Minutes of University Graduate Council     
February 15, 2007

Present:  Michelle Hardy (AG), John Brittingham (A & A), Priscilla Wisner (BUS), Mark Nelson (EHHD), Robert Maher (ENGR), Carl Fox (DGE), Robert Rydell (L & S—Letters), Yves Idzerda (L & S—Science), Rita Cheek (NURS), Seth Humphries (STUDENT), David Weaver (FAC C).
          Also attending:  Susan Agre-Kippenhan (Dean of A & A), Todd Larkin (Art), Ron Larsen (Dept. Head of Chem & Biol Engr), Jen Jencso (DGE), MaryKay West (DGE).

Meeting commenced at 8:05 a.m. in 103 Sherrick.

UNIVERSITY GRADUATE COUNCIL AGENDA ITEMS: (Numbers refer to item numbers on the Agenda)

1.  Approval of January 18, 2007 Minutes

  • Mark asked members to check for any errors and omissions
  • Robert Rydell pointed out there was a spelling error in “tenure track”
  • Seth motioned and Michelle seconded that the minutes be accepted with above correction; vote was unanimous.


2.  Proposal for Certificate in Nursing Education

  • Rita presented an overview:  N 501, 502 and EDCI 504 have received positive student response; the proposal is to develop a 10 credit nursing certificate with N 501 thru N 504; this would meet the National League of Nursing criteria
  • Ives asked if some current classes would be stopped in order to teach the 2 new courses; Rita said N 504 was taught as an EDCI course and would now be taught as a nursing class; teaching for N 503 (summer ’08) has not yet been assigned
  • Robert Rydell asked if MSU had a specific number of credits for a certificate program; Rita said she could not find reference to the number of credits
  • Carl asked how it related to accreditation; Rita said it was not a required part of accreditation
  • Carl asked how many students would enroll; Rita said there would be 7 to 9 during summer, although some might drop due to course load
  • Carl asked if it would be offered on-line; Rita said classes would have a Web Ct platform
  • Mark asked about the possible impact on Division of Graduate Education; Carl said it would be minimal.


3.  Chemical Engineering Proposal

  • Ron Larsen is concerned with PhD candidates who reach the point of completing everything but their dissertation and then leave MSU with no degree; on their way to the PhD, candidate has met all the Master’s requirements; Ron would like such candidates to be given their MS degree
  • Ron stated that U C Davis, Rutgers, Yale, and Arizona grant MS degrees to PhD candidates
  • Ron stated that some grants are for PhD candidates ONLY; one half of chemical engineering department graduates are PhD candidates
  • Jen suggested the use “Change in Graduate Status” form (although problems with Banner system may be encountered due to short term MS status)
  • Carl asked when comp exams would take place; Ron said late in the second year; Jen would need comps before the degree would be granted; the MS degree needs to show on the transcript
  • DGE will work with Registrar and Banner
  • Mark asked if all chemical engineering candidates would want to use this; Ron said it would be only for students who do not complete their PhD, so they will have a MS degree
  • Ives asked how this would work with committee approval; Ron said there would be committee approval at the comp exam
  • Carl noted a need to clarify the professional paper requirement, so that the student clearly understands what is required; Ron said that a student now writes up a proposal
  • Jen will send a copy of “Change in Graduate Status” to Ron



4.  Proposal for Master’s Degree in Art History

  • Todd Larkin passed out a handout
  • Susan stated that the Art dept. currently offers a MFA for 60 credits; the University of Montana will terminate their MA in Fine Art with Emphasis in Art History, due to low enrollment; MSU would then have the only MA in Art History in 5 states
  • Priscilla asked if Art had adequate faculty; Todd stated that MSU has three art history faculty plus five adjuncts, so new faculty would not be required
  • An undergraduate art major must have nine credits in art history
  • Robert Rydell asked how many students would be involved; Todd said eight to ten
  • Todd stated that art students would reach out to the community as volunteers and teachers in classrooms
  • Jen asked if all students would be required to write a thesis; Todd said yes
  • Robert Maher asked about the increased thesis load on faculty; Susan did not see any problem as there are not many students involved at this time
  • Carl asked about the impact of shifting resources from art adjuncts and whether the department had enough funding to cover five Teachings Assistants; Susan said the department is looking into these items; tuition waivers may need internal redistribution
  • Carl asked about the record of the Art department’s faculty research grant funding; Todd said there was no grant record at this time
  • Carl asked if there would be any impact on undergraduate programs (such as an increase in teaching loads); Todd stated that undergraduate courses would be improved due to the new degree
  • Robert Maher stated that UGC reviews the quality and sustainability of graduate programs;  Susan said the degree would allow art history faculty to work on their areas of expertise, not just on undergraduate courses
  • Carl asked that the item be tabled for now.




2.  Nursing – continued from above

  • Michelle seconded and the vote was unanimous.


3.  Chemical Engineering – continued from above

  • Mark stated that chemical engineering no longer needs to pursue their proposal; they will use the “Change in Graduate Status” form
  • DGE will check into Banner and short term MS status
  • The quality of the MS degree when automatically granted was discussed; Robert Rydell suggested that it must meet the specific department’s admission standards.

4.  Art History – continued from above

  • Priscilla questioned the adequacy of the number of faculty (only three; what if one left MSU?) and whether two to three students in the first four years constituted adequate demand for the degree
  • Robert Rydell stated that the Political Science faculty of five offers the Masters in Public Administration so faculty number might not be vital
  • Ives stated that Art must resolve its funding issues first before proceeding;  UGC needs letters or reports from Art to prove sustainability of the degree
  • David stated that the Academic Affairs Committee of the Faculty Council would require additional information before it could act on the proposal
  • Priscilla wanted to know how many students the colleges referred to taught; also, why there was no such degree in five states
  • Michelle wanted to know how many art students and faculty University of Montana had before it discontinued their degree
  • Carl and Mark will communicate UGC concerns to the Art department; further discussion is needed to address possible future problems (funding, teaching loads, adequate demand, etc)
  • One suggestion was to conduct a survey of current MSU art undergraduates to determine how many would pursue this degree.


5.  Co-convening and Cross listing

  • Rob stated that there are details to be worked out, such as (1) quality—teach at 400 level but give out 500 level credit; (2) resources—co-convene because MSU does not have enough money to offer a full graduate program
  • Michelle said more funding from MSU is not likely to happen
  • John stated that co-convening helps with resource problems
  • Michelle pointed out the possible problem of faculty addressing undergraduates or graduates mainly
  • Carl stated that a department would need to submit very specific outlines of what is expected from undergraduates and from graduates
  • Carl asked members to email Michelle for further discussion.


6, 7, and 8 – To be discussed at future meeting.

Meeting adjourned at 10:05 a.m.

MaryKay West
Division of Graduate Education