University of Minnesota, Morris
Morris, Minnesota 56267

ANNUAL REPORT OF THE
CURRICULUM COMMITTEE
FOR 1997-98

The Curriculum Committee (CC) held 18 regular meetings during the academic year 1997-98. There were five (5) meetings during fall quarter, ten (10) meetings during winter quarter, and five (5) meetings during spring quarter.

FALL QUARTER

Continuation of Adjunct Committees: Last year the Executive Committee requested that the five major Assembly committees (of which the CC is one) examine with their adjunct committees whether the adjuncts should continue to exist. Last year the CC was extremely busy reviewing the new semester curriculum, so put off this task until this year. The adjunct committees' recommendations and the CC recommendations were discussed in fall and winter quarter and are summarized in the table below.


Adjunct Committee

Adjunct's Recommendation

Curriculum Committee Recommendation

Campus Assembly Action

Academic Support Services (ASSC)

Continuation

Continuation

Passed

Teacher Education (TEC)

Continuation

Continuation

Passed

International Programs (IPC)

Continuation

Continuation

Passed

Minority Experience (MEC)

Continuation

Continuation

Passed

General Education (GEC)

Discontinuation

Immediate discontinuation

Passed 5/4/98

Honors Program (HPC)

Discontinuation

Discontinuation

FAILED 5/4/98

Gathering More Semester Information: Having passed the semester curriculum last year, faculty needed additionally to decide what General Education Requirement (GER) each course would fulfill. The intention was that each course would fulfill one category of the GER. The Form C (Add) and Form C (GenEd) were distributed to the Divisions with a deadline of November 24.

Educational Development Program: The Educational Development Program (EDP) each year gives out small grants from the total sum of $7,500. A subcommittee of the CC solicits faculty for grant proposals and then the CC allocates the money. Last year the EDP Subcommittee chaired by Lee suggested using the 1996-97 and 1997-98 funds for development of the Common Experience course for semesters. There was a consensus in the CC in favor of freezing 1997-98 EDP funds for creation of the Common Experience course.

GenEdWeb Discussion: Roger McCannon and the GenEdWeb Steering Committee were invited to a CC meeting to explain the GenEdWeb program. University College, formerly Continuing Education and Extension, administers the program and Kissock serves as faculty coordinator to the program. A memo to the CC dated 11/19/97 answered the question of how the GenEdWeb program fits with the mission of this campus. McCannon provided a complete background to the project and discussion of the program followed (see minutes of Meeting #4).

Assessment of General Education: The Assessment of Student Learning Committee (ASLC) asked the CC to do something about the assessment of general education. Our next regularly scheduled NCA reaccreditation visit will be in 1999-2000. For that visit, we need to assess general education. The CC unanimously passed the following motion:

Passed: To create a subgroup of the CC and ASLC to solicit ideas from across the campus and report back to both parent committees.

Schuman asked for student, faculty, and Division Chair volunteers. The following people volunteered: Taylor, Kissock, Leroux.

Email Minutes: The following motion was put forward by Korth and unanimously approved by the CC:

Passed: To recommend that the Executive Committee require all Assembly and adjunct committees to better inform the campus community of their discussions and actions by regularly providing minutes via email to those who request them.

 

This motion was forwarded to the Executive Committee, resulting finally in the email distribution group called "minutes."

Bulletin Production Schedule: The production schedule for the first semester catalog for 1999-2001 was set during fall quarter. All changes to semester courses must be entered on the web database by 6/29/98. There will be no galley stage for this catalog. Minor changes can be made on page proofs, but whatever is in the web database at the end of spring quarter will determine what appears in our catalog.

GER Designations for Semester Courses: Several issues arose as the CC reviewed proposals for designation of GER categories for semester courses. The following are examples of the opinions and questions put forward:

Discussion of these issues was continued into winter quarter.

Fall Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Quarters

Passed: To approve the curriculum change proposals from political science: Pol 1300 (add C2), Pol 3230 (add W), Pol 3267 (add W), Pol 3267H (add W). [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Fall Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Semesters

Passed: To approve the proposal to convert IS 3010, English Language Teaching Assistant Program, to semesters. [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Passed: To approve the proposal to add IS 1091, Ethical and Social Implications of Technology, in the semester system. [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Passed: To permit the computer science discipline to use 1301 and 1302 rather than 1101-1102 for the numbers of the introductory courses to the major.

WINTER QUARTER

Semester Policy on Directed Studies and Senior Honors Projects: The question which came up during fall quarter with directed studies was whether to list four levels of directed studies in the bulletin even if faculty don't expect to use all four levels. There was extensive discussion of these choices: 1) put all four levels of directed study in every discipline; 2) put only the 3xxx and 4xxx level in each discipline; 3) let every discipline decide on the levels they want to offer.

After Division Chairs polled the disciplines, there was continued discussion in the CC during winter quarter. The following motions were approved:

Passed: To have the default directed studies listing for semesters include all four levels (1xxx, 2xxx, 3xxx, 4xxx), but give each discipline the opportunity to revise the directed study listing for the catalog. [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Passed: To set "1-5 credits" as a standard for all directed studies offerings. [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Passed: To set "1-5 credits" as a standard for all senior honors project offerings. [Passed by Campus Assembly 1/26/98.]

Passed: That the Curriculum Committee determines that directed studies and senior honors projects not be given a GER designator in the bulletin.

Passed: To set a policy that all semester directed studies and senior honors projects would be repeatable.

Last Call for Semester Curricular Revisions: A "last call" for revisions to the semester curricula was announced February 10 with a proposal deadline of March 30, 1998. Division Chairs were asked to notify disciplines of this last opportunity for making changes before the first semester catalog is produced. A transition course catalog, advisers' handbook, and student handbook will be produced in spring 1998 to help people make decisions for the last year of quarters. The 1999-2001 UMM Catalog will be produced in the spring of 1999; the deadline in the Twin Cities for making curricular changes is the end of spring quarter 1998.

Continued Discussion of Semester GER Designations: CC members considered a list of variable-credit courses which had one-credit options and had also been proposed for Expanding Perspectives GER designations. The problem here is that Expanding Perspectives courses must be at least two credits. There were several options: a) change the credits to start at the 2-credit level instead of the 1-credit level; b) add a phrase in the course catalog that says these courses will not meet the GER requirement if taken for less than 2 credits; or c) take away the GER designation. The CC voted to send the variable-credit courses back to the disciplines with the three choices.

Semester Catalog Copy Revisions: The CC reviewed proposals with substantial semester curriculum revisions in the following disciplines: elementary education, secondary education, wellness and sport science, English, German, humanities, music, philosophy, biology, chemistry, geography, management, psychology, European Studies, Women's Studies, Common Experience course.

Repeatable Course Lists: Disciplines had been given course lists and asked to respond to the question: "Is this course repeatable?" The CC moved discipline by discipline through the repeatable course lists, asking for comments and concerns.

General Rules for Topics Courses: During the discussion of repeatable courses, the question of how to deal with topics courses arose. Would the general rule be that topic umbrellas would be repeatable, but specific topics would not? Would the rule assume no maximum on the repeatability of the umbrella course? The term "topic" or "topics" could be reserved for umbrella courses with variable topics. Umbrella topics could be required to have "topic" in the title. Any title with the words "Variable Topics in..." would be repeatable. The word "topic" or "topics" would be excised from other course titles. We could also say that it is not possible to register for the generic heading, only the subsets. The generic topic is always repeatable but the specific topics are not.

The CC would approve generic topic headings such as "Topics in English." Then each time the discipline teaches that course, they would give it a unique number and title. That would be the only setting for topics courses. If the generic heading has a GER category, then all of the specific topics below it would also have that GER. The CC agreed that the Dean should draft a general policy on these matters to bring to the committee in spring quarter (see below).

Winter Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Quarters:

Passed: To approve the proposal to add WSS 1513--Varsity Soccer to the quarter curriculum effective fall of 1998. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Passed: To approve the proposal to add WSS 3207--Soccer Coaching to the quarter curriculum effective fall of 1998. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Winter Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Semesters:

Passed: To approve the proposal to add WSS 1411--Varsity Soccer to the semester curriculum effective fall of 1999. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

SPRING QUARTER

Topics Template: Schuman indicated that the first item on the agenda was a continued discussion of topics courses. He had written down, with a lot of help from Mooney, what he thought should be our policy on topics courses. A slightly edited version, given below, was approved by the CC on 3/31/98.

1. Any course which is listed in the catalog as a "topics" course, with specific topics sublisted, will be called "Variable Topics in..." For example:

Engl 1100. Variable Topics in Literature (Hum; 4 cr; jr status)

Engl 1101f. The Novel Since 1960

Engl 1102. The Environmental Imagination

Engl 1103. The Novel on Page and Screen

2. It is not possible to register for the "umbrella" course number (e.g., Engl 1100), just the specific topic course (e.g., Engl 1101f or 1102 or 1103).

3. If the "umbrella" generic course has a GER designation, then ALL the sublisted specific courses would carry that designation. Such designation of the umbrella course would need the normal Curriculum Committee approval. E.g., Engl. 1101f and 1102 meet the "Hum" requirement.

4. If the "umbrella" generic course does NOT have a GER designation, specific courses listed under it could meet GER requirements, but would need CC approval to do so.

5. While there is no limit to the number of specific topic courses students can take under one general Variable Topic heading, students will usually not be allowed to repeat a specific topic course.

6. Any other catalog information specified under the general heading is understood to apply to all the subsets. E.g., Junior Status is required to take Engl 1101f, 1102, etc.

7. When disciplines mean a course to differ from this model, they should make a prodigious effort to avoid the word "topics." Alternatives might be "Studies in..." or "Seminar in..." or "Current Issues in..." etc.

8. Conversely, any course which exactly fits this pattern SHOULD be entitled "Variable Topics in..."

NOTE: A closely related, but different type of course is the single course which shifts its subject periodically: e.g., a course called "Advanced Shakespeare" might study the Comedies one year, the History plays the next, the Tragedies a third. Someone called this a "variable subject" course. Such courses should just be listed (hopefully, without the word "topics" in the title), and the discipline needs to decide how repeatable they are.

Mooney had culled all of the courses that looked like topics from the semester bulletin copy. There was agreement to have the Division Chairs work with the list to identify the courses which should be "variable topic" courses.

Review of Galleys: Schuman informed CC members that Mooney had sent out galley proofs to Divisions for the next regular catalog. We got back a lot of changes. Most of the changes are shown as penciled-in corrections on the galley sheets. The substantial changes were reviewed by the CC in the following disciplines: wellness and sport science, English, humanities, music, biology, chemistry, mathematics, political science, psychology.

Continued Discussion of GenEdWeb: The CC invited Roger McCannon to Meeting #16 to continue the discussion of GenEdWeb which was begun in November. Copies of a Consultative Committee memo on this topic were distributed to CC members. McCannon and Schuman had responded to the Consultative Committee memo, saying that the suggestions in the memo provide a good working basis for the GenEdWeb project. McCannon shared a copy of the "Guidelines for Distance Education" published by the North Central Association which are mentioned in the Consultative Committee memo. In February, a preliminary report on GenEdWeb was submitted to Dan Granger, head of distance education in the Twin Cities because the project had received some funding from that office.

Among other issues, McCannon mentioned that the CC discussed last fall the possibility of creating a policy statement similar to the ITV policy which was created by the CC. He expressed willingness to work with a subcommittee of the CC to update and expand the ITV policy to include web courses. The CC planned to pick up this discussion after reviewing the ITV policy.

ITV Guidelines & Application to GenEdWeb: Copies of the ITV Guidelines that were set into effect in 1994, and were sent into oblivion in 1996, were sent out to CC members. Schuman questioned whether there should be a subcommittee created for next year to review and update the current non-existing standards. This subcommittee would revise the guidelines and bring them up to date considering technology, distance, and other factors now present. A motion was approved to reconsider the ITV/GenEdWeb policy during the 1998-99 academic year.

Semester Transition Course Catalog: The following motion was approved on 4/28/98:

Passed: . To approve the Semester Transition Course Catalog as UMM's official transition curriculum. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Provision V of the GER: When the General Education Task Force proposed the new semester GER, the writing (W) and computing applications (C2) requirements had disappeared. The philosophy was to fold those components into the major requirements. In the new GER, it says that the major will state how students will get these components within the major. Disciplines were not pressured to prepare a statement about how this is being accomplished in each major. Schuman thought we could let this drift for one semester catalog and then require a statement for the second catalog. There was a consensus that Schuman should remind people in the fall to remember that they will have to prepare a statement for semesters and designate courses for the quarter GER.

Campus Assembly Motion on Labeling Classes Using Student Assistants: During a discussion of the semester transition course catalog at Campus Assembly, McIntosh had introduced a motion which was discussed and referred back to the Curriculum Committee for a recommendation. The motion, as proposed in Campus Assembly, is as follows:

"Courses designed or expected to use undergraduate teaching assistants in charge of classroom, discussion or laboratory instruction should indicate this use of undergraduate teaching assistants in the course catalog and course schedule."

After lengthy discussion, the CC proposed an amended motion, which failed:

Failed: Courses designed or expected to use undergraduate teaching assistants in charge of classroom, discussion, or laboratory instruction should indicate this use of undergraduate teaching assistants in the course schedule.

Schuman suggested that the CC consider other ways to address this concern over the summer, so when school starts up next fall, there will be something to discuss. Schuman also encouraged the CC to start to think about a policy on students grading other students.

Spring Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Quarters:

Passed: . To approve the following Science and Math proposals: Chem 3531, 3533, 3535. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: . To approve Russ 1100, 1101, 1102. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: . To make the Vietnam History course (Hist 3332) a Non-Western course back to Fall 1988. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: . To approve the Major/Minor forms from History. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Spring Quarter Curriculum Proposals for Semesters:

Passed: To approve the proposal to change the GER category for Ed 1011-1012-Beginning Sign Language I-II to the foreign language designator ("FL"). NOTE: Mooney later discovered that there are two intermediate-level sign language courses which should have been included in McRoberts' memo--Ed 2011-2012. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Passed: To approve the proposal to convert the Dakota language courses (IS 1301-1302) to semesters and give them the "FL" GER designator. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Passed: To approve the proposal to change the semester major requirements for sociology. [Passed by Campus Assembly 5/4/98.]

Passed: To approve the following Science and Math proposals: Biol 4101, 4102, Biol/WSS 2102, Math/Mgmt 3501-3502 [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: To approve Russ 1001, 1002, and a Form B for Russian. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: To approve IS 3705, 3710. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

Passed: . To approve the Major/Minor forms from History. [Will be on Campus Assembly agenda in Fall 1998.]

IN CONCLUSION

It was an extremely busy year for the Curriculum Committee. Progress is being made toward completion of the semester conversion process.

Respectfully submitted,
Samuel Schuman
Chair, Curriculum Committee

Send comments to Nancy Mooney
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