Agenda/Minutes‎ > ‎2007-2008‎ > ‎

2008 - 01/10

agenda status: approved



University Committee on Academic Policy
Thursday, January 10, 2008
10:15 A.M. to 12:00 P.M.
Board Room, Administration Building

  1. Approval of the Agenda
  2. Approval of the November 29, 2007 Minutes 
  3. Comments from the Chairperson
  4. Comments from the Associate Provost
  5. Request to Exceed 120 Credits for the Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Therapy
    Curtis Olson, Associate Dean, College of Music.....(Attachment)
    Frederick Tims, Director & Chair of the Music Therapy Area, College of Music
  6. Undergraduate Learning Assistants Discussion
  7. Religious Observance Discussion
  8. Roundtable

Phone or e-mail Sandra Walther (353-5380; if you cannot be present. Please remember that you are asked to send a substitute from your college.

Attachment 1: 11/29/2007 UCAP Draft Minutes
Attachment 2: Request to Exceed 120 Credits for the Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Therapy

minutes status: approved

approved at meeting of 01/24/2008

UCAP Minutes for meeting held on 01/10/2008

University Committee on Academic Policy
Thursday, January 10, 2008
10:15 A.M. to 12:00 P.M.
Board Room, Administration Building

Attendees: Dennis Banks, R. Sekhar Chivukula, Peter Cobbett, Marty Crimp, Doug Estry, Ruba Farah, Richard Hallgren, Caroline Hartig, Carolyn Loeb, Helen Mayer, Brad McDonald, Jerry Punch, Ralph Putnam, Michael Schechter, Jim Smith, Thomas Volkening, Chris Wenstrom

Absent: Linda Jackson, Michael Shields

Chairperson Chivukula introduced the two new UCAP representatives from ASMSU, Ruba Farah and Brad McDonald.

Agenda was approved.

Minutes of the November 29, 2007 meeting were approved.

Comments from Chairperson
Chairperson Chivukula reported that Dennis Banks, UCAP representative to the Athletic Council, presented a report on COIA and the Knight Foundation conference regarding Faculty Perceptions of Intercollegiate Athletics at the ECAC meeting on Tuesday, January 8, 2008. Chivukula commented that UCAP’s presence on the Athletic Council is helping to establish a connection between athletics and academics at MSU.

Professor Chivukula recalled that last semester ECAC had created a subcommittee to work on COIAs proposed guidelines that, it asserted, every university should implement. The subcommittee found that it appears MSU meets and, in some cases exceeds, the recommended practices.

Chivukula also said that ECAC has engaged John Beck to help shape discussions around the Faculty Taskforce I report in order to move it to closure.

Professor Chivukula added that the HealthCare Options taskforce would be sending a preliminary report to every faculty member by email, for comments. The report is already posted on their website. The purpose of the HealthCare Options taskforce is to advise how MSU should navigate its way through future healthcare choices.

Chairperson Chivukula noted that programmatic requests from UCC are increasing. It is necessary for UCAP to move quickly on the programmatic requests in order for deadlines to be met for the next academic year. In order to accommodate the requests and accomplish important committee work, it may be necessary to plan an extra meeting in February.

Professor Chivukula pointed out that some of the programmatic requests UCAP will review will be to establish minors. There is concern within the committee that if a major is not well defined, double counting of credits in a minor will become an issue. Currently, boilerplate language states that the department decides this on a case-by-case basis. The Office of the Registrar will soon put forward a proposal to UCC to resolve the issue of double counting.

Comments from Associate Provost
No comments.

Request to Exceed 120 Credits for the Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Therapy
Curtis Olson, Associate Dean, College of Music
Frederick Tims, Director & Chair of the Music Therapy Area, College of Music

The committee unanimously granted voice to Drs. Olson and Tims.

Professor Tims provided a brief history of the Music Therapy degree at MSU. A leader in its field, the Music Therapy area in the College of Music requests the changes in order to maintain its leadership and its accreditation by adding courses relevant to the current and projected needs of the field and deleting courses that are not. Tims pointed out that degree credits necessary for a Music Therapy degree currently exceed the 120 credits required by the University for reasons such as the level of piano proficiency of an incoming student and practicum courses required for accreditation.
There was no further discussion by the committee.

Motion by Marty Crimp passed unanimously:

The committee endorses the request to exceed 120 credits for the Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Therapy.

Undergraduate Learning Assistants (ULA)
Richard Hallgren and Jim Smith of the ULA Subcommittee

Chairperson Chivukula prefaced the committee’s discussion of the draft by summarizing the committee’s concerns, expressed at the January 10 meeting, still needing to be addressed in the ULA draft.

Committee discussion centered on the following issues:
    Is the ULA document a policy that includes a broad range of acceptable practice or suggested guidelines?
    Scope of the policy, clearly defining who the policy governs, no matter the title used in a particular unit
    Location in the document of ULA definition and salient policy points
    Title of document, position title, and definitions need to be readily searchable in a database
    Should ULA position description tie to HR student job titles
    Requirement and specificity of criteria for selection process, orientation and training, compensation, workload, evaluation, and grievances
    Language – use of terms will, must, shall – what is most appropriate language, are statements suggestions or requirements

The committee agreed that further revisions should be made by the subcommittee, circulated via email for comments and a second revision, based on comments received, be prepared for UCAP action at the January 24 meeting

Religious Observance Discussion
Ralph Putnam Subcommittee Chairperson

Professor Putnam provided copies of the current religious observance policy and the proposed policy to the committee members.

Committee discussion of the proposed policy language centered on the following issues:
    Should there be a specific statement about timeframe of notification of absence?
    Blanket attendance policies, a concern raised by ASMSU, is not mentioned in the proposed policy
    Define: what does it mean to not seriously disadvantage a student
    Define: unreasonable burden on an instructor
    What are the implications of this policy for students who miss classes in order to meet obligations to the university?
    Are there any reasons to deny a student accommodation for an absence for religious observance?
    Appropriate title for policy

Professor Putnam will prepare a revised draft of the policy for committee review at a future meeting.

Chairperson Chivukula noted that the two ASMSU students who had been members of the Religious Observance subcommittee had been replaced by the incoming ASMSU students. Ruba Farah and Doug McDonald agreed to serve on the Religious Observance subcommittee.

Chairperson Chivukula distributed a draft UCAP docket for Spring ’08 and asked for committee feedback. The draft docket will be posted on the UCAP website.

Dennis Banks reported that the MSU Athletic Council met January 10, 2008. In addition to the regular subcommittee reports, Athletic Director Mark Hollis presented the strategic plan for the athletic department under his administration. The fall semester academic report for all teams was distributed and discussed. Four notable achievements included:
    Highest athletic department fall GPA (2.93)
    Highest number of student athletes with cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher (333)
    Highest number of students with a fall GPA of 3.0 or greater (348)
    Highest number of student athletes with a perfect 4.0 GPA

Respectfully submitted by
Sandra Walther