University Senate - January 25, 2021 Meeting Minutes

Call to Order and Announcements

The University Senate was called to order at 3:30 p.m., via Zoom, on Monday, January 25, 2021. Members absent: Rodney Coates, Martin Johnson, Reena Murphy, Marielena Orozco, and Harper Sutton.

  1. Announcements and Remarks by the Chair of Senate Executive Committee, James Bielo.

    1. The next Senate Working Session will be February 1 and will be led by Cathy Wagner. The topic is shared governance. If you would like to propose a topic for the Senate Working Sessions, the proposal form is available on Canvas.

    2. Today’s meeting is the first since the transition to the Zoom platform. There are a few differences: the hand raise feature is in reactions tab at the bottom; everyone can see when a hand is raised; and, we will have a record of voting, but it will not be available until after the meeting. The votes are reviewed to ensure only senators have voted. There are two possible votes today; unless there are significant concerns

    3. Provost Osborne updated Senate that COVID testing is going well. There is testing for any student planning on being in the residence halls or in a face to face or hybrid class. There has been a low positivity rate - overall, less than 1%. We are now going to transition into surveillance testing. Saliva testing is now available through the Microbiology Department. The results are much quicker, and the capacity is larger. We are able to do 680 tests per day for six days/week. There is some employee surveillance being done for those who are in greatest contact with our students. Daily case counts are in the single digits with low positivity rates (<1%.) The saliva test is a very sensitive test, but it is not diagnostic. Any positive cases are then sent for a PCR test, which is diagnostic and comes back quickly. There recently was an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education that has determined that classrooms and formal on campus spaces were not areas that contributed to the spread of COVID. One of the top factors was off-campus gatherings and residence halls. It was also determined that entry and surveillance testing were critical.

    4. Provost Osborne updated Senate on the COVID vaccine. There is not a lot of information about it at this point. We don’t know what kind we will be getting. There is an interdisciplinary group working on this, focusing on both students and employees.

    5. Provost Osborne indicated that the Center for Teaching Excellence has given 947 commendations from last semester to faculty, staff, leaders, and graduate students. This is in addition to the 275 Student Recognition for Teaching Excellence recognitions by the Provost Office and Associated Student Government.

    6. We are not continuing to allow any course to be taken credit/no credit. Students were permitted to do this for spring 2020 and fall 2020 due to the significant disruption in courses and changes in course modalities. Students want this option to continue to be available, but there are issues with this. We have found that Miami is out of alignment compared to other universities. Employers are going to have problems with a student having 2-3 semesters of no GPA while other institutions have 1-2 semesters of reduced GPA. Provost Osborne is willing to discuss this further if a proposal is brought forward.

    7. Senators had the following questions and discussion:

      1. Senator Wagner stated that faculty are wondering why they have not been required to be tested before teaching in person. Is it a cost issue? Provost Osborne answered that it’s a capacity issue, not a cost issue. There is limited testing capacity, and we are trying to put resources where there is the most risk. People on the Regionals had similar questions last semester. As members of the community, we can be tested anywhere through a private provider.

      2. Senator Stein asked ‘how accurate is the saliva test compared to throat and nose swabs? Is there a concern about false negatives?’ We have been told that the saliva tests are more sensitive than the throat and nose swabs. We are not experiencing false negatives, but are having positives that are not followed up by the PCR. Senator Cox added that we’re in a better place with saliva testing. It is much easier to provide a sample, and there are thoughts that the virus shows up in saliva faster than in throat or nose swab. The tests that we use here are the gold standard for PCR. There will be more false results with an antigen test.

      3. Senator Wu commented that many students have used C/NC policy on 1-2 classes, so they still would have a GPA. Why was C/NC put into place? There was a disruption, and it is still in place now. Can you please expand on the rationale? Provost Osborne commented that you can still use C/NC selectively, you just cannot used it for your required/major courses. We are still in the middle of a pandemic. Last spring, we suddenly sprung into a different learning mode and there was upheaval. In the fall, we still needed to give grace due to changes that did not meet expectations. Students are now getting what they signed up for, and faculty are very well prepared to deliver the courses as needed and there has not been the disruption. Credit/No Credit can still be accessed for certain classes during the first 20% of the semester. The Provost stated that he is not willing to continue suspending the policy, but added that if you want to change the policy, that is a conversation that can occur.

      4. Senator Stuart expressed concern that we are allowing faculty to go into classrooms without being tested. There was concern about the new, more contagious variants of the virus. Senator Cox elaborated that getting tested does not make them safer, it makes the people around them safer. Testing the people around the faculty member (e.g. students) makes the faculty member safer. With our resources available, we could test a relatively safe population, or we can test a riskier population (student areas) where there may be more potential to have a positive test. Testing should not be thought of as healthcare, but as a data collection device. Therefore, we want to do the data collection in areas that have a higher likelihood for infection, including, dorms, fraternity houses, and social events. We do have some KN-95 masks at our disposal. We are looking for a way to distribute them, so if there is a need, please send requests to Dana.

Approval of University Senate Minutes

  1. A motion was received, seconded, and carried to approve the November 23, 2020, minutes.

Consent Calendar

  1. The following items were received on the Consent calendar:

    1. Curriculum

    2. Liberal Education Council Meeting Minutes – December 1, 2020

    3. Graduate Council Minutes – November 10, 2020

New Business

  1. SR 21-16 -Master of Science in Sport Leadership and Management – Melissa Chase – Chair, Department of Sport Leadership and Management

    1. There are 12 full-time faculty in the Sport Leadership and Management Department who will contribute toward this Master’s. There are currently 36 graduate students. There has been a Master Sports Studies since 1985. This comes as a new proposal due to the partitioning between KNH and SLM.

    2. The overall purpose is to prepare students to critically analyze and engage in the leadership and culture of sport. Alumni go on to doctoral programs, athletic directors, marketing, management, academic support services, sport performance psychology, coaching, and many other fields.

    3. Curriculum has been offered for a number of years and is 30 hours. It is a Master of Science containing Research based curriculum. There are six hours of research methods (quantitative and qualitative) courses in addition to a Sport Leadership core and 12-18 hours from elective classes particular to their interest. The culminating experience can be a thesis or a non-thesis research project.

    4. There has been a steady growth in the number of combined (4+1) students. They come from Sport Leadership and Management undergraduate degree, but can come from other undergraduate degrees on campus. There is a history of recruiting international students into the sports psychology focus. Anticipate more students from the sport management area with name change. This previously was a concentration within the Master of Science in Kinesiology and Health degree. There are a number of staff/people on-campus who taking the program while they are working. There are collaborations with other programs across campus as well.

    5. The following question was asked:
      1. Senator Bosworth asked if students are able to accelerate the 4+1 to 3+1? Yes, they can. It depends on how many hours a student brings in and whether they take summer/winter term courses.

    6. SR 21-16 was approved 54 Yes; 4 Abstentions

SR 21-16

January 25, 2021

BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED that University Senate endorse the proposed degree and major, Master of Science in Sport Leadership and Management, College of Education, Health and Society.

AND FURTHERMORE, that the endorsement by University Senate of the proposed degree and major will be forwarded to the Miami University Board of Trustees for consideration.


  1. SR 21-17 – Master of Esports Management – Michael Bailey-Van Kuran, Chair, Emerging Technology in Business and Design and Melissa Chase, Chair, Department of Sport Leadership and Management

    1. The proposed degree/major is cross-departmental between the Department of Emerging Technology, Business and Design and the Department of Sport Leadership and Management. The primary administrative home will be ETBD, and MOU will be put together between the two departments. The curriculum is a combination of what is being offered now in Esports and what has just been proposed in the Sport Leadership and Management degree. It will be an online or blended program. There are courses in the Fall and Spring semesters with an internship (esporting event) in summer.

    2. A rationale for doing this is that the esports industry is expected to be at 1.6M, and over 400 million people watched esports last year. There are no venues for training in esports management in the U.S.

    3. There are faculty in both departments that will be augmented by adjunct professors who are industry experts. Students get industry trends as well as academic experience. Full-time faculty from both departments will help curate the internship so that students build upon their learning.

    4. Senators had the following discussion and questions:

      1. Senator Barr asked if this is totally online? It can be totally online. The practicum piece can be managed from here since the events are typically online.

      2. Senator Wang asked about the relationship between the two Master’s degrees that are being proposed today – how much overlap in terms of the market? Is there going to be competition between the degrees for recruiting purposes. These are two different recruiting populations. There will be some curriculum overlap, but it usually is a different population of people going in to esports as compared to those pursuing a Sport Leadership and Management degree. However, there is nothing that precludes someone from getting a sport leadership and management degree and going into the esports industry, but they wouldn’t have that specialized knowledge.

      3. Senator Wagner pointed out that there may have been error in costs in paperwork. It is showing that there are no expenses. She asked if staffing will be primarily with adjunct faculty with Dr. Phill Alexander directing? Correct, the thought is that TCPL faculty will be hired in the future if enrollment would allow for that. Senator Wagner expressed a concern that the Director of the program, Dr. Alexander, is an Assistant Professor and won’t be able to advocate for adjunct faculty. Dr. Bailey-Van Kuran stated that there will be shared administration. Additionally, Dr. Alexander has been granted a leave in the fall. Dr. Platt added that there are no PhD programs in this. People brought in to teach are going to have to be practitioners.

    5. SR 21-17 was approved 52 Yes; 3 No; 3 Abstentions

SR 21-17

January 25, 2021

BE IT HEREBY RESOLVED that University Senate endorse the proposed degree and major, Master of Esports Management, College of Education, Health, and Society and College of Creative Arts.

AND FURTHERMORE, that the endorsement by University Senate of the proposed degree and major will be forwarded to the Miami University Board of Trustees for consideration.

  1. Academic Incubator Program – Carolyn Haynes, Associate Provost 

    1. This is a new program that was recommended in the MiamiRISE Strategic Plan. This is a concierge/consultation service for departments and programs who are considering developing new programs (majors, co-majors, certificates) or if they would like consultation on significant revisions to existing programs. The idea is to help create more successful programs that align with mission and faculty talents and expertise that will meet student demand and market need.

    2. The benefits include: Proposal development assistance; utilization of market research data and other research; the opportunity to apply for Boldly Creative start-up funds; and, participation in revenue sharing (graduate programs).

    3. There is a steering committee. Two Senate committees are represented: Council for Undergraduate Curriculum and Graduate Council. Depending on the kind of proposal, such as an online program, other groups will be included.

    4. There are two processes, depending on who makes the program proposal. If the department comes up with the idea, they go to Associate Provost Haynes who provides them with resources that may be helpful (e.g. data from Institutional Research). Additionally, a Canvas site is being developed with resources. The proposer would be asked to develop a very brief concept paper. Feedback would be provided, and a summary would be forwarded to the Dean. The proposal would then go into the CIM system. The second process is if the Steering Committee comes up with the idea by doing research on fields of study that are promising. Each year, there would be a retreat where these ideas would be shared and if there is interest, the steps in process 1 would be followed.

    5. There is then a follow-up evaluation that is done. Departments will prepare a brief one-page report by the end of the spring semester each year (using a standard template and in the year following the launch of the program). Proposers may also submit a budget template with the report to request additional funds. The Steering Committee will prepare an annual report on the MAPI program activities which will be submitted to the academic deans and Provost. The deans and provost will review the annual report and make recommendations for improvement.

    6. Senators had the following discussion and questions:

    7. Provost Osborne clarified that some of the ideas that lead to this proposal came after the presentation of the Real Estate major (Fall 2020) when senators expressed concern about the program. This would allow consistency in development (e.g. including an Advanced Writing course.) Associate Provost Haynes noted that the Canvas site has a section on D,E, & I and programs would be encouraged to go to the appropriate unit for assistance (e.g. The Howe Center for Writing Excellence.)

      1. Senator Carlin asked if there is a plan to look at the incubator program in conjunction with the APEIP process. Associate Provost Haynes indicated that was one of the thoughts of getting this together. As departments identify significant changes or have thoughts of new programs, they can go through this consultation process. She added that the program is going to be launched in the spring as a pilot and then be ready for full implementation in the fall.

      2. Senator Hatch asked about curriculum bloat (which has been a concern of Senate in the past) in relation to this proposal. This program is not about eliminating programs, it is about creating strong programs so that they don’t have to be eliminated. Senator Hatch asked for clarification on the idea that we already have a bloated curriculum. Associate Provost Haynes responded that part of this is what the APEIP process is about. Additionally, part of what her group does is look for duplication in programming and reach out to departments to assist and encourage them to move forward.

      3. Senator Travis asked for explanation to the relationship to Boldly Creative. Will this group begin to evaluate return on investment of some of the Boldly Creative programs? Boldly Creative will be morphing into this program, allowing departments to create new programs. If funding is needed, they can use the same budget template and rationale that was used for Boldly Creative. Provost Osborne added that we are trying to be more nimble with curricular Boldly Creative proposals.

      4. Senator Haynes asked if all new programs will go through academic incubator program. Yes, currently only five to six programs are proposed each year. Provost Osborne added that if the help is not needed, the intent is not to slow things down.

      5. Senator Coleman asked if we could start data mining in CIM. The group will start looking at procedures and policies regarding data that is needed. There have already been issues identified that will need to be addressed.

  2. SR 21-18 - Change in Senate Standing Rules and ByLaws to add a Staff Member to Senate Executive Committee – Joe Carlin – Senate Liaison, Governance Committee

    1. Adding a staff member to Executive Committee was first discussed at the April 27, 2020, meeting. Senators Cox and Carlin met in January to discuss the process. It was determined that two areas within the Senate documents would need to be amended: the Senate ByLaws and Standing Rules. Once Senate has reviewed, it will need to be sent to the Governance Committee for review.

    2. The change to the ByLaws will be to add one staff member to 6.B.1.a (The Executive Committee of University Senate.) The change to the Standing Rules would be to add the staff member and to add that the staff members will select the staff member for Executive Committee, similar to how the students select their members.

    3. Senators had the following discussion and questions:

      1. Senator Barr said it was a great idea and long overdue. She expressed appreciation for the work that has been put into this and fully supports the changes once Governance Committee has reviewed.

    4. Senator Carlin asked Senator Bielo to move the proposal to Governance Committee.

Special Reports

  1. Dr. Jenny Darroch, Dean, Farmer School of Business

    1. Dr Darroch began as Dean, Farmer School of Business July 1, 2020. She is focusing on the budget and the ASCSB accreditation in March. Focus on rankings – currently ranked 18th in U.S. as an undergraduate business school. We are 10th in the country among public institutions for the student experience. Additionally, we are 3rd in the country for internships and 11th for outcomes (salaries and jobs). Regarding the budget, Dean Darroch is looking at ways to increase revenues and efficiencies.

  2. Dr. Alicia Knoedler, Vice President for Research and Innovation

    1. Dr. Knoedler has been the V.P. for Research and Innovation since November 2020. She wants to reset the expectation regarding what is research at Miami and wants people to think long-term about research programs. Her goal is to take a more relational perspective toward research and to be successful with external partners. She has begun listening sessions with departments and divisions that will continue throughout the semester. Dr. Knoedler has experience with non-STEM disciplines and creative areas and encourages faculty to reach out if you have questions or need assistance removing barriers.


  1. The meeting was adjourned at 4:55 p.m.