Erindale College Council

MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE RESOURCE PLANNING AND PRIORITIES COMMITTEE of Erindale College Council held on Monday, October 20, 2003 at 3:10 p.m., in the Alumni Lounge, room 3138, South Building.

PRESENT: G. Sprules (in the Chair), I. Orchard, R. Beck, P. Donoghue, R. Baker, D. Crocker, S. O’Connell, J. Harkness, C. Capewell, M. Jalland, M. Georges, P. King
REGRETS: C. Misak, S. Kibria, A. Mirza, A. Mullin, B. Schneider, U. Krull, K. Hannah-Moffat, P. Silcox

1. Adoption of the Agenda

The agenda was approved. (P. Donoghue/R. Baker)

2. Minutes of the Previous Meeting (September 15, 2003)

The Minutes of the previous meeting were approved. (D. Crocker / J. Harkness)

3. Ratification of Committee membership and election of Chair

After introduction of the new membership, the Chair announced that he was stepping down from his position and called for nomination of a new Chair. The Vice-President and Principal thanked Prof. Sprules for his four years of service to this very important Committee. Professor Baker was nominated to be the new Chair of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee. (P. Donoghue/D. Crocker) Prof. Baker accepted the nomination and there being no other nominations, was declared the new Chair by acclamation. Prof. Baker thanked Prof. Sprules for his contributions and took the Chair.

4. Business arising from the minutes

a) Effective room scheduling and course timetables – D. Crocker

D. Crocker noted that the Office of the Registrar was pleased to receive input from the Committee on how to utilize rooms effectively. She distributed a report to the Committee on how rooms are currently utilized. She noted that the Office of the Registrar had recently reprogrammed the software that books exams and significant changes were made in order to make the process easier for students. Ms. Crocker presented a diagram illustrating the number of students on an hourly basis scheduled in classes based on expected enrolments provided by academic Departments. She noted that classes are well balanced through the week; however, there are still relatively few students on campus after 3:00 p.m. during the entire week and proportionately more students on campus before 3:00 p.m. on Mondays. She also noted the Office of the Registrar had introduced some classes, which are scheduled at 8:00 a.m. and after 3:00 p.m. on Fridays. On the utilization of individual classrooms, she reported that much work had been done to educate students in contributing to the more effective use of the Matthew’s Auditorium in the Kaneff Centre. Such signage and education efforts may be extended to other classrooms as well.

The Chair opened to floor to questions and comments from the Committee.

In response to a member’s question about the timetable software, Ms. Crocker noted that it was changed from one that was front end loading classes on Mondays, to spreading them out more evenly over the week. She added that many instructors who requested three-hour timeslots, later agreed to distribute these class over the week.

A member asked about the cycle for finalizing the timetable. D. Crocker explained that her staff is in the process of compiling summer course offerings and that the Fall timetable is finalized at the end of June. This process requires that the Office have an estimate of enrolment figures. She explained that in order for UTM to accommodate the move of this year’s large first year classes into second year and another large incoming first year class, more faculty need to be available to teach in the 8:00 a.m. and the 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. timeslots. She noted that she would undertake to research the effectiveness of the 8:00 a.m. timeslot to encourage more faculty to do so.

In response to a member’s question about the renovation of medium sized classrooms, the Chief Administrative Officer explained that the first priority in the renovation process was large classrooms, and medium sized classrooms would receive attention during the next fiscal year. The Registrar commented that she would study and bring back to this Committee an estimate of the types of programs first year students elect for their second year.

In response to a member’s comment about some instructors’ dissatisfaction with the criteria used to assign classrooms, the Registrar explained that for a very few courses, classes had to be separated into two different locations, but that this type of assignment is kept to a minimum. She added that the scheduling software has been tailored to be considerate of the needs of students; for example, the number of students writing two exams on one day has been reduced by 50% and there are no longer any students who have to write three exams on one day. In addition, the number of exams during the evening hours has been reduced.

5. Other Business

The Chief Administrative Officer noted that upcoming meetings of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee will feature plans for classroom renovation, other renovations proposed for the summer months, the overall budget process and an update on the multi-year financial planning process. He noted that the UTM budget process will undergo substantial revision to bring it in line with the new departmental structure. This model is currently being discussed at Principal’s Table and will include extensive consultation in order to arrive at a system, which features differential resource allocation.

6. Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Resource Planning and Priorities Committee will be on November 17, 2003.

7. Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 4:00 p.m. (I. Orchard/G. Sprules)