Meeting Minutes: May 7, 2009

Attendance

Present: Edward Adelstein, Lloyd Barrow, Clyde Bentley, Leah Cohn, Jay Dow, Victoria Johnson, John Lande, Kenneth MacLeod, Tom Marrero, Rebecca McCathren, James McGlew, Steve Neal, Joe Parcell, Tom Phillips, Eileen Porter, Leona Rubin, Frank Schmidt, David Trinklein, J. Wilson Watt, Adam Whaley-Connell, William Wiebold, Shelley Worden (Librarians), Edward Hunvald (Retirees), and Rebekah K. Hart (sec.). Absent: Michael Diamond, Arthur Jago, Norman Land, April Langley, Xiaoguang Ni, Stephen Sayers, Michael Taksar, Ian Worthington, Charles Nilon (Black Faculty & Staff), Rainer Glaser (AAUP), Lori McKinley, and Fred Williams (NTT).

Approval of Minutes

Chair Tom Phillips called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m., in the Adams Conference Center Veterinary Medicine. The 4-9-09 and 4-23-09 minutes were approved as submitted.

Report of Officers

Chair Phillips opened the meeting by commenting that the spring semester general faculty meeting was lightly attended. He mentioned: both the course evaluation and IRB task forces have been established; attended a presentation on swine flu; and met with the MSA on plus/minus grading.

Action Items

Service Award Plaques. Phillips handed out nine service award plaques to: Adelstein, Dow, Johnson, McGlew, Neal, Porter, Schmidt, Trinklein, and Phillips on completion of their terms on Faculty Council.

Full time status for students with disabilities - Trinklein. This draft policy is in regard to reduced course load and full-time student status as a reasonable accommodation for students with documented disabilities. It was pointed out in discussion that: students must request accommodation; the cases are determined on an individual basis; a physician or specialist documentation is needed; students pay for the testing to determine if they have a learning disability; and accommodations are to be reviewed each semester. Following discussion this measure was unanimously passed.

"Proposal Regarding Reduced Course-Load/Full Time Student Status as a Resonable Accommodation

Proposal: An otherwise qualified student who has a disability (as defined by Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act) will be eligible to request, as an accommodation, a reduced course load while still being considered a full time student. Under University of Missouri policy, a full-time undergraduate studnet is enrolled in at least 12 semester hours during the Fall and Spring semesters or an equivalent number of hours during the Summer Session. A full-time graduate student is enrolled in at least 9 semester hours during the Fall and Spring semesters or an equivalent number of hours during the summer session. With this accommodation, the student shall be considered by the University of Missouri to be a full-time student while carrying a minimum of 9 credit hours for undergraduate and 6 credit hours for graduate or professional programs during Fall and Spring semesters or the equivalent during Summer session. Students who have received such accommodations will be granted an appropriate extension in the length of time permitted to complete all degree requirements, to the extent possible consistent with professional accrediting standards. This accommodation will be approved on a semester-by-semester basis."

Proposal to create a General Education Taskforce. Council passed the charge to the task force. Membership will be discussed in closed session.

"Proposal for a campus-wide review of the General Education Program

RATIONALE: The General Education Policy is one of the cornerstones of the undergraduate educational experience at MU. It is essential that such a key program be periodically reviewed by the faculty to ensure it continues to achieve the original goal that "All baccalaureate graduates of the University should have a sound intellectual foundation in the liberal arts and sciences which provides the ability to reason and think critically, to write and speak coherently, to understand important issues confronting society, to understand the importance of international affairs in an increasingly interdependent global environment, to understand our culture and history, to appreciate the fine arts and the humanities and to understand major scientific and technological influences in society.

PROPOSED MOTION: Faculty Council shall appoint a committee consisting of members from within and outside Faculty Council with a mandate to review the entire General Education program and make recommendations, via Faculty Council, to the general faculty. If any significant alterations of the Gen Ed program are recommended, Council will hold appropriate open forums on the proposals and hold a ballot to gain the sense of the general faculty. Although this review should encompass all aspects of the Gen Ed program, specific issues that have already been identified for discussion include:

  1. Is there a need to incorporate a requirement for a course exploring diversity in the Gen Ed curriculum? If so, what would be the parameters of courses which would meet this requirement? The ability of existing courses and faculty to handle the increased demand for these courses should be assessed. In addition, the impact of additional course requirements on students should be evaluated.
  2. Review and clarify what are the requirements for a laboratory course.
  3. Review and clarify the role of experiential learning classes (e.g., musical performance) in Gen Ed.
  4. Review and clarify the requirement that a General Education course should be limited to no more than one prerequisite.
  5. Review and clarify the requirement that College Algebra (or ACT/SAT scores that exempt the student from it) is both a requirement and prerequisite for courses filling the Math Reasoning Proficiency (MRP) requirement.
  6. How can the quality of general education at MU be assessed? Review the impact of state mandated entry and exit competencies for General Education classes.
  7. Review the impact of growing enrollment and stagnant or declining faculty numbers on delivery of capstone and writing intensive courses to students.
  8. Do MU undergraduates receive an education outside of their major that reflects their abilities, the various strengths of MU, and what the MU faculty thinks a college graduate should know, experience, and be able to do? Evaluate whether the current design of the General Education program meets the goals outlined in the Core Learning Objectives (http://provost.missouri.edu/assessment/general-education.html) of the University.
  9. Evaluate whether the current design of the General Education program meets the goals outlined in the Core Learning Objectives (http://provost.missouri.edu/assessment/general-education.html) of the University.
  10. Examine if any college or programs have distribution and/or residency requirements that interfere with students' ability to fill General Education requirements in a timely manner and recommend a policy to remove such hindrances.
  11. Should we add an information literacy requirement? At one point we had a computer - information proficiency (CIP) requirement that was ultimately dropped or handed off to departments and colleges to handle on based on their curriculum needs. However, we infer that our students will be able to "discover" in the general education goals. We have students that trust any web based information. Should we equip our students with the ability to find resources and identify them as scholarly versus popular opinion driven? If we do, should it be required within the first two years, so the students are equipped this way for upper division course work?)
  12. Is there a need to incorporate a General Education requirement for a service learning course/community service project?"

Discussion Items

Proposal to change Faculty Council bylaws on voting by proxy. Phillips began the discussion by "pulling item off the table". This will be further discussed in executive committee.

Standing Committee Reports

Academic Affairs: Trinklein, chair, reported they are looking at ways to define instruction: what is meant by a lab course; a recitation course; a lab experience. This request came from the Registrar's Office.

Fiscal Affairs: Dow, chair, reported they will be meeting with Tim Rooney on May 15, 2009 to discuss: finalizing the Student Fees Committee, and e-Procurement.

Adjournment

In closed session elections were held for 2009-2010 executive committee offices: James Tarr, Chair, Academic Affairs; Joe Parcell, Chair, Faculty Affairs; Michael Taksar, Chair, Fiscal Affairs; and Leah Cohn, Chair, Diversity Enhancement Committee. The meeting adjourned at 5:00 p.m.