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December 1, 2005

Academic Affairs Committee
Minutes of December 1, 2005 - final
Library Taylor Conference Room

Present: Berit Gundersen, Jean Purnell, Chris Goff, Steven Wheeler, Gigi Gokcek, Michael Golanbari, Ken Day, Fred Muskal, Amber Padilla, Robert Coburn

Guests: Lou Matz, Tom Wrensch, Bill Ford

Berit Gundersen, Chairperson, called the meeting to order at 3:05 p.m.


Approval of Minutes
November 3, 2005
Motion: Ken Day moved, Gigi Gokcek seconded to approve the minutes.
Motion unanimously approved.


Amendment to the Consent Agenda
Jean Purnell announced a change to the agenda. The Computer Science program change should be listed as an information item.


Course Revisions (not Consent Agenda)
General Education

Lou Matz explained that an Ad Hoc Committee has been reviewing content of the Mentor Seminars I, II, and III. A goal of these revisions is to create thematic connections between the courses. MS-I will focus on what is a good society. MS-II will focus on topics in various disciplines that are tied to the MS-I theme. MS-III has focused on ethics. It has been refined to focus student reflections on ethics related to family/friends; workplace; citizenship.
In fall 2006 students will begin to build an electronic portfolio from the several courses. The syllabus for MS-I is currently being developed. Representatives of the professional schools expressed concerns regarding the proposed increase from 3 to 4 units for MS-II. MS II’s 43.5 contact hours suggests that it should be 4 units, like MS-I. WASC requires 42-45 General Education units. In some disciplines the extra unit may put some students over 18 units, which is a full load. Consideration should be given to how this change might impact the 4-year guarantee.
Jean Purnell requested that the request for individual faculty to assess learning in MS-II be made more explicit.
Motion: Fred Muskal moved, Chris Goff seconded to approve Revisions of Mentor Seminar I, Title: What is a Good Society?
Motion unanimously approved.

Motion: Fred Muskal moved, Steve Wheeler seconded to approve Revisions of Mentor Seminar III, Title: Family, Work, Citizenship.
Steve Wheeler made a friendly amendment to include the word ‘ethics’ in the course title.
Motion and friendly amendment unanimously approved with the condition that a revised title be submitted to the committee.

Motion: Fred Muskal moved, Robert Coburn seconded to approve Revisions of Mentor Seminar II, Title: Topical Seminars on a Good Society in principle, that is, the nature and content of the course with the requirement that further deliberation occur regarding the unit value of the course.
Motion unanimously approved.


Program Changes
Computer Science - Major

The Computer Science discipline is rapidly evolving and requires multiple changes. Computer Science was re-accredited in 2004. Adjustments to the discipline will include Additions, Revisions, and Deletions. An additional path will be available. The Computer Science path leading to the Major: Computer Science, BS will remain accredited. The Bioinformatics path leading to the Major: Computer Science, BS is not accredited. ABET will be prepared to create template for accreditation by 2009. Computer Science could seek accreditation at the next ABET visit in 2010.
The need for the Bioinformatics degree grew out of the Human Genome Project and other types of work involving huge amounts of data. The field incorporates more interdisciplinary training.
Motion: Michael Golanbari moved, Chris Goff seconded to conditionally approve the revision to Computer Science Major, the new Bioinformatics path, and revisions to the Minor based on receiving the Registrar’s approval without substantive change.
Motion unanimously approved.


Consent Agenda
Motion: Chris Goff moved, Michael Golanbari seconded to approve the consent agenda contingent on signature approval of the Physics department chairperson for PHYS 125 and cross-listing forms.
Motion unanimously approved.


Program Review
A. Proposed Panels for 2006

A list of the Program Review panel members was distributed. The following panels will serve:

1. English/Film Studies
  • Jim Blankehship
  • Ray Sylvester
  • Randall Koper
  • Susan Giraldez
  • Qingwen Dong (available to substitute for S. Giraldez)
2. History Department Special Review
  • Berit Gundersen*
  • Amber Padilla*
  • Ken Day*
Jean Purnell will send the *special readers a copy of the History Department’s report.
Motion: Ken Day moved, Gigi Gokcek seconded to approve the Program Review panels.
Motion unanimously approved.
B. Proposal to end Graduate Studies Office.
1. How will admissions be handled for each unit?
2. Send questions to Jean Purnell
C. Program Review guidelines revision
1. An ad hoc group is being formed.

Revision of Policy regarding Challenge of Courses by Exam
If students are able to waive a course by passing an exam, they will get course credit but any potential overload will be nullified for purposes of paying additional tuition. If approved, it will need to be reviewed by the VP for Finance.
Motion: Chris Goff moved, Fred Muskal seconded to approve as an undergraduate policy.
Motion unanimously approved.


Review of Policy on Minors
Should Item 7 be in terms of courses or units? It sets up a lack of standard across the units. AAC representatives will gather feedback from their units on the draft revision of policy.


Academic Calendar – January Term (information/discussion only item)
Chris Goff distributed a possible alternate calendar that could include a January Term and a modified summer term. Discussion will continue at the February meeting.


Berit Gundersen adjourned the meeting at 5:00 p.m.


Submitted by
Jean Purnell
Assistant Provost