The overall philosophy for budget development and allocation in the Academic Division is based on a highly decentralized approach with a great deal of authority and flexibility provided to the colleges and academic units. The overall policies and procedures adopted by the Provost to facilitate the budget process reflect this philosophy.
The resource allocation model adopted by the Provost and the Deans with endorsement by the President, is the basis of year-to-year budget allocations for UWF’s three colleges. Not covered are funds for non-instructional positions and other academic support functions not directly related to delivering instruction.
Each year the dollars available for distribution using the model are those remaining after all non-formula items including resources allocated for specific strategic planning opportunities are deducted from the total academic budget.
There are several sets of inputs to the model, each of which is entered into a single overall spreadsheet used to calculate the factors used for distribution. Annual FTE’s for each unit, as reported by the university’s Office of Institutional Research, serve as the principal data for the model. The definition of an FTE is consistent with the state’s method of annualizing SCH’s for purposes of funding and expenditure analysis related to the State University System. For purposes of this model, all FTE are used, both fundable and non-fundable.
The Allocation Model
The actual student FTE generated (funded and un-funded) by each department for each of the three years (summer, fall, spring) prior to the allocation year begins the process. While the FTE for a given college is totaled for all departments in the college, separate sub-totals are retained for the four reported instructional levels, i.e., Lower Division, Upper Division, Graduate Classroom and Thesis/Dissertation in order to apply the level weights.
The method used to calculate each college’s distribution ratio is described below:
1) A three-year weighted average of the student FTE is calculated for each department. The most recent year is weighted by a factor of 3, the next most recent year by a factor of 2, and the third year by a factor of 1.
2) After the actual student FTE has been weighted, level and discipline weights are then applied to arrive at the adjusted FTE. An off-campus weight is also applied to FTE generated in the upper and graduate levels to arrive at the adjusted FTE. Level and discipline weights are described in the table below.
3) The adjusted FTE’s for each level, i.e. lower, upper, graduate, are then added together to arrive at the total adjusted FTE for the department and a grand total is calculated for each college.
4) A percent is then calculated for each college’s share for allocation purposes.
Allocation of Expense and OPS
The amount of expense and OPS funds that are distributed based on the allocation ratio described above has been established at $850,000 and $155,000, respectively in recent years.
Other Capital Outlay (OCO)
The university does not receive specific legislative allocations for OCO. Colleges are responsible for retaining sufficient funds to meet OCO needs for faculty and staff. OCO for computer labs and classrooms is provided centrally by the Provost’s Office by holding new positions/lines vacant for a minimum of one year prior to distribution to the colleges.
Each college is expected to hold sufficient faculty lines in reserve to convert to OPS to cover the costs of part-time faculty. This is accomplished by retaining vacant faculty lines in planned conversion accounts and by using salary savings from recently vacated lines in the college. Academic Affairs encourages the colleges to keep vacant lines open for at least one year in order to continually replenish subsidies needed to the planned conversion reserves to help ensure sufficient resources are available to fund the costs of part-time faculty.
There are several academic support functions that are not funded using the allocation model. Those functions include the Library, Enrollment Services, the Branch Campuses, International Education and Programs, University Teaching and Learning Center, and University Planning. Also included are many support functions that are organized within the College of Arts and Sciences such as the Honors Program, Student Success, and the Center for Fine and Performing Arts. The College of Arts and Sciences is also provided funding to help support general studies, including funding for teaching assistance, writing and math labs, and the University Advising Center.
Changes in funding for these units and functions is incremental and is based on the history of prior year’s expenditures, availability of additional resources, and the relationship of expressed additional need to University and Divisional priorities as presented as part of the strategic planning process.