The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)
Regular session – February 14, 2005 - 3:30 p.m. - Jacobson Faculty Hall 102
office: Jacobson Faculty Hall 206   phone: 325-6789
e-mail:   web site:


The Faculty Senate was called to order by Professor Valerie Watts, Chair.


PRESENT:       Barker, Biggerstaff, Blank, Bozorgi, Bradford, Brown, Burns, Caldwell, Catlin, Cintrón, Civan, Cramer, Davis, Devenport, Dewers, Dohrmann, Draheim, Driver, Elisens, Fincke, Forman, Geletzke, Gutierrez, Halterman, Havlicek, Henderson, Hobbs, Houser, Kauffman, C. Knapp, R. Knapp, Lewis, Liu, Magnusson, Marcus-Mendoza, Raadschelders, Ransom, Rupp-Serrano, Schwarzkopf, Sharp, Striz, Watts, Wheeler, Wood, Wyckoff

Provost's office representative:  Mergler
ISA representatives:  Schwiebert
UOSA representatives:  M. Deeg


ABSENT:         Frech, Greene, Hayes-Thumann, Lai, Penrose, Scherman, Taylor, Vieux





Announcement:  Poll concerning Aetna insurance

Security software change

Senate Chair's Report:

Student textbook library

Campus campaign

Nominations for committees

Budget summaries

Issues for 2004-05






The Faculty Senate Journal for the regular session of January 24, 2005 was approved.





In an e-mail sent on February 3, the Faculty Welfare and Employment Benefits committees asked faculty and staff to send in comments, both positive and negative, about their experiences with our new medical and dental provider, Aetna.  You may send a simple description, without private information, to in the Faculty Senate office.  The objectives are (1) to identify systemic problems affecting the user community; (2) to make sure that contractual obligations are closely being followed; and (3) to gain insight on operational procedures and issues where additional information may need to be conveyed.  The comments will be transmitted to the Human Resources office.  Prof. Watts reported that 71 comments had been received as of February 11 and the Human Resources office was attending to those that were urgent. 






Mr. Matt Singleton, Director of Services in the Information Technology (IT) office, was asked to tell the senate about the change in security software that the university is undergoing.  Mr. Singleton said IT was planning to make a change in desktop security before the end of the fiscal year.  (The handout he distributed at the meeting is available from the senate office.)  Since 1998, the University has had a subscription to Network Associates (McAfee) for desktop computer virus protection.  Under the agreement, the University pays a certain amount each year to cover a particular number of clients.  A lot of areas on campus have purchased products other than McAfee that better suit their needs.  In addition, IT has been seeing more customer demand for managed applications in which end users do not have to update their software.  Instead, the responsibility for updating software would shift to system administrators, who will keep the antivirus definitions up to date.  Currently, we experience some slowdowns with the Exchange software because of the way McAfee scans large attachments.  Network Associates changed the license from an annual subscription to a perpetual license.  From May to September 2004, several products were reviewed by local network administrators, a group of over 200 individuals that includes faculty.  Campus IT leaders and field security officers also assessed the products.  Bidders came to campus to demonstrate their products.  The final two candidates, McAfee and Symantec, did a mock implementation for the network administrators.  The campus IT leaders made a recommendation to move from McAfee to Symantec for several reasons.  Symantec has new offerings in addition to virus protection.  The product includes desktop intrusion detection and intrusion protection, desktop firewall, and virus protection.  Intrusion detection looks for intrusion attempts on local machines.  Intrusion prevention will allow us to be much more proactive during outbreaks.  Updates for the products will be taken care of centrally so the customer will not have to worry.  Symantec has security operation centers around the world to monitor outbreaks and new vulnerabilities and can notify us up to two days before an event happens here.  A Symantec engineer will be on campus for three weeks to help configure areas and train staff to keep the software running.  Symantec offers pre-release definitions that are sent to their customers as quickly as 40 minutes after the first signature of an outbreak is found.  If a definition has an adverse effect, the customer can roll back to the previous definition.  The files for Symantec updates are much smaller, which makes updates faster and causes less saturation on the network. 


Several areas have put resources forward to implement this project.  The colleges of Engineering and Architecture will test the product.  Phase I (implementation planning) runs through February, phase II (testing and communications) is scheduled for February15 through March15, and phase III (implementation) will take place March 15 through the end of June.  IT expects to be done by the end of May in order to allow time to do cleanup.  Our license with McAfee expires on June 30.  IT has been working with the Information Technology Council Chair, Prof. Deborah Trytten (Computer Science), to determine the initial roll out.  When individuals log in on the designated day for their implementation, it will take about ten minutes for the software to uninstall McAfee and install Symantec automatically.  Prof. Trytten asked IT to put in an opt-out function, which will allow users to make the change later through a software download if the ten-minute login is a problem.  Customers with enhanced service agreements will be deployed first.  Field technicians will be available to ensure that everything runs smoothly during the deployment, and systems people will address any problems that may occur on the back end.  Field technicians can assist local network administrators and individual faculty and staff with the migration.  In addition, IT will have a dedicated phone queue to provide support.  Students and home users will be able to download the installation package at 


Provost Mergler asked for an estimate of how many computers would have to be handled by IT.  Mr. Singleton said IT expected an 80% success rate for faculty and staff machines, so 1500 machines may need one-on-one interaction.  He said he was not sure how IT was going to support students and home users.  Provost Mergler said she assumed many faculty members had computers that they used at home.  Mr. Singleton mentioned that individuals could bring their machines to any service center and have them worked on for free.  They can also try to download the software from home.

Prof. Striz asked whether the software applied to Macintosh computers.  Mr. Singleton said the software was available for Mac, PC, and Linux.  Prof. Schwarzkopf commented that customers must use a password to access the download site, so IT should make sure instructions for the password are on the site.  He asked Mr. Singleton to elaborate on the licensing arrangement.  Mr. Singleton explained that McAfee used to have an annual subscription.  The company announced that the only option would be a perpetual license, which has a very large upfront investment, followed by a smaller annual maintenance fee.  The new system is based on headcount instead of the number of machines, so an individual with six machines will have all six covered. 


Prof. Burns said his understanding was McAfee would catch viruses at the desktop level, but the new software would catch more upstream.  Mr. Singleton said that was true.  IT approaches security in a multi-layer approach.  IT staff members have implemented some other services at the network level and are catching more and more problems before they reach the machines.  Prof. Burns asked whether people who sometimes use their computers on different networks would have adequate protection from viruses.  Mr. Singleton answered that the client would be configured to talk to the server on campus or go directly to Symantec to pull down appropriate files.


Prof. Gutierrez asked whether the software would be as transparent on Unix systems as it is on Windows.  Mr. Singleton replied that in the preliminary testing, it had been very transparent on Unix as well as Mac.


Prof. Barker commented that there was a one in five chance he would not be able to do any work at some point between March 15 and June 24 if he is unsuccessful in the download.  Mr. Singleton said the implementation would not affect anyone’s ability to access other resources on the network.  Individuals can continue to run McAfee until a field technician can come out and take care of the installation.  Even after the McAfee license expires, individuals will not be cut off from resources on the network.  The machine will continue to function except for the time when the software is being installed.


Prof. Schwarzkopf asked about the rights to the software for computers that are not OU funded.  Mr. Singleton said personal and office machines would be covered for anyone affiliated with the University.  Prof. Schwarzkopf asked whether retirees were included.  Mr. Singleton said he would check on that.  [Note:  Per our contract with Symantec, only active OU employees are covered under our license.  However, Faculty Emeriti who currently work for the university will be covered.  This would include professors who hold office hours or are an advisor.  Retired faculty members who no longer work at the university may purchase a discounted copy at]


Prof. Devenport asked whether the installation would remove only McAfee.  Mr. Singleton said IT was prepackaging installations to remove McAfee only.  There are other removal options, however.


Prof. Schwarzkopf asked how long it would take to install the software and whether naïve users could handle the download on their own without too much frustration.  Mr. Singleton said the installation would take about ten minutes, depending on the computer’s speed, and users should be able to handle it on their own.  One of the steps in phase 2 is to work with faculty and staff in the colleges of Engineering and Architecture on ease of use and communicating the changeover to campus.  Questions can be sent to 


Prof. Biggerstaff asked whether the software was available for the different versions of operating systems.  Mr. Singleton said it would work for Windows 98 and above, Mac OS 9 and above, and versions of Linux.  Prof. Schwarzkopf asked whether the new security could be added to Windows 95.  Mr. Singleton said IT would like to get people up to the latest operating system but would try to work with those users.


Prof. Magnusson said she was concerned that some faculty would be away from campus during the time frame for implementation.  Mr. Singleton said IT was trying to get the download available prior to the end of the semester so that faculty members could do the installation before they leave.  However, IT is trying to avoid touching faculty machines the week before, the week of, and the week after finals.



SENATE CHAIR'S REPORT, by Prof. Valerie Watts


“As you may or may not know, the students have started a textbook library.  The rising expense of textbooks has generated discussion and suggestions on how to provide access to classroom materials for those students in financial need.  In light of the growing availability and convenience of electronic textbooks, it has been suggested that faculty consider using textbooks in their courses that can be resold and, in general, to be sensitive to cost.


“Last month we had our guest, Kirk Garton, discuss the fundraising efforts of the campus campaign.  I thought I would put an additional plug for the campaign by reminding you that you can choose the program to receive your donation, such as the Faculty Senate account and the new scholarship account for employees’ children.  For many years faculty have asked about some kind of break in tuition for their children.  This scholarship account is a perfect vehicle for us to attend to that request.


“I want to remind you to note the call for nominations for faculty senate committees has gone out.  Nominations are due March 15.


“The president’s office sent over copies of the University and Higher Education budget revenues and appropriations to distribute to senators.”  (Copies are available from the senate office.)


“Prof. Alan Witten from Geology and Geophysics died on February 13.  A memorial service will be held at 7:00 p.m. on February 14 at the Hillel Center.”



ISSUES FOR 2004-05


Prof. Watts said she thought this meeting would be a good opportunity to review the issues achieved this academic year and, most importantly, to hear the items the senators would like to add to the following list of issues and concerns identified last fall. 


1.   Faculty compensation: priority on continued raises and study of promotion increase.

2.   Retirement benefits: work with Nick Kelly to educate faculty about retirement options and aid in the transition.  Advisor on retirement companies.

3.   Health benefits: monitor transition to 2005 insurance company.

4.   Faculty development fund: refine the committee structure and granting process.  Work for increased support in the future.

5.   Ranked renewable term faculty: monitor the number of RT faculty and its impact annually. 

6.   Legislative relations: work with President Boren to increase state support for OU.

7.   Gender issues: endowed chairs, spousal hires.

8.   Regents policy manual: final proofing and vote on “Financial Emergency” section.

9.   Task force recommendations on classroom renovations: monitor implementation of one-time funds.  Annual renovations: Provost to establish advisory committee.

10. Approve Campus Tenure Committee recommendation to discontinue its review of hire-with-tenure cases.

11. Approve recommendation of post-tenure review committee.

12. Work on additional issues with classroom technology management and IT.  Consider new and interim ITC policies.


Prof. Watts reported that the first priority of concern is faculty compensation.  President Boren has made continued raises his top priority.  The provost increased the amount of promotion raises and hopes to meet the amount recommended by the faculty compensation committee, depending on the budget.  We have not been able to work on the issue of retirement benefits because we are still awaiting IRS approval regarding other options for those who are with OTRS.  The survey concerning health benefits should help us gather information about pressing issues.  Both positive and negative comments about Aetna insurance will be categorized.  The number of applicants to the faculty development fund has been growing.  The committee’s structure and granting process was refined.  We have asked the president for continued support and increased funding for 2005-06.  We have been monitoring the number of ranked renewable term faculty, and the number is still below the cap (ten percent of the tenured and tenure-track faculty).  Mr. Danny Hilliard, the new director of government relations, will be working with the Faculty Senate’s ad hoc committee to visit state legislators.  In terms of gender issues, the spousal hire program was discontinued because of budget shortfalls.  The senate executive committee asked the administration to reinstate the program when the budget is back on course, and the administration agreed.  Several items were approved last fall:  the financial emergency section of the regents’ policy manual, the campus tenure committee’s recommendation to discontinue review of hire-with-tenure cases, and the recommendations of the post-tenure review committee.  A task force made recommendations on classroom renovations, using money available in a one-time fund.  If the bond issue is passed by the legislature, $1 million for the next five years will be earmarked for classroom renovations.  The Information Technology Council will soon bring a web policy to the senate for consideration, and the council will have a comprehensive document incorporating various policies next fall. 


Prof. Raadschelders suggested that the senate express appreciation to Dr. Dee Fink, who is retiring as Instructional Development director the end of June.  Provost Mergler said she was putting together a search committee and a job advertisement, which would allow the flexibility of a faculty or staff appointment for Dr. Fink’s position.  Prof. Raadschelders also commented that the focus of the Instructional Development program is on the development of faculty members in terms of their pedagogical skills.  Anything that has to do with IT is considered primarily a technical issue, and the pedagogical consequences are not considered.  The role of IT is not just a matter of managing a network but understanding the pedagogical use of certain technologies.  Provost Mergler said it was a more complicated issue than before because IT is its own separate vice presidential area.  When she becomes aware of issues that will affect faculty, she makes sure IT presents the information to the senate.  She has looked at how instructional development programs are organized at other universities, and the format varies.  She is open to increasing the program, as the budget allows.  Prof. Schwarzkopf noted that one of the problems was how to disseminate novel techniques to faculty and do it in such a way that IT was not dictating to faculty members how they should teach.  Dr. Fink includes in his instructional session information on how to use technology.  It is a faculty issue.  Prof. Kauffman said he was in complete agreement.  He pointed out that the College of Education has a program that focuses on technology and development of instruction.  Prof. Cintron suggested that the search committee should include someone from the ambassador’s program, an instructional development committee, and someone from adult education.  Provost Mergler said she was putting together a committee with representation from across the colleges but was trying to keep it small enough to find a time to meet.  She wants to keep the job description flexible to avoid pre-determining the candidate. 


Prof. Kauffman said he thought the Institutional Review Board (IRB) no longer allowed students to be principal investigators on projects, even at the thesis and dissertation levels, and that faculty had to sign off as PI for the project.  Prof. Devenport, vice chair of the IRB, said that policy had been instituted for legal purposes.  Many people are unhappy with the decision.  It is being negotiated. 


Prof. Forman said he was concerned about the shortage of classes for students in particular departments and the prospect that students could not get their degrees in a four-year period.  Provost Mergler said it is tough to balance the need for faculty compensation with the need for faculty lines.  We had a large spurt of students interested in health-related careers and a larger enrollment in our freshman classes the past couple of years, which created a demand for two- and three-thousand level courses.  In some cases, she was able to substitute courses to accommodate students.  Right-sizing the faculty to the student body continues to be a struggle.  Prof. Hobbs asked whether the fall’s freshman class would be larger.  Provost Mergler said the freshman class would likely be smaller.  The demographics in Oklahoma for the next 10 years suggest a slow decrease in the number of high school graduates.  Therefore, our undergraduate enrollment will decline some. 


Prof. Cintron echoed Prof. Raadschelders’ suggestion that the senate mention some appreciation for Dr. Dee Fink.  Provost Mergler said she would host a reception for him, and an expression of appreciation could be presented there.  Prof. Watts said the senate Executive Committee would discuss options.  Prof. Schwarzkopf asked what was usually done to recognize retirees.  Provost Mergler said the regents’ office prepares plaques for retirees and their departments, and the president writes them a letter.  Prof. Watts noted that the Faculty Compensation Committee had been looking at ways to honor years of service for faculty.


Prof. Cintron said her colleagues object to the high fees that faculty members have to pay to use Huston Huffman center.  The new facility in the stadium does not have all the resources Huston Huffman has.  Prof. Watts said her understanding was most of Huffman’s operating budget comes from student fees.  That is why faculty and staff are charged.  She will ask whether something can be negotiated.  Prof. Schwarzkopf explained that part of the reason the president established the facility in the stadium was because of the Huffman fees.


Prof. Cintron said she thought we should include our efforts to increase faculty diversity every year.  Prof. Henderson announced that February is Black History Month.  He encouraged his colleagues to support the university community’s Black History activities.  He encouraged faculty, when submitting nominations for the Faculty Senate, to try to increase the diversity.  He asked departments to identify the first African-American faculty members, undergraduate students, and graduate students.


Prof. Marcus-Mendoza asked how much the promotion raises increased and when the increases were effective.  Provost Mergler said she did not remember all the details but would send the information to the senate office.  [Note:  The promotion raises given to faculty in July 2004 increased from $2000 to $3000 for those promoted to Associate Professor and from $4,000 to $5,000 for those promoted to Professor.  Faculty awarded a Cross, Boyd, or Regents’ Professorship received $7000.  The same amounts are budgeted for promotions that will occur July 2005.]


Prof. Raadschelders asked whether it made sense to have triennial presentations to the senate by the deans of the colleges, given that the Liberal Studies dean and other people had been invited to speak to the senate. 





The meeting adjourned at 4:30 p.m.  The next regular session of the Faculty Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, March 21, 2005, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.


Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator


Roger Frech, Secretary