Graduate College

Graduate Council Minutes #991

The Graduate Council

Graduate Council Minutes No. 991

March 11, 2010

Present: Coon, Clayton, Coulter, Etscheidt, Harton, Stalp, Thompson, Waldron, Wurtz, Zhang,

Guests: Al Hays, Susie Schwieger, Martha Wartick

Waldron called the meeting to order. Motion by Coulter, seconded by Etscheidt to approve minutes of Graduate Council meeting on February 25, 2010. Waldron would like sentence in last paragraph to read brainstorming. Motion approved.

Graduate College Reports – Coon discussed new course numbering system which will take effect Fall 2011. UNI will be using four digit course numbers; 0 – 4999 are undergraduate courses; current 100g level courses will be 3000 or 4000. If graduate students enroll in a 3000 or 4000 course it will record on their transcript as a 5000 level course. Courses labeled 5000 are the current 100g upper level courses, 6000 will be 200 level courses, 7000 will replace 300 level courses and 8000 and 9000 are reserved for special courses.

Schwieger reported with the extended deadline for registration for the symposium was successful. There are now 69 people enrolled to participate in the symposium scheduled for April 12, 2010.

The Graduate College will be celebrating its 40th anniversary with an open house from 3 – 5 p.m. in the Georgian Lounge on April 13, 2010.

Chair of the Graduate Faculty Report – Clayton stated April 14 is the last of the Brown Bag series for this year. Lisa Jepsen will be presenting. Clayton will have more information after spring break. The Annual Graduate Faculty meeting is tentatively set for the week of April 19 and will be Monday, Tuesday or Friday.

Unfinished business – There has been another revision to the policy pertaining to graduate credit taken as an undergraduate. Undergraduates can take graduate courses but will not count as graduate credit unless student requests the course be counted as graduate credit. A student cannot ask to take a course for graduate credit and also have it apply to their undergraduate degree. Coon will rewrite and state “no course may be taken for credit toward an undergraduate and graduate degree”.

Currently there are two policies in place that frequently get waived; currently the policy states no more than 12 hours of credit taken as non-degree student can be applied toward a degree. Programs and students often ask to waive this policy.

There is also a policy that states no more than 15 hours of credit can be completed before admission to a program and applied toward the degree being sought. Students often take courses while waiting for admission process to be completed. Students sometimes take courses to get certificate and then want to use those hours towards EdD. Clayton asked if waiving the policy would impact the 7 year window. Thompson felt unless policy was huge hurdle it could be left in place. Thompson moved to remove 15 hours from policy. Clayton seconded. Etscheidt asked if there was a disadvantage. Coon did not feel there was. Motion passed.

Clayton asked if the sentence referring to no more than 12 hours counting toward a degree program could be eliminated. Motion by Thompson and seconded by Stalp to remove second sentence from policy. Motion passed.

Signature Graduate Programs – The Strategic Plan emphasizes applied graduate programs. Waldron would like to bring this issue to the Annual Graduate Faculty meeting for feedback. Waldron asked for discussion on impact from graduate faculty as the process progresses. Thompson stated the task force report should be used to help identify programs. The task force report will be put on the Graduate College website. Programs are related to people, curriculum, environment, etc. There is a long list of potential indicators. Programs may not be seen as strong for the same reasons. Graduate education is about more than classes; it helps to turn students into professionals. Waldron asked if information from APA was available. Hays felt participants may be willing to share. Clayton will look into what the APA process required. Clayton stated criteria were not ranked in task force report. Coon stated she felt report should only be mailed to Graduate Council. Thompson felt all graduate faculty should see report and perhaps not include the survey. Thompson asked how often programs were evaluated is they were designated as signature programs. Hays stated he believed evaluating graduate programs needs to be a transparent process. If process is transparent, everyone feels the process is fair. If criteria are listed, programs should be able to present argument why they feel they are a signature program. Etscheidt said many people saw the role of the task force as program reduction. Thompson asked if the program was not offered at other Regent institutions, does that automatically give it signature program status. Etscheidt asked if centrality to mission of UNI was seen as criteria. Harton felt unique was important but other criteria are also important. Stalp said Strategic Plan speaks to UNI being a worldwide institution yet also places emphasis on being an Iowa institution; felt it couldn’t be portrayed as global and local. Thompson asked if the Graduate Council had a role in the Strategic Plan. Stalp felt faculty was under-represented for Strategic Plan. Clayton asked faculty to respond if Gibson asked for input. Faculty would like to be more involved and not just include faculty in administrative roles. Let the Provost know Graduate Council is interested in helping shape the Strategic Plan concerning graduate education.

The Provost’s office has announced three new internal searches. Provost Gibson will attend the March 25th meeting of the Graduate Council to discuss these positions. The Graduate Council would like to ask why this is viewed as a good decision and why are we going back to something that was tried previously. Thompson felt when the Graduate Dean was housed in the Provost’s Office before it was viewed as an interim decision and was not meant to be permanent. What does this mean to the future of graduate education and the Graduate College? The Graduate Dean has leadership role in graduate education and development and promotion of graduate education. It will be difficult for this person to have leadership of graduate education with the additional two roles added to the position. Thompson asked if anyone had looked at the framework of UNI peer institutions. Etscheidt asked if search committees have been named. Clayton and Waldron each stated they have been assigned to the search committee by the Provost. Some members felt we were following ISU. Coon felt this position would diminish graduate education; there would not be enough time to devote to graduate education. Stalp asked about plans for the Graduate College and staff. Gibson told Clayton the Graduate College will still exist. Etscheidt asked if questions should be forwarded to provost before next meeting. It was felt that most faculty do not read UNI Online and don’t know about new positions. Thompson asked how important graduate education is to UNI. The Graduate Council would like more communication with the Provost’s office. It was felt that the Graduate Council and graduate faculty are stakeholders in graduate education and as stakeholders should have been considered before announcement. Waldron stated as a new position it will affect Graduate Council and graduate faculty. It was felt that a special UNI Online would have reached more graduate faculty. The information regarding the new positions was not disseminated in a confident manner. Graduate faculty will be notified that the Provost will be at the next Graduate Council meeting in the usual way; agendas will be e-mailed to all graduate faculty. Thompson stated the Graduate Council needed to raise the issue of this change; it was a temporary solution previously and now we are returning to something that did not work. How often will this be evaluated. Hays asked if the Provost expected this new position to provide leadership or just be a title. Clayton felt it could be difficult for interdisciplinary programs that are not housed in one college.

Meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted

Machelle Stickler