University of Minnesota, Morris
MINUTES-1997-98 CURRICULUM COMMITTEE MEETING #14
March 31, 1998; 8:00 a.m.; Behmler Conference Room
Present: Asmus, Ballou, Farrell, Frenier, Korth, Kissock, Lee, Leroux, McIntosh, Schuman, Taylor
Absent: Beiswenger, Ellis, Nylander, Thielke
[In these minutes: Continued discussion of topics courses and repeatable
Korth thought that, overall, the proposed template did accurately capture
the CC discussion. However, he thought that #5 bordered on the nonsensical.
It says that "umbrella" topics offerings can be repeated with
no limit, but #2 says that it is not possible to register for an "umbrella"
course number. Schuman understood what he was saying. The intent of #5 is
to say that students can register repeatably for courses under one umbrella,
but specific topics cannot be repeated. Korth thought that may not need
to be spelled out. Schuman thought it was worthwhile to try to describe
all of the details; he will try to reword #5.
Ballou said she had missed the winter quarter discussions on this, but
she would appreciate understanding the difference between variable topics
and variable subjects. Schuman said that Engl 1100, a real course which
was used as an example, is a variable topic course. It serves to define
a rubric of courses. However, the variable subject course may have, for
instance, a reading list that differs each year, but is essentially the
same course. Students would not be allowed to repeat it. That is a fine
distinction; some disciplines might want to allow such a course to be repeated.
Ballou wondered if students would be able to tell the difference because
they would be able to take several courses under the variable topic courses
but the variable subject courses would probably not be repeatable. Schuman
said some courses have titles like "Selected Topics in Sociology,"
but the idea is that you would only take it once. Ballou wondered if, in
the future, that course would not be allowed to use the word "topics."
Schuman agreed that, under the proposed scheme, we would like to have people
avoid the word "topics" for courses which do not have umbrella
courses. However, if someone insisted that the only word that would work
was "topics," we would allow it.
Schuman noted that the major requirements might limit the number of specific
topics that can be applied to the major. Ballou commented that the major
requirements would have to make that clear to students.
Kissock wondered if Schuman was looking for a motion. Schuman offered
to rewrite #5 before having the CC take a vote, unless CC members trusted
him to make the change appropriately.
MOTION (Kissock, Farrell): To approve the "topics template" subject to a rephrasing of item #5.
VOTE: Unanimous in favor (9-0-0).
Schuman indicated that Mooney had culled all of the courses that look
like topics from the semester bulletin copy. How should we find out which
ones should be variable topics? He wondered if the lists should be given
to the Division Chairs. There was agreement to have the Division Chairs
work with the list.
Farrell wondered if four credits would constitute a "course"
in terms of faculty workload. Schuman said yes, emphatically.
[Frenier arrived at the meeting at this point.]
Korth wondered about the 60-credit maximum on directed studies. Lee said
he would be willing to change it to "no maximum." The 60-credits
is not tied to any requirement; it has no meaning. Farrell wondered if a
student could get a major entirely by taking directed studies. Frenier said
it hasn't been done, but it is theoretically possible. Schuman said he preferred
to say "no max." Sixty credits amounts to two years of directed
Schuman wondered if the 10-credit maximum for 4101-4102 was correct.
Since that would total one repeat of each course, it was assumed to be correct.
Ballou was concerned about the possible message to students with repeatable
courses: if they do poorly the first time, they can take the course again.
Frenier said there are standards concerning "D" grades. Schuman
read aloud about repeating a course from the current bulletin (see page
38). We need to ask Thielke how she tells if a student is taking the course
to get a better grade.
Schuman said the CC would expect a revised proposal from history.
Schuman wondered if the 2-credit courses were going to meet for 1/2 semester.
Lee said yes.
Ballou wondered who is attracted to these UC courses. Farrell said it
is largely special students, but sometimes regular day school students take
them. Schuman noted that two of the UC courses on the list are directed
to high school students in the Summer Scholars program. The sign language
courses are frequently taken by day students, but none of the foreign language
disciplines wanted to take on the teaching of sign language. Ballou wondered
if they could be described as supplementary courses. Kissock said UC is
a way to offer courses that the disciplines don't have resources to offer.
Another reason is that people in the community are interested--like karate,
dance, etc. Schuman said the dance program had conversations with WSS and
Humanities Division faculty about moving into the regular curriculum, but
the faculty were not willing to add those courses to the regular curriculum.
UC is a sort of catchall--a mechanism for allowing us to do things we wouldn't
otherwise be able to do.
Lee wondered if there would be a UC course that is repeatable and the
same course in the day school is not repeatable? Mooney said the two courses
would have different numbers.
Kissock noted that ELTAP should be on the list and not repeatable.
Mooney wondered if the repeatability lists should be forwarded to Campus
Assembly. Schuman said he was tempted to report to Assembly that we have
gone through the repeatable lists. Does that make sense? Kissock said it
made sense to him. Korth was not sure what would be going to Assembly. There
have been a number of changes which have not been sent forward. Mooney suggested
that Campus Assembly could review the Transition Course Catalog as a reflection
of the various changes that have come through the Curriculum Committee.
Schuman said there have been so many tiny decisions. He liked Mooney's idea.
Ballou said, as a faculty member, she would like to see if the semester
curriculum will work out. Farrell commented that, in the past, when we have
had so much to review, we've put the materials in the library. Schuman said
all of the changes would be nicely consolidated in the Transition Course
Catalog. Mooney noted that the catalog would be ready by April 24.
Meeting adjourned 8:50 a.m.
Submitted by Nancy Mooney
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