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To the REGENTS: Faculty Work Time

to:  REGENTS of the University of California
from:  Charles Schwartz, Professor Emeritus, UC Berkeley
subject:  ITEM E1 for the May 15 meeting of the Committee on Educational Policy

Academic Performance Indicators at UC

     It is gratifying to see the UC Office of the President (UCOP) finally making use of the University’s Faculty Time Use Survey (see page 6 of Item E1, posted at http://regents.universityofcalifornia.edu/regmeet/may13/e1.pdf ).  I have been writing and speaking about this important source of data for some time, with little or no response from University officials.  For any serious intellectual study about what goes on in this great public research university, and for any serious attempt to provide meaningful “accountability and transparency” to the public, this is an essential resource.

I am happy to see that UCOP acknowledges that this data, originally collected almost 30 years ago, is probably quite accurate today. The top level results are that Regular Rank Faculty spend, on average, 61.3 hours per week at all university-related activities; and this total work time is primarily allocated: 42% to Instruction; 38% to Research; 20% to Professional, Public and University Service. There is a portion of the non-Instructional activities, amounting to something less than 6%, which may be allocated to Instruction. (The UCOP paper erroneously gives a total of 54% for all instructional activities.)

Regretfully, the UCOP paper does not mention further data that allows one to separate the Instructional work of the Faculty between undergraduate and graduate studies. This is very important for any realistic assessment of work and costs at the University. The older Time Use Survey says that Faculty class time is divided equally between these two levels of instruction; a more recent study by UCOP, which involves a measure of student credit hours, comes out with a different proportion, namely 3/8 for undergraduate classes and 5/8 for graduate classes. (See http://ucop.edu/academic-planning-programs-coordination/_files/documents/fia/fia_annlrpt2007.pdf , Tables 14-16.)

This leads to an estimate that something under ¼ of all Faculty work time – and thus something less than ¼ of all Core expenses for Ladder Faculty – may be fairly allocated to undergraduate instruction.  This conclusion is strongly at odds with the standard method by which UCOP (and other research universities) calculate the average per-student cost for providing undergraduate education.  For more discussion of this controversy, see my recent papers “Financing the University – Parts 22 and 23”, posted at http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~schwrtz .  There I calculate that undergraduate tuition and fees now far exceed 100% of the actual cost for UC to provide undergraduate education (including direct instructional costs, supporting services and institutional overhead).

 

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Cost Accounting at a Research University

Cost Accounting at a Research University

by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

My previous study on this topic, with the title, “The Cost of Undergraduate Education at the University of California – Improved Calculation”, was posted in late 2007 at http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~schwrtz/recost.html. It concluded that the current level of mandatory fees for resident undergraduate students is very close to 100% of the University’s actual expenditure for undergraduate education, averaged per student.  In contrast, University officials said that student fees covered 30% of the cost of education.

New results reported here, for the year 2011-12, show University expenditures of:
$1.296 Billion for Undergraduate Education = $6,910 average cost per student; and
$2.117 Billion for Faculty Research (unsponsored) and related Graduate Programs.

The mandatory fee level for resident undergraduate students was $13,181, which is nearly twice what it cost the University to provide their education.  In this paper, I shall review the method used before, then go through the steps with the latest input data. At the end is a critical discussion of the implications of these financial facts, including an indictment of the University leadership for their dishonesty.

The full paper is posted at  http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~schwrtz/Part_22.html

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UC Management Bloat – updated

UC’s Management Continues its Super-Sized Growth

by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

 

It has been two years since my last presentation of data on the bloated growth of management at the University of California, covering the span 1991-2010. (See the post here in March 2011.)

The following graph includes the newest official data: up to October 2012.

image001

This shows the continuing outsized growth of the management cadre (defined as the employees classified in Senior Management Group and Management & Senior Professionals): their numbers grew by 252% over the 21 year period while total employee numbers grew by a mere 51%. (The total number of employees shown in this graph is scaled down so that one can compare the relative growth, over time, of each population.)

For another comparison, the latest total number in this management category (SMG + MSP) is 9,457 FTE (full time equivalent employees) while the number of Regular Teaching Faculty is 8,657 FTE.

Similar graphs for each individual campus of the university system can be found here (.doc) or here (.pdf).  For several campuses we note a mild decrease in the Management numbers in the past few years but then a new upward surge with the latest data.

Elsewhere I have written about the repeated requests for UC’s top officials to either justify this apparent bloat or to get rid of it; and their inability to do either.  My previous estimate was that, if the apparent excess is not justifiable, then UC is wasting something like $1 Billion per year.

The Governor has recently shown some interest in the University and its financial problems. He has called for lowering costs, avoiding further tuition increases and reducing executive salaries. Many people have criticized the Board of Regents for setting corporate scale salaries for the top executives they appoint at UC; and fixing that bad habit would be good for the soul of this public institution. In defense, the UC President and his minions often point out that the total amount of money paid to the Senior Management Group is rather small. So, a better line of attack would be to hold them accountable for this whole mass of bureaucratic excess which they have created.

 

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Progress in Privatization at UC Berkeley

Progress in Privatization at UC Berkeley
by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

When Robert J. Birgeneau first appeared as the new Chancellor before the Berkeley Academic Senate, in October 2004, he started out with a clear principled statement against privatization. Here is the official campus report on that event:

He has already heard, he said, from a number of people, including donors, who believe that the only strategy for the future “is one that takes us in the direction of privatizing the university. I want to state unambiguously and unequivocally that if Berkeley wants a chancellor who will lead in the privatization direction, it should find someone else and I’ll go back to the lab,” he said to much applause.
[Source: the Berkeleyan 10/28/04]

Obviously, things have changed a lot since then; and Chancellor Birgeneau has defined himself as a leading figure in the national move to privatize our greatest public universities. Here is his latest report to the campus (11/5/2012).
———-
To all members of the UC Berkeley campus community:

Five years ago, I announced to you that UC Berkeley had received a historic gift of $113 million from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to establish 100 new endowed chairs on our campus. This gift was set up as a challenge grant to inspire others to give by matching their support dollar-for-dollar until we raised the 100 chairs.

Today I am delighted to announce that the campus has successfully completed the Hewlett Challenge. We have exceeded our own expectations and reached our goal more than two years ahead of schedule.

This milestone recognizes the critical role that our world-class faculty and graduate students play in ensuring UC Berkeley’s global academic leadership. The support of so many donors in this five-year period is an extraordinary vote of confidence in the contributions that UC Berkeley makes to society as one of the world’s preeminent teaching and research universities.

The success of the Hewlett Challenge makes me very confident about the future of our great University. On behalf of the many faculty and students who will benefit from the extraordinary generosity of the Hewlett Foundation and the outpouring of support from our alumni and friends who stepped up to the challenge, I express my deepest and most sincere gratitude.

I encourage you to read more about this exciting news on the campus NewsCenter, http://newscenter.berkeley.edu/

Yours sincerely,
Robert J. Birgeneau
Chancellor, UC Berkeley
———–
This leads us to pose the question: What is it that distinguishes a great public university from a great private university? In other words, “Who’s afraid of privatization?”

You are invited to comment.

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Asking the Chancellor

Asking the Chancellor

about Nonresident enrollments
about Where the money goes
about Shared governance

by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

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Occupy Education Northern California

      Over the last few months I have been involved with a new group of teachers, students and citizens concerned about all levels of public education, from K-12 through Higher Ed, and even Pre-School and lifelong learning. It has been instructive to learn how deep and widespread is the impact of Privatization, and the emerging view of where that destructive force comes from. The following Mission Statement, developed through extensive discussions, was just recently approved by the group; and I thought it worthwhile to circulate this document, inviting your comments.     Charles Schwartz
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President Yudof’s Principles re Police Behavior

President Yudof’s Principles re Police Behavior

by Charles Schwartz, UC Berkeley

On November 23, 2011, I sent a request for information to the Public Records office at the University of California Office of the President (PRA@ucop.edu ). [PRA stands for California’s Public Records Act.]

This PRA request refers to the meeting with Chancellors convened by President Yudof on Monday, November 21, 2011, to discuss matters related to recent police behavior at campus protests. (I see a news report about that meeting listed at http://www.ucop.edu)

I request a copy of any and all minutes and notes of what transpired at that meeting.

I also request a copy of any recordings (audio and/or video) of that meeting.

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How to Contact the UC Regents by Email (Yeah!)

How to Contact the UC Regents by Email (Yeah!)

by Charles Schwartz, Professor Emeritus, UC Berkeley

On the official web site of the Regents of the University of California it says,
“If you would like to email the Regents, please address your comments to Regents Office (regentsoffice@ucop.edu )”

Alternatively, you can find that Marsha Kelman is the Secretary and Chief of Staff to The Regents and her email address is  marsha.kelman@ucop.edu .

Here is my recent experience with that channel of communication.
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Where does the violence come from?

WHERE DOES THE VIOLENCE COME FROM?

by Charles Schwartz at UC Berkeley

Trying to make sense of recent events here, I came up with the following.

– – – – – – – – – –

DRAFT#1  by C.S. 11/19/11

The past two weeks have seen an unprecedented outbreak of police violence against peaceful students on UC campuses at Berkeley and Davis.  And this comes amidst the continuing loud protests against the privatization of UC.  Are those two things connected?

I expect that the Regents would say, No: privatization is necessary because the state has failed to provide enough money; and police action is necessary because some students don’t behave the way they should.

It seems clear that the Regents approve of the police violence – since we have heard no words of condemnation, or even regret, from them after the fact. Furthermore, it is quite conceivable that they actually ordained this violence, telling their Chancellors to “be tough” in the face of protesters. In any case, The Regents, are the legally responsible authority.

From ARTICLE 9 SECTION 9 of the California Constitution:
(a) The University of California shall constitute a public trust, to be
administered by the existing corporation known as "The Regents of the
University of California," with full powers of organization and government,

But, again, what has this got to do with privatization?

Freedom of Speech is protected by the U.S. Constitution, but only in the public domain. Any private business may fire employees and exclude customers whose speech displeases the bosses.  Freedom of Assembly is also only in the public domain. Any private business may call in the police to remove anyone they dislike from their private property.

Therefore, we propose ……

– – – – – – – – –

For a reality check, I sent this draft to a well-respected colleagues, as follows.

X;
We have been on opposing sides of some arguments lately; so now I want to see if we might possibly collaborate on something.  Below is my first draft of a somewhat broader statement about what is happening at UC.  Please tell me what you think of this and whether there is some form in which we might promote these ideas in concert.
Charlie

He replied,

Charlie,
I’ll pass on this one.  I don’t believe anyone supports the violence – I think that far too many in our administration are well intentioned but incompetent.
On top of that, …
X

To which I replied,

X, thanks for your response.
I find your second sentence most thought-provoking: did that violence just fall, like rain, from the sky?
Charlie

– – – – – – – – – –

So, now I am posting this for wider commentary.

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Letter to The Regents

Department of Physics
University of California
Berkeley, CA 94720
September 16, 2011

To The Regents of the University of California
Via the Office of their Secretary and Chief of Staff

Dear REGENTS;

I read in this morning’s newspaper that you want to see alternative plans for UC’s future budgeting. So, please read: “A BETTER PLAN for the Future of the University of California,” posted at http://socrates.berkeley.edu/~schwrtz/ToTheCommission.pdf .

This document was originally presented to the UC Commission on the Future in December 2009. I personally handed the papers to Vice President Taylor at a public meeting where he represented the President’s Office on the Commission. I have never received any substantive response to the analysis and proposals contained therein.

You will discover that the analysis of this paper directly contradicts the financial scheme presented to you yesterday by Vice Presidents Brostrom and Lenz. They rely on the bad old habit of hiding all the costs of faculty research under the misleading title of  “Average Expenditures for Education” (Display 3 in Item F8).

The central issue here is to acknowledge the Cost of Research and the Cost of Education as two essential and distinguishable parts of the University’s core budget. Then one can intelligently pursue the question, Who should pay for what?  To ignore (or to obfuscate) this issue is a fundamental fault, which I have tried to bring to President Yudof’s attention on several previous occasions. But he has chosen to ignore this challenge.

Therefore, I now invite you, The Regents, to dig into this basic problem yourselves. I hope it will lead you to ask more questions and promote more healthy debate.

Sincerely yours,
Charles Schwartz
Professor Emeritus
Schwartz@physics.berkeley.edu

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