Acadia University Senate


A meeting of the Senate of Acadia University occurred on Monday, 13 June 2005, beginning at
 10:12 a.m. with Chair Ian Wilks presiding and 35 members present.
1)   Minutes of the Meeting of
11 May 2005

It was moved by L. Oliver and seconded by J. Sumarah that the minutes of
Wednesday, 11 May 2005 be approved. 
It was agreed to add the following sentence to the end of Para 4 of Item 5)a):  "She confirmed that this policy would in future be communicated in the relevant course calendars as well as to all Spring and Summer instructors."
Also spelling error on Pg 7.

2) Announcements and
   a) From the Chair
      -re Regrets
      -re Agenda
      -re Retiring Faculty
Regrets were received from P. Abela, S. Bondrup-Nielsen, P. Cabilio, G. Daborn, G. Dinter-Gottlieb, D. Duke, R. Gossage, G. Hepburn, A. Irving, E. Nahm, and S. Phillips.
The Chair indicated handouts for today's meeting and the following additions to the agenda: under item 5) New Business - b) Annual Reports an additional two reports have been received; - c) Accommodations for Students with Learning Disabilities.  It was agreed to add these items to the agenda.
I. Wilks made presentations to faculty who have recently or will be shortly retired from Acadia University and who have served on the Senate.  He emphasized that Senate oversees the academic integrity of the institution just as the Board overseas its financial integrity.  We should publicly establish the importance of Senate and the huge contribution of those individuals who serve on it.  As a token of appreciation, he made presentations to Diane Looker, Cy MacLatchy, and Les Oliver.
D. Looker and C. MacLatchy spoke briefly and expressed thanks for the gifts.  The Chair invited the two former Senators to stay and enter the debate on Academic Program Review.

   b) From the Vice-President
R. Nilson felt this had been a good year and a great learning curve for himself.  He has seen an acceptance of Senate's responsibility and the role that comes with being a Senator.  In future, there will be many opportunities to interact and work together for change and improvement at Acadia University. 
He noted that the Strategic Planning exercise is winding down.  The Board of Governors debated the results of the content this past weekend and a final draft is expected within the month.  The Senate  will have an opportunity to provide feedback at that time. 

  3) Business Arising from the
   a) Registrar-Inactive Courses
      in Last Three Years as
      Attached to May agenda
I. Wilks noted that the Registrar's Office produced a list of courses that had not been offered for the last three years and it was attached to the May agenda.  He asked Senators how they wished to proceed with this issue.
R. Jotcham confirmed that the list included courses that had been created within the last three years and not offered.  It was not known how many such courses were on the list.  She said that some on this list are on a rotating schedule of offering which is more than three years.
B. Matthews noted that he taught some courses on the list, before he took the Dean position, and these should not be removed.
No action was taken on this matter.

  b) By-Laws Committee-
      Membership Name Change
It was moved by P. Corkum and seconded by A. Mitchell that as a result of the position title of Provost to Vice-President Student Affairs, the By-Laws Committee recommends that within Section II. MEMBERSHIP, "Provost (non-voting)" should be replaced with "Vice-President Student Affairs (non-voting)".

  c) By-Laws Committee
      Faculty Elections Officer
It was moved by P. Corkum and seconded by A. Mitchell that Section VIII. (q) be revised to read:  "i - the Faculty Elections Officer of Acadia's Faculty at large shall be elected annually by Senate on nomination by the Nominating Committee of Senate.  This position is to be distinguished from the Faculty Election Officers within each Faculty".

  4) New Business
   a) Vice-President (Academic)-
      Academic Program Review
      & Unit Review Process

It was moved by R. Nilson and seconded by J. Sumarah that the Academic Program Review Committee report on the Unit Review Process be accepted.
R. Nilson spoke to this report and noted that the APRC began work on this document in January.  He said that the attempt was to bring back to life, the program reviews that took place at Acadia years ago.  Recently, cluster reviews were conducted which the committee felt were not as beneficial as individual unit reviews.  A number of schools/departments have professional designation that requires a regular review while other units do not.  Therefore, a unit-based review allows issues to come forward.  As well, real value is in the self-study portion of a review as it allows others outside the unit to understand what is going on in individual departments/schools.  The review procedure is based on a ten-year external and a five-year internal review schedule for each unit.  The process outlined in the report was pulled together from a variety of sources.  Major changes include a move away from cluster review, addition of disciplinary work, and addition of self-study within units.
D. Looker felt a move away from cluster review was a good one. 
It was moved by W. Bedingfield and seconded by B. Matthews that the schedule be excluded completely from this report and be constructed annually by the VP(A) in consultation with the Deans.
Open discussion of this report was held with the following points coming forth:
·  Schedule to be approved by Senate one year at a time; therefore, all but 2005 will be deleted from the schedule in the report.  This was accepted as a friendly amendment.
·  As Nutrition will be reviewed for its professional designation/certification in 2008, it will be removed from the schedule.
·  Even though the School of Music will be under an Acting Head in 2005, the review should go forward.
·  The purpose of a review is to determine how we work together to provide the best possible environment for faculty and for students.
·  Strategic Review results may be helpful in a review; but will not wait for a final document to begin the first reviews.
·  Deans have not discussed this document with their Heads and Directors to date - but will.
·  VP(A) confirmed that the complexity of units (how they are interdependent) has been considered and this pattern has worked well in other institutions.
·  Friendly amendment accepted to amend Pg 2, Review Coordination, 1st bullet to read "Develop a schedule for reviews on consultation with the Deans; who themselves, will consult with Heads and Directors;".
·  APRC is a committee of Senate and to report annually to this body.  To bring review recommendations to Senate for approval, may over-ride the unit's voice.
·  The assessment of use of technology and also of efforts to internationalize are important.
·  If no agreement was reached on a definition of Liberal Education, perhaps there is a problem.
·  Under Section 4 - Review Team Selection, a definition of "small unit" is needed.
·  As per Pg 4, # 8, VP(A) defined "listing any research on the teaching in the unit" as identifying if anything has gone on in the unit relative to assessing or researching teaching mechanisms, styles, or any aspect of the teaching being done.  This is a means to share and celebrate teaching methods.
·  Friendly amendment accepted to amend Pg 2, Review Coordination, 4th bullet to read "Develop terms of reference for the review team in consultation with the unit; ".
·  A friendly amendment was accepted to amend Pg 3, Time Frame Table by inserting: May - APRC inform Senate as to which units are to be reviewed in the coming year (placed above September item).
·  Much discussion was held in an attempt to clarify Senate's part/authority in this process.  A friendly amendment was accepted to amend Pg 8, Response and Implementation, by adding the following to that paragraph "The APRC will bring recommendations before Senate. "
·  Discussion continued on "what authority Senate has to decide whether APRC recommendations are proper".
·  To clarify who chairs the review team, a friendly amendment was accepted to amend Pg 6, Review Team Selection Para 1, by adding the following after the first sentence:  "The APRC will designate the Chair of this team."
·  VP(A) confirmed that the University would cover all costs of reviews, including internal costs.
·  A review is much added work for units and some parts of the academic year are busier than others.  The external reviewer typically chooses the final dates and should consider this.
·  Discussion held on having a balanced perspective of recommendations before the review team disbands.
·  The VP(A) confirmed that the implementation plan is part of the recommendations that will go to Senate.

The Chair changed the agenda order at this point

b) Notice of Motion -
      Accommodations for    
      Students with Learning
      Disabilities (045-52-TIE)
It was moved by A. Mitchell and seconded by G. Bissix that the following be accepted: 
Be it resolved that the Senate Timetable, Instruction, and Examination Committee consider the issue of individual treatment for learning disabled students and report back to Senate with recommendations for the conduct of tests and examinations in time for the 2005/06 Christmas Examination period."
A. Mitchell spoke to this motion, noting that the number of students requiring special consideration for tests and examinations has increased.  Arrangements are made, but there is no policy or guidelines available.  He felt such policy should be looked at and brought to Senate for approval. 
Discussion followed regarding this issue going to the Senate Academic Integrity Committee instead or as well.  The issue at this time is how much time should be given and what space is appropriate for students requiring special consideration.  Jill Davies will be invited to the September meeting to speak on this matter, outlining the current situation, and answer questions from Senators.

  Remaining items on agenda were deferred.
The Chair expressed thanks to the Senate Secretariat for a job well done during this very busy past year.

 7) Adjournment

D. Kruisselbrink moved this meeting be adjourned.  It was 4:30 p.m.




D. Murphy, Recording Secretary