Minutes:  Undergraduate Council, April 26, 2011

Present:
Diane Bello, Kathleen Bratby, Donna Di Donato, Sarah Fuller, Jeffrey Ge, D. Kane Gillespie, Norman Goodman, Cheryl Hamilton, Roy Lacey, Deborah Malachow, Joseph Mitchell, Anne Moyer, Scott Sutherland

Minutes of previous meeting:
The minutes of the April 5, 2011 meeting were approved with minor changes.

Proposal from Journalism to pilot an Advanced College Experience (ACE) course:
Journalism has proposed to offer News Literacy to high schools in two districts, Northport and Oyster Bay.  There was general agreement that the proposal should be approved but with a request for clarification.  There was some concern that the proposal did not adequately specify the resources required to deliver the two courses.  A satisfactory response to this concern (one that will not sacrifice the SB undergraduate program) is necessary for final approval by the Council.

Continuation of the discussion of undergraduate credit limits:
The Council further considered the proposal to, 1) limit to the number of credits that incoming new students may initially register for and 2) limit the number of credits that all students may register for based on cumulative GPA, eg, students would be permitted to register for up to 19 credits only if they have at least a 3.0 GPA).

Relevant data on the credit loads of freshmen and transfer students after completion of one semester, as well as credit load and GPA data for honors students for the last three fall semesters was considered to determine if altering the maximum credit load would in fact positively impact student academic success.  There was general consensus that the data were not conclusive, providing no strong evidence that lowering the credit limit will improve overall academic performance.

Ultimately the Council agreed to approve an initial limit for incoming freshmen and transfer students of sixteen semester credits, with an exception made for those admitted to the Honors College, University Scholars, WISE and some CEAS majors where the initial limit will be 17 credits [the BME and CME majors, however, will have initial limits of 18 and 19 credits respectively].

In addition, the Council decided not to amend the University policy that permits students to register for up to 19 credits just before the start of classes, thereby continuing to permit all students the opportunity to register for up to 19 credits regardless of .grade point average or class standing.

Respectfully submitted,
Donna Di Donato