Academic Information Technology Committee
Held on: January 22, 2009,
1:30 - 2:50 p.m.
Held at: Galloway, Room 242
Paula Nichols, Kokoli Bandyopadhyay, Kabir C. Sen, James Rackley, Richard Lumpkin, Michael Entner, David Carroll, Joko Saputro, Mark Asteris, John Genuardi, Cruse Melvin, Henry Venta, Mary Wilkinson, Mike Dobe, Virginia Allen
Approval of Minutes from December meeting
James Rackley moved and Richard Lumpkin seconded that the Minutes of the December, 2008 meeting be approved. Motion passed.
Updates from Administrative Computing Committee – James Rackley
The student system is being migrated to Banner. Lots of patching was done last weekend. A complaint was raised that trainers really do not know all of the problems. It is believed that the non-standard information is not covered in training. James explained that training is really implementation. Henry said that the Council of Deans proposed a delay to take care of this. Mike Entner said there is permission issues which he agrees to take up with Priscilla Parsons.
Sidebar: We have acquired Ghost copies on 4500 machines of Symantec to replace CA’s E-Trust. There was a savings of $19,000 on the cost of Symantec’s End Point compared to the current anti-virus software.
MACs will interact with Banner.
Discussion of how student fees are currently computed – James Rackley
Donna Quebedeaux will come to our next meeting. She knows about the complexity of Banner fees. The calculation of fees is driven by courses. The same fee structure that is in Plus will be migrated to Banner. Resident and non-resident charges are in process.
The discussion continued around the development of the fee structure; whether to make it simple or complex, and the importance of moving forward. A conclusion is that fees are complicated.
Situation on campus with respect to building an infrastructure for the Teragrid—Mike Entner
Mike reported that the Teragrid project cannot go forward until the bandwidth is available. Cruse Melvin reported that one terabyte of connectivity is needed after September to support a grant. Interim funding is needed. The issue is the price tag of a Teragrid network. Ask University of Texas El Paso, University of Texas Austin, and Stephen F. Austin how they handle this.
Michael Dobe said that LU had been paying $20,000 per year for nothing. He wants to check with the president. Cruse Melvin said that any kind of bottleneck will stop the grant project.
Michael Entner said these are complex issues involving getting more speed, upgrading the firewall, and the LEARN issue.
Update to LEARN network—Mike Entner
Mike reported that Fatai and Patrick were working to provide more information about LEARN. This project is only recently being addressed again. He is working with AT&T to get the last mile of connectivity and it should be in by the end of the first quarter of this year. Mike promised to get answers very soon. Twenty thousand dollars per year has been given to the LEARN project for the last several years. Mike will get answers and decisions will be made from that point.
LEARN was promised for 2007. Now it is a top priority. We want it to happen and he promised a brief later.
This brought up a question about the slowness of the network on campus. Mike explained that network analysis is going on and the goal is to meet demand.
MAC support on campus—John Genuardi
John reported that MAC Office software is available for department heads to request. Discounts are available for faculty purchase. Meetings with Apple representatives have resulted in no new deep discounts. The Information Technology Department has certified technicians ready to support Apple implementations.
Faculty Senate response to resolution about Blackboard shell for all courses—Bo Sun
Bo Sun reported that the faculty does not want a mandate to move courses to Blackboard. Johnny Jerrell talked to the Faculty Senate and provided a new perspective. A resolution will be voted next Faculty Senate meeting. It was agreed that the better course would be to make it available for faculty members to move courses from Course Studio and to provide course information to Blackboard if they wanted to do so.
Paula Nichols provided statistics regarding the use of Blackboard.
LU Blackboard Use Statistics 2007 – Spring 2009
Spring 2007 Fall 2007 Spring 2008 Fall 2008 Spring 2009
Online Sections 44 76 83 109 111
Web Enhanced Sections 180 235 252 283 228
Total Sections 224 311 335 392 339
Online Enrollments 1172 1859 1986 2683 3144
Web Enhanced Enrollments 4302 6776 6717 7878 5720
Total Enrollments 5474 8635 8703 10561 8864
Blackboard Users 3659 5325 5066 6272 5098
Workshop Attendance 93 64 93
Update on actions taken in previous Committee meetings—Larry Osborne
Richard Lumpkin asked about authentication. He noted that students use their LEA while faculty uses the MyLamar logins.
Michael Dobe said that there is a need to fix the portal. We have SunGard’s Luminis which is bad software. Oracle has a great portal. But contractually we are stuck with Luminis. It needs to be stabilized. Luminis is the gateway to Banner but it is a closed system and does not work with partners. Further discussion included issues of faculty access; stages of deployment should not interrupt the academic calendar, Student Banner deployment, vendor support, possibility of having a SAAS solution for the portal, and network latency problems. These must be top priorities.
• Larry Osborne asked about the status of projector mounts. Mark Asteris reported that fourteen has been ordered.
• Mark Asteris asked about putting access to the computing survey on MyLamar and was informed that it had not been put up. He reported that the survey had 100 responses and was waiting on more via MyLamar.
• Larry Osborne reported that the Turnitin software had been canceled.
• Cruse Melvin announced the move of the Writing Center which is now located on the second floor of the Maes Building is to be moved to the first floor of the Gray Library. The furniture is due next week. The Library facility will also have a tutorial space.
• Richard G. Baraniuk and C. Sidney Burrus. “Viewpoint. Global Warming Toward Open Educational Resources; Seeking to realize the potential for significantly improving and advancing the world’s standard of education.” Communication of the ACM, September, 2008.
• Josh Keller. “Energy Drain by Computers Stifles Efforts at Cost Control; ‘We don’t have a meter on the data center,’ says one college official” Chronicle of Higher Education. January 9, 2009.
• Patrick Kurp. “Green Computing; Are you ready for a personal energy meter?” Communications of the ACM, Vol. 51, no 10 (October 2008).
February 2009 Meeting will be on Thursday, February 26, at 1:30 P.M. in Galloway 242
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