Combined with



Tuesday, October 21, 2008, 2:00 pm

Ferst Center for the Arts


1.      Dr. Ronald Bohlander, Secretary of the Faculty, opened the meeting at 2:00 PM and explained there had been some inadvertent announcements that the State of the Institute Message would be delivered at 3 p.m.  Therefore the meeting would take the faculty business parts of the agenda first, followed by President Schuster’s address.  He then introduced President Schuster to conduct the business of the day.

2.      President Schuster asked for the minutes of the April 22, 2008 meeting to be approved.  He indicated that the minutes were posted on the faculty governance web site and no additions or corrections had been received. (See Attachment #1 below for web site reference).   The minutes were approved without dissent.  

3.      Dr. Schuster called on Mr. Time Strike, Chair of the Statutes Committee, to present proposed changes to the Faculty Handbook having to do with hiring and promotion of research titled faculty.  Mr. Strike followed closely the briefing documented in Attachment #2.  He explained that the proposal was being brought forth at this time in an effort to improve the cycle of promotion actions that were already underway for 2008-09.  Only one reading and approval of these recommendations would be required since the Sec. 22 of the Faculty handbook was the only one affected and it was not part of the Statutes.

Slide 5 showed the first of the recommended changes.  Mr. Strike explained that the language about counterpart ranks was proposed for deletion because it had caused confusion in recent years and no longer served a purpose.  Research and professorial ranks were separately administered and no direct correspondence could be assumed in hiring and promotion. 

Slide 6 showed a change in the baseline for measuring "years of experience," "years in rank," and "years at Georgia Tech" for compliance with hiring and promotion guidelines.  Mr. Strike said the change was to clarify the intent of the guidelines so that applicants were not counted one day short when they were applying after the minimum times specified.

Mr. Strike indicated the changes shown in Slide 7 and 8 were intended to better recognize the value of technical experience earned while the candidate only had a bachelor’s degree as long as at least a master’s degree was earned by the date of hiring or promotion.

Mr. Strike moved on behalf of the Statutes Committee that these changes in the Handbook be approved and instituted this year.  There was a second and the motion passed without dissent.

4.      The President then called on representatives of each of the faculty’s Standing Committees to present their annual reports and any minutes requiring approval.  Explicit approval of the faculty for specific action items was also sought where required.  In most cases the representatives followed closely the reports in the committees’ files on the faculty governance website noted in Attachment #3 below and so this text will not be repeated here.  The following is an outline of the material presented showing the representatives that appeared to make the presentation. 

Standing Committees of the General Faculty

a.       Faculty Benefits (Dr. Bettina Cothran) – Annual Report
Minutes:4/1/08, 4/22/08. No action items.

b.      Faculty Honors (Dr. Bill Hunt) – report held over to the Nov. 18, 2008 meeting

c.       Faculty Status & Grievance (Dr. Carol Colatrella) – Annual Report

d.      Statutes (Mr. Tim Strike) – Annual Report

e.       Academic Services (Dr. Margaret Loper) – Annual Report
Minutes: 2/26/08, 3/25/08, 4/22/08, 8/26/08, 9/16/08. No action items.

f.        Welfare & Security (Ms. Jilda Garton) – report held over to the Nov. 18, 2008 meeting

Standing Committees of the Academic Faculty

a.       Undergraduate Curriculum (Dr. Chuck Parsons) – Annual Report
Minutes: 5/7/08, 5/12/08, 6/11/08, 7/16/08, 8/6/08, 8/18/08, 8/27/08, 9/10/08, 10/8/08. 
Action items. From 5/7: Math – 1 new course, 2 cross-listings with CS; ME – change in degree requirements related to economics and technical electives.  From 7/16: Modern Languages – 2 new courses; Architecture – 3 new courses; CoC and LCC – change in grade requirements for BS in Computational Media, its International Plan Option, and its Research Option; Psych. – 1 new course and an additional elective option for Social Science.  From 8/18: Procedure for handling petitions for additional credits in the final term.  From 9/10: BME – revision to minor in BME; EAS – 2 new courses and a modification to the degree program concerning expanding a requirement for C or better in certain courses; HST – changes in the minors in History and in Sociology.  From 10/8: Public Policy – minors in Political Science, Public Policy, Philosophy of Science and Technology, and Law, Science, and Technology will require 15 instead of 18 hours; Provost’s Office – new special topics course re the “In/Venture Prize@Georgia Tech”.  A question was asked about the rationale for changing required minor hours from 18 to 15.  Dr. Parsons explained that such a move was to make it more attractive for students to pursue a minor while still satisfying Board of Regents minimum requirements of 15 hours for a minor.  He noted that such changes would not be applied automatically to existing minors.  Each department of instruction would need to apply to the curriculum committee if they wanted to institute this kind of change.

b.      Graduate Curriculum (Dr. R. Gary Parker) – Annual Report
Minutes: 5/12/08, 6/12/08, 9/4/08
Action Items. From 5/12: new Guidelines for Petitions, Admission to Graduate Status without an Undergraduate Degree.  Also, Psych. - new PhD specializations in Cognitive Aging and in Cognition and Brain Science, plus 14 new courses; Building Construction Program - change MS in Building Construction and Integrated Facility Management from a 12-month program to a 9-month program.  From 6/12: Mgt – 3 new courses; ME – cross-listing 3 courses with CS, AE, ECE.

c.       Student Regulations (Dr. Paul Benkeser for Dr. Jeff Streator, Chair) – Annual Report
Minutes: 4/15/08, 8/25/08, 9/22/08. 
Action items.  From 8/25: Policy change on student academic grievance procedures providing additional bases for possible grievance and further avenues for students to file grievances.
From 9/22: Policy on course credit for completion of International Baccalaureate courses in high school, providing guidance for the amount of credit.  A question was asked if International Baccalaureate credits granted tended to be the same or higher than those granted for Advanced Placement work.  Dr. Benkeser responded that this is judged on a case by case basis but that it had been difficult to establish a pattern until this proposed policy guideline was put in place.

d.      Student Academic & Financial Affairs (Dr. Susan Burns for the chair Dr. Augustine Esogbue) – Annual Report
Minutes: 1/31/08, 3/27/08, 4/24/08.  No action items.

e.       Student Activities (Ms. Mary-Frances Panettiere for the chair Dr. Brent Carter) – Annual Report
Minutes: 9/28/07, 11/2/07, 11/30/07, 2/22/08, 3/7/08, 4/25/08
Action items: Approval of all student activity charters and constitution revisions recommended by the committee as documented in their minutes and the annual report.

f.        Student Grievance & Appeal (Dr. Facundo Fernandez) – report held over to the Nov. 18, 2008 meeting.

g.       Student Honor (Dr. Carol Senf) – Annual Report

h.       Student Computer Ownership (Dr. Jonathan Giffin) – Annual Report
Minutes: 9/17/07, 2/14/08.  Action items: Approval of recommended changes to laptop requirements and software recommendations as documented in the annual report

i.     Academic Integrity (Dr. Robert Kirkman) – report held over to the Nov. 18, 2008 meeting

In each of the above committee presentations, the presenter moved for the adoption of the listed minutes and action items (if any).  All were approved without dissent.


4.      The President called for any other business. Hearing none, Dr. Schuster adjourned the meeting at about 3 PM. 


5.   After a brief intermission, President Gary Schuster delivered his State of the Institute Address which has been documented in Attachments #4a and b below.  Following the talk, there were no questions and the assembly was dismissed.


Respectfully submitted,


Ronald A. Bohlander
Secretary of the Faculty

November 11, 2008


Attachments to be included with archival copy of the minutes:


  1. Minutes of the April 22, 2008 meeting of the Academic Senate, Academic Faculty, and General Faculty.
  2. Proposed change in the Faculty Handbook concerning hiring and promotion of research-titled faculty.
  3. All annual reports and minutes may be found at
  4. State of the Institute Address
    1. PowerPoint presentation
    2. Text