Graduate Academic Council
2003 - 2004

Minutes of the Council meeting of December 11, 2003
Approved by the Council on February 12, 2004

In attendance: A. Pomerantz, H. Charalambous (Chair), J. Mumpower, J. Bartow (staff), J. Koehler, L. Trubitt, L.-A. McNutt, M. Casserly, R. Geer, S. Shahedipour & S. Chen

Unable to attend: Ticano, C. Smith, D. Byrd, F. Cornet, S. Friedman, H. Meyer, S. Lee & S. Ramanathan

Guests: None

1. Minutes from the meeting of 11/13/03 were unanimously approved with minor correction to the spelling of the word recuse in item 4.

2. Dean's Report - J. Mumpower

· Assessment reports have been distributed to Council members. Reports have gone to SUNY System Administration, although they should have gone first before UAC/GAC, but, didn't. The campus has been one year behind in the targeted schedule.

· The will be a meeting on 12/18/03 of the graduate deans from the doctoral granting SUNY units - called by Provost Salins, to discuss use of an external firm such as Petersons to build a database for benchmarking programs. Dean Mumpower considers this similar to efforts by the National Research Council (NRC) along the same lines. Information will be forthcoming to the Council regarding this initiative.

· Reporting back to the Council about graduate level career counseling services, Dean Mumpower indicated that discussions are underway with the Vice President for Student Affairs.

3. Discussion

The Council engaged in further discussion of the assessment reports as introduced by Dean Mumpower. Concern was expressed by Council members regarding that lack of governance review prior to transmittal to SUNY System Administration. It was observed that many of the assessment reports shared with Council members did not include (1) a response to the report from the reviewed unit, (2) self study documents and (3) comments from SUNY System Administration. The question was raised as to whether the 2003-04 GAC would engage in a review of the reports. Council members present agreed to read the existing reports and continue discussion of them at a future meeting. The Graduate Dean was requested to contact the Assessment Director and convey a GAC request for timely consultation on all graduate program review activities underway.

4. Committee on Ed Policy & Procedure - Anita Pomerantz & Mary Casserly

An ad-hoc committee to study ETD implementation & impact issues, formed at the request of Libraries Dean Meredith Butler and chaired by GAC member Mary Casserly, has met once. Questions for the committee's attention are being identified. A presentation by staff from University Microfilms (UMI) is being planned for February.

5. Committee on Admissions & Academic Standing - Shadi Shahedipour

Prof. Shahedipour introduced the CAAS written report (appended to the end of these minutes), indicating the committee had met three times to consider the subject grievance. A summary of the confidential recommendation pertaining to the grievance was provided. There was discussion of the thoroughness of the CAAS proceedings, with committee members providing the Council an account of the detailed steps of their inquiry and assurance that the matter was very thoroughly examined. The Council voted to accept the CAAS report by a vote of 8-0-1 and therefore approve the recommendation contained therein.

6. Program Exceptions

A motion was made and seconded to remind the academic departments/programs to document authorized exceptions/waivers/changes made at the program level with special attention to providing such documentation to students and the students' official files. The motion was passed by a vote of 9-0-0.

7. GAC Charge

The topic of the newly approved University By-Laws and Senate Charter came up for discussion, particular the GAC charge and the change in wording regarding the approval of graduate courses. Prof. Geer noted that sensitivities on this topic grew out of the Fall 2003 GAC review of new courses in the School of Nanosciences and Nanoengineeering. After a brief discussion the matter was tabled for further GAC consideration in the Spring 2004 term.

It should be noted that Chair Charalambous opted not to make a report at this meeting.

There being no further business, the GAC meeting of 12/11/03 was adjourned.

To: Graduate Academic Council

From: Shadi Shahedipour, Chair
GAC Committee on Admissions & Academic Standing (CAAS)

Date: December 5, 2003

Subj: Report and Recommendations

The CAAS met three times during this fall 2003 term to consider a student grievance. Attendance at the three meetings was as follows:

10/7/03 - C. Wagner, A. Ticano, F. Cornet, D. Peterson, S. Shahedipour (Chair), J. Bartow (staff), L. Trubitt & S. Maloney
10/21/03 - K. Trent, A. Boehm, C. Wagner, S. Shahedipour (Chair), J. Bartow (staff), L. Trubitt & S. Maloney
11/13/03 - A. Boehm, D. Peterson, S. Shahedipour (Chair), J. Bartow (staff), L. Trubitt & S. Maloney

A recommendation to the GAC on this confidential student grievance is forwarded under separate cover.