Graduate Council Minutes #875

April 22, 1998


Present: Bankston, Bruess, Chao, Dedrick, Hanson, Hays, Jackson, Kirmani, Martin (for Safford), Osman, Smaldino, Somervill, Walker
Absent: Bozylinsky, Kalkwarf, Raiklin, Thomas
Visitors: Philip East (Computer Science), Ed Brown (Biology), Mohammed Fahmy (Industrial Technology), Eugene Wallingford (Computer Science)
Minutes #874 were approved as published.
Somervill asked the Graduate Council to consider the issue of thesis defense for off-campus students at a meeting next fall. Possible issues to consider include having the defense waived, having the defense held over the ICN, and determining whether the defense must be held on campus or at a mutually agreeable off-campus location.
Somervill suggested the Graduate Council consider forming an Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award. Somervill suggested giving a $500 award and plaque as an effort to recognize meaningful graduate teaching. He recommended that Graduate Council propose the criteria, procedures, nomination process, and review committee for the award. Somervill also suggested that Graduate Council consider the possibility of forming an Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award. Currently, three departments have teaching assistants who are responsible for courses, specifically English, Modern Languages, and Communication Studies. Somervill stated this award could be considered only for the College of Humanities and Fine Arts. Hanson expressed support of both awards and said that the criteria and procedures could be modeled after other awards. Bruess stated that he was concerned that the award may settle in certain colleges or certain programs. He also stated that UNI prides itself on being a "teaching university," and what kind of message would a graduate teaching assistant award send to people? Somervill replied that the criteria and procedures could be developed to prevent these problems. Hays moved to create an outstanding graduate teaching award and have the chair of Graduate Council appoint a committee to make recommendations for procedures and criteria by which the award will be made. Hanson seconded the motion and it passed. Graduate Council will address the creation of an Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant Award in the fall agenda.
The committee addressing the formation of the Graduate College Curriculum Committee (GCCC), consisting of Hans Isakson, Chair, Philip East, Carolyn Shields, Sherry Gable, and Greg Bruess, proposed changes for the composition and duties of the Graduate College Curriculum Committee. The committee suggested the nature of GCCC be incorporated into the Graduate Council By-Laws. East reviewed the main changes for the selection and duties of the GCCC. Members will be elected instead of being appointed by deans. Members will be elected in such a way so that there are staggered terms. The duties of the GCCC are to examine curriculum proposals and to present changes in procedure and policy to the Graduate Council. East explained that there is nothing in the current by-laws addressing these issues. Martin stated that there needs to be a consideration for the role of the GCCC in unresolved objections. Smaldino expressed a need for having explicit directions for this process and suggested sending consultation forms along with the proposals. Although library faculty were recently granted voting representation on Graduate Council, it doesn't necessarily follow that it is appropriate that they have the same privileges for GCCC. Hays suggested revisions may need to be made for Section 2.4.4. before action could be taken. Hays moved to accept Sections 2.4.1., 2.4.2., and 2.4.3. of the proposed change in the by-laws of the Graduate Council (see attached) with further discussion over Section 2.4.4.and to refer Section 2.4.4. to GCCC for recommendations to Graduate Council in the fall. Hanson seconded the motion, and it passed. The approved sections are attached.
The committee addressing the subject of variable graduate assistant stipends, including Ronnie Bankston, Chair, Curtiss Hanson, Geofrey Mills, Sharon Smaldino, and Jerry Stockdale, gave their recommendations. Somervill expressed concern about the department being able to define the minimum number of hours required for an assistantship. Current practice of Regent universities recognizes only one-fourth (10 hrs) and one-half (15-20 hrs) FTE assistantship stipends. Less than a half-time (10 hrs) assistantship may affect whether the student and/or the student's spouse receive resident tuition. If students are working different number of hours per week, there is increased difficulty to accurately monitor their performance. Hanson moved to accept sections 1, 2, and a revised 3 of the variable graduate assistantship stipends proposal with section 4 referred to another committee in the fall for recommendations. Bruess seconded the motion, and it passed. The approved sections of the proposal are attached.
The fifteenth annual graduate study fellowship granted by the R.J. McElroy Trust has been awarded to the University of Northern Iowa. The fellowship, which carries a stipend of $7,500 per year, will be presented to Adam Galambos. He was selected from a field of seven finalists from colleges and universities in Northeast Iowa.
The meeting adjourned at 5:10 p.m.
Respectfully submitted,
Christina Stejskal
There will be no more Graduate Council meetings this academic year. Have a nice summer!