”

 

  • The following summary documents academic dishonesty cases reported to the Office of Academic Affairs.

 

  • 200.020.B.1.a CHEATING- (i) use of any unauthorized assistance in taking quizzes, tests, or examinations, (ii) dependence upon the aid of sources beyond those authorized by the instructor, (iii) acquisition or possession without permission of tests or other academic materials, or (iv) knowingly providing any unauthorized assistance to another student on quizzes, tests, or examinations.

 

  • There are 23 procedural cases involving incidents of cheating by undergraduate and graduate students kept in the Office of Academic Affairs.  Of the 23 cases, 6 cases have been investigated and documented since June 1, 2004.

o Of the 6 cases, 5 cases were undergraduates and 1 case was graduate.

o In 4 of the 6 cases, the students were found guilty of cheating and received a failing grade for the work in question.

o Of these 4 cases, 3 students were sanctioned with writing research papers that looked at academic dishonesty and professional ethics in their future professions or receive a “hold” on their Winter 2005 registration for courses if not completed within the time allotted.

o In the remaining case, the student was sanctioned with a warning of the seriousness of the violation. 

o Currently, the Office of Academic Affairs is investigating two incidents of academic dishonesty involving cheating.

 

  • 200.020.B.1.b PLAGIARISM- (i) use by paraphrase or direct quotation of the published or unpublished work of another person without fully and properly crediting the author with footnotes, citations or bibliographical reference, (ii) unacknowledged use of materials prepared by another person or agency engaged in the selling of term papers or other academic materials, (iii) unacknowledged use of original work/material that has been produced through collaboration with others without release in writing from collaborators.

 

  • There are 63 procedural cases involving incidents of plagiarism by undergraduate and graduate students kept in the Office of Academic Affairs.  Of the 63 cases, 27 cases have been investigated and documented since June 1, 2004.

o Of the 27 cases, 19 were undergraduates.

o 1 of the 19 undergraduate cases was dismissed due to lack of sufficient evidence to warrant an academic dishonesty charge. 

o Of the remaining 18 cases, students were found guilty of plagiarism and received a failing grade for the work in question by the professor and/or TA that initiated the charge.

§ In addition to receiving a failed grade on the work in question, 4 students also failed the course.

o 6 students also received warnings on the seriousness of academic dishonesty and their violation.

o 11 students were also sanctioned to provide evidence that they discussed the plagiarism charge and strategies for avoiding plagiarism with the Center for Academic Development (Writing Lab) before being allowed to register for Winter 2005 courses.

o One student was found guilty of 2 counts of plagiarism in two separate classes and sanctioned to attend the Center for Academic Development (Writing Lab) to discuss strategies to avoid plagiarism as well as to rewrite one of the plagiarized works and write a reflective essay on what the student has learned.  This sanction has to be completed before the student is allowed to register for Winter 2005 classes.

o Interesting to note, the remaining student did not respond to his academic dishonesty charge and received a “hold” on registration until such time that the student complies with the Office of Academic Affairs.

o The remaining 8 cases involved graduate students.

o In all 8 cases involving graduate students, the students were found guilty of plagiarism and received a failing grade on the work in question by the professor.

§ Of the 8 cases, 3 students failed the courses as well.

o Of the 8 case, 3 students received warnings on the seriousness of the violation

o 2 students were sanctioned to provide evidence that they discussed the plagiarism charge and strategies to avoid plagiarism with the Center for Academic Development (Writing Lab).

o 2 students were suspended for one academic semester.

o In the remaining case, the student was found guilty of two counts of plagiarism in two separate classes and was dismissed from the program.

o Currently, the Office of Academic Affairs is investigating one incident of academic dishonesty involving plagiarism in which the student also admitted to plagiarizing an additional paper.

 

  • 200.020.B.1.c SABOTAGEunauthorized interference with, modification of, or destruction of the work or intellectual property of another member of the University community.

 

  • Currently, the Office of Academic Affairs has not investigated any incidents of sabotage since 2003 in which the student was found guilty of sabotage and was suspended from the University for one academic semester.

 

Program Proposals

  • The status of program proposals that the campus approved follows:

 

Type

Program

Sponsor

Status

New

Bachelor of Arts in Theatre & Dance

CoFAC

At System for review

New

Bachelor of Liberal Studies

CAS

Approved by CBHE 10/04

New

Master’s Adult & Higher Education

CoE

Approved by Curators 9/04

New

Ed.S. Educational Leadership

CoE

Approved by Curators 9/04

New

Ed.S. School Psychology

CoE

Approved by Curators 9/04

New

PhD Metropolitan & Regional Studies

CAS

Not approved by VPAA

 

Charter Schools

  • The two charter schools sponsored by UMSL underwent their mandatory fourth-year review last summer. They were notified of our intent not to continue to sponsor them. However, pressure from legislators has led the administration to participate in finding another sponsor for one school where we have academic relations.  

 

Enrollment Management, Recruitment, and Retention

  • As many of you know, our retention statistics are not what they should be. We lose many students for a variety of reasons each semester who do not return the following semester or year. Some of these student leave for personal reasons that are temporary, and eventually return and graduate. Some leave to transfer to other institutions. Some simply never complete their degrees. In many cases, actions (or inaction) on the part of staff and faculty at UMSL have contributed to our inability to retain these students. We need to increase our retention and graduation rates significantly in order to maintain and increase our overall enrollments, as well as to serve our student population better. Our drop in enrollments in fall 2004 from fall 2003 (-1.6%) has cost the campus about $1 million in projected funding. Increasing our enrollments through retention of students will have the opposite effect, increasing our revenues, improving our reputation, and ultimately leading to increases in enrollment, retention, and graduation rates.
  • About three quarters of our students transfer to UMSL from community colleges and some transfer from other institutions. The other quarter of our students come to us as freshmen and women. We need to retain both groups of students through improved student services and student life, better advising, and excellent teaching.
  • We have taken several positive steps to improve student retention:

§ Creating the position and hiring John Kundel as Associate Vice Provost of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management.

§ Improving student services, especially including Financial Aid.

§ Holding a series of Key Communicators workshops to determine actions that can be taken immediately and throughout this year to improve communication with students and student experiences.

§ Student Affairs staff have been working very closely with the Faculty Senate Committee on Recruitment, Admissions, Retention, and Student Financial Aid to develop retention strategies and improve student services as quickly as possible.

§ Engaging Charles Schroeder as a retention consultant to work with UMSL over the next 18 months to improve student retention. He will come for his first consultation in November. With his help, we will be able to develop a retention plan much more quickly than otherwise, and to begin implementation of the plan this year, with an expectation of results in increased retention between May 2005 and Fall 2005. A retention team is now being appointed with representation from Student Affairs and each College to work with Charles Schroeder in this process.

§ More steps will be taken to improve services to students. Retention activities are very action oriented; there will be reports, but positive action, not reports, is the purpose of our retention activities.

 

Strategic Initiatives

  • As part of the $12 million rate funding increase appropriated to the University of Missouri this year, $4 million was set aside for Strategic Initiatives on each campus, that had to be matched by the campus. We proposed as our first priority $1 million in new scholarship funding and $400,000 in new faculty position funding as our second priority.
  • We received an allocation of $500,000 for scholarships and fellowships as our share of the strategic initiative funds. We’ll match this with $500,000 of the equity adjustment funding we allocated for scholarships. This will be distributed approximately at least 25% for graduate students and up to 75% for undergraduate students, including both transfer students and new freshmen and women. This allocation was approximately 15% of the total funds distributed. These new scholarships from our equity adjustment and strategic initiatives will help us increase our assistance on both merit an need bases.
  • The University of Missouri Libraries also received $500,000 in strategic initiative funds, to be matched by all four campuses, of which $61,400 is our share. These funds will go for electronic journals, data bases, and other electronic resources in the life sciences that will be available to all four campuses.

 

Summer Operations

  • We are now in the process of implementing some of the recommendations of the Ad Hoc Summer Operations Committee. I am working with Vice Chancellor Jim Krueger to revise the summer budget allocations in a short term response to committee recommendations. Data will be collected and analyzed for all summer school changes made in 2005, for use in future decision making.
  • In relation to the longer term issues and recommendations of the Ad Hoc Committee, I plan to appoint a new ad hoc committee to consider and analyze the possibility of year round academic operations. This committee will be charged with analyzing the UMSL particulars, and with researching operations at other universities for innovative ideas. I hope to have a report from this committee in late 2005 or early 2006.

 

Evening College 

  • Faculty membership for the committee on evening programs has been elected by the Senate, and the last appointed members are in the process of being invited and appointed now. I expect them to begin meeting very soon, and to report in December with recommendations on how we might implement the Academic Advisory Committee’s recommendation last spring that the Evening Collegeshould be eliminated, while preserving evening programming and the ability of UMSL students to receive their degrees by attending entirely in the evenings. We expect that whatever changes are made will be completed by Summer 2005.