Undergraduate Council
November 28, 2007, 4:00 pm

Brian Colle (chair), Beverly Rivera, Donna di Donato, Scott Sutherland, Arlene Feldman, Cheryl Hamilton, Norm Goodman, Cynthia Dietz, Sarah Fuller, Michael Barnhardt

1. Minutes of November 14, 2007
approved with corrections

2. WISE on Diploma or Transcript

All members reviewed the proposal from WISE to put a statement of program completion on either the diploma or transcript.

Beverly Riveria supplied a document outlining the policies and procedures for diploma and transcript printing.

SUNY policy recommends that only the Degree should be printed on the SUNY diploma, thus WISE can not be printed there.

There was discussion about possibly putting WISE on the transcript. Specializations can be listed on the transcript.

Beverly R. noted that specializations do not include special programs (e.g., student programs).

Donna D. expressed concern that WISE does not seem to be a 4-year academic program, but rather a support program that stresses research. There are limited WISE-related courses taken the sophomore through senior years.

The consensus on the Council was to deny a WISE printing on the transcript or diploma. The chair (Brian) will send a memo to Carrie-Ann Miller of WISE about the Council’s decision on this matter.

3. Philosophy of D.E.C. at Stony Brook

Before looking at Stony Brook’s D.E.C. requirements more closely in the next meeting, some discussion was needed on what we want the D.E.C. to do? Some sort of philosophical statement on the D.E.C. helps with this. A few such statements were submitted by members of the Council and shared with the group.

Michael B. believes the D.E.C. is not broke. There are just problems with the number of courses offered for D.E.C.  D.

Scott S. noted that the Skills are often taken by seniors, which suggests a problem. Scott suggested that students should be required see an advisor before they can register if they have not satisfied the basic skills and D.E.C. A,B,C by the end of the sophomore year.

Joe M. asked if students can take an AP exam after they graduate from high school and get credit to satisfy skill 4? It seems in the UG Bulletin that there is nothing preventing students from doing this. Students should be able to take advantage of the College Board exams to satisfy these sorts of requirements.

Sarah F. noted that there is nothing in the Bulletin that explains why there is a need for the D.E.C.

Joe M. believes the students will not read this statement and do not care about any philosophical statement we might add to the Bulletin.

Joe M. mentioned that students should write in the 101 Writing class about why they think the D.E.C. is important. Many on the committee thought this was a good idea.

Brian C. gave his philosophy of a way to bring new life into the D.E.C. He thought students would appreciate a D.E.C. designed more similar to the News Literacy D.E.C. B option, in which students are able to share a common experience on an important topic of interest. Each section of the course can cover the topic with a certain quantitative, social, or economic angle by utilizing faculty from various departments. There was no consensus on the U.G. Council that this approach would be useful.

Cynthia passed out the General Education policies from many other AAU universities. She believes that the D.E.C. could be improved by reducing the class sizes. Many thought that this would not be feasible with current university resources.

It was recommended that Norm G. write a few sentences for the Bulletin on the D.E.C. philosophy.

Donna D. mentioned that the upper-division is not working the way it was designed. Students do not come out of the Writing program ready to write well. There is a search for a new Director for the Writing program, and the U.G. is curious who is on the search committee.

During the next meeting we will discuss our D.E.C. requirements, and what can be adjusted or changed.

Meeting adjourned 5:10 pm

Respectively submitted,
Brian Colle