University of North Florida
Board of Trustees
Educational Policy Committee

  • Meeting
September 3, 2003
University Center at 10:00 a.m.

Committee Members Present

Edythe Abdullah, Luther Coggin, Toni Crawford, Ann Hicks, Jerry Watterson

Committee Members Absent

Bruce Taylor

Other Trustees Present

Judy Solano

Call to Order/Approval of Minutes

Chair Hicks called the meeting to order and asked for a motion to approve the previous minutes. Trustee Crawford moved to approve the minutes and Trustee Coggin seconded the motion. The motion was approved unanimously.

Commercial Activity Rule

Chair Hicks asked Judy Clausen to explain the rule on commercial activity. Ms. Clausen offered some background on the changes, stating that the rules to be discussed were outdated and often contradictory and were not reflective of current practices. The pertinent university departments drafted a new set of rules over the past year. The new policies had been approved by the Associates Group and UNF’s constituent assemblies. Regarding commercial activity, Ms. Clausen said the definition had been tightened, defining commercial activity as that which resulted in commercial gain and did not include passing out flyers. The rule is intended to regulate commercial activity on campus. Permission would be required, as would sponsorship from a campus group or organization, and would be granted only if the activity benefited a campus entity or was for a non-profit organization.


Upon Ms. Stone’s request, Trustee Watterson added that student clubs and organizations often received compensation for sponsorship helping to allay costs. Trustee Crawford asked if charitable groups were also required to compensate clubs for sponsorship. Trustee Watterson replied that they were not. Dr. Gonzalez said that groups requesting permission for commercial activity often were already connected with a campus organization, although Student Life occasionally assisted with finding a campus sponsor.


Ms. Clausen stated that activity contracted with the University did not require permission, nor did activities held on a one-on-one basis with a student such as a pizza delivery, etc. Chair Hicks asked if the rule had been based on the Florida system and Ms. Clausen agreed that it was based on a rule from the University of Florida. Dr. Serwatka noted that one change had been added thanks to Chair Hicks’ observation: the University Center operated separately from the rest of the campus in regard to commercial activity and had its own guidelines. This information had been added to the rule.

Distribution of Printed Material Rule

Ms. Clausen stated that the rule on the distribution of printed material had to do with literature passed out on campus. She said the rule was very liberal, literature could be distributed anywhere on campus so long as the action was not disruptive. For example, the material could not be left on car windshields or passed out in buildings, and the distributor could not block the sidewalk. The rule also outlined the procedure for leaving material without an attendant. Ms. Clausen noted that certain places, such as residence halls, operated a little differently.

Demonstrations Rule

The rule on demonstrations set out procedures for oral traditions such as giving speeches, playing guitar, etc. Ms. Clausen said a free speech zone had been designated next to the Robinson Student Life Center. The free speech zone was available to anyone without advanced permission. Flexibility to designate additional spaces with more traffic but without interfering with University operations was included within the rule. Advanced registration was required to set up booths on campus. Booths would be able to set up in the same locations as those designated for commercial activity. Applications and permission were required for protests and other such events on campus. Applications must include the applicant’s name, proposed location, date, and time for the activity, anticipated number of participants, purpose, signature, and a statement indicating whether amplification devices would be used. The Office of Student Life would evaluate applications and determine whether the activity would disrupt the campus or pose danger to students, staff, faculty, or the security of the University. Additionally, the Office would ensure that the time and location were suitable and that the applicant was not under a disciplinary penalty or probation prohibiting public assembly or demonstration. Ms. Clausen stated that originally Student Life had not been responsible for oversight but had been designated as the responsible office in the new policy. She drew the group’s attention to the policy’s outline for handling events that began to disrupt campus. Initially the President or the President’s designee would ask the event participants to leave prior to calling in campus police.


Trustee Abdullah asked why the President went out first. President Delaney responded that much of the policy had been derived from UF. The idea behind the policy was that situations might be handled faster and more effectively, resulting in less escalation, if the President or his designee could resolve the issue prior to calling for law enforcement. Ms. Stone complimented Ms. Clausen on the research into the policies and thanked her for all her hard work.


Chair Hicks asked for motions to recommend the rules to the full Board. It was so motioned and the Trustees voted unanimously to recommend all of the rules.

Rescind 6C 9-7.007 and 6C 9-7.008

Judy Clausen explained the need to rescind Rules 6C 9-7.007 and 6C 9-7.008 as these rules were now addressed in the campus demonstrations rule and were outdated. Trustees unanimously voted to recommend that the rules be rescinded.

Five-Year Program Reviews

Moving to five-year program reviews, Chair Hicks asked Dr. Wilson to lead the discussion. Dr. Wilson stated that academic programs were reviewed on a regular basis. The reviews were included in the SACS continuous improvement process, the University goals, etc. He referred committee members to the materials in their packets. Three categories of program review were defined: programs without accrediting bodies which required self study within the program or department and an outside reviewer, reviews of programs with accrediting bodies that reviewed the program on a five to seven year cycle, and reviews of programs where accreditation occurred every eight to ten years. Dr. Wilson stated that last year’s reviews were conducted under the existing format. While each program had its own recommendations and concerns, primarily the need for more money and more faculty, overall reviews had been outstanding. He said that a number of program reviews were planned this year. At the end of the program review process, reviews were analyzed by an internal committee and sent to the Department of Education.


Chair Hicks asked how it was determined that some programs had outside accrediting bodies while others did not. Dr. Wilson replied that many programs did not have accrediting bodies, accreditation was generally associated with professional licensure. Dr. Kline added that he believed every program in the University that could be accredited was either already accredited or seeking accreditation.


Trustee Coggin asked if there was an additional evaluation process in place between the program reviews. Dr. Wilson answered that there was: each program was required to submit an annual report and to complete a midterm internal program review, in part to examine the progress made in terms of accreditation. Dr. Kline said that often departments chose external reviewers who would conclude that the program needed more resources. He and Dr. Wilson had discussed at length how best to encourage reviewers to work for the University rather than strictly for the departments. He said that it was important to meet with external reviewers to make sure they knew the reasoning behind the report. It was fine to request more resources but other alternatives should be presented as well.


Trustee Abdullah asked how this process tied in with SACS accreditation for the University. Dr. Wilson replied that departments were asked to identify their needs. Trustee Abdullah asked if they had to develop a quality enhancement plan to which Dr. Wilson responded that they did. Dr. Abdullah thought that was wonderful and asked if any thought had been given to how to connect the process with the State’s move toward accountability. Dr. Wilson acknowledged that the issue was under consideration. The University was examining how to effect changes in response to department reports. President Delaney asked Janet Owen to speak to this issue. Ms. Owen said that CEPRI was conducting a study on the possibility of university funding contracts for all of the universities rather than just the five universities currently contracted in this manner. Universities would contract with the Board of Governors guaranteeing accomplishments according to the level of funding. Universities would then know in advance how many students could be enrolled. She said possible performance measures, along with each university’s mission, would be discussed at the next meeting. UNF was very supportive of the contracting idea. She said the State Board of Education planned to establish common definitions and standards for K through 20 by December 1 of this year. President Delaney pointed out that some of the measures might not be the same as those examined by SACS, however, SACS was increasingly looking at outcomes.


Trustee Abdullah asked if educational needs of the country and of the region were considered in the review process. Dr. Wilson answered that they were and that the process was heavily data driven with data collected from a number of sources. Dr. Kline pointed out mathematics and statistics as an example of this. He said that departments were encouraged to come up with methods for increasing enrolments in programs such as these that were areas of high need. Trustee Abdullah asked if these issues were tied to department budgets. Dr. Wilson replied that departments were asked to specifically address these issues. Trustee Watterson noted that the section under mathematics and statistics offered a less than desirable success rate. He said his professor had announced that more than half the class would fail his college algebra class on the first day of class. He asked how this could be addressed. Dr. Kline agreed that it was a problem. Chair Hicks noted that the problem existed at Harvard and many other universities as well. Dr. Wilson said that the external reviewer had informed them that some universities were replacing the college algebra requirement with liberal arts math. Though the current UNF requirement could not be disposed of at this time, the issue was under consideration.


Chair Hicks commended Dr. Wilson for his report, stating that it was very enlightening and reassuring. She asked President Delaney to announce the changes in funding for the Library addition. President Delaney introduced Ms. Shuman, the new vice president of administration and finance. After everyone welcomed her, he announced that with the consent of the TSI board, he had decided to move some funding back to the library project to allow more substantial renovation in accordance with what had originally been planned. The original plan had been pared down significantly due to budget constraints but he felt it was of the utmost importance that the library addition be sufficient to meet student needs for some time to come. The library was such a necessary resource to any university and he did not feel it sensible to go to the expense of an addition that would quickly be inadequate to the needs of UNF.