Graduate Council Meeting
I. The meeting was called to order at 2:05 p.m.
Voting members and alternates present were: J. Allen, G. Alter, A. Chamberlain, J. Coleman, D. Cool,
R. Grandhi, B. Gray, M. Gruys, P. Ilagan, M. McNutt, B. Milligan, R. Ramsey, L. Ream, D. Roby, J. Runkle, M. Schultz, E. Self, T. Tarpey, J. Tipps, L. VandeCreek, S. Watamaniuk.
Non-voting members, alternates and other attendees were: B. Ayres, M. Brainerd, C. Brun, L. Caron,
D. Cipollini, D. Curry, S. Foster, E. Gilles (scribe), L. Hofmeyer, A. Hsu (chair), L. James, M. Kadakia,
C. Loranger, D. Voss, D. Williams.
II. Approval of Minutes
It was moved and seconded that the minutes of the November 10, 2011 meeting be approved as written. Motion carried unanimously.
III. Report of the Dean (A. Hsu)
a. Enrollment and Recruitment – The Graduate School received an enrollment report from Institutional Research and is taking the enrollment downturn seriously. Several initiatives were introduced last fall, i.e., retention scholarships and recruitment grant programs. Enrollment is down: (1) as part of the national downward trend (4% overall for masters programs), (2) as a result of a large decrease in the education workforce and the removal of the state’s link between teacher salary and degree level (Education students make up 1/3 of the WSU grad student population –CEHS had a 14% decrease), and (3) as a result of the quarter to semester transition. Studies have shown that many universities experience a dip in enrollment before the transition. Application data comparing Fall 2012 with Fall 2011 applications shows a 27% increase in domestic applications for Fall 2012 and 10% increase in international applications. This suggests that domestic students have been delaying their applications.
b. Graduate School External Advisory Board – First meeting held in December with seven board members. They are very enthusiastic about helping and committed to meeting quarterly (the Grad School had suggested biannually). Although their activities are still being considered, the Grad School will encourage the formation of an advancement committee to help with graduate student support.
c. Admission Software – The Graduate School is moving towards an electronic admission process. The College of Liberal Arts is assisting in the testing phase.
IV. Report of the Assistant Dean (B. Ayres)
a. Retention Scholarships – An email was sent in January with a request for grad program directors/dept chairs to identify students who are doing well in their program but have encountered financial difficulties. Students who meet the following criteria are eligible to apply for these scholarships: (1) Has completed at least one half of the credit hours towards a master’s or doctoral degree program at Wright State by the start of Fall 2012, (2) Enrolled as a full time student (registered for at least 6 semester credit hours) in a graduate degree program for Fall 2012, or enrolled part time in the final semester of graduate work, (3) Does not also hold a Graduate Tuition Scholarship (GTS), Graduate Assistantship (GA/GRA/GTA), or Graduate Council Scholarship in the same terms for which the Retention Scholarship is requested, (4) Has at least a 3.3 accumulative grade point average in their graduate career at Wright State, and (5) Test scores (GRE, MAT, Praxis, etc.) and undergraduate GPA may be considered as needed to further differentiate applicants.
Discussion: April 15 deadline may be too early to identify students. Response: The Graduate School can offer up to thirty scholarships; may have second deadline if some money remains after April 15.
b. Graduate Application Fee – The Graduate School has been in the practice of waiving the graduate application fee for students who have participated in the McNair scholars program (a program for under-represented minorities). The Grad School intends to extend this policy to also include students in the NIH-funded PREP program (Post-baccalaureate Research Education Program) and to put the policy in writing in the Graduate School’s Policies and Procedures Manual (Policy 1.50).
Dr. Hsu explained that this is an administrative procedural issue. As such, this policy is being presented as information only.
V. Committee Reports
a. Policies Committee (G. Alter)
1. Plagiarism – The Policies Committee met again to discuss the need for a policy. The committee reviewed the incident at Ohio University and invited Gary Dickstein, Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Director of Community Standards and Student Conduct, to the meeting. In the end, the committee concluded that a policy for plagiarism was not appropriate. The Student Code of Conduct already includes language that is specific to graduate students and offers a range of sanctions. The Faculty Handbook and Student Handbook both state that faculty are responsible to report plagiarism. Any change to the current policies would require action by the Executive Committee of the Faculty Senate. Gary Dickstein had shared an example of the process with the committee; the Policies Committee felt that the current policy is a thorough and fair process.
2. Policy 1.73 English Proficiency – On behalf of the Policies Committee, G. Alter moved to approve the amendment to Policy 1.73 that adds "a minimum score of 57 on the Pearson Test of English (PTE)" as a means to demonstrate English proficiency. Discussion: The question was asked if departments could require higher scores. Departments can set higher scores without the approval of the Graduate School. The Grad School just asks to be informed of the minimum score. A. Hsu called for a vote. All in favor. Motion carried.
3. Policy 3.23 Curriculum Approvals Process – On behalf of the Policies Committee, G. Alter moved to approve the amendment to Policy 3.23 that adds "Requests for course additions will also be sent to the Registrar and the Dean or Dean’s designate of the other academic colleges with a minimum of thirty days for review before final action by the Graduate School is required. Deans and their designates are encouraged to give their feedback on the proposal through their college’s Graduate Council representatives, where it can be considered both at the Curriculum Committee and by the Graduate Council as a whole." Discussion: none. A. Hsu called for a vote. All in favor. Motion carried.
4. Policy 3.100 Graduate Program Review – On behalf of the Policies Committee, G. Alter moved to approve a new policy for graduate program review, Policy 3.100. Discussion: Time interval of the program reviews was questioned. The Policies Committee and Graduate School had intentionally left this vague because of the uncertainty of how long one program review will take. The Grad School has started reviewing the PhD programs with an eventual goal of a 5-year cycle of review (one per year). With sixty masters programs, it might be feasible to set a 6-year cycle of review (ten programs a year). A process has not been established. After discussion, G. Alter withdrew the motion.
b. Membership Committee (B. Gray)
The Graduate School Dean approved 15 new graduate faculty members (3 Regular, 12 Adjunct). The Membership Committee reviewed and approved 3 new Regular grad faculty members. A reminder: As part of the annual faculty review, please ask your department/college to check graduate faculty status -do memberships need to be renewed and/or upgraded?
c. Curriculum Committee B (C. Loranger)
1. CEHS Certificate in Instructional Design for Online Learning –On behalf of the Curriculum Committee B, C. Loranger moved to approve the certificate program and the two corresponding course inventories (EDT 8490 and EDT 8590). Discussion: To clarify the purpose of the certificate, this program will teach how to develop and design online instruction. A. Hsu called for a vote. All in favor. Motion carried.
2. Course Inventory: ENG 609 Technical Writing and Professional Skills for International Students – This is a new course to be offered this summer, and includes quarter and semester options. It is mainly for LEAP students and provides an opportunity for them to substitute the TOEFL requirement by taking LEAP Level 4 and a program related graduate level course. On behalf of the Curriculum Committee B, C. Loranger moved to approve the course inventory for ENG 609. Discussion: none. A. Hsu called for a vote. All in favor. Motion carried.
d. Joint Curriculum Committees (C. Loranger)
1. Degree Title Change: Selected Studies to Professional Studies – Curriculum Committees A and B met in November to discuss the degree title change proposal from the Graduate School. Some committee members had concerns that the title of professional studies was too vague. A compromise was reached by recommending that Graduate Council require that the transcript of any student completing a Professional Studies master’s degree note a specific concentration for the student. On behalf of Curriculum Committees A and B,
C. Loranger moved to approve the degree title change from Selected Studies to Professional Studies with the concentration noted on the student transcript. Discussion: Explanation of current Selected Studies program: A student works with an advisor (and a committee of at least three faculty) to develop a program that is substantially different than any other program that is offered. There has only been one student in ten years to graduate with this degree. Concerns that the degree title, Professional Studies, was misleading and too vague were voiced. A move to refer the issue back to the curriculum committees with the recommendation to consider a different title for the program was seconded. A. Hsu called for a vote. All in favor. Motion carried.
e. Student Affairs Committee (C. Brun)
1. Outstanding Graduate Alumni Award – The Student Affairs Committee submitted their nomination for the Graduate School Alumna of the Year, Ms. Chitra Bannerjee Divakaruni, MA in English, College of Liberal Arts. She is an award winning and internationally known author, poet, and teacher of writing.
2. Graduate Council Scholars – The Committee received twelve applications: six from Engineering, four from Science and Math, one from Business, and one from Liberal Arts. Two awards will be selected from these nominees and announced by Feb. 15. Nominees can be submitted up until March 15, 2012, with a committee decision by April 1. Nominations already received and not selected in the first round will be reviewed in the second round. There is no need for a second submission of the same nominee.
VI. Career Services (C. Walker)
Charlene Walker, Associate Director of Career Services, provided a quick overview of the services they provide to undergraduate students, graduate students, and alumni. The four main services are (1) career exploration, (2) student employment, (3) cooperative education/internships, and (4) career employment job search and development. They schedule individual appointments (and have associate directors for different majors) to help with career exploration, interviewing skills, and resume and vita reviews. In their office suite, they have a Career Resource Center with 400+ items to review. Career Services has a Linked-In group that is the second largest group at WSU. Career Services organizes Fall and Spring Career Fairs and many other activities and fairs. Charlene encouraged everyone to explore the Career Services website; they have a wide variety of resources on the web.
VII. Graduate Student Assembly - No report.
VIII. Unfinished Business - None
IX. New Business - None
X. Discussion - None
XI. The meeting was adjourned at 3:30 p.m.