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Meeting of the Faculty Council

Friday, February 10, 2012
3:00 p.m.
Hitchcock Multipurpose Room
Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History

Chancellor Holden Thorp and Professor Jan Boxill, Chair of the Faculty, presiding


Seating arrangement

3:00  Chancellor’s Remarks and Question Period

  • Chancellor Holden Thorp
3:15  Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks
  • Prof. Jan Boxill
3:30  Guests
3:40  Presentation:  ESL Services on Our Campus
  • Dr. Kimberly Abels, Director, Writing Center
  • Dr. Gigi Taylor, ESL Specialist, Writing Center
Related web links to be featured:
3:55  Presentation:  The Transformative Potential of the Digital Humanities
  • Prof. John McGowan, Director, Institute for Arts and Humanities
4:05  Committee Reports
    • Prof. Charles Daye, Chair
    • Ms. Shirley Ort, Associate Provost and Director, Scholarships and Student Aid
4:45  Votes
  • IN CLOSED SESSION:  2013 Honorary Degree Nominees (5 mins) [access limited to Faculty Council membership/ONYEN login via Sakai]
    • Secretary of the Faculty Joe Ferrell for the Honorary Degrees and Special Awards Committee
5:00  Adjourn



February 10, 2012

The Faculty Council of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill convened February 10, 2012, at 3:00 p.m. in the Hitchcock Multipurpose Room of the Sonja Haynes Stone Center for Black Culture and History. The following 53 members attended:  Anderson, Bachenheimer, Balaban, Boxill, Brice, Bulik, Cavin, Chapman, Chenault, Copenhaver, Engel, Friga, Fuchs Lokensgar, Gallippi, Gilliland, Giovanello, Grabowski, Greene, Grinias, Hayslett, Hill, Hodges, Howes, Irons, Ives, Janken, Jones, Kim, Kramer, Lee, Leonard, Linden, Lund, Maffly-Kipp, Mayer , Milano, Miller, Moracco, Nelson, New, O’Shaughnessey Palmer, Parreiras, Paul, Reiter, Renner , Rodgers, Schoenbach, Shea, Steponaitis, Swogger, Thrailkill, Webster-Cyriaque, and You.

Call to Order

Chancellor Holden Thorp called the Council to order at 3:00 p.m.

Chancellor’s Remarks and Question Period

Chancellor Thorp reported that this morning the Board of Governors had approved a 2012-13 tuition and fee schedule for Carolina and also undergraduate tuition for 2013-14. Under the new schedule, tuition and fees will increase by 9.9% for in-state undergraduates. In 2013-14, in-state undergraduate tuition will increase by an additional 8%. The chancellor said that he is pleased to have undergraduate tuition rates settled for two years so we can focus our attention on other pressing issues. He said that UNC President Tom Ross had done a good job of balancing the views of all the various constituencies; all student body presidents in the system as well as the Staff Assembly and the Faculty Assembly endorsed the president’s proposals. Chancellor Thorp noted some concern that some members of the Board of Governors appear to be not in support of our current policies for setting aside sufficient funds from tuition increases to hold harmless students receiving financial aid. He said that we at Carolina continue to emphasize the importance of our guarantees of student aid. He was glad, he said, that the Board of Governors did not act to curtail those policies, but we will continue to emphasize financial aid and work on private fund-raising for that purpose.

Chancellor Thorp concluded by noting that the Prince Review has again rated Carolina #1 in its list of best college values.

There were no questions or comments

Chair of the Faculty’s Remarks

Chair of the Faculty Jan Boxill reported that the Faculty Executive Committee recently met with Chief Jeff McCracken and Mary Beth Koza, director of environmental health and safety, to discuss classroom safety issues that came to light in the recent tornado alert. She recognized Ms. Koza who spoke briefly about the work of her department and how to contact her. She also reported that things are moving forward on implementation of the Carolina H2O theme.

Prof. Cal Lee (Information & Library Science) rose to report that Prof. Deborah Barreau, a former members of the Council, had recently died.

Invited Guests

Prof. Boxill introduced Dr. Rob Bruce, director of the William and Ida Friday Center, who gave a brief overview of the work of the Center. The Center serves over 80,000 people each year, 60 percent of whom are affiliated with Carolina in some way. Two thousand students go through professional development and enrichment programs and 8,000 students take courses for credit through the Center, which has over 350 course offerings. The Center also conducts an educational program for inmates of North Carolina correctional institutions.

Prof. Boxill next introduced Prof. Emerita Bobbie Lubker, president of the UNC Association of Retired Faculty. Prof. Lubker described the work of the association and reported that the national conference of the Association of Retirement Organizations in High Education will be held in Chapel Hill this year.

Presentation on ESL Services

Dr. Kimberly Abels, director of the Writing Center, and Dr. Gigi Taylor, ESL Specialist at the Writing Center gave a presentation on work the Center is doing for international students.

Presentation on Digital Humanities

Prof. John McGowan, director of the Institute for Arts & Humanities, gave a presentation on the transformative potential of the digital humanities.

Annual Reports of Standing Committees

Faculty Information Technology Advisory Committee. Prof. Anselmo Lastra presented the committee’s annual report. He said that the committee has been reconstituted after having been dormant for several years, partially in response to a request from Vice Chancellor Larry Conrad for a formalized means of obtaining faculty advice on information technology issues. Prof. Lastra said that one of the issues discussed this year was how to comply with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) with respect to student grades. The committee is working on a short document providing guidance on the subject of storing grade information on portable devices. Prof. Lastra pointed out that the committee’s webpage now has a comments section, which he invited faculty members to use. Prof. Victor Schoenbach (Public Health) asked whether the committee has student members. Prof. Lastra said that it does not. Prof. Schoenbach suggested that perhaps focus groups with students would be helpful, and Prof. Lastra agreed.

Committee on Scholarships, Awards, and Student Aid. Prof. Charles Day presented the committee’s annual report. Prof. Lloyd Kramer asked whether recent increases in out-of-state tuition have had a negative impact on admissions yield. Mr. Steve Farmer, Director of Undergraduate Admissions, said that there is not yet an observable impact.

Committee on Undergraduate Admissions. Prof. Bobbi Owen presented the committee’s annual report.

Resolution on Adopting the Federal Definition of the Credit Hour

Prof. Andrea Biddle, chair of the Educational Policy Committee, laid before the Council Resolution 2012-1 On Adopting the Federal Definition of the Credit Hour. She said that our accrediting agency has pointed out that we do not currently have an official definition of “credit hour.” The purpose of this resolution is to fill that gap.

The resolution was adopted without dissent. See Appendix A.

Special Report of the Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards

Prof. Joseph Ferrell moved that the Council go into closed session to discuss nominees for honorary degrees to be awarded at Commencement 2013. The motion was adopted.

Prof. Ferrell, on behalf of the Committee on Honorary Degrees and Special Awards, presented five nominees to be presented to the Board of Trustees for approval for honorary degrees. Each nominee was approved.

Prof. Ferrell moved that the Council return to open session. The motion was adopted


Its business having concluded, the Council adjourned at 4:55 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Joseph S. Ferrell
Secretary of the Faculty

Appendix A

Resolution 2012-1. On Adopting the Federal Definition of the Credit Hour.

The Faculty Council enacts:

Section 1. The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill hereby adopts the Federal Definition of a Credit Hour (described in 34 CFR 600.2, effective July 1, 2011) as follows:

Federal Definition of the Credit Hour. For purposes of the application of this policy and in accord with federal regulations, a credit hour is an amount of work represented in intended learning outcomes and verified by evidence of student achievement that is an institutionally established equivalency that reasonably approximates:

1. Not less than one hour of classroom or direct faculty instruction and a minimum of two hours out of class student work each week for approximately fifteen weeks for one semester or trimester hour of credit, or ten to twelve weeks for one quarter hour of credit, or the equivalent amount of work over a different amount of time, or

2. At least an equivalent amount of work as outlined in item 1 above for other academic activities as established by the institution including laboratory work, internships, practica, studio work, and other academic work leading to the award of credit hours.

Section 2. This credit hour policy applies to all courses at all levels (graduate, professional, and undergraduate) that award academic credit (i.e. any course that appears on an official transcript issued by the University) regardless of the mode of delivery including, but not limited to, self-paced, online, hybrid, lecture, seminar, and laboratory.  Academic units are responsible for ensuring that credit hours are awarded only for work that meets the requirements outlined in this policy.

Section 3.

  1. 1.       The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill adheres to the Carnegie unit for contact time (750 minutes for each credit awarded) in its official Academic Calendar
  2. 2.       Additional guidelines and procedures for implementing and monitoring compliance with Federal requirements and accreditation standards related to credit hours should be recorded in a University Policy Memorandum (UPM) maintained by the University Registrar.

Submitted by the Educational Policy Committee.

Comment: As outlined in the SACS/COC Policy concerning credit hours “Students, institutions, employers, and others rely on the common currency of academic credit to support a wide range of activities, including the transfer of students from one institution to another.”  In addition, “…the federal government has relied on credits as a measure of student academic engagement as a basis of awarding financial aid.”

It is noted that Federal regulations provide institutions with some flexibility to take into consideration alternative delivery methods, types of coursework, measurements of student work, academic calendars, disciplines, and degree levels when determining credits to be awarded for student work.  The Federal definition does not dictate particular amounts of classroom time versus out-of-class student work.   Credits may be awarded on the basis of documentation of the amount of work a typical student is expected to complete within a specified amount of academically engaged time.   The basic requirement is that a credit hour “reasonably approximate” the minimum amount of work specified in Section 1, above.


Pdf of meeting materials

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