University of Minnesota, Morris
Morris, MN

 

 

 

MINUTES 2001-2002 CURRICULUM COMMITTEE MEETING # 8

February 25, 2002, 1:00 p.m. Behmler Conference Room

 

Present:           John F. Schwaller, Michael Korth, Jeff Ratliff-Crain for Jooinn Lee, Jenny Nellis, Vicky Demos, Van Gooch, Jillian Evans, Bridget Hollerman, Michael Urness, Dorothy De Jager, Nancy Mooney, Jeri Mullin, Clare Strand, and Ruth Thielke

 

Absent:           Jooinn Lee, Craig Kissock, Jim Carlson, Chris DeVries, and Amanda Johnson

 

Visitors:          Nick McPhee and Leslie Meek

 

Schwaller brought forward several agenda items that were for information only and minor discussion.

 

Schwaller discussed the scheduling change explaining that due to the increase in agenda items CC would need to add two extra meeting dates and possibly more if the need arises. The additional meeting dates are March 4th and April 8th.

 

Schwaller reminded everyone that a GER and a description are still needed for some courses.

 

Schwaller raised the issue of Provision V of the GER. The statements do need to be updated but do they need to be included in the next catalog? A motion was made to not put them in the next catalog.

 

MOTION:      (Nellis, Urness) Not to include the Provision V statements in the next catalog

 

            VOTE:            Unanimous in favor (8-0-0)

 

Schwaller discussed the issue of Speech 4100 Topic Umbrella having a GER of IP. Schwaller read the umbrella description. Nellis responded that the GER is being changed to “see specific topic for GER” and is included in the packet of revisions from Humanities that is on the agenda.

 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Schwaller asked for a motion to approve the minutes from

February 11, 2002.

 

            MOTION:      (Nellis, Urness) To approve minutes from February 11, 2002

 

            VOTE:            Unanimous in favor (8-0-0)

FIRST YEAR SEMINAR REVIEW:

Schwaller stated to CC that they would have to decide if they would accept or reject the recommendations of the First Year Seminar Review Committee. A member stated she was under the impression that CC had decided to accept the recommendation. Schwaller agreed and suggested that a formal motion to accept be made and voted upon.

 

MOTION:      (Nellis, Urness) To accept the report and recommendations of the First

Year Seminar Review Committee

 

            VOTE:            Unanimous in favor (8-0-0)

 

Schwaller now asked CC if they would like to constitute a group – preferably faculty and students to address the questions raised by the FYS Review Committee. Schwaller also asked CC if they agree to have the FYS Review Committee Report posted to the web. A member stated that since CC has agreed to accept the report and recommendations that it was all right to post it to the web, CC concurred. A member asked and Schwaller confirmed that the intention of this “group” is to address the 6 questions that the FYS Review Committee asked to be explored further.

 

A member disagreed with creating a new group and suggested using an existing committee to review these issues and make a recommendation to CC. She stated it is too easy to proliferate another committee. She explained that the FYS course has problems, some questions have consensus but there will always be more questions, who will teach it, etc. If the topic is left as open as it currently is there are different notions and approaches to teaching the course, of which they are neither all good nor all bad. It comes down to personal opinion, the area the person teaches in, social issues, etc. There are some problems that will never be solved; yet it also has a good side. About half the students are having a good experience and some may not realize that it was a good experience until later, maybe when they are a junior or senior. The main decision of the CC was whether or not to keep the course. We decided to keep it and changing the topic should not be that big of an issue. It is important to make a topic relevant to many areas, and not define it too narrowly; another member agreed with the idea of having a generalized topic.

 

Schwaller asked again if CC would like to create a group and a member suggested using an existing group, which will be objective.

 

The question arose whether the last questions are implementation or policy. A member suggested issues of implementation be sent to the Steering Committee. A group other than the Steering Committee should look at the Human Diversity theme, which may lean toward policy. Schwaller agreed that the issues appear to be about implementation more than policy, with the possible exception of the theme. Schwaller explained to CC that he wants to make sure that CC can support any action they take and that Campus Assembly will support CC’s decision also.

 

A member voiced support for the idea of having the Steering Committee look at these “implementation issues” and went on to say that this discussion could go on forever. CC needs to separate the issues and decide that yes we endorse the continuation of FYS and yes some changes need to be made and have them address by the Steering Committee. This is not going to be a perfect program and we should realize that it is doing what we wanted it to do and we need people interested in it to teach it, the broader the topic the broader the development.

 

Two members voiced concern over having the accepted report go to Campus Assembly before all areas were addressed because not everyone approves of FYS in everyway. One member stated that it is within CC’s authority to review these issues and act on them.

 

Schwaller asked CC when dealing with these questions for FYS how CC would act on these same questions of any other course coming to CC. He explained that textbooks, readers, workload, tests etc are not the concern of CC. A member disagreed because this is a common course and there should be some overview of these implementation issues by CC. A member stated he was concerned about assembly level committees micromanaging the issue.

 

MOTION:     (Nellis, Demos) To send the FYS Review Committee Report to the Steering Committee and ask them to respond in some way to the 6 implementation questions and Curriculum Committee should report to the campus that the FYS Review Committee report was received and outstanding questions are being referred to the Steering Committee.

 

DISCUSSION:

 

Another member stated she was not in favor of sending this to the Steering Committee and questioned the percent of students on the committee. A member stated that there are 5 students and 17 faculty members. The former member explained she would ask for 1/3 student representation on the committee and another concern was that the Steering Committee is self-selected and she is concerned not a large enough variety of opinions would be represented of the campus.

 

A member explained that we have already received responses from a wide variety of campus views and is against proliferating another committee. Another member agreed that we don’t need another committee but had reservations about having the Steering Committee deal with the questions. He suggested that CC take up the questions because the questions are not merely implementation issues. Schwaller disagreed and stated that CC does not look into details such as this for other courses. He explained that he believes this should go to a group of faculty and students and he agrees that the Steering Committee is self selected and he went on to say that he would be more confident going to Campus Assembly with the recommendations of a broader committee

 

Discussion among members raised the issue that this is an IS course and Dean Schwaller as the IS Division Chair would have the say as to what committee would deal with it.

 

A member again brought up that this discussion continues to go back to the determination of these questions being implementation or policy and what policy issues would CC deal with. Schwaller confirmed that CC would not normally decide such issues for other courses. The one major policy issue would be “is there a topic?” not what would be the topic. Members discussed the topic issue and that Campus Assembly had approved the Human Diversity topic with the course implementation. Schwaller explained that topic was subject to change after the mandated review of FYS.

 

A call to question on the vote
           

            VOTE:           4 in favor and 5 against the motion  -  MOTION FAILED

 

Schwaller informed CC that we will continue to discuss this issue and the FYS Review Committee Report would be posted on the web.

 

A member stated after reviewing what Campus Assembly approved in 1997 these questions raised by the FYS Review Committee are implementation.

 

Meeting adjourned 2:00 p.m.

Submitted by Karen Van Horn

 

Send comments to Karen Van Horn at vanhornk@morris.umn.edu

Send comments to Curriculum Committee at curriculum@morris.umn.edu