March 4, 2014
1. Call to Order
Chair David Zonderman called the meeting to order at 3 p.m.
2. Remarks, David Zonderman, Chair of the NCSU Faculty
Chair Zonderman welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Chair Zonderman updated the faculty on some of the major issues of the Faculty Senate. He stated that the functions of the Faculty Senate include three things. The Senate discusses many issues, passes a number of resolutions, and follows-up on actions both from the resolutions and other issues that may come to the committees.
Chair Zonderman highlighted some of the discussions since the last General Faculty meeting.
There has been a series of discussions concerning success of the undergraduate student population. Louis Hunt, University Registrar, and Tommy Griffin, Director of Admissions, gave a presentation in the Senate on how to balance both the increasing competitiveness on admissions while continuing to maintain a broad and diverse student population.
The graduation rates are increasing for all student populations including students from underrepresented groups. Hunt stated that recruitment and admission of some underrepresented students decreased a little because they are aiming for students that can succeed here at NC State, which in the long term will be beneficial to the university.
Chair Zonderman stated that General Administration proposed a number of initiatives to try to improve graduation rates. The university is going to be facing more and more initiatives from the UNC System as a whole and the faculty needs to pay attention to them.
Chair of the Board of Trustees Ben Jenkins addressed the Senate with some very ambitious goals. He would like to see NC State in the next ten years get into the AAU (American Association of Universities), which is regarded as being made up of the most elite research universities in the nation. He would also like to see NC State ranked as a top 25 public university.
Susan Nutter, Director of Libraries, addressed the Senate. The library is going through another journals review. They are now faced with running two libraries with about 1.5 budgets and they are faced with journal subscription prices that continue to rise far beyond the rate of inflation. The University Library Committee is trying to help the library figure out what to do about staff. Nutter also asked, what do we do about collections? Can we maintain twenty-four hours at two different libraries? She stated that those are tough questions with no immediate answers. The journal review is happening now, so faculty should participate in that review.
Chair Zonderman reported that the Senate passed a couple of important resolutions this year. One is a resolution trying to explore the idea of faculty and staff “banking tuition credits” and using them for the education of dependents. All faculty and staff get to take two classes a year free of charge, so we would like to explore the possibility of, why not if you choose not to take those classes, bank them year after year and when your children become college age they could use them toward their education at a UNC System school. This is done at many other public university systems in the country. This change would obviously need to be done at the system level or the legislative level, but we at least wanted to get the discussion going.
Chair Zonderman stated that there will be a second reading on a resolution condemning the idea of academic boycotts at the next Faculty Senate meeting. Recently, several academic organizations were promoting a boycott of Israeli institutions. The Senate has chosen not to focus on that specific boycott but to make a general statement that we believe as the faculty of a major research university little good is served by promoting “academic” boycotts.
Finally many are aware of some allegations of research misconduct in the Chemistry Department. The specifics of that case is not a matter for the Faculty Senate, but it has been asked to look into a more general question of the policy regarding research misconduct and the reporting of investigations into research misconduct. The Personnel Policy Committee has drafted a resolution for the Senate to consider how it might improve the reporting policy.
The Senate is trying to move forward with the proposal of an Ombuds Office that would serve faculty and staff. The Senate is also looking into the idea of “deep freezing” courses that a department has not taught for several years. Rather than removing that course from the books, list it such that it is not visible to students, but where it can be reactivated with less paperwork than proposing a new course.
The Senate is also looking into the academic calendars. We have been working with the University Calendar Committee and they are trying to develop a long term policy where every semester has a minimum number of class meeting days for each day.
3. Approval of the Minutes, Dennis Daley, Secretary of the Faculty
The minutes of the October 8, 2013 General Faculty meeting were approved as submitted.
4. Remarks and Discussion, Chancellor Woodson
Chancellor Woodson reported that NC State is in a quiet phase of the next capital campaign. Donors have been stepping up to help the institution. Almost $200 million was raised last year. The endowment is up from $436 million in 2010 to $769 million this year, so a lot of progress is being made. He stated that one of the biggest challenges the university faced was losing Vice Chancellor Nevin Kessler to Rutgers.
Chancellor Woodson announced that Brian Sischo has been hired as the Vice Chancellor of University Advancement and he will be joining the university in two weeks. Brian is coming from Syracuse University where he served in the same position and was in charge of their $1 billion capital campaign. He is a very experienced outstanding leader and NC State is excited to have him.
Dr. Maureen Grasso, the current Dean of the Graduate School at the University of Georgia, has accepted the Provost’s offer to come to NC State as Dean of the Graduate School. She will start July 1st.
Chancellor Woodson announced that Mary Lelik recently came to the university from the University of Illinois, Chicago to lead Planning and Analysis, the institutional research office which is critical not only for management issues but also for reporting to federal partners for rankings and other things.
Chancellor Woodson reported that President Obama visited the university to announce a $140 million research project, which was fantastic for NC State and the faculty. He stated that NC State is a university that has invested the last thirty years in people and facilities and expertise in this area. It is great for NC State.
Chancellor Woodson stated that he got an opportunity to fly back to Washington on Air Force One because he was going to be there the next day to attend a meeting that President Obama had called with fifty university Presidents to talk about the college pipeline initiative, which is a statistic that everyone should be frightened by. He reported that eighty-five percent of children born to the upper income households in America, $200,00 and above, attend and graduate from college at a rate of 85% and 8% of children born to the lowest income quartile attend and graduate from college and this is a problem. This is not good for the future of our country and it’s a challenge that the President and First Lady want to address.
Chancellor Woodson stated that NC State has recently partnered with Davidson College and UNC Chapel Hill to scale up a program called the College Advising Core, which is built on a model of Teach for America where young, bright, creative people, and recent graduates from our university are placed in high schools across the State of North Carolina to assist advisors.
Currently the ratio is 800 to 1 for students to guidance counselors and there is no way those counselors can provide advice and counsel to young people that have an interest in college. The question is how are the young people that don’t have families able to do that, how do they see a path for themselves. That is what this program is about and it is built off of a $10 million grant from the Belk endowment that will support the program going forward.
Chancellor Woodson announced that Rubin Carbonelle, Professor of Chemical Environmolecular Engineering, has been selected for the National Academy of Engineering, which is a great honor for both him and NC State.
The Triangle Business Journal has named two of NC State’s Women leaders on campus as Business Women Leaders in the Triangle. There were twenty awards given out this year and two of them were received by Terri Lomax, Vice Chancellor for Research, Innovation and Economic Development, and Anita Brown-Graham, Director for the Institute for Emerging Issues. Another recent award that is a great reflection on the Provost and leadership of Bialian Li, is NC State was one of four universities to receive the Paul Simon Award given by the Association of International Educators. This award is given to universities for internationalization of the university.
The Hunt Library continues to get amazing recognition, being named one of the fifty most beautiful libraries in the world and only two are in the United States. Hunt is the highest ranked at fourteenth of the most beautiful libraries in the world and the other one is in Seattle. The library continues to place NC State in very good light.
NC State continues to be seen as one of the best values of America. The Princeton Review ranked it as the fifth best value in America. US News and World Report ranked us 5th and the top ten in almost every measure, so the return on investment for NC State continues to be very positive.
The academic all ACC team has come out and NC State had the second most academic scholars of any university in the ACC and second only to Duke in football.
Chancellor Woodson stated that this is going to be a challenging Legislative session and it’s going to be a short session. His guess is that the Legislators are going to want to get through it quickly. Salaries are going to be up for conversation. He promised that every Chancellor in the system and the President are arguing for critical salary increases that are needed on all of their campuses. One of the policy recommendations from the Board of Governors voted unanimously to increase the university’s contribution to ORP to 8.5% from its current level that has not increased since 1994. There is a request to increase the university’s contribution to the optional retirement program and also recognition of a need for salary increases for the faculty and staff.
Questions and Comments
The agenda today is focused on distance education, so will NC State ever approve a program where students can complete a two year degree at a community college and then finish a BS without coming to campus?
Chancellor Woodson responded yes, NC State has a program at Craven Community College where a student never has to come to campus and gets a four-year engineering degree. In fact, many of the employees at Cherry Point Naval Base have taken advantage of that program. NC State also has an early college career high school in Bertie County that is in partnership with the Martin Community College. He thinks there are going to be more, but the faculty has to decide if it is of sufficient quality to warrant a degree from NC State. He stated that it will always be the faculty to ensure that the quality and the rigor are sufficient to bear the name of this university on a diploma.
5. Remarks and Discussion, Provost Arden
Provost Arden welcomed Mary Lelik, as Director of the new Office of Institutional Research and Planning. He stated that she comes to NC State with a lot of experience from the University of Illinois in Chicago. Maureen Grasso will join the university on July 1st and she will be coming from the University of Georgia where she has been Dean of the Graduate School for eleven years, so she will bring a lot of experience to the graduate school.
Provost Arden reported that the Southern Association of College and Schools (SACS) will be here in two weeks. This is NC State’s ten year reaffirmation visit, which is a big deal. He stated that there are two major parts to this. There is a compliance part where we submit 92 different compliance reports with approximately 3,000 pages of supporting documents. NC State was in compliance with everything except nine or ten prior to the visit, and targeted or focused reports have been submitted on those issues.
The other part is the Quality Enhancement Program (QEP) and the onsite folks will ask everyone that they meet especially the faculty, what you know about NC State’s quality enhancement program. As you all know it is high order skills and critical and creative thinking. He encouraged the faculty to take a little time reviewing the executive summary to familiarize themselves with the details.
Provost Arden stated that the university has made very significant gains on undergraduate student success over the last two or three years. We have a much higher than average dropout rate in our doctoral programs. We have a significantly higher completion rate, a 63% doctoral completion rate, which is significantly higher than the national average.
Provost Arden stated that there was a front page article on the Chronicle on Higher Education last week, which largely featured NC State. It talked about some of the difficulties of interdisciplinary cluster hires so it was a very realistic article. He reported that they are up to twenty eight of those interdisciplinary cluster hires.
Provost Arden stated that one of the concerns that he has is that they have tried to do research allocations in a somewhat balanced way between disciplinary college hires and interdisciplinary cluster hires. His fear is that on the disciplinary side they are treading water and when you look at the numbers over the last fifteen years that would justify it since they have only grown 3% in tenure-tenure track faculty in fifteen
years up until 2011, the release of the strategic plan. We actually did somewhere between 60 and 70 disciplinary hires over that same period of time that we did twenty eight cluster hires, but unfortunately we lost about 60 to 70 faculty either through retirements or moving to other institutions, so on the disciplinary side we are largely treading water and we are making very significant net gains on the interdisciplinary cluster hires, so we are going to have to figure out how to address that and it is not easy, because with the budget cuts that we have been taking, $140 million in base budget cuts over the last five years we know that we are losing faculty positions from that pool, so we are going to have to think through that, how we continue to make progress both on the disciplinary hiring side as well as the interdisciplinary hiring side.
Provost Arden stated that NC State is only one of four universities in the country to receive the Paul Simon Award, an award for comprehensive campus internationalization. He commended Bialian Li and the Office of International Affairs staff.
Provost Arden stated that they are beginning to work on the budget. They know that the university has a small additional loss already programed in a second year of biannual budget. The state budget director has called for all units including the University of North Carolina System to submit budgets that are 2% less than the prior year and on top of that there are certain things associated with the UNC System’s strategic plan that will have to be funded as well. They will be keeping their eye on the ball in the next few months.
6. Remarks from the Chair-Elect of the Faculty Candidates
Remarks from Dennis Daley, Professor of Public and International Affairs
I’m Dennis Daley, Professor of Public Administration. I have been involved in Faculty Governance at NC State for some twenty years, serving on many committees, Chairman of the University Research Committee and the Group Insurance and Benefits Committee. I have served on the Faculty Senate many times and a decade ago served as Chair of the Faculty.
My reason for running is because I believe in issues, to focus on the issues that I felt was not addressed well enough. The first one that has been addressed, I have to mention is the maintenance of our role in shared governance. The first duty of the Chair of the Faculty is to assure that the faculty voices are heard by our university administration. Ten years ago I would have said faculty voice, because I was a little more naïve back then that we would get together and come into agreement. Today I realize that sometime we don’t come into agreement. There are faculty voices. It is still important that our faculty administrators especially the Chancellor and Provost have those opinions before them when they make decisions even if we are in disagreement and part of that is to make sure that whatever happens those views are presented.
As for issues I have been concerned the last four or five years with the recession and its effect on our departments and disciplines. We may be treading water but we are only treading water in some departments and some disciplines. Other disciplines are going to have to kind of climb a little to just tread water. Our disciplines are basic foundations of the university. We do our research and we do the teaching in the disciplines and they have been hurt by the recession. As we would expect during a recession, vacant positions due to retirement aren’t filled. We don’t fill the positions when people leave unless it’s a critical position, but as we began to recover we need to do more and more to fill the positions especially as we have had growth in programs. There are too many positions that are critical in the university that remain unfilled. Someone retires and the program disappears and we want to make sure that it is more than just a balance. Now the faculty excellence initiative, things like this that has been done successfully at other universities, the Chronicle Report, which also mentions Florida and Notre Dame really highlights this. I have reviewed a list of those hires and we have done well but that is a research enterprise for the most part. The other side of it is we are doing research within our departments and we are teaching and I would like to see more emphasis on making sure our departments are renewed and restored so they can be viable as part of the NC State campus. Thank you.
Remarks for Jeannette Moore, Professor of Animal Science
I’m Jeannette Moore, Professor of Animal Science and finishing my fourth year on the Faculty Senate and my second term on the Faculty Senate Executive Committee. I have held some leadership roles. I’m current chair of the Faculty Senate Academic Policy Committee and this is my second time doing that. I have served as Chair of the University Courses and Curricula Committee and I have served as President of a National Organization, so I do have organizational skills and the ability to keep a meeting on track.
In terms of what I would concentrate on, what I would like to concentrate on if I’m elected to Chair- Elect/Chair of the Faculty 2014-2017 would be to improve communication. As David mentioned the Faculty Senate does a lot of really wonderful things but I’m not sure that word gets out about all the things that we do and not everyone can come to these meetings each semester, so we would like to improve communication and there are different aspects of that.
One is letting people know what we are doing when faculty bring issues of concern to the Faculty Senate, they should know what happens to those issues of concern. We do list what the issues are that are brought up, but I would like our website to also include what happened, did it go to committee, has it been to the Executive Committee yet, was it resolved, so just to have better communication. That is one aspect of communication.
Another aspect is two-way communication between the Senators and their colleges. In some of our colleges we do have very good two-way communication and with the two way communication the concerns of faculty in the colleges can be brought to the Senate, but also what is happening in the Senate can be brought back to the colleges. I would like to work with all of the Senators to improve that communication so that the Senate is more visible, but also so that the concerns in and the comments from the faculty can be brought to the Senate. Thank you.
7. Distance Education (DE) at NC State: Present and Future Opportunities and Changes
Vice Provost Tom Miller reported that there are a total of 78 degrees, certificates and licensure programs.
Miller stated that they have a lot of certificate programs between undergraduate and graduate. A lot of those are in CALS and for people who want concentrated amounts of information which are typically adult learners, and then some teach licensure programs as well.
The credit hours over the last five years are in an upward trend. The only category that is shrinking is the NDS (non degree seeking) program. The reason it’s shrinking is because supply is capped and the campus students and the DE degree seeking students have precedence over the NDS students. The DE degree seeking students are increasing over a fairly substantial rate. However, this past year it was flat while the on campus DE went up. The percentage of campus total has grown as well from about 8% in2009-2010 to almost 12% today, so it is becoming a bigger part of our overall campus activity.
If you look at how the activity breaks down by types of student, you will see that undergraduate on campus students make up the lion share, which is about 64% of the total. Graduate DE degree seeking is the second largest number at 14%, non-degree seeking is 13% and then a very small portion of undergraduate DE at 1percent.
The on campus graduate population does not participate in DE to nearly the extent that the undergraduate population does. Of all students that are participating in DE, the largest number is CHASS and the second largest is the College of Sciences and CALS is the third largest. He stated that a lot of degrees seeking students are doing General Education.
The DE plus non degree seeking students are mostly from Engineering and the second largest is the College of Education where there are a lot of nontraditional students who are updating their education through DE opportunities.
Vice Provost Miller reported from their fall 2013 DE student services survey. He stated that they had a question specifically about preferences mode of learning. There were a good portion of students who preferred DE courses; more preferred the on campus courses. A lot had to do with the instructor. They have a large variety of instructors who really put a lot of effort into developing their DE courses and others who simply take what is in the classroom and try to map it. The students can tell the difference and they like the ones where they are very engaged in the course. They also like to take their non-majorcourses in the DE format.
The students were also asked their top reason for taking a DE course and they could give more than one answer. The number one reason was progress toward degree. Number two was progress toward professional goals and number three was course scheduling conflicts, personal enrichment, and then some high school students that are trying to earn college credits before they actually come to college.
Vice Provost Miller stated that the sweet spot and the opportunity for them is not just purely DE but blended learning. We have done work on eleven courses in terms of course redesign, targeting courses with high DWF rates. He said the data comes from work that they did with the math department from Math 111 and they did a traditional and redesigned course and basically this was a flip course where the lecture is delivered not in the class room but via online. The students do that as homework and then in the classroom they are actually working the math problem. There was a 40% reduction in the number of retakes as a result of the redesigned course.
Miller stated that if they look downstream at the courses, who took the redesign Math 111 versus the traditional Math 111 as preparation for Math 141 there is a dramatic difference. If they took the redesign course much less rate of attempts are required to pass versus the traditional course, so there is something going on there. There is learning that is happening and persistent.
Vice Provost Miller stated that they have been asked about MOOCS by a lot of faculty. After doing an experiment the business model is not quite there yet and this is consistent with National statistics.
Vice Provost Miller stated that another one that has been most successful is the Friday Institute have created MOOC ED which is a different strategy. Instead of taking a traditional course and targeting students with an academic course they are doing a professional development for teachers and have had a lot of success with this. They have received a Gates Grant and some other funding as well. They have done three of these and are planning to do more and it has been quite successful.
Vice Provost Miller announced that on April 17th at the Friday Institute from 2 – 4:30 p.m. they are going to have an open seminar about what has been done with MOOCS and he would also like to have a discussion with the faculty about where NC State should go in this arena.
Diane Chapman, Director-Office of Faculty Development
Diane Chapman gave a general overview of the information that’s out there in literature. She stated that in the last fifteen years people have seen no significant difference between the student learning outcome for distance education and traditional education. For the most part the literature is pretty consistent.
The Obama administration recently set a new goal that the United States is going to have the highest proportion of graduates in the world by 2020 and currently we are number sixteen in the world, but they see online learning as a key component to this goal. The literature basically supports the notion that online learning and distance education is going to continue to grow.
Instructors and Student Outcomes
Chapman reported that more and more part time and non-tenured track faculty members are teaching distance education courses and they have different motivations to teach than tenure track or tenured faculty members. Students look to their instructors for guidance as to how you use technology in teaching and as a result the instructors have to have a foundation and expertise for online teaching, that it is different from face to face teaching.
The role of the instructor as leader and guide is the single largest influencing factor of how effectively students learn in online settings. Despite the ongoing and large agreement on importance of digital media literacy for instructors, many instructors don’t come to teach courses at the university with a lot of preparation in teaching and especially online teaching, so many are not confident in their skills to do this. A recent study showed those instructors with twenty-five years or more experience teaching in a classroom and move over into DE doing fairly well still felt a lack of confidence in making that move.
Chapman stated as online learning becomes larger and larger we need more and more people to do it because at the same time we are being asked as faculty to work on more grants and other things, so a lot of the faculty time that use to be spent teaching is doing other things. We have to hire part time and non- tenure track people to do it, so the needs for preparation increased. There has been a movement over the past five years in documenting and certifying faculty expertise and skill in the area of distance education and online teaching, so giving faculty a certification, portable credentials and things like that, that they have these competencies that are needed in online education.
As far as what makes a difference in student outcomes in these learning environments, the immediacy behavior, basically faculty engagement with a student is what makes the biggest difference in whether the student succeeds or not and because DE presents those problems in immediacy behavior that aren’t present in a traditional classroom you can see why there are issues with that and why you see some people dropping out of distance education courses.
There is a growing interest in personalizing the learning experience for the distance education student and this comes with the emergence of big data and analytics.
One of the issues is that technology changes constantly, it is hard to keep up with. Even the people that are interested in keeping up with their technology skills find it hard. Add to this that technology itself, the standards for technology can’t remain consistent, people can’t agree on standards that last more than two or three years. The complicating factor is that policy has not been able to keep up with technology so higher education and social media is now a big part of teaching and learning. All though students prefer to keep their social and their education life separate in social media, they want social media in their classes, but policy has not been able to keep up with this. Some of the challenges that are in the literature includes, with all these different issues surrounding distance education and the role of faculty in distance education, how do we encourage faculty to innovate in distance education with the limited incentives to do so, but also the need to do so because this is probably one of the most growing areas that we are going to see over the next few years.
How do we encourage faculty to commit to increasing skills in teaching learning and technology or should we? How do we ensure competency in critical competencies in teaching and learning with technology or is this something that we need to be concerned with? How do we keep faculty pedagogical and technological skills relevant? Finally how do we allow policies to keep up with this entire technological invasion?
Linda Krute, Director of Distance Engineering Education Programs
Director, Linda Krute shared information about the Engineering Online Program.
In 1978 the College of Engineering started delivering distance education courses to students, primarily in North Carolina and the surrounding areas using video tapes, and then went to satellites. Then in 2002 we went to CD-ROMs before going totally online. In 2002 we had one online degree program called the Master of Engineering which had different areas of specialization, then that fall our second online program, Master of Civil of Engineering began. Today, we have fifteen online graduate degree programs with our latest program, the Master of Nanoengineering started this past fall.
The Office of Distance Education in the College of Engineering is a separate unit and we have not only undergraduate degrees, we also have a joint degree with UNC Ashville in mechatronics and we have a 2+2 program in Wilmington. A lot of students are going on getting their graduate degrees.
Another program is our bridging program and the largest program is the computer programming certificate in which students who already have an undergraduate degree but want to develop competencies and skills in computer programming will come back and take courses and those courses are often the prerequisites to get into the Master of Computer Science.
This fall we offered ninety four graduate courses and this spring we are offering one hundred graduate courses in sections. This is important to make sure that the people enrolled in those fifteen online degree programs can get the courses that they need. She estimated that 99% of the faculty teaching the courses is full time faculty on campus. They are teaching to students that in North Carolina are in 41 to 50 of the 100 counties and this academic year they are in forty five of the fifty states and this semester we have expanded to twenty four countries. The largest group of students that have been admitted to a degree program is Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering with 158 distance students, which is more than their on campus graduate enrollment.
We have been awarded recognition by US News and World Report for the last five years as being in the top ten online graduate engineering programs and last year we were ranked number one by the military for online graduate programs. Our mission is primarily to serve the citizens of North Carolina, which is the way it has been since the late 1970’s, but we see that we have companies out there who want their employees to get degrees from NC State. In fact, General Electric is the largest supporter of our online degree programs. When a new engineer is hired at GE they go into the Edison Program and they have to get a Master’s degree in the first three years of employment. We managed to get in and it’s Georgia Tech versus NC State. At first it was all Georgia Tech and now we are getting those people to realize that we have programs at NC State. We have about 800 graduate students taking our courses and they represent 500 engineering companies, so not only are we getting out information about the College of Engineering we are getting out information about NC State.
Krute stated that she would like to see the College of Engineering at NC State have a four-yeardegree program that is available to anyone in North Carolina, where they would not have to come to Raleigh. They can already go to Havelock, Wilmington, and they can go to Ashville, but that we would put something together where for the labs they would have to come to one of those sites or to Raleigh on the weekend.
We have a large contingency of people in this state who are attached to a military location. How can we help them get an undergraduate degree in Engineering? We have done a great job with our graduate programs. We want to home grow some engineers just like we did with the group in Craven so that those people are from the eastern part of North Carolina, they get their degree and they go back there and they work and they live. I see another opportunity for us to go internationally especially with some of our key companies such as IBM. We have not expanded internationally the way that I think we can. Some programs are hesitant about expanding internationally because of the academic integrity issues. This is one of our challenges, maintaining the academic integrity program.
We work with full time professional engineers. It requires more service, it requires more preparation for our faculty, because you are dealing with people that range from age 25 to 72. Most of our graduate students take only one course per semester, so it may take them a while to get their degree.
Another challenge that we have is getting those students who did not attend NC State familiar with the policies and procedures. You could go through many of the major engineering schools and their alumni are taking courses here. It is really exciting to see where our students are, to see the possibilities that we can do, but another challenge is scalability. Twelve hundred students in all of our programs in one semester make it difficult to use the resources that we have and support the students and the faculty.
Engineering online is an office that has been created to be supporting to the faculty, the department, and the students and we are very proud of where we have gone and look to the future of where we can continue to go.
Questions and Comments
With all the interest in on-campus students taking DE courses, a little bit of crowding out and for our certificate programs they remain NDS students until they received a certificate, so how can we address the issue of crowding out?
Vice Provost Miller stated that is the problem and they register later. It has been discussed and one possibility is to reserve a certain number of seats in classes based on the data that we have on demand for those NDS students, but then the on campus students get crowded out so the campus tendency has been to give preference to those students who are already here and admitted to a degree program. The only other way to address it is to increase supply which is also a challenge with the budget cuts we face year after year.
Has anything been decided about the effect of the program compensation relative to saving money for DELTA?
Vice Provost Miller stated that more and more are going to in load teaching for DE and it varies by college. We have tried to structure things to give the colleges and departments some maximum flexibility in the use of those funds, so it is pretty much in their hands how that is going to break out. We have never reduced flexibility access funding per enrollment, we have only increased it over time and have found a way to deal with budget cuts elsewhere, but that is going to get harder and harder as we continue to face budget pressures from the state.
Is there no new funding in the works?
Provost Arden stated that part of our funding is very much in direct loop. We provide DE credit hours as a fixed formula that provides additional resources to a college, department, and even individuals and then we have on-campus credit hours where resources flow through a central reserve given out strategically across the campus, but there is no direct funding. So we have one process that has a positive feedback loop and we have another that is very confused, so rather than just look purely at DE, what we need to do is step back and look broadly at the way resources are for all credit hours on campus. You are going to see less difference long term between DE and on-campus, meaning that we are going to try to provide some level of direct proportional funding to credit hour production.
Provost Arden stated that they developed a lot of DE funding back to individuals based on the additional load. You have to begin to question that model when the very biggest part of what we are now doing is providing credit hours to our own undergraduate student body. Is that really additional load or part of what we should be doing? You have to look at all of these things together.
Why does your funding model so heavily privileges program level funding both in terms of the level of funding and also in terms of continuing funding versus the one time funding?
Vice Provost Miller stated that it is less but not much less when you look at the total formula and you look at the pieces that go to the college and department. This started in 2007 when Larry Nielsen was Provost and he wanted the colleges and departments to take more responsibility for their DE programs to have additional incentive for those who created DE programs. The whole idea was to incentivize programs over individual courses. The other thing is that we have never reduced funding for flexible acts, it has always increased and we have found ways to make that happen. When you get money for a DE program it goes into your college on a continuing basis and those have been cut, so if you look at it over time those budgets have come down, where as flexible access has not, so the gap between the two has closed over the past two years.
Does it make sense to have faculty development oriented toward technology or is that something that will start to converge in terms of overall faculty. We have defined credit hours as essentially contact hours and that seems not to mean that much anymore as we talk about flipping classrooms, could you respond to those issues.
Director Krute stated that flipping is something that is going to be unique to our students if we can provide the technology support that they can engage in the on- time meeting that the faculty may have. We do class room capture, which is the way engineers like to learn. There are supervisors who are paying and would like to know that these courses are exactly the same as if their employees were actually sitting on the campus here in Raleigh NC, so it is important for us to continue to show that this is a learning experience that is very comparable to what is here.
Krute stated that she thinks faculty development is crucial. At the beginning of every semester they invite faculty to attend orientation to explain to them how to deal with the distance students. Adults ask a lot of questions and demand a lot from the faculty because they are nervous. They have to show their grades to their employer who has to pay the tuition and if they don’t make a good grade the employee has to pay.
Krute stated that they also work very close to the DELTA video group to learn how to use the technology to create a rich learning experience, not only for the students sitting in the on-campus class, but also for the distance learners. She said they need to improve on some of those issues and they also have to realize that there is a difference in the on campus student population and the distance education population.
Director Chapman stated that faculty development really needs to have a pedagogical side and a technology side. Then there is faculty development that is only about pedagogy because it doesn’t have a technology component or it’s the same no matter what technology component you use and then there are those things that faculty need to learn that remove somewhat from the pedagogy. She stated that her fear is that she never wants to see the technology take over the pedagogy. She would always like to see the pedagogy drive how we use the technology. She added that we need to teach our faculty how to teach adults.
Chair Zonderman thanked everyone for attending.
A motion passed to adjourn the meeting at 4:46 p.m.