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2005 - 03/31

UCAP Meeting of 03/31/2005


agenda status: approved


University Committee on Academic Policy

Meeting of Thursday, March 31, 2005
10:15 a.m., Board Room

1. Approval of Agenda

2. Approval of Minutes of the March 17, 2005 meeting..........(Attachment)

3. Comments from the Chairperson

4. Comments from the Assistant Provost

5. Transfer of FCE to the College of Social Science..........(Attachment)

6. Code of Teaching Responsibility Subcommittee Report.......... (Sharon Pocock)

7. Repeat Policy Editorial Change – Information Item Only..........(Attachment)

8. Review of the Writing Task Force Report...............Jim Porter
9. Round Table discussion

Please phone or E-Mail Robin Pline (353-5380; to indicate your substitute if you cannot be present.

Attachments: Minutes of March 17, 2005
FCE Transfer Materials
Repeat Policy Editorial Change Document

minutes status: approved

approved at meeting of

UCAP Minutes for meeting held on 03/31/2005
Approved 4/14/05

University Committee on Academic Policy
Thursday, March 31, 2005
Meeting Minutes

Members Present: Henry Beckmeyer, Bridget Behe, Renée Canady, Steve Dilley, Jeremy Hernandez, Jennifer Hodges, Helen Mayer, Folu Ogundimu, Rodney Phillips, Sharon Pocock, Ralph Putnam, Sharon Senk, Kurt Stirewalt, Cynthia Taggert, Alex von Eye, Maija Zile

Members Absent: Kurt Dewhurst, Rebecca Henry, Kyle Martin, Sulema Medrano, Karthik Prasad, Peter Tomchuck

Others Present: June Pierce Youatt (Assistant Provost and Dean); Anne Soderman (Acting Chairperson, Department of Family and Child Ecology); Holly Brophy-Herb (FCE); Jim Porter (Writing, Rhetoric and American Cultures).

1) Meeting called to order and agenda approved at 10:20 a.m.

2) Minutes from the March 17, 2005 UCAP meeting were approved with two minor corrections. (Item 5, paragraph 4, line 3 should read “lose”; item 6, last paragraph, last line should read “March 24.”)

3) Comments from the Chair: Folu Ogundimu noted that UCAP feedback is expected on the various task force reports by the end of the semester.

4) Comments from the Assistant Provost: Deferred until end.

5) Transfer of Department of Family and Child Ecology to College of Social Science: Professor Anne Soderman, Acting Chair of the FCE Department, and Professor Holly Brophy-Herb, also of FCE, were present to answer questions about the transfer of FCE from the College of Human Ecology (CHE) to the College of Social Science (CSS). Old guidelines will govern current FCE students and those entering in Fall 2005. Assuming resolution of all governance issues, students entering in Fall 2006 will fall under new guidelines. Current students may choose whether CSS or CHE will appear on their diplomas.

A motion to approve the transfer was made and seconded. Motion approved.

6) Code of Teaching Responsibility (CTR) Subcommittee Report: Sharon Pocock distributed a redlined version of the CTR, comparing the final proposed revision with the current CTR. She reported that Ombudsman Stan Soffin and Kristine Zayco of the General Counsel’s Office had reviewed the document and suggested several minor wording changes, which the Subcommittee had adopted with minor edits.

A motion to approve the revised CTR was made and seconded. Motion approved.

The Chair thanked the Subcommittee for its work.

7) Repeat Policy Editorial Change (information item): UCAP was apprised of a minor editorial change to the policy on repeating a course, which will appear in the Academic Programs 2005-2007 catalog. June Youatt noted that, as a future issue, UCAP may want to consider whether the restrictions on when students may repeat a course (i.e., grade under 2.0) may have unintended negative consequences.

8) Review of Writing Task Force Final Report: Professor Jim Porter (WRAC), Chair of the Coordinating Committee of the Writing Task Force, was present to introduce the Report and answer questions. Porter noted that the Writing Task Force consisted of 28 faculty from 10 colleges, an academic specialist, 3 graduate students, and 3 undergraduate students. In addition to the main Report, separate reports of the Tier I Subcommittee and the Tier II Subcommittee are available online. The Coordinating Committee acted across the Task Force, as well as across various colleges. In preparing the Report, the Task Force performed surveys of MSU faculty and of other institutions, collected syllabi, and held focus groups with undergraduates.

Porter called attention to two points of the Report: there was a consensus that the current Tier I and Tier II structure worked and should be retained, and, secondly, it was agreed that new administrative structures and governance mechanisms were needed. To the latter end, the Report suggests the formation of two committees, one for Tier II courses and one at the University level.

There was some discussion about the writing abilities of both entering and exiting college students. Porter noted that the Writing Center exists to help students with particular writing problems and also to help faculty teaching writing courses to develop syllabi, manage their workload through various strategies, and deal with students for whom English is not the primary language. Porter also noted that the English Language Center exists to help this latter group of students.

At the end of the question session with Porter, Folu Ogundimu asked UCAP members to bring their comments on the Report to the final UCAP meeting.

9) Round Table:

UCAP Liaison to Athletic Council: The University Bylaws do not specifically provide for a liaison from UCAP to Athletic Council. Steve Dilley currently fills this ad hoc role. Because of the unofficial nature of the liaison, he was not officially notified of a recent meeting between UCAG and Athletic Council. There was discussion about the many undergraduate policy issues that arise in Athletic Council and its subcommittees.

A motion was made and seconded to suggest that a UCAP representative be a permanent member of Athletic Council and its subcommittees. Motion approved.

Working Group to Improve Undergraduate Education: Cynthia Taggert reported that meeting times had initially been set for Tuesday evenings in April, when she cannot attend because of a teaching conflict. After discussion, UCAP members of this group noted that they would ask for a rescheduling of the meetings.

Minors: Cynthia Taggert noted that the Minors Subcommittee would reconvene and bring forward a recommendation to UCAP, after receiving information on the issue from June Youatt, subsequent to a meeting of Associate Deans.

Information about Capstone Courses on the Web: Sharon Senk suggested that information about capstone courses be made more readily available on the Web. The information should have a listing of such courses, a definition and explanation of what capstone courses are, to make them more easily accessible to new faculty. Youatt agreed to forward this suggestion to the proper channel for consideration.

10) Comments from the Assistant Provost: June Youatt noted that, in light of upcoming final NCAA rounds, the University was doing what it could to disseminate to students the message of responsible behavior.

Youatt also provided an update on academic dishonesty. A Freshman Tutorial is being pilot-tested with 600 students. The administration is preliminarily editing University publications with respect to the X/F grade. Once the edits are made, the issue of three options (penalty grade, failing grade, or X/F grade) will come before UCAP.

11) Closing Comment from Chair: Folu Ogundimu noted that UCAP needs to elect a new chair for next year. He noted that the UCAP chair not only coordinates input from UCAP members but also is involved with Academic Council, Faculty Council, ECAC, and Assistant Provost Youatt’s office.

A motion to adjourn was made, seconded, and approved.

Meeting adjourned at 11:40 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Sharon Pocock