The University of Oklahoma (Norman campus)
Regular session – May 3, 2004 - 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 Mike McInerney, Chair.


PRESENT:       Abraham (2), Barker (1), Bozorgi (2), Bradford (1), Brown (0), Burns (1), Caldwell (3), Davis (1), Dewers (3), Dohrmann (2), Forman (1), Frech (2), Halterman (2), Hartel (3), Havlicek (1), Hayes-Thumann (1), Henderson (2), Houser (1), Kauffman (2), R. Knapp (0), Liu (3), Marcus-Mendoza (1), McInerney (0), Megginson (2), Milton (0), Newman (4), Pender (2), Rai (2), Rupp-Serrano (1), Russell (2), Scherman (3), Sharp (0), Striz (0), Watts (0), Wyckoff, (1) Yuan (1)

Provost's office representative:  Mergler

ABSENT:         Baldwin (3), Biggerstaff (1) Brady (2), Catlin (3), Cintrón (2), Devenport (3), Driver (1), Huseman (2), C. Knapp (2), Mendoza (2), Penrose (3), Raadschelders (3), Ransom (2), Schramm (1), Sievers (3), Wheeler (3)

[Note:  During the period from June 2003 to May 2004, the Senate held 9 regular session and no special sessions.  The Figures in parentheses above indicate the number of absences.]






Schedule of Senate meetings for fall 2004

Summary of Speakers Service program

Faculty retirees

Good practice for courses and programs

Academic integrity

Senate Chair's Report:

NEH awards (scholarship/fellowship leaves)

Bicycle policy

Junk e-mail

Health insurance

Athletic Department Self Study

Faculty Senate reapportionment and charter

Salary program

Certificates of appreciation

Election, councils/committees/boards

Election, Senate standing committees

Election, Senate Secretary and Chair-elect

E-mail notification

Resolution of Appreciation to Prof. Mike McInerney






The Faculty Senate Journal for the regular session of April 12, 2004 was approved.





The regular meetings of the Faculty Senate for fall 2004 will be held at 3:30 p.m. in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102 on the following Mondays:  September 13, October 11, November 8, and December 13.

Summary of the activities of the Senate Speakers Service for the past year:  From May 2003 to April 2004, the Faculty Senate office arranged for 53 faculty and staff to give 110 talks to 52 organizations in 22 communities throughout the state.  The Faculty Senate and the University sincerely appreciate the members of the Speakers Service who share their expertise and knowledge with the people of Oklahoma.

Prof. McInerney congratulated the senators who received awards at the faculty tribute April 13:  Professors Brady, Caldwell, Scherman, and Wyckoff.

A list of the faculty who retired during the past academic year is below.  The Faculty Senate thanks these faculty members for their dedication and contribution to our community.  Prof. McInerney said, “We will miss them and certainly appreciate all their efforts throughout these years.”





Bert, Charles

Aerospace & Mech. Engr.



Evans, Rodney




Faulconer, James




Fletcher, John

Botany & Microbiology



Fung, Bing-Man

Chemistry & Biochemistry



Gross, David




Horrell, James




Lee, Lloyd

Chemical Engr. & Mat. Sci.



Lujan, Philip




Sloan, Stephen

Political Science



Smith, Patricia

Educational Psychology



Swisher, Robert

Library & Info. Studies



Whinery, Leo




Whitely, William




Wieder, D. Larry





President Boren approved the document on good practice for courses and programs, which was approved by the Faculty Senate at its April 12, 2004 meeting (see 4/04 senate journal).





Prof. McInerney explained that student government had approved an academic integrity statement and formed an honor council to promote good practices in taking exams and writing papers.  Honor council member Pal Randhawa thanked the Faculty Senate and Provost leadership for their support.  He said the new integrity statement was the product of many students’ hard work over the past three years.  The purpose of the honor council is to publicize academic integrity, serve as a bridge between students and faculty, and educate students on the nature and meaning of academic misconduct.  Council members will serve as substitute members of academic misconduct hearings at the request of a college.  The honor council is meant to supplement, not replace anything the university has in regard to academic integrity.  Honor council member Amber Khan talked about some of the ideas for promoting academic integrity next fall.  They plan to talk to students in Gateway and other classes to help them understand the purpose of the honor statement and council and to explain that this is a student-led initiative.  Other ideas include holding an Integrity Week next year with prominent speakers and activities.  Mr. Randhawa added that various universities use resources, such as integrity CDs and case files, to show situations where students are tempted to cheat and the consequences when someone cheats.  A web site will be further developed this summer and will provide various resources for students.  The council would like to talk to international students to explain what constitutes academic misconduct in the United States.  Ms. Khan said the most important thing was to keep everyone aware of the new policy.  Mr. Randhawa said he appreciated faculty support in promoting academic integrity.



SENATE CHAIR'S REPORT, by Prof. Mike McInerney


“The executive committee discussed the proposed new option for leaves with pay to accept an award (e. g., a scholarship or fellowship). This option covers the situation when the award is made directly to the faculty member. The suggested practice would be to have the faculty member sign over the award to the University. The faculty member would then receive full salary and benefits from the University. Generally, these awards are much less than the full salary and benefits. The University would provide the faculty member documentation of the contribution to be used when the faculty member files his/her taxes. This route would probably require the submission of Schedule C on business expenses by the faculty member so that the faculty member does not pay additional taxes. There was some discussion about a minimum dollar award needed to receive full compensation from the University. Wording has been added to include approval by the respective department. The concern is to ensure that the teaching needs of the department are met. The executive committee approved this as an interim policy. The Provost Office will help draft wording for amendment to the Faculty Handbook, which the Senate will address next year. There is not enough time to get the amendment drafted and discussed this year.

“Last meeting, I mentioned that the University is drafting a policy for abandoned bicycles and for appropriate use of bicycles on campus. The bicycle use policy would require registration of bicycles that are used on campus and stipulates the appropriate places to park bicycles, e.g., in racks by buildings. We had concerns about the cost and frequency of registration. You would need to register the bicycle once and there would be no charge to the faculty for registration. Also, the policy would not prevent faculty from bringing their bicycles into their offices. I told Associate Vice President for Administrative Affairs Burr Millsap to go ahead with this policy.

“We have had a lot of comments about junk e-mail. I asked Professor Fran Ayres, who is head of the Information Technology Council, to look into this. The Information Technology office informed her that the Outlook software with the new version of Microsoft Office has a very good filtering system. Also, the e-mail software that comes with OSX for Macintosh has a very good filter.

“We met with President Boren last week and got his assurance that the executive committees of the Faculty and Staff Senates would be involved in the discussions about the decision for the health insurance provider over the summer. In addition, he assured us that both executive committees will be involved, along with the appropriate councils and committees, in formulating the future retirement plans if House Bill 2226 passes and OU and OSU are allowed to opt out of Teachers Retirement. The new leadership and I will meet with Julius Hilburn and Nick Kelly next week about these issues.

“The Employment Benefits Committee is reviewing the proposals for the health and dental coverage from vendors other than HealthChoice.  Julius Hilburn made a presentation in our general faculty meeting last week.  Aetna was viewed as offering more value than the other applicants for health insurance; however, all quotes were higher than the current provider.  So there is no magic bullet.  Aetna will be provided with updated claims information for the first part of this year to help them adjust or modify their rate quotes.  This will then be compared with HealthChoice during the summer.  For dental, Aetna, Delta, and MetLife were chosen for future consideration.  The committee reviewed their proposals more fully to make recommendations, not only for dental but also for health provider.  The EBC will have this information/resource on the website May 5.

“Prof. Dan Gibbens, our NCAA representative, has made available copies of the self study report on the athletics department. We have a hard copy in our office.  President Boren would really encourage input on this.  I think they would like the input by early June.  Prof. Gibbens sent an e-mail to everyone through OUMM, so you can take a look at this rather extensive report (

“The general faculty meeting did not have a quorum, so we did not vote on the amendments to the faculty senate charter or reapportionment.  The Senate office sent out an e-mail to faculty to vote on these two issues.  So please vote and if you get three other colleagues, then we will have more than our quorum, which is 161.  You can either vote by just responding back to the e-mail or if you want to maintain anonymity, then you can put it in a hard copy and send it back to the senate office.  [Note:  The faculty voted to approve the charter 138-23-2 and to approve the reapportionment 141-16-6.]

“I have had some questions about the salary program. President Boren has agreed to have a pool of funds sufficient to provide on average a five percent raise for faculty and staff. He had an open meeting, primarily with students, last week to talk about the tuition and fee increases.  The executive committee discussed with him how to allocate these funds. We felt that there should be a cost of living component so that all faculty and staff receive some increase in salary. We also mentioned that issues of merit and compression/inversion are serious issues affecting faculty morale and retention. Thus, the salary program should also address these issues. The exact percent allocation is still in debate but may be half to cost of living and half to merit/compression/inversion issues. This is consistent with the recommendations of the Budget Council, except that the Budget Council recommended a minimum $1,000 raise for all employees. I think the president said he could meet this recommendation.  The Provost has found $500,000 to address severe compression and inversion problems in three units on campus. This source of funds is in addition to the pool of money for the salary program. The units have had historically high program reviews, been highly productive in all areas, have had difficulties in retaining and attracting faculty, and the salaries of the entire unit are severely compressed/inverted compared to their peers and the Big 12. The funds in the salary program that would have been used to rectify the problems in these units can now be allocated to solve other merit/compression/inversion problems in those colleges. I think that the salary program is a start in the right direction. I am pleased that the faculty and staff will receive raises in a difficult budget year, especially considering that we are not likely to get a large increase in funding from the state. If you have any questions, we will be happy to discuss this.

“I would like to thank Ms. Lauren Hake, who has been a student employee in the Senate office for four years. She gets to collect data, search the web and do a lot of the stuff that I don’t like to do. She has been a great help to Ms. Sonya Fallgatter and me and the other Senate Chairs. She will be graduating in May with a degree in Special Education and will complete her student teaching in the fall. We will miss her greatly and certainly wish her the best. Please let’s thank Lauren.

“I would like to offer a special thanks to the members of my Executive Committee who suffered through some long agendas and far too many stories on the south side of Chicago.  In spite of this, they still provided excellent insight, advice, and counsel.”  Prof. McInerney also said how valuable Ms. Fallgatter had been to him, and he thanked the senators for their diligence and insight.





Certificates of Appreciation were presented to the following outgoing senators who completed full three-year terms (2001-04):  Michael Abraham, J. David Baldwin, Jim Davis, Roger Frech, Austin Hartel, Roy Knapp, Kimball Milton, Jody Newman, Judith Pender, Scott Russell, and Don Wyckoff.  Certificates also were presented to other senators whose terms expired and to the outgoing members of the Senate Executive Committee.





The Senate approved the Senate Committee on Committees' nominations for end-of-the-year vacancies on university and campus councils/committees/boards (attached).  The names of the remaining volunteers will be forwarded to the president to consider for the appointments he makes.





The Senate elected the following faculty to fill vacancies on Senate standing committees: 



Continuing members:  Keith Gaddie (Political Science), Ellen Greene (Classics), S. Lakshmivarahan (Computer Science).

To replace Connie Dillon (Educ. Lead. & Pol. St.) and Valerie Watts (Music), 2004-07 term: 

Jane Magrath (Professor of Music, B.M. Wesleyan College, M.M. North Carolina, D.M. Northwestern, at OU since 1981)

Al Schwarzkopf (Associate Professor of Management Information Systems, B.A. Vanderbilt, Ph.D. Virginia, at OU since 1970)



Continuing members: Eric Anderson (Art), Darryl McCullough (Mathematics), Fred Striz (Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering).

To replace Roy Knapp (Petroleum & Geological Engineering), 2004-07 term:

Tyrrell Conway (Associate Professor of Botany & Microbiology, B.S., Ph.D. Oklahoma State, at OU since 1999)

To replace M. Chris Knapp (Accounting), 2003-06 term:

Richard Marshment (Professor of Regional & City Planning, B.S. Bowling Green State, M.Arch. New Mexico, Ph.D. Washington, at OU since 1988)



Continuing members: Bob Dauffenbach (Management Information Systems), Pat Weaver-Meyers (University Libraries).  

To replace Donald Pisani (History) and Lee Willinger (Accounting), 2004-07 term:

Tom Burns (Associate Professor of Sociology, B.S. Maryland, M.S. Delaware, Ph.D. Maryland, at OU since 2001)

Sheena Murphy (Associate Professor of Physics & Astronomy, B.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Ph.D. Cornell, at OU since 1995)

To replace Myron Pope (Educ. Lead. & Pol. St.), 2002-05 term:

G. Lee Willinger (Stambaugh Professor of Accounting, B.B.A. Ohio, M.B.A. Oregon, D.B.A. Florida, at OU since 1990)


EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE, 2004-05 term, 3 vacancies

To replace Jim Davis (Journalism & Mass Communication), Roy Knapp (Petroleum & Geological Engineering), and Avi Scherman (Educational Psychology): 

Steve Bradford (Saxon Professor of History, B.A. Wisconsin, M.A., Ph.D. Chicago, at OU since 1994)

Neil Houser (Associate Professor of Instructional Leadership & Academic Curriculum, B.A. Westmar College, M.A. California State, Ph.D. Washington State, at OU since 1996)

Meg Penrose (Associate Professor of Law, B.A. Texas at Arlington, J.D. Pepperdine, L.L.M. Notre Dame, at OU since 2000)





Prof. Roger Frech (Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry) was elected Secretary, and Prof. Roy Knapp (Mewbourne Professor of Petroleum & Geological Engineering) was elected Chair-Elect of the Senate for 2004-05.





Prof. McInerney noted that the proposed e-mail notification policy (below) was discussed last month (see 4/04 Senate Journal).  An addition made 4/19/04 by the Information Technology Council (ITC) policy subcommittee is underlined.


In order to assure timely and efficient communication, the University establishes email as an acceptable means of official communication.

All University students, faculty, and staff will be assigned an official University email account. Official University communications will be sent to this account. Email sent to this account is expected to be read in a timely fashion, except in circumstances where access to email is impracticable.

Faculty and staff may assume that a student’s official University email is a valid mechanism for communicating with that student. Faculty who rely upon electronic communication with or between students in their classes will specify their requirements in the course syllabus.

Disclaimer: Account holders who choose to have email forwarded to another email address do so at their own risk.  An account holder’s failure to receive or read, in a timely manner, official University communications sent to an official email account does not absolve the account holder from knowing and complying with the content of the official communication.


Prof. Deborah Trytten, Chair of the ITC policy subcommittee, said the policy was prompted by the provost’s suggestion that students should be required to check their e-mail.  She said the most recent controversy was whether people should be forbidden from sending confidential information through unencrypted e-mail.  ITC had a version of the policy that would have required people to use encrypted and secure channels; however, Legal Counsel did not think it was a good idea. 


Prof. Abraham said Legal Counsel had told him a couple of years ago that faculty could not discuss a student’s grades with that student via e-mail.  Prof. Fran Ayres, Chair of the ITC, said she thought he could under the proposed policy.  Prof. Abraham said the explanation given was if a student requested information via U.S. mail and someone represented themselves fraudulently, it would be a federal offense.  Prof. Ayres noted that one section of the policy states that students should use the official OU e-mail account because they have to log in with their name and password.  Prof. Trytten said the phrase was added at the end of the second paragraph to handle cases such as when someone is away from campus and e-mail is not available.  Prof. Marcus-Mendoza said it was not always practical for advanced programs students to have Internet access.  Prof. Russell pointed out that there are technical limitations to e-mail.  There may be no record that the e-mail was ever sent and therefore could not constitute legal notification.  Prof. Trytten said Legal Counsel’s position is legal notifications cannot be sent by e-mail. 


Prof. Knapp said the policy also discussed official communication with faculty and staff, not just students.  He asked whether that meant the annual contract from the president could be sent by e-mail.  Prof. Trytten said this was not any attempt to create a paperless university, and she saw no sign that the administration intended to send important items by e-mail.  Provost Mergler said e-mail would be just one means of communication.  The intent is to encourage students to pay more attention.  One example is advisors try to urge students to get advised and enrolled in a timely manner.  She said she did not plan to stop putting on paper what she currently is. 


Prof. Halterman said he was concerned about the language, “except in circumstances where access to e-mail is impracticable.”  If a student cannot access e-mail, it should be incumbent upon the student to notify the faculty member so that some other means can be used for sending information.  Prof. Ayres said the policy suggests that faculty should specify in the course syllabus how they plan to communicate.  Prof. Halterman said the expectation that e-mail would be read in a timely fashion was also a problem.  Prof. Trytten replied that she specifies in her syllabus that she has a 24-hour expectation.  Prof. Burns commented that it was common for messages to come back as undeliverable.  Prof. Trytten said she includes a statement on her syllabus that it is the student’s responsibility to keep his/her OU e-mail account updated.  The motion to approve the policy was approved 19 to 9.





The Faculty Senate approved the following resolution of appreciation to Prof. Mike McInerney, outgoing Senate Chair:


Whereas, Mike maintained an effective and amicable relationship with the university administration during the 2003-2004 academic year,

Whereas, Mike gently guided the faculty development award program into existence and through its first award round,

Whereas, Mike has, in our behalf, encouraged the University of Oklahoma Student Association in developing an honor code and establishing an honor council and agreed to serve as the honor council faculty advisor,

Whereas, Mike has, with good humor and patience, guided the Senate through the adoption of several items such as a seemingly endless number of and constantly modified policies involving IT, a Research Council charge change, adoption of good practice for courses and programs and the usual housekeeping to allow the Faculty Senate to function,

Whereas, through Mike’s leadership and efforts the interests of the university faculty were incorporated into and protected in the revision of the Regents’ Handbook, including complex issues surrounding renewable term faculty,

Whereas, Mike has worked diligently to keep the communication with the university administration about faculty concerns and needs regarding critical issues of salary, health care plans and retirement programs open and positive and as a result fruitful, showing that once again Irish heritage can go a long way to save civility, if not civilization, at OU,

And whereas, Mike discovered the use of a meeting of the General Regular Faculty to convey current information about the medical and dental insurance RFP and Oklahoma Teachers’ Retirement to the widest possible faculty audience to assure those issues are maintained in a vegetative aerobic state; regrettably the faculty proved to be sessile rather than planktonic, and as a result their attendance was sparse,

Be it resolved that the Faculty Senate expresses its sincere appreciation to Professor Mike McInerney for providing leadership and service to the university faculty for the academic year 2003-2004.


Prof. Valerie Watts presented Prof. McInerney with a certificate of appreciation and an engraved clock and played an Irish lament on the flute.  Prof. McInerney said he certainly enjoyed the year.  Prof. Watts then assumed the office of 2004-05 Senate Chair.





The meeting adjourned at 4:20 p.m.  The next regular session of the Faculty Senate will be held at 3:30 p.m. on Monday, September 13, 2004, in Jacobson Faculty Hall 102.


Sonya Fallgatter, Administrative Coordinator


Karen Rupp-Serrano, Secretary