Undergraduate Academic Council - MINUTES

Meeting Date:
Thursday, November 6, 2003, 9:45 AM-10:53 AM

Deborah Bernnard, Gerald Burke, Richard Collier, Sue Faerman, Robert Gibson, Anne Hildreth, Reed Hoyt, Trudi Jacobson, Faridah Jivani,
Steve Messner, Sue Phillips John Pipkin, Joan Savitt, Helene Scheck, Joshua Smith, Greg Stevens

Chair's Report:

Minutes from the October 23, 2003 meeting were reviewed and approved. No updates were required.

MOU/System-Wide Assessment
Dick Collier shared an e-mail from Faculty Senate President Hildreth regarding the MOU/System-Wide assessment which was rejected by the Faculty Senate. It was noted that a joint SUNY/Faculty Council of Community Colleges Executive Committee meeting with Chancellor King, scheduled for November 14th, will discuss this subject.

Item #14 - Economics Major
Bob Gibson discussed the results of the Committee on Admissions & Academic Standing's review of the restriction of entry into the Economics' major. The Council requested an appeal process be included too in this policy. It was noted this policy is applicable only for students admitted in Fall, 2004 and thereafter. This information will be added to the update. "Application" is a generic term and does not imply a new form needs to be created. Changes in the handout were suggested. The sentence "Applications may be made at any time" should be removed. Under the "Denials" section, the last two sentences should be moved to the beginning of the paragraph.

Dean Faerman suggested some type of credit limit (e.g., 18 credits) be established to prevent lower level students from taking the upper level classes. It was noted that since Eco 301 and 320 are primarily taken only by Economics majors, requiring a "C" or better in the prerequisites for these courses might solve the problem.

The Council agreed that the proposal is consistent with our guidelines for admission requirements for a major.

It was noted that students re-taking a course do not need to appeal.

The "denials" section of the handout was discussed. Since it would be a waste of resources, the Council agreed that a formal written application is not necessary. A suggestion was made that perhaps Advisement Services could create a flyer explaining the appeals process. It was noted that with current wording, students will assume they have to submit an appeal in order to re-take a course. Wording needs to be changed.
Bob Gibson and other members of the committee will meet with the Chair of the Economics Department to discuss the acceptable wording of the policy.

Item #4 - Revision to Dean's List Criteria
The proposal set forth is to allow freshman students a 3.25 GPA their first semester. After their first semester they must maintain a 3.5 GPA to remain on the Dean's List. Dean Faerman mentioned that most students deal with extreme stress in adjusting to their first college semester and should be given a little leniency. The 3.25 GPA their first semester would allow that leniency.

The definition of a freshman was read from the Bulletin:

For the purposes of this policy "freshman" is defined as a student whose admissions status is freshman and who has completed no more than two full time semesters of study in the fall or spring semester at the University at Albany.

It was noted that the Registrar's Office provides two runs with the Dean's list. A possible PeopleSoft glitch would be a student no longer eligible for the Dean's list logging on after the first run is completed and locating their name on the Dean's list, but not realizing a second run would remove their name due to ineligibility. Dean Faerman mentioned the need to make only one run.

Dean Faerman suggested that text information be added in DARS for future audits reflecting a freshman student's need to retain a "3.25 GPA the first semester and 3.5 GPA thereafter" comment.

Bob Gibson asked that the wording "12 credits before last day of adding courses" be removed since this has nothing to do with current University definition of full- vs. part-time status.

Dick Collier mentioned the idea of "giving a break to new students" resulted in a nearly even split the last time it was brought up to Senate. If the first semester were to include all students (freshman and transfer admits), it seems more fair and should be easier to understand and administer.

The Council's consensus was to allow all students a 3.25 GPA first semester and all semesters afterwards to be a 3.5 for students to make Dean's List.

The next Undergraduate Academic Council meeting will probably be held Thursday 11/20/03, 9:45 AM, LC-31

Notes taken by Joanne Baronner, Undergraduate Studies