I. CALL TO ORDER, ATTENDANCE, MINUTES: The James Madison University Council met on Thursday, December 4, 1997, at 4:00 p.m. in Taylor Hall, Room 306, with Dr. Linwood Rose, Acting President, presiding.
PRESENT: Dr. Jerry Benson, Dr. Douglas Brown, Dr. Barbara Castello, Mr. Kevin Chamberlin, Dr. John Cordani, Dr. Diane Fuqua, Ms. Nicole Gallipoli, Dr. Norman Garrison, Mr. Gerald Gill, Dr. Archer Harris, Ms. Marilyn Heishman (for Dr. Dorothy Boyd-Rush), Dr. Carol Kefalas, Mr. Charles King, Mr. Stin Lenkerd, Dr. Robert Reid, Ms. April Roberts, Dr. Robert Scott, Mr. Glenn Smith, Mr. Andrew Sorensen, Dr. Carl Weaver, and Mr. Jerry Weaver (for Dr. Richard Whitman).
ABSENT: Dr. Linda Cabe-Halpern, Ms. Barbara Miller, Mr. Jeff Nobel, Ms. Michele Parsons, and Dr. Jackson Ramsey.
MINUTES: There being no corrections or additions to the University Council minutes of October 22, 1997, they were approved as posted.
II. COMMISSION/COUNCIL REPORTS:
A. ACADEMIC COUNCIL:
Dr. Brown, Chairperson, presented the following report:
Since the last University Council meeting, the Division of Academic Affairs has proposed revisions for several academic policies and developed recommendations for the 1998-99 academic calendar.
Revisions are suggested for the following policies:
- Grading system
- Readmission to the university
- Earning a second baccalaureate degree
The process used for all of the above policy revisions included review of the proposals by Academic Council, Department heads/school directors/program coordinators (through their regular meetings with deans), Faculty Senate, and the Student Government Association.
Everyone received the full text of the proposals but here is a summary of the proposed changes.
- continue the use of plus/minus
- begin awarding quality points for plus/minus grades
It was recommended that this be changed to read Undergraduate Grading System.
On motion of Dr. Brown, seconded by Dr. Scott, the above proposal with the addition of the word "undergraduate" was approved by the Council.
Readmission to the university:
- clarification of readmission process for students who leave the university in good standing
- institute review of previous academic work during admission process to determine appropriateness for degree requirements
Dr. Harris, on behalf of the Faculty Senate, voiced the following concern. One student returns to the university after an absence of two years and another student returns after three years but with the help of transfer credit earned while absent from the university, both will graduate after their sixth year. Despite taking the same courses during their first year and graduating at the same time, under this policy only the second student is subject to re-evaluation of the first year's courses. The Senate recommends the review policy be rewritten to be based on a statue of limitations and build into the policy a course review for any student not scheduled to graduate before the limitation runs out.
At this suggestion, Academic Council will begin discussion on developing a policy on aging credits.
On motion of Dr. Brown, seconded by Dr. Scott, the above proposal was approved by Council.
Earning a second baccalaureate degree:
- remove prohibition for earning concurrent baccalaureate degrees
- specify requirements for earning second baccalaureate degree
It was recommended that "at James Madison University" be added to this policy.
On motion of Dr. Brown, seconded by Dr. Scott, the above proposal with the addition of "at James Madison University" was approved by the Council.
Copies of the proposed calendar for 1998-99 were circulated on campus for feedback. Based on the responses, the following changes were made:
- Fall holiday was changed from Oct. 19 to Oct. 9
- First block classes will end on October 19
Dr. Weaver asked what had happened to the suggestion made by Faculty Senate last year to eliminate the fall holiday, begin classes on the Monday morning (August 31, 1998), and take the entire week of Thanksgiving off. Dr. Brown expressed three concerns with the suggestion. 1) On that Monday there are assessment activities which cannot be rescheduled to another day. 2) By increasing the Thanksgiving holiday, we might be reducing the amount of instruction time that the students would be receiving since some of them would choose to leave the week before Thanksgiving. 3) Taking the whole week off would not look good from a public relations aspect.
Another concern voiced was that there was no date given for the last day to add a class. The concern was that the date would be too late for students to catch up with work for the class. Dr. Gonzalez assured the group that this would not be an issue. The date would coincide with the census date which would actually be earlier than this current year's date. Dr. Rose charged Academic Council to finalize this date for both semesters with the Registration and Enrollment Services Committee before publishing the calendar in the catalog.
On motion of Dr. Benson, seconded by Dr. Weaver, the academic calendar as proposed by Academic Council but with the inclusion of the "last day to add a class" date was approved by University Council.
B. UNDERGRADATE CURRICULUM COUNCIL:
Dr. Diane Fuqua, Chairperson, reported that the Undergraduate Curriculum Council had not met and therefore had no report.
C. GRADUATE COUNCIL:
Ms. Marilyn Heishman presented the following report for Dr. Dorothy Boyd-Rush, Chairperson:
The Graduate Council met 18 November and the following actions may be reported to the University Council:
A. Seven faculty members were given graduate faculty status.
B. Five course changes were approved in Health Sciences and two program changes were approved in Accounting.
C. Enrollment deposits will no longer be required for any graduate programs. Those programs which had utilized such a deposit noted no difference in tracking acceptance and enrollment which was the primary reason for implementing a deposit.
D. A six-year time period for graduate faculty approval was approved to take the place of the current four-year time period. All current members of the graduate faculty will "grandfather in" based on their last date of approval as graduate faculty members. A listing will be sent to each department/program to indicate who current faculty are and when each member was last approved.
In response to policy and procedure review necessitated by People Soft implementation, the following items were discussed. Members will review with their respective colleges and return for decision at a later meeting.
- Admissions deadlines versus rolling admissions were discussed, including financial aid implications.
- Changing the registration period for graduate students to coincide with that of undergraduates and continuing education students was discussed.
Dr. Erwin also met with the Graduate Council to keep them apprised of progress related to the new PsyD in Assessment program offering. This innovative, new program will be part of the Psychology offerings, but could benefit programs throughout the university.
D. COMMISSION ON STUDENT SERVICES:
Dr. Robert Scott, Chairperson, presented the following report:
The Commission on Student Services recently polled its members for approval of the following new student organizations. The organizations were approved by a majority vote of membership.
Art and Waste Management Association Overtones
Atheists are People Too Psychology Department's
The Baseball Club Peer Advising Organization
College Libertarians The Sign Language Club
Eclipse Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity
Nurses Christian Fellowship UMOJA Association of JMU
Opera Society Voices for Pre-Born Children
Should there be any questions or concerns about any of the above, please contact the Vice President for Student Affairs Office at x6226.
E. COMMISSION ON COMMUNITY:
Dr. Carol Kefalas, Chairperson, presented the following report:
The following items were discussed/acted on by the Commission on Community at its October 31 and November 21 meetings.
October 31, 1997 meeting:
The members of the Commission on Community discussed their ideas and the different deadlines for each committee. The subject of Diversity Day was discussed and the Diversity Day Committee will be meeting at a later date to work on planning the event.
The subject of community relations was also discussed. The SGA and the police have formed a community relations committee with a board of 25 people, and they have already met once.
November 21, 1997 meeting:
The members of the Commission on Community reported updates from each of their committees. Both the Dolley Madison Award and Grants applications will be mailed out soon. The Diversity Day Committee has a meeting coming up to discuss their plans for the event. The Community Relations committee reported that the SGA had a meeting with the police. They are discussing issues involving the JMU community. The committee is also thinking about having a webpage online through CISAT to provide people with community information.
III. REPORT OF THE FACULTY SENATE
Dr. Archer Harris, Speaker of the Faculty Senate, presented the following report:
Senate Web Pages:
The Faculty Senate is constructing Web pages which will shortly be moved to the CWIS machine. Until they are moved, they can be found at the following location.
Response to the Report by the Taskforce on Academic Misconduct:
The Faculty Senate has sent its response to the report by the Taskforce on Academic Misconduct to the Honor Advisory Board. A copy of that report is also available on the Senate's Web pages.
The Senate reviewed and approved the grading system and second degree policies and supported the intent of the readmission policy presented to the University Council at this meeting. With respect to the grading system change, the Senate commented that the revision may have consequences for some departments, particularly in situations where current policies call for students to obtain an average of C or better (a C- will no longer
satisfy that requirement).
The Senate instructed the Speaker to seek more information about the conferring of the title of James Madison University Distinguished Professor. The Senate indicated its willingness to be involved in developing criteria and processes for making the selection of the recipient of this title.
Senators were asked if faculty in their department were NOT asked to comment on the 96-97 performance of their head/director or dean. Responses indicated faculty input was not solicited in the evaluation of eight heads/directors and three deans.
State senate leaders have developed a mechanism for faculty senate leaders to meet regularly with the SCHEV director and staff. State university and college presidents and provosts meet regularly with SCHEV directors. Faculty leaders have not had a similar opportunity to share ideas and issues. These meetings will continue in the years following so there will be an "institutionalization" of faculty contact and opportunity to contribute to policy and procedure formation. This year's meetings will be on December 10, February 5, and April 23.
The Senate Speaker and the Chair of the Academic Policies Committee have sent a letter to all faculty concerning grade inflation. The letter concludes as follows.
"We hope you will join us in a private yet collective effort to review the expectations each of us has for our students, the rigor we require and the standards we set for assigning grades in our courses. It is appropriate to do this now as we begin to develop syllabi and introductory notes for our courses next semester."
Revolving Term Contracts:
The Senate voted to send a request to the Vice President for Academic Affairs that there be faculty participation in the entire process of determining criteria for tenure and revolving term contracts, as required by the Board of Visitors ad hoc committee on tenure, and that faculty participation include members of the Faculty Senate on the Academic Council Task Force.
Time Between Classes:
The Senate voted to support an Academic Council proposal to expand the time between classes to fifteen minutes, provided the beginning of classes is left at 8:00 am. rather than be changed to 7:50 am.
IV. REPORT OF THE STUDENT GOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION
Ms. April Roberts, SGA President, presented the following report:
Police Relations Panel in Full Swing:
The Police Relations Panel, which was initiated by Student Services Chairmen Chris Drunsic and Tory Jenkins, is fully underway. It is the intention of the panel to foster dialogue between various law enforcement officials and students through the use of speakers, i.e. The Drug Task Force, an ABC Agent, etc. and question/answer periods among the panel members. The next meeting is scheduled for January 14th and will feature a member of the Drug Task Force to address drug-related issues here in Harrisonburg.
Holidays on the Quad:
Once again, the SGA Buildings and Grounds Committee under chairman Will Pearson, has worked alongside the School of Music to plan the annual Holidays on the Quad, currently planned for December 7th at 5:30 p.m. The tree lighting ceremony will follow the Holiday Fest Concert featuring the JMU Chorale, Brass Ensemble, and the Symphony Orchestra. The ceremony itself will host the Contemporary Gospel Singers as well Christmas caroling, hot chocolate and Christmas cookies. The SGA would like to invite all faculty, staff, and administration to the event to help welcome the holiday season to JMU.
The Multicultural committee, chaired by Tim Emry, organized a panel held on Wednesday, November 19th at Wilson Hall. The panel consisted of students and staff members committed to talk about issues of diversity at JMU. The event involved a large amount of audience questions and did a good job of trying to pinpoint some problems and ways to combat them. The Multicultural committee looks to follow up on the panel with an event second semester that will continue to improve situations at JMU. Any input for possible topics or format for future events is greatly welcomed.
SGA Webpage Online:
The SGA webpage is finally up and running! The page, which will serve as a key link to the JMU campus, the surrounding community, and other universities around the country, was reconstructed this semester by new Webmaster, Davey Ahearn. Although pieces of the page are still under construction, the finished product should be ready in the next few weeks. It is our hope that through this outlet we can keep the JMU population informed and up-to-date on the activities of the SGA. The website can be reached at the following address: www.jmu.edu/orgs/sga.
V. REPORT OF THE HONOR COUNCIL
Mr. Kevin Chamberlin, Honor Council President, explained the following information: Case Update:
There have been a total of fourteen cases so far this year, two held over from the summer. We currently have seven active cases. Four cases were dropped, two resulted in a guilty verdict, one a not guilty verdict, and one student took the administrative option.
The website committee has been working on establishing a website to be used as another promotional tool and to keep the campus aware of changes that may potentially occur. Space has been allocated on the JMU server. Access to that space will be available in early January.
Members of the presentation committee have given eighteen presentations to various groups this semester. They will continue to educate and promote our honor system this coming semester.
A committee has been formed to work to get plaques detailing the seventeen violations hung in all the academic buildings.
Honor Advisory Board:
The Honor Advisory Board sent a response and a list of recommendations to Academic Council in regards to last years task force report. The response was sent November 15.
We are currently in the process of selecting an investigator for the Spring semester. The process will be completed by December 5, 1997.
VI. REPORT OF UNIVERSITY PROGRAM BOARD
UPB had previously submitted the following report:
- The UPB has meet 5 times since the last University Council Meeting.
- The Horizon newsletter has been published twice this semester.
- Elections for a new UPB Executive Council will be held in February. Applications will be available on January 13
- October 21 -- Club PC with Dan Horn (comedy club)
- October 23 -- Special Sneak Preview of A Life Less Ordinary
- November 2 -- "They Might Be Giants" concert in Godwin
- November 4 -- Steve Gunderson and Rob Morris in Grafton Stovall at 7PM (speakers)
- November 13 -- Jazz trio featuring Joshua Redman, Christian McBride and Brian Blade in Wilson Hall
- November 20 -- Jazz and Poetry in Taylor Down Under
William Julius Wilson (Speaker) in Wilson Hall
Director Kevin Smith in Grafton Stovall
There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned at 4:30 p.m.