MINUTES-1998-99 CURRICULUM COMMITTEE MEETING #11
March 31, 1999; 8:00 a.m.; Behmler Conference Room
Present: Cerar, Farrell, Frenier, Haugen, Kissock,
Korth, Lee, Leroux, McIntosh, Taylor
Absent: Busch, Neuharth, Thielke, Utoft, Woll
[In these minutes: renewal of adjunct committees;
GER designations of variable topics courses; Psy 3222, Behavioral
Biology of Women.]
APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Korth
asked for corrections or additions to the previous minutes. Frenier
mentioned two corrections she would like made. On page two, under
Women's Studies, paragraph two, the sentence is corrected to read
"In 1978, when the minor was introduced,
weren't enough interested faculty to offer such a diverse curriculum
a major seemed unwise as there weren't enough interested faculty
to offer such a diverse curriculum." Also, on page three,
paragraph three, "...she teaches
will teach one Women's Studies course every 2 years outside the
History discipline." Lee mentioned a correction within the
same paragraph, "Anthropology, for example, has 2.5
1.67 faculty members."
To approve the amended minutes of the 3/03/99 Curriculum Committee
in favor (9-0-0)
RENEWAL OF ADJUNCT COMMITTEES:
Korth mentioned the CC oversees five adjunct committees. The CC
previously reviewed a report from one committee, so there are
four remaining to review. Korth referred the CC members to the
four adjunct committee reports they received with the agenda.
A) Teacher Education Committee
Frenier) To recommend continuation of the Teacher Education Committee
Korth asked if he was correct in his understanding that the TEC had not met yet this year. Kissock said that was a false understanding; the committee had met once and has a large agenda to cover at its upcoming meeting.
Farrell suggested that the first paragraph should
say something about the purpose of this committee beyond its existence
to respond to Board of Teaching and NCATE reviews. Lee agreed
with Farrell's comment regarding the statement, suggesting that
the CC approve the renewal of this adjunct committee and then
attach an amended statement to pass on to the Executive Committee.
Korth wondered about passing to the assembly a different statement
than what was approved. Kissock commented that there was precedent
for this in the past. Mooney agreed, especially if the CC felt
the statements were inadequate. Kissock said the statement would
be revised to say it is necessary to renew the committee in order
to continue the mission of the TEC. [The statement was later revised
as suggested; however the statements were not forwarded to Campus
VOTE: Approved 8
B) Minority Experience Committee
Farrell) To recommend continuation of the Minority Experience
C) International Programs Committee
Frenier mentioned a concern she has regarding the
Katherine Sullivan Scholarship awards. She asked if any UMM students
received one of the five scholarships offered this year. Haugen
said a UMM student was a finalist. Frenier wondered if a UMM student
received the scholarship last year. Haugen wasn't certain, but
she was confident that a UMM student had received the scholarship
within the past two years. Frenier said at one time UMM students
were quite successful in their applications for this award, but
the nominees in the past two years have not done well. She wondered
about the value of encouraging students to pursue such a strenuous,
highly competitive process if they are unlikely to be successful.
Farrell felt that two scholarships awarded to UMM students within
four years was a good percentage. Korth wondered if this concern
was a reflection on the existence of this committee. Frenier said
no, it was instead an indirect concern. She felt that the nominee
this year was particularly well qualified and Frenier was disappointed
she was not selected. Lee said that may be true, but it has nothing
to do with the committee's function. Frenier agreed, stating she
only wanted to express her concern.
Frenier) To recommend continuation of the International Programs
D) Academic Support Services Committee
Leroux) To recommend continuation of the Academic Support Services
Farrell expressed a concern regarding the committee
report. He stated this committee's function concerns the overall
collection at Brigg's Library. Farrell noted that the committee's
activities mainly addressed the technology issues, space considerations,
and the fine policy, with little attention directed to the overall
collection of undergraduate library materials. He pointed out
that this would be the ultimate responsibility of Karen Fischer,
the Librarian, but the ASSC should be making recommendations to
her. Farrell conceded that maybe the ASSC is making recommendations
and it is reflected in some way in the technology issues. Korth
also wondered if space issues belonged with ASSC or instead with
the Campus Resources and Planning Committee. Farrell did not intend
to challenge what belongs with which committee, he was only concerned
with the committee's focus. McIntosh pointed out the comment in
the report from an ASSC committee member who expressed a desire
for a more clearly defined role. He wondered if Farrell's concern
may be what the committee member was expressing. Korth mentioned
that the CC could work with the ASSC members to develop new duties
and responsibilities as a separate agenda item for another meeting.
GER DESIGNATIONS OF VARIABLE TOPICS COURSES: This is a list of courses to be offered under variable topics umbrellas that had no GER designations. Korth stated this list was compiled by Jeri Mullin from information submitted from the various divisions for the Class Schedule. Leroux expressed concern that a course he plans on teaching in the fall was not on the list. Mooney said the umbrella course may already have a GER designation approved and assigned. If so, there would be no need for the course to be included on this list.
McIntosh wondered if the approved GER designations would be forwarded to Campus Assembly. Korth said they would. Farrell wondered how he would challenge a designation since there was no rationale provided. Mooney said in the past the CC has asked instructors to change the recommended designation of a course. For example, the designation for the Sign Language course was changed from Social Science to foreign language. This is the type of thing the CC can catch. Farrell said it seems this is a task that could be done in the Registrar's office. Korth felt this could be said of a lot of the CC work. He pointed out that the CC could no longer ask GER proposals to meet criteria, since there are none. Farrell agreed and felt it was irrelevant.
McIntosh said without a course description there
is no way he can determine if a course fits a certain GER designator.
For example, is "Facing West" a course that teaches
diversity? He assumes so, but has no way of knowing. Mooney pointed
out that topics courses typically have no descriptions; they fit
under the description of the umbrella course. Farrell said as
a result there is no information to make a judgment. Mooney stated
that the CC could require the disciplines to put the course description
on the Form C for each topics course. Farrell said no, if the
process is changed it should be simplified not complicated. His
office spends an immense amount of time on curricular changes.
The process does not improve the quality of the students' education.
Farrell felt the process was unnecessarily complicated. Kissock
pointed out that at this time we must follow the procedure that
is in place. He wondered if a course is to be offered under a
broad heading, and there is no GER classification for that heading,
how it would be determined. Mooney said generally the catalog
says, " See specific topics for general education categories."
Some say nothing. We have some with variation, therefore we need
to review each course. Kissock agreed and said we need to make
or verify the judgment. This is the CC's opportunity to review
the GER designation and study them if we choose to.
Lee) Move to accept the GER designations of the variable topics
McIntosh stated he was not ready to vote without more information to base a judgment on. Mooney said the CC has approved the form C, which doesn't require any explanation for GER categories or descriptions for topics courses. If we require a description, we need to change the form C so the CC can deal with things brought forward.
Lee said he can understand McIntosh's concern, but feels the CC can trust the instructor and the division to assign an appropriate GER designation. He does feel the CC review of the designator is a good checking mechanism. McIntosh felt that a course description is not an excessive expectation. Mooney pointed out that it would be a new requirement.
Kissock desired to return to the point that Farrell
was making, He stated that the CC has just been through a massive
change in converting from quarters to semesters. It may be a time
to step back and review the entire process. Mooney said it would
be no problem for her to require descriptions for topics courses.
The new PeopleSoft system requires a description and she must
trick the system to accept a course without a description. Korth
said this could be a future agenda item.
VOTE: Approved 8
CURRICULAR CHANGE PROPOSAL, PSY 3222: Korth requested a change in the agenda order so the CC could review the PSY 3222 form C and hopefully pass it on to the Campus Assembly.
Korth pointed out that this form C is for an honors version of a course that already exists. Mooney questioned if the instructor intended to select the grading option as A-F only. She wondered if the instructor may have been unaware that almost all courses at UMM are A-F or S-N. Mooney said all the other courses, except one, were offered with both options. Frenier wondered if all are offered with both options, then why have the option at all. Mooney said the question had never been on the form before. She said faculty may be checking the first option available without realizing the usual practice at UMM.
Frenier said she likes to have the S-N option available, but would like most of her courses to be A-F only. Mooney stated her understanding of the original intent of the S-N grading option was to encourage students to try unfamiliar areas without risk to their GPAs. Frenier said the S-N grade is not seen as above a C to a graduate school. Therefore she advises students not to take S-N except outside of any possible majors, which can be difficult to identify in the first years of college. Mooney noted that the major requirements often specify that courses for the major must be taken A-F.
Kissock stated that at UMM the Education Program does not accept S-N grades. Lee wondered if most courses allow S-N option. Mooney said the semester curriculum only has one "A-F only" course. Lee mentioned that if the instructor is concerned that students taking a course as S-N may have a less serious approach, they may prefer that the course have the A-F grading option only. Mooney said her only concern is that the instructor may be unaware of the significance of the options.
Kissock wondered if the teaching courses are listed with S-N options. Mooney said the student is not restricted when registering for the course. She said this may be an oversight. Kissock said it is made clear in the program description. He said in the discipline of education, a student may register for an S-N course, but in ELED or SecEd they cannot. Mooney said the S-N only grading option should appear on the parenthetical for the course. If it does not, registration is not restricted to S-N only.
Lee recommended that the CC approve this Psy 3222
course with the A-F only option as proposed. He will contact the
instructor to verify their desire and will inform Mooney if there
is a change needed. Lee felt the instructor purposely chose the
A-F option. Frenier wondered why any student would take an honors
course as S-N. Mooney agreed and wondered if the CC should review
all honors courses and require them to be A-F only. Kissock called
the question for a vote.
To approve Psy 3222H, Behavioral Biology of Women.
Meeting adjourned 8:50 a.m.
Submitted by Melody Veenendaal