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Cal State Fullerton Academic Senate votes to increase virtual instruction. (Eliza Green / Daily Titan)

Cal State Fullerton’s Academic Senate voted on Aug. 26 to implement an increase in the amount of virtual instruction permitted in traditional in-person instruction classes. 

According to the university policy statement, traditional in-person instruction is defined as, “courses that may contain 20% or less of total class meeting time offered in an online fashion.”

The senate unanimously approved a temporary increase in the percentage of traditional classes taught in an online format to 30% for the 2021 fall academic term. Additionally, it gave faculty full autonomy to determine the percentage of a traditional class to be taught online within the 30% limit. 

Senator Matthew Jarvis motioned to round up the increase to an even five weeks rather than the 30% to make the allowable online percentage easier to manage. His motion was accepted without objection. 

This approval came on the same day that the provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, Carolyn Thomas, issued the Provost Report. She said that as of Thursday, 76% of Titan community members have uploaded their vaccination records — 73% of students and 82% of staff and faculty.

“We have a lot to be proud of with our work in this area: our record on health and safety is exceptional; our protocols for collecting vaccine records are among the strongest in the CSU system; and the Reentry Leadership team has tremendous cumulative expertise to navigate today and tomorrow,” Thomas said in the report.

With the recent rise in the delta variant, worries have risen about whether the university will switch back to fully virtual instruction. Thomas said that there are no plans for a switch at the moment, with the caveat that things may change.

“There is no indication at this point from the county, the state, or the Chancellor’s Office that we need to shift to virtual instruction,” Thomas said. “However, there is no way we can be certain what will come in a month or two.”

In addition to the points regarding virtual instruction, the senate also unanimously voted to create open spaces for discussion and updating of the current department personnel standards considering the updated university policy statement, and to have them ready by no later than the 2023 fall academic semester. 

The senate then voted unanimously to revise the faculty emeriti status to allow granting of emeriti status to tenured professors both full and part-time. The vote will allow temporary faculty who have completed 10 years of service, or a minimum of 300 weighted teaching units. 

The wording was changed in emeriti status to allow for temporary faculty who may not have been working for 10 years, but have worked full-time and completed the minimum amount of weighted teaching units to be considered for emeriti status. 

Emeriti status is awarded by the president of the university to faculty who have served honorably and consistently performed high-quality work at CSUF.

It allows the faculty member to continue to remain active in their profession and in service to the university. It is considered an honor and recognition of the continuing professional activity of faculty and how they remain an integral part of the academic community and a valuable resource to the university.

 

Multimedia Asst. F20; Reporter & Multimedia Editor S21

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