Graduate Council Minutes #1004

Graduate Council Minutes No. 1004

September 22, 2011

Present:  Bartlett, Bauman, Botzum, Caswell, Clayton, Coon, Etscheidt, Hays, Husband, Iqbal, Licari, Nelson, Pohl, Power, Schuchart

Absent:  Waldron on PDA

Guests:  Mary Herring, Department of Curriculum & Instruction and Susie Schwieger

The meeting was called to order by Clayton.  Motion by Bauman to approve the minutes of the September 8, 2011 meeting; seconded by Etscheidt.  Motion approved

Licari reported that as of the end of the second week, it appeared there had been a decline in enrollment of 40+ graduate students.  He and Coon attended a meeting yesterday regarding student enrollment to get an understanding of the fluctuation in the number of new graduate students and returning graduate students.  They found that the new SIS uses a different definition regarding new students, which could be why there is an increase in new students and a decrease in returning students.  It was mentioned that several cohorts of students in distance programs just graduated, and several more just started, which may have also contributed to the large numbers of new students and the small numbers of returning students.  Currently, graduate student enrollment is at 1,818, up by eight from the second week census Fall of last year.  He added that there was more post-census registration than is typical and was not sure if this would be due to the implementation of the new SIS.  The end result is that enrollment is about where it was last year.

Regarding tuition scholarships, Licari noted that scholarships may not have gotten credited even though the Graduate College submitted its paperwork in August and some in early July.  He added that the Graduate College submitted information in a timely manner, and there have been problems with the scholarships being applied to students’ accounts by Financial Aid, due to the new SIS.  These issues will continue to be worked through, although there is still frustration at this late date.  Botzum noted that she knows of students who have experienced delays in receiving their scholarships.  Licari advised Council members who have students who have not received their scholarships to contact Financial Aid.

Coon reported that students may see a service indicator in the Student Services Center that notes they have a hold on their scholarship.  She clarified that this is probably not related to Fall registration; students need to click on the hold notation to get information about what the hold is actually for.  Students who have a spring scholarship will have a hold on that scholarship for the Spring semester.  That has no effect on Fall.

Regarding the application for graduation, Coon reported that the application is now live and students can apply for Fall 2011 graduation.  The system does check the student’s program or academic requirements, so if the student is close to graduation it will let them apply; one thing to note would be that the student may have transfer credit and this can’t be put on the advisement report yet.  Coon stated that faculty, secretaries and the Registrar’s Office cannot apply for graduation for the student; the student has to apply for graduation themselves.  She will send out a message letting everyone know.

Coon said that student requests for continuing graduate students can be submitted using request types M and Z for free typing; students who are new to UNI in the Fall should still not submit a request, since the major, advisor or coordinator will not be correct.  There may be new students who have registration changes.  In those cases  the student needs to send an e-mail to the Graduate Coordinator, who will forward to Coon with approval or denial.  Coon will forward to Pam MacKay with approval or denial.  This procedure is temporary until the student request system is online for registration changes.  Coon will be e-mailing students regarding this process.

Schwieger reminded everyone that Marybeth Stalp and Carissa Froyum would be presenting their writing group workshop on October 26.  She noted that all the members of the Graduate Student Advisory Board have been appointed by the deans to serve and meetings, chaired by Licari, will take place at Noon on October 6 and December 1.  Schwieger will be attending career fairs next week at Wartburg, Grinnell and Luther Colleges.  In November, Schwieger is planning on at least two workshops on networking and interviewing.  She also referenced a book she received from a colleague entitled “CV Handbook: A curriculum vitae owner's manual” and mentioned trying to get the authors to come in for a presentation.  TAGS will take place on October 12 and will include a graduate program fair.

Nelson said she received feedback from Licari, Coon and Clayton regarding possible presenters for Brown Bag sessions.  Tim Lindquist from Accounting will hold a Brown Bag in the Spring and Chris Larimer from Political Science will hold a Brown Bag as well.  Nelson is waiting for responses back from others.

Proposal to Change Language Regarding Composition of the Ed.D. Dissertation Committee

Clayton asked the Council for permission to go out of agenda order since Mary Herring was in attendance to discuss the proposal related to composition of the Ed.D. dissertation committee. 

Herring thanked the Council and distributed copies of the proposal for consideration. 

Herring noted that after discussions in the College of Education, she was hoping to expedite a proposed change in the composition of the Ed.D. dissertation committee that would reduce the required number of members to four; one member would be required to be from outside the student’s department and some departments may require the person to be outside the college.  She gave an overview of the rationale for the change and shared that during program review, it was mentioned that increasing demands on faculty and the decrease in the number of faculty makes it difficult for students to find committee members from outside the department.  A comment was made that cohorts are not typically on campus and do not know faculty here.  Herring added that faculty do not feel the reduced number of committee members would have an effect on the quality of advisement the student receives or the academic integrity of the dissertations.  A national survey of Ed.D. programs by the Carnegie Institute showed that the majority of institutions require a 3- or 4-person committee.

Etscheidt mentioned that there is value to the multidisciplinary component an outside person adds and some departments have established networks of people outside the department that provide the expertise needed to serve on the dissertation committees.

Herring stated that in the past, the issue of having a member from outside the College of Education had been thought to be something the Graduate College wanted.  Licari responded that may have been the case under previous administration, but not under the current administration.

Discussion regarding the proposed committee composition, as well as other possible options followed.

Hays made a motion to accept the proposed change in Ed.D. dissertation committee composition.  After additional discussion and some change in language, Husband seconded the motion to accept the proposed language change regarding the composition of the Ed.D. dissertation committee.  Motion passed.

            The language is as follows:

The dissertation committee will consist of a minimum of four members of the UNI graduate faculty.  One of the four members must be from outside the student’s department and some departments may require the person to be outside the college.

Late Applications to Graduate – Proposal to Require Graduate College Approval

Based on discussions from the previous meeting, Coon distributed a revised proposal for immediate implementation related to late applications to graduate.  She noted that requirements do not have to be met by the end of the term, but an application has to be submitted.  A question was raised as to when the term ends, and when the deadline for being included in the commencement program is. Coon said she would get clarification on the timing.

After some discussion, Coon emphasized the last sentence in the proposal related to whether or not a student would have to pay a second graduation fee if their initial application was not approved by the Graduate College.

Coon will send a message to students and departments letting them know that the graduation application is live and students need to apply before the end of the semester.  Some discussion took place regarding unforeseen circumstances.  Botzum commented that in some cases the delay in students applying to graduate may not be within the student’s control.  Coon added that the department not communicating with students is not an unforeseen circumstance and increased communication from the Graduate College and automatic communication through the new SIS would make it so there is hardly ever a student that needs to apply late. 

Husband made a motion to accept the language of the revised proposal.  After brief discussion some changes were agreed upon.  With those changes, Pohl seconded the motion.  Motion passed.

 The language for the schedule book is as follows:

Graduate students:  It is the student’s responsibility to make a timely application to graduate during the term the final degree requirements are completed.  Application for graduation must be completed online through MyUNIverse Student Center.  Paper applications are no longer accepted.  A non-refundable graduation fee is charged each term a student applies to graduate.  For participation in commencement, an application to graduate must be submitted by the end of the 12th week of the Fall or Spring term so that students’ names can be included in the commencement publication.  After the 12th week, but before the end of the term, students may still apply for degree conferral that term, but their names may not be included in the commencement publication.  Applications submitted after the end of the term will generally not be processed for degree conferral for the term just past.  Exceptions will only be considered for unforeseen circumstances arising after the end of the term and require approval by the department and the Graduate College on a MyUNIverse student request.  If the department or Graduate College does not approve a late applicant, the student will need to apply for graduation the next term and pay the graduation fee, but will not have to pay a graduation fee for the late application. 

Representation on the University Curriculum Committee (UCC) and the Graduate College Curriculum Committee (GCCC)
Licari reported that the UCC met and went through the CBA packets.  He said that the UCC can function without a quorum however the Graduate College should be represented, as there is a crosswalk between the UCC and the GCCC.  After some discussion regarding the responsibilities and time commitment of UCC and GCCC members, Bartlett and Etscheidt agreed to serve on the GCCC and Pohl agreed to serve on the UCC.  Licari thanked everyone for agreeing to serve. 

Volunteers Needed for Student Awards Committees
Coon said that the Outstanding Master’s Thesis Award would be the priority since the first place winner is our nominee for the Midwest Association of Graduate Schools Outstanding Thesis competition, which is due at the beginning of November.  Winners of the other awards have to be determined in time for the Annual Graduate Faculty Meeting in the Spring.  Clayton noted that three members are needed per award committee.  Etscheidt, Husband and Clayton agreed to serve. 

Implementation of the Graduate Education Strategic Plan
After some discussion regarding the implementation of the Graduate Education Strategic Plan, Licari said he would put together some action steps for goals and objectives that the Graduate College could use and would provide actions steps for Goal 5 as an example.  He proposed that between this meeting and next Council members would e-mail him some thoughts on goals and objectives of the strategic plan and he would make a compilation of the e-mails.  Licari noted that this needs to be a collaborative effort and work will need to be done in between meetings, as there are plenty of issues to cover during meetings.  He added that this would be a first draft and getting feedback from the dean’s, department heads and colleagues would be a good idea.

Proposal to Change Language Regarding the Composition of the Graduate College Curriculum Committee (GCCC) to reflect the merger of CHFA and CNS to Form CHAS
Clayton said that since there are no longer five academic colleges, and based on the recommendation of the CNS/CHFA merger working group, there is a proposal to change college representation of the GCCC.  The GCCC structure would remain the same as it was prior to the merger, however the language would change to make it proportional to the number of graduate faculty. 

Husband made a motion to accept the composition of the Graduate College Curriculum Committee as follows:

Academic College Representation is determined as follows:

200-299 graduate faculty members = 2 representatives

>300 graduate faculty members = 3 representatives

Motion seconded by Etscheidt.  Motion passed.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:50 p.m. 

The next meeting will take place on Thursday, October 13, 2011 at 3:30 p.m. in Lang 115.


Respectfully submitted,


Cheryl Nedrow