Department Heads Meeting -- Feb. 13, 2008

Department Heads Meeting
February 13, 2008

Communication

To enhance communication, the chair of the Faculty Council will now be included in all department heads meetings.

Budget

The dean has met with several department heads regarding anticipated budget needs for the next year. He will follow up with individual department heads on FTE reduction proposals.

Teaching time tabulations

Department heads should review teaching time tabulations prior to FSR submissions to ensure that they are accurate. Accurate apportionment of teaching time for team taught courses remains a problem.

Student mentoring program

The college piloted a student mentoring program this year with a small cohort of students with mixed results. The program has been substantially revised for next year. Solicitations for nominations for student mentors have been sent out. Comments on the proposed revised program are invited.

Retention study

The retention study commissioned by the college through the Survey Research Center is complete and copies of the executive summary provided to all department heads. Of those students who withdrew many cited conflicts with work as a factor in their decision to withdraw. Many worked 30-40 hours a week while trying to attend college. Of those students who withdrew most retained positive feelings about the college and their programs of study.

Weather policy

Campus administration has asked us to further address the current inclement weather policy with faculty and department heads. Faculty have latitude to determine the policy for class cancellation but the policy and means for notification must be placed in the syllabus.

Awards

Faculty nominations for most awards were adequate this year but student nominations remain lower than desired. Departments should make every effort to nominate deserving students. Honors day this year will move to an evening event in April. This year we will recognize all outstanding undergraduates and graduate student in each department in addition to the college awards.

Curriculum Change Approval Process

Departments that do not have curriculum committees were encouraged to form these and to review all curricular changes presented for the departments. Some problems of courses being approved in college committees prior to departmental approval were discussed.

Enrollment Distribution Report

The current distribution of undergraduate and graduate courses by enrollment counts was distributed. Of the 648 sections offered; 237 were considered low enrolled. This did include dual enrollment, cross listed courses, seminars, judging teams, controlled enrollment sections and off campus sections. When adjusted for these factors, there were 62 (9.6%) low enrolled sections

Science Day

Three science days are planned this year at Harrison for North Central Schools, Farmington for Benton and Washington County schools. The PSRC committee plans these events, but a problem has surfaced between commitment made by the committee members and faculty participation. Ways to improve the communication of the decisions made were discussed.

RAR retreat is planned for March 27. Please hold the date on your calendar.

Please note: Handouts from this meeting are available upon request from Donna Graham at dgraham@uark.edu or Carmen Alessi at calessi@uark.edu