Wickert provides update at Faculty Senate

Senior vice president and provost Jonathan Wickert addressed concerns faculty raised during the April 7 virtual meeting of the Faculty Senate. With 76 participants taking part through Zoom, Wickert said the return of faculty, staff and students to campus is not imminent. 

"We are not anywhere near that point," he said. "No date has been set for when the remote-work approach is going to end."

Campus events -- for example, conferences and other large gatherings -- have been canceled through May 31, Wickert said.

Planning is underway should a shelter-in-place order be issued.

"If we have to move to a minimal campus footprint, what does that look like for our research?" he said. "We have been working on the definition of essential research and the principles that we would bring to making those decisions."

Associate provost for faculty Dawn Bratsch-Prince said she is collaborating with the Faculty Senate executive board, department chairs and academic deans on spring course evaluations.

"We have developed an eight-question survey that will be used for all courses, whether they started online or not," Bratsch-Prince said. "The course evaluations will not be included in any review process unless a faculty member wants to reference them." 

The survey will ask for an overall rating of a course, whether the instructor provided timely feedback, thoughts on the online transition, and what was most and least helpful about the course.

Faculty will receive a survey after the semester to provide their input on the transition and virtual instruction.

Other business

Senators will take action at the April 21 meeting on several proposals:

  • An update to the military service policy requiring instructors to excuse veteran or military service obligations of up to two weeks without penalty. For obligations that last longer than two weeks, it is the student's responsibility to communicate with their adviser and instructor on potential accommodations before their absence.

  • An update to the schedule change policy during Period 2 of the fall and spring semesters. Students who want to add or change course sections or adjust course credit hours need signatures from their adviser and course instructor, but to drop a course, only the academic adviser’s signature is needed. No fee is charged for adds, drops, section changes or administrative schedule changes.

  • A policy for calculating the GPA of home-school applicants. Only grades assigned by an independent entity -- not parents or guardians -- are factored into the cumulative GPA.  Twelve semester credits of college-level coursework or at least five Carnegie units of high school-level work -- or a combination of both -- must be completed to establish a GPA. A GPA is not a requirement to be considered for admission. 

  • A change to the early reinstatement policy allowing each college to set procedures for juniors and seniors requesting early reinstatement. Students must follow the academic standards committee procedures for the college they are requesting reinstatement.

  • A name change for the department of management in the Ivy College of Business, to department of management and entrepreneurship. A third of the 30 faculty members deal exclusively or mostly with entrepreneurship.