STONY BROOK UNIVERSITY
UNDERGRADUATE COUNCIL

Minutes from November 14, 2007 Meeting

In Attendance:  Joseph Antonelli, Michael Barnhart, Brian Colle, Donna Di Donato, Cynthia Dietz, Arlene Feldman, Sarah Fuller, Rick Gatteau, Kane Gillespie, Norm Goodman, Joe Mitchell, Scott Sutherland.

The meeting began at 4:05 p.m.

B. Colle distributed the minutes from the 10/3/07, 10/10/07, and 10/24/07 meetings.  He asked committee members to review the minutes and e-mail him with any corrections or edits.

Agenda items discussed:

WISE Proposal:

D. Di Donato distributed a proposal forwarded to her by Imin Kao, Associate Dean in the College of Engineering & Applied Sciences.  The proposal outlines criteria for women in the WISE (Women in Science & Engineering) program to satisfy in order to have a WISE notation on their Stony Brook diploma. 

D. Di Donato reported that the Undergraduate Council had previously been asked to consider a WISE remark on the Stony Brook transcript.  D. Di Donato shared that the Council rejected this request since the curriculum, at that time, was more of a mentoring program and not an academic 4-year program.  The Council, at that time, asked for a new proposal that outlined a 4-year program.

Questions arose by Council members regarding which notations are currently included on the diploma.  Council members reported that Phi Beta Kappa membership, Honors (for Honors College and academic departmental honors) were noted on the transcript, but the Council wanted confirmation from Beverly Rivera, University Registrar, who was unable to attend the meeting.

Another question arose regarding the specifics of the WISE request.  It is unclear if WISE is seeking a statement that says “WISE” or “WISE Honors Program” on the diploma.

J. Mitchell recalled the Council’s discussion regarding student groups being included on transcripts and the issue of allowing exclusionary groups on transcripts.  In this case, should WISE as a female-only group be permitted to have a remark on the diploma if it excludes membership on the basis of gender?  J. Mitchell also stated that it is appropriate for academic groups to be noted on the transcript.

K. Gillespie asked whether or not transcript remarks should also appear on the diploma, and vice versa.  No consensus was reached on this question, and the issue was tabled until the Council speaks with Beverly Rivera.

S. Fuller brought the discussion back to the issue of what WISE is seeking on the diploma.  She asked if the statement on the diploma will indicate completion of the WISE program, or earning honors in the WISE program.  She suggested they consider making two levels.

S. Sutherland commented it was reasonable to have a remark on the diploma for 4-year programs.

S. Fuller commented that the Bulletin does not state WISE as an honors program at the University.  She also stated that we need a clearer proposal of what WISE is seeking.

DEC Discussion:

B. Colle continued discussion on the DEC evaluation process.  He suggested we look at our DEC categories compared to other AAU institutions, including names and descriptions.

N. Goodman stated that assessment is important.  He said we need to think about what it is the DEC is supposed to do.  We need to clarify what it is we want our general education program to accomplish.

S. Fuller suggested we look at DEC categories and get reaction to whether the categories are valid – or if new categories are more pertinent.  She also said we need to look at the delivery of courses.

N. Goodman noted that SUNY requires certain categories of courses to be fulfilled.

B. Colle said he looked at other large institutions.  For example, he read some eye-catching categories used at Ohio State.

C. Dietz shared some of the research she did on other schools’ general education requirements, stating that Ohio State, Penn State, and MIT are good models.

S. Sutherland stated that we need a resolution on the philosophical question of what general education should be at Stony Brook.

B. Colle commented that we need to make decisions and progress on this issue before the end of the semester.

The meeting adjourned at 5:10 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Rick Gatteau