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2001 - 03/15

UCAP Meeting of 03/15/2001


agenda status: approved


University Committee on Academic Policy
Meeting of Thursday, March 15, 2001
10:15 a.m., Board Room, Administration Building

1. Approval of Agenda

2. Approval of Minutes of the February 8 & 22, 2001 Meetings (8th), (22nd) Attachments

3. Comments from the Chairperson

4. Comments from the Assistant Provost

5. Copyright Discussion... Paul Hunt
(for statement of proposed policy see

6. Application for Admission: Criminal Records
Questions -- Discussion

7. Teaching Evaluation Discussion...(see for dimensions of the discussion )

8. Roundtable

Attachments: February 8, 2001 Draft Minutes
February 22, 2001 Draft Minutes

Other Materials: Memo sent by Jon Sticklen to ECAC regarding UCAP concerns regarding copyright issue ... (Attachment)

Please phone or E-Mail Robin Pline (353-5380; if you cannot be present.


minutes status: approved

approved at meeting of

UCAP Minutes for meeting held on 03/15/2001

Approved 3/29/01
University Committee on Academic Policy
March 15, 2001

Present: Henry Beckmeyer, J. Roy Black, Howard Bossen, Joseph Chartkoff,
          David Imig, Fred Jacobs, Kurt Lausman, Rod Phillips, Shaun Phillips, Jon Sticklen, Winston Wilkinson
Others: Barbara Steidle (Assistant Provost); Paul Hunt (Vice Provost)

1. Meeting was called to order at 10:20 am.

2. Vice Chairperson Jon Sticklen asked the Committee to approve an amendment to the agenda to move Vice Provost Paul Hunt’s discussion to the beginning of the meeting. The Committee approved the change in the agenda.

3. Vice Chairperson Jon Sticklen introduced Dr. Paul Hunt, Vice Provost for Libraries, Computing & Technology to speak to the Committee on the proposed Copyright Policy for MSU. Sticklen referred to his memo sent to the Executive Committee of Academic Council (ECAC) regarding UCAP’s concerns on the University Copyright Policy.
    The issue of concern to UCAP is the potential impact of the policy on the undergraduate curriculum and teaching. The concern is that the policy as written may discourage creative activity of the faculty to this end. Under the proposed copyright policy, a faculty member developing intellectual property specifically as part of his directed activity will not have a share in potential commercial gain which might flow from the developed intellectual property. UCAP members understand that a faculty person developing material for web delivery in support of a regular class at MSU would not be banned from participating in profits accruing to the University by sale or distribution of the web-based materials. However, UCAP members also understand that should the same professor be directed to develop a web-based course for use in the MSU Virtual University, the developed intellectual property would become the sole property of the University, and the faculty person who developed the material would not share in any economic gain which might accrue.

    Paul Hunt interpreted the crux of the issue in the ECAC memo as whether a VU product was being treated differently, in terms of potential remuneration, from other products that a faculty member might develop in the course of his University work.
    The crisp answer to that is NO.

    Professor Hunt noted that there were four trip wires that signaled University retention of copyrighted works created by one or more employees in the scope of their employment:
1. Work involving substantial use of University equipment, materials, or staff
2. Work supported with money, released time, or other substantial U resources
3. Work directly commissioned by the University
4. Work developed in the context of outside work for pay if that work competes with University functions or products that might be developed by the university in pursuit of its mission.
    Even within those boundaries, all University-copyrighted material produced by a faculty member requires the faculty’s agreement to license it externally; and if it is licensed, the faculty member shares in the royalties. VU is not different from regular courses. If VU helps a faculty member create material, that does hit the trip wire because of the use of a staff service, and the University owns what is produced in terms of copyright. But, if the University then wishes to license it to third parties a) it requires approval of the faculty member, and b) the faculty member shares in the royalties. He noted that ideas, per se, are not copyrightable, but the media forms of them are. Copyrighting those forms does not preclude subsequent faculty use of the
    material and ideas. He noted that faculty had the right to request withdrawal of University copyrighted materials that may become dated and unrepresentative of the state of the art in a discipline.

    In the discussion that followed, it was noted that much of the old policy had developed in relation to instructional TV, which was the widget of the day—as VU may now be. Nevertheless, Bossen noted that if there were indeed a paradigm shift an opportunity now existed that had not existed before to the same degree. The discussion turned to the formula for distribution of revenues, which was challenged for being too limited. Imig referenced a document produced by the Pew Trust which called for substantial rewards for faculty technological innovations and asked what comparisons with other peer institutions had been made. The question of how academic units would factor such developments into their salary, tenure and promotion deliberations was also raised. In response Hunt noted that UCFA had recommended six changes in the old document and had made a change at the first level of distribution.

    Hunt also responded to general questions raised about how royalties are paid. This is a personal matter, but some receive actual checks and some have monies applied to research projects. He indicated that the amount of money involved is not significant in many cases. The bulk of the copyrights over the life of external licensing will bring in less than $5,000. In the last 5 years there are approximately 4 that have brought in more than $100,000.

    Following Hunt’s departure, the committee returned to the agenda for the day. The minutes of the meetings of February 8 and February 22, 2001 were approved.
    Sticklen then posed the question as to how to frame a UCAP response that would be ready in time for the scheduled Faculty and Academic Council discussions on the following Tuesday. He noted the need to keep the response within the boundaries of UCAP’s legitimate concern with the issue, namely, the impact on teaching and learning. The consensus was that a UCAP position be formulated and a committee of volunteers (Imig, Chartkoff, Bossen, Jacobs) was charged with developing and circulating a statement for an E-mail vote of the committee.
4. The meeting was adjourned at 11:45 a.m.