Meeting of the Faculty Council

Friday, March 24 th, 2006 at 3:00 pm

The Hitchcock Multipurpose Room, Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History

Chancellor James Moeser and Professor Judith Wegner, Chair of the Faculty, will preside.

Agenda

3:00 Faculty Council Convenes

  • Comments from Chancellor Moeser
  • Questions and Comments from the Faculty Council
  • Comments from Prof. Wegner

3:25 Annual Report of the Educational Policy Committee Prof. Peter C. Gordon, Chair

  • Resolution 2006-2. Revising the Standards for Continued Academic Eligibility for Undergraduate Enrollment
  • Resolution 2006-3. Replacing the System of Academic Warning Notification and Academic Review with a System of Academic Probation
  • Resolution 2006-4. Revising the Deadline for Undergraduate Course Schedule Changes in the Fall and Spring Semester

4:20 Strategic Thoughts on Information Technology: Faculty Feedback and Discussion.

  • Professor Wegner; Robyn East, Deputy Chief Information Officer; Carol Jenkins, Director of the Health Sciences Library and Chair of the Strategic Planning Committee for Information Technology
  • Website of the Strategic Planning Committee for Information Technology
    • Trends Affecting Information Technology Strategic Planning The
    • Horizon Report 2006 IT Update Presentation
    • PowerPoint by Robyn East
  • Kick-off Presentation to the ITSP Committee
    • PowerPoint by Carol Jenkins
    • Charter and Charge, Strategic Planning Committee for Information Technology

4:40 Annual Reports of Standing Committees

  • Administrative Board of the Library, Prof. Robert Peet, Chair
  • Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee, Prof. Jim Porto, Chair
  • University Committee on Copyright, Leah McGinnis, Chair

5:00 Adjourn

Joseph S. Ferrell

Secretary of the Faculty

Minutes

The Faculty Council of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill convened at 3:00 p.m. in the Hitchcock Multipurpose Room of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History.

The following 44 members of the Council attended: Alperin, Arnold, Barreau, Becker, Cairns, Chapman, Couper, Dalton, Degener, Eble, Foley, Frampton, Gasaway, Gerber, Givre, Gulledge, Huber, Kamarei, Lastra, Leonard, Matthysse, McIntosh, Mesibov, Murray, Papanikolas, Peirce, Peterson, Renner, Salmon, Sandelowski, Selassie, Smith, Sulik, Tauchen, Threadgill, Templeton, Tiwana, Tobin, Trotman, Wallace, Weinberg, Weir, Wilson, Wissick. The following 41 members were granted excused absences: Ammerman, Bachenheimer, Belger, Bennett, Blocher, Booth, Connolly, Conover, Copenhaver, DeSaix, Dupuis, Gilligan, Granger, Heenan, Holmgren, Howell, Jonas, Kagarise, Keagy, Klebanow, Kramer, Marshall, Martin, Matson, McGrath, Miguel, Muller, Murphy, Perrin, Rock, Rogers, Rustioni, Sawin, Simpson, Strom-Gottfried, Sutherland, Sweeney, Taylor, Vick, Wolford Yankaskas. The following three members were absent without excuse: Anton, Ewend, Lin.

Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks

Chancellor Moeser having been delayed in arrival, Professor Judith Wegner called the meeting to order. She reminded the Council that the SACS reaccreditation team will be visiting in Chapel Hill April 11-13. Prof. Wegner reported that the Board of Trustees had expressed much interest in the survey of graduate education that she had conducted.
Prof. Wegner recognized Prof. Ed Halloran, who said that there is interest in reactivating the UNC-Chapel Hill chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP). Prof. Wegner said that she has designated Prof. Halloran as a “permanent observer” of the Council on behalf of AAUP.

Resolutions Submitted by the Educational Policy Committee

Prof. Clayton Koelb, speaking on behalf of the Educational Policy Committee (EPC) in the absence of Prof. Peter Gordon, chair of the committee, said that EPC had begun consideration of undergraduate eligibility standards in the Fall of 2004. The committee collected data and then began looking into policy implications of the data. The committee’s primary concern was how to improve the current system so that students who are failing or in danger of failing are warned and directed toward help before it is too late. Under our current rules, students may find that as they progress it becomes more and more difficult to achieve the 2.0 grade point average (GPA) needed for graduation. Our current standard requires only a 1.5 GPA to begin the third semester, 1.75 to begin the fifth semester, and 1.9 to begin the seventh semester. These requirements are much more lenient than any of our peer institutions and also below the standards required by the NCAA for athletic eligibility. Prof. Koelb said that EPC recommends a uniform eligibility standard of a 2.0 GPA.

Prof. Koelb said that EPC also recommends that the present system of academic warning be replaced by one of academic probation, and that the drop/add deadline be extended to the eighth week of the semester. He said that at one point EPC had considered increasing the number of credit hours needed to advance to the third, fifth, seventh, and ninth semesters, but, he said, in the end EPC saw that this would raise more problems that it would solve and the idea was abandoned.

Prof. Barbara Foley (Nursing) asked whether the eligibility standard would be applied from semester to semester or only at the beginning of a new academic year. Sr. Assoc. Dean Bobbi Owen (Arts & Sciences) answered that the standard would be applied on a semester basis beginning with the third semester. She said that the intent is that all first-year students will remain eligible for the entire academic year.

Prof. Frank Wilson (Orthopaedics) questioned extending the drop/add deadline. He said that especially for small classes, faculty may have invested considerable time and energy in a course that will go to waste if several of the students drop mid-way through. Prof. Koelb replied that EPC was keenly aware of that possibility, but that the committee is persuaded that the proposed change is a good one.

Prof. Wegner asked how the warning system works. Dean Owen explained that mid-term grade reports are required, but that often there is little reliable information about a student’s performance in a given class until a mid-term examination is given. By that time, the six-week drop/add period has usually passed. Dean Owen said that many of our peer institutions allow drop/add up to the eighth week and report no problems with it.

The discussion having concluded, Prof. Wegner called for a vote on Resolution 2006-2 Revising the Standards for Continued Academic Eligibility for Undergraduate Enrollment. The resolution was adopted.

Prof. Wegner called for a vote on Resolution 2006-3 Replacing the System of Academic Warning Notification and Academic Review with a System of Academic Probation. Dean Owen reiterated that the intent is to begin applying the 2.0 GPA requirement and invoking the probation system at the beginning of the third semester. Prof. Ferrell pointed out that the wording of the resolution as introduced did not make that distinction and suggested an amendment to make it clear that the system will apply to the “third and succeeding semesters.” The amendment was adopted. The resolution as amended was adopted.

Prof. Wegner called for a vote on Resolution 2006-4 revising the Deadline for Undergraduate Course Schedule Changes in the Fall and Spring Semester. Prof. Ferrell reported that Dean James Murphy (Summer School) had raised the question of how the drop/add deadline would be applied to courses that do not follow the standard semester pattern. Prof. Ferrell said that he understands that currently the deadline is prorated to correspond to roughly the same point in the course as in the case of a standard semester-length course. If Resolution 2006-4 is adopted, this suggests that the deadline would occur at the mid-point of the course, or roughly 50% completion. Dean Bernadette Gray-Little (Arts & Science) and Dean Owen agreed that Prof. Ferrell had correctly described current practice. It was agreed that the minutes would record the discussion. The resolution was adopted as introduced.

Chancellor’s Remarks

Chancellor Moeser said that he endorses the faculty legislation just enacted, and that it is consistent with the goals of the Board of Trustees in improving student retention and advancement.

The chancellor reported that Prof. Madeline Levine has accepted appointment as interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and that Dean Linda Dykstra (Graduate School) will chair the search committee for a new dean. The chancellor said that this will be a national search, and that Prof. Levine will not be a candidate for the permanent post.

The chancellor reported that Dr. Jerry Lucido, Vice Provost for Enrollment Policy & Management, has accepted a similar post at the University of Southern California, effective August 1. Chancellor Moeser spoke warmly of Dr. Lucido’s work during his tenure here at Carolina.

Strategic Thoughts on Information Technology

Prof. Wegner led a discussion to generate feedback from the faculty to aid the work of the Strategic Planning Committee for Information Technology.

Reports of Standing Committees

  • Administrative Board of the Library. The report was received.
  • Copyright Committee.The report was received.
  • Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee. The report was received. Prof. James Porto, chair of the committee, said that he has found it difficult to interest faculty in serving on the committee. He thought that the faculty needs to give thought to what the committee is expected to do.

Adjournment

Its business having been completed, the Council adjourned at 5:00 p.m.

Joseph S. Ferrell
Secretary of the Faculty

Appendix A

Resolution 2006-2. Revising the Standards for Continued Academic Eligibility for Undergraduate Enrollment

The Faculty Council endorses the recommendation of the Educational Policy Committee that the standard for continuing eligibility for undergraduate enrollment be changed to a cumulative GPA of 2.0 throughout a student’s enrollment, and that this change be made effective beginning with the Fall Semester, 2007.

The Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences is requested to prepare the necessary amendments to the Academic Eligibility Regulations (2005-006 Undergraduate Bulletin, pp. 304-308) for formal approval by the Faculty Council.

Educational Policy Committee Comment: Eligibility standards are designed to specify minimum acceptable academic performance. It is expected that most students will exceed those standards and in fact most do. Current standards for continuing eligibility have been in place since the mid 1980s (see the Undergraduate Bulletin). These standards can be seen as attempting to place standards for cumulative GPA that get progressively higher over the course of a college career, presumably so as to allow a struggling student to adapt to the demands of academic work at Carolina. Based on analyses of student performance by the Student Retention Study Group and on discussions with student advisors, the current system creates two kinds of difficulties. First, the current rules requiring progressively higher levels of performance are very complicated and can be difficult to explain to students in some cases. Second, and more seriously, the current eligibility rules allow students to remain eligible while building a record that can make it very hard to meet the standard of a cumulative GPA of 2.0 that is needed in order to graduate. Based on these considerations, EPC recommends that the standard for continuing eligibility be changed to a cumulative GPA of 2.0 throughout a student’s academic career. EPC proposes that this change go into effect for students entering the University during the fall semester of 2007.

Appendix B

Resolution 2006-3. Replacing the System of Academic Warning Notification and Academic Review with a System of Academic Probation.

The Faculty Council endorses the recommendation of the Educational Policy Committee that the current system of Academic Warning Notification and Academic Review for undergraduate students be replaced with a system of Academic Probation that contains the following features:

    • a student who does not meet eligibility standards by the beginning of the third or any subsequent semester in residence is automatically placed on probation for one semester;
    • a student who does not meet eligibility standards at the end of the probationary semester becomes ineligible; and
    • the associate dean responsible for academic advising may impose other conditions to be met during the probationary semester in order to promote student success by providing support services to students in a coordinated and timely manner.

  This change shall be made effective beginning with the Fall Semester, 2007.

The Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences is requested to prepare the necessary amendments to the Academic Eligibility Regulations (2005-006 Undergraduate Bulletin, pp. 304-308) for formal approval by the Faculty Council.

Educational Policy Committee Comment: Currently there is a system where students who are not making acceptable academic progress receive an Academic Warning Notification and undergo Academic Review. Besides providing an explicit warning about inadequate progress, this notice is meant to encourage students to take advantage of resources that provide academic support. EPC recommends that the current system of Academic Warning Notification and Academic Review be replaced with a system of Academic Probation. A student who does not meet eligibility standards after any semester in residence would be automatically placed on probation for one semester. A student who does not meet eligibility standards at the end of the probationary semester would become ineligible. Further conditions of Academic Probation would be determined by the Deans who are responsible for academic advising. The requirement that students on probation meet conditions specified by academic advisors is intended to promote student success by providing support services to students in a coordinated and timely manner. EPC proposes that this change go into effect for students entering the University during the fall semester of 2007.

Appendix C

Resolution 2006-4. Revising the Deadline for Undergraduate Course Schedule Changes in the Fall and Spring Semester

The regulation on Changes in Fall and Spring Semester Schedules (2005-06 Undergraduate Bulletin, pp. 301-302) is amended by striking out the words “sixth week” wherever they appear and inserting in lieu thereof the words “eighth week”.
This amendment is effective beginning with the Fall Semester, 2006.

Educational Policy Committee Comment: Currently students can drop a course  (with permission) through the sixth week of class with no record of enrollment in the course on their transcripts. EPC believes that if higher eligibility standards for cumulative GPA are instituted, then this deadline should be extended to the eighth week of classes. Extending the drop date would allow students to assess better how well they are doing in a class before having to decide whether to drop. This should make it easier for struggling students to meet the GPA standards by dropping courses in which they are doing poorly and focusing on their remaining courses. Because a change in the drop date is relatively easy to implement, EPC recommends that the new deadline be adopted starting in the fall semester of 2006.

Pdf of meeting materials

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