Undergraduate Academic Council


Meeting Date:

Monday, October 4, 2004, 2:00-3:25 PM.



J. Philippe Abraham, Robert Andrea (Guest), Scott Barclay, Seth Chaiken, Richard Collier, Randall Craig, Rachel Dressler, Sue Faerman, Robert Gibson, Anne Hildreth, Trudi Jacobson, Sheila Mahan (Guest), Carolyn Malloch, Karin Reinhold-Larsson, Crystal Rion, Joan Savitt, Dave Smith, Lisa Trubitt



Minutes from the September 27, 2004 meeting were reviewed and corrections acknowledged. The minutes, with required updates, were approved.


Chair's Report:

-  The Chair announced he reported to the Senate Executive Committee last Monday on our

proposal for increasing our membership and modifying the requirements for the gen. ed. assessment subcommittee chair. The proposal will be passed on to the Senate. The Chair noted that the Senate Charter requires proposed revisions to be presented to the Senate three weeks in advance of their consideration. The Chair mentioned that under the new bylaws, councils like ours forego making their formal report to the executive committee and may now place our proposals directly on the Senate agenda.

-  The Chair mentioned he would be reporting this afternoon to the Senate the information he

   e-mailed this morning to all members.

-  Today’s agenda will include a report from Sheila Mahan about last year’s legislation regarding

   admission policy followed by continued discussion of Mission Review.


Name Change for L&CS:


A proposal for a name change from the Department of Latin American and Caribbean Studies (LACS) to the Department of Latin American, Caribbean, and U.S. Latino Studies was submitted. The name change is requested because of its greater accuracy in describing the current programs of that Department. The Council approved passage of the name change.


Admission Policy:


Sheila Mahan and Bob Andrea attended the Council meeting to discuss the undergraduate admissions policy. A report entitled “Fall 2004 Freshman and Transfer Admissions Report” was reviewed. The SUNY selectivity matrix was created when the Mission Review I process was introduced. The matrix report shows students falling in either Group 1, 2, 3, or 4. Sheila mentioned that the University falls under the “Highly Selective” category. This is a yearly updated report. The change in composition of freshman class 1995-2004 was discussed. Groups 1 and 2 categories have risen while the Group 3/4/Special Admits have decreased. Transfer students are not included on this page since it only includes freshmen. Last year the University had a multi-cultural admissions program. We were informed by the University’s lawyer that the program did not conform to the Supreme Court’s decision in the University of Michigan ruling. Sheila mentioned an updated report would be presented yearly to the Council. In discussing applications, a decline was noted for the last two years in Groups 3, and 5. Group 1 showed an increase. Admit with consideration is a new special admit category. Sheila mentioned we no longer can separate ethnicity from the overall categories. It was noted that the printed Undergraduate Bulletin did not reflect this change, but that the change will be included in subsequent bulletins. Our goal for Fall 2004 enrollment was 2100 freshmen enrolled, but the final total was 2,022. There is no certainty as to why we had this decline, but perhaps it was just a one year dip. The academic profile of traditional admits were average and revealed no surprises. Sheila mentioned that EOP reviews EOP students to ensure they have the requisite financial need. In discussing the “other characteristics of freshman” page, Sheila noted that perhaps the 2003 tuition increase may have affected our out-of-state recruitment. Page 4 detailed freshman students’ desired majors. A third of the pool are interested in majors the University does not offer. The undecided or open category is looked upon as a strength for us since the University is not interested in forcing a student’s decision. Page 5 provided transfer admission information. We are 2.9% behind in applications compared to 2003. This is a three-year decline. The Fall 2004 admissions showed an increase. The 2005 goals for the SUNY selectivity matrix performance are shown on page 2. Sheila noted that the high school population is increasing. Individuals in the enrollment business are showing concern regarding access due to rising costs. The cost of education in New York State is being shifted away from taxpayers to the shoulders of students.


History Honors Program Proposed Revision:


The Asian and Ibero-American concentrations were not listed since these concentrations are being phased out of the major. The Department feels they do not have enough courses in these areas to support concentration, but these areas can still be pursued within the World History concentration, which is also an option in the proposed honors program.


The proposed honors requirements unnecessarily listed the major requirements, which caused some confusion. The honors program should be considered an overlay. The audit will continue to check the same major requirements it does now. As is now the case, whenever a student takes one of the honors courses (History 495Z, 496Z, and 497Z), the department will signify in which concentration category the course belongs. The audit will need to include a separate check for students in the honors program to verify that the three honors courses have been satisfactorily completed. In the catalogue, the History Department will provide only a brief explanation of the application process (including the application deadline) so as not to discourage students from applying. Dick Collier will present the proposed bulletin copy at a future meeting.


MSI 215 as an Admission & Degree Requirement:


This proposal will be turned over to the Committee on Admissions and Academic Standing. The Committee will provide a report at a future UAC meeting.


Elimination of the Pre-“Fall 2000” General Education Program and Proposed Suffixes for General Education Categories:


The proposal requests that students under the so-called “Continuing” (pre-Fall 2000) General Education Requirements” be waived from those requirements except for the requirement to complete an upper division Writing Intensive course with the grade of C or better or S. This change become effective for students graduating in May, 2005.


In response to complaints of confusion from students and advisers concerning how to identify courses meeting one or more of the Fall 2000 General Education Program requirements in writing intensive, oral discourse, and information literacy, new suffices are being assigned to designate courses that fulfill these requirements. To do this, it is necessary to retire the suffixes that were assigned courses meeting the former (pre-Fall 2000) requirements. It was noted that utilizing A, B, and other suffixes is not compatible with DARS software.


The Dean requested members e-mail her with their comments. Due to time constraint, the proposal will be presented again at the next UAC meeting.


Mission Review:


Discussion of Mission Review will continue at the October 18, 2004 meeting.


Next Meeting:

Due to the upcoming Columbus Day holiday, the UAC meeting will not be held next Monday.  The next Undergraduate Academic Council meeting will be held Monday, 10/18/04, 2:00 PM, LC-31.


Minutes Taken:

Notes taken by Joanne Baronner, Undergraduate Studies.