The University Senate of Michigan Technological University

 PROPOSAL 11-12 [Revised]
(Voting Units: Full Senate)



Revised Proposal 11-12 incorporates the following changes

1.     Survey will be conducted every other year.

2.     The processing of the results have been completely rewritten to significantly reduce the work of writing a report.

The essence of the change is that the comments are not confidential as no individual is being evaluated. If we don't have the (wo)man power (sufficient volunteers) to create a synopsis then we just post the collated comments as an appendix while the main body of report is just a short description of the statistics. Any individual who wants to dig deeper into numbers can look at the appendix.

3.     For scaled questions with comments, the committee has been given the authority to seek comments if the respondent chooses a number above (or below) a certain value.

4.     Questions on the demographics of the respondent have been added.


Question to consider: We are not evaluating any individual but rather Senate processes, priorities, and communication. Do we want to change the title of the proposal to read: “Procedure for conducting survey of its constituents by the Senate”?


Suggestion: If the survey instrument is approved along with the proposal then Senate will not need to a have another vote later to approve the survey instrument.


1.0 Introduction

Senate derives its moral authority from its representation of its constituency. It will become a stronger and a more effective body by advocating issues its constituency deems important and by improving itself with regular feedback from its constituency.

In addition, the Senate evaluates university upper administration each year and has established policies and procedures for periodic evaluation of Chairs and Deans, and evaluation of faculty by students in each course. Evaluation and survey have become easy since going electronic and many service units are conducting surveys to improve themselves. For the sake of consistency and to get regular feedback the Senate needs to conduct survey and make the results public.

This procedure allows the Senate constituency to provide input on Senate processes, priorities, and communications. Improvements in these categories will make the Senate more relevant in the functioning of the university.

2.0  Survey Time Line

Every other year the Senate will conduct a survey electronically using all reasonable efforts to maintain the anonymity of the survey responder. The survey will be coordinated and supervised by the Senate Administrative Policy Committee. The survey instrument will be approved by the Senate by the end of Spring semester. The survey will be conducted over a period of two weeks starting on Monday of the third week of the fall semester.

3.0 Format

The Senate president will coordinate writing of a brief report, less than two pages long, on the accomplishment of the Senate in the year prior to the year of the survey. The report will be distributed to the Senate constituents prior to the survey and posted on the Senate web page. The report will be also linked to the electronic survey instrument.

The questionnaire section will contain questions asking for scaled responses and comments.

Scaled responses and comments will be sought for:

        effectiveness of Senate in representing constituents interests.

        prioritizing the responsibility of the Senate.

        keeping constituents informed.

Comments will also be sought for strengthening and improving the Senate and the questionnaire. A sample questionnaire is included in the appendix.

4.0  Survey Result

1.     Responses from faculty and from professional staff will be compiled separately.

2.     The comments will be collated for each question either electronically or with help of the Senate Assistant.

3.     The comments will be edited to ensure there are no personal attack on any individual and are fit for public distribution. Eventually these collated comments will become appendix of the electronic report.

4.     Senators will be requested to volunteer for purpose of writing synopsis of the comments. If not enough Senators volunteer then the committee may elect to not write synopsis for certain questions and direct the reader to the collated comments in the appendix of the report.

5.     Statistical summary of the scaled questions, the synopsis of comments, the appendix of the collated comments, along with introduction and conclusion will constitute the final report.

6.     The committee will make an oral presentation to the Senate by the end of fall semester. The written report will be posted on the Senate website and its link sent to all Senate constituents, the Provost, and the members of the Board of Control.

Appendix: Sample questionnaire

The Senate establishes and participates in formulation of policies and procedures that affect faculty and professional staff. The implementation of these policies and procedures are responsibilities of other bodies like administration, academic units, and university committees. The Senate also has the responsibility to facilitate discussion and obtain information on any issue that is important to its constituent. The Senate responsibility and jurisdiction are defined in detail in the Senate Constitution posted on the web address

 Brief listing of Senate responsibility and jurisdiction

1.     Establishes academic policies and procedures governing teaching and research that includes but not limited to: establishment, dissolution, and changes in degree programs; requirements for certificates and academic degrees; teaching evaluation; academic calendar; awarding of honorary degrees; regulations governing attendance, examinations, grading, scholastic standing, probation, and honors.

2.     Establishes shared governance policies and procedures that includes but not limited to: Academic freedom, rights and responsibilities; appointment, promotion, tenure, dismissal, and leaves of the academic faculty; academic ranks; selection and evaluation of university administrators; guidelines for academic unit charters; academic organization, establishment or elimination of schools, colleges, or departments; and the reorganization of the academic structure.

3.     Advise, reviews, and participates on use of university resources that includes but not limited to: Fringe benefits; institutional priorities; allocation and utilization of the university’s human, fiscal, and physical resources that affect scholarly, instructional, and research activities; admission standards and procedures; student financial aid.

Survey Instrument

Questions on Demographics of Respondent

1.     Are you Faculty or Staff?

2.     Have you ever served on the Senate?

3.     Have you ever attended or viewed a Senate meeting?

Questions for scaled response on a scale of 5 with space for commenting.


[The committee may choose to get comments only if a score is above or below a certain number.]

4.     Senate provided appropriate input to your group in the development of proposals submitted to it.

5.     Senate has acted in a timely manner on proposals submitted by your group.

6.     Senate has been effective in development of shared governance policies and procedures.

7.     Senate has been effective in reflecting your concerns on use of university resources.

8.     Senate has been effective in communicating issues that impact you.

9.     Your senator keeps you informed about issues being considered by the Senate.

10. Taking everything into account the Senate is an effective body in representing you.

Questions asking for comments

11. What kind of proposals should the Senate spend more time on?

12. What can the Senate do to get the information to you more effectively?

13. How can the Senate better meet your needs?

14. How can this questionnaire be improved?






Introduced to Senate: 01 February 2012
Revised and Reintroduced to Senate: 29 February 2012
Friendly amendment added in
red: 21 March 2012