Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Council in Attendance:
Mike Wittie (Engineering)
Christopher Livingston (Architecture)                       
Scott Creel (Letters & Science)
Sweeney Windchief (Education)
Michael Brody (Faculty Senate)
Marc Giullian (Business)
Wade Hill (Nursing)
Hannah McKelvey (Library)
Jane Mangold (Agriculture)
Craig Ogilvie (Dean of The Graduate School)


Also in Attendance:            
Lauren Cerretti (Graduate School)
Emily Peters (Graduate School)
Ariel Donohue (Diversity & Inclusion)
John Paxton (Computer Science)
John Sheppard (Computer Science)


Maureen Kessler (Student Representative)
Dennis Ag (Arts)
Dawn Tarabochia (Health & Human Development)
Catherine Dunlop (Letters & Science)

Meeting started at 11:01 am on WebEx

October 12, 2021 minutes

  • Motion to approve by Wittie, 2nd by Mangold, unanimous pass


  • Update from the Dean
    • Graduate Fair this week: special thank you to the graduate admissions team and admissions GA, Margaret
      • Departments hosing individual 1-hour sessions
      • g. Physics reached out to 150 contacts around the country

  • Faculty Senate update (Brody)
    • Senate meeting tomorrow: discussing climate resolution
    • Will be going into Executive Session to discuss rising cost of living in Bozeman
      • Can the Faculty Senate also include a plug for new graduate housing and expansion of ASMSU childcare
      • If you know of offers that were turned down or faculty that left due to cost of living, communicate these examples through your senators, copy Michael Brody and Bradford Watson

Old Business

Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee (Donohue)

  • Ariel Donohue in attendance to answer questions on creation of DEI committee for UGC: Council wanted to know how a committee could fit in with other university initiatives
    • Next step after this is to move the item to the governance committee
  • Existing initiatives or bodies:
  • Diversity Council: 12-member official council of the university. Open meetings every month. Provides guidance/consultation and tracks progress on the diversity goals in strategic plan. There is representative for graduate education, selected by Graduate Dean. In the future, this rep could come from the UGC DEI committee.
    • Academic & Diversity Partners: representatives from academic colleges (10), selected by their Deans, spend .2 of their FTE on DEI initiatives in their college. Meet weekly.
    • A UGC DEI committee should make sure their work aligns with the academic and diversity partners in the colleges. Keep diversity council informed. Important to keep experience of graduate students in mind – different experiences of graduate students is one area where there may be a gap in both the Diversity Council and Academic & Diversity Partners.
  • Questions/Comments
    • Would a group or a liaison be most effective?
      • A group could be effective if it has the right focus. Are we implementing strategies or making recommendations? What is the capacity of the group? Most often committees want to implement, but that can be difficult. A group making recommendations and really understanding the landscape of graduate education may work well. Boundaries of the group need to be clear.
      • Could be successful if very specifically designed to inform the graduate council and graduate programs
    • How was the membership of the diversity council determined?
      • Difficult to represent all of campus with 12 members
      • Spoke to campus groups, deans, ASMSU, etc.: who people wanted to see representing and intended outcome of group
      • Decided to get as broad of representation as possible, with over representation of students
    • No group on campus primarily looking at DEI at the graduate level, individual initiatives (e.g. Sloan), but there isn’t a group thinking about this holistically
    • Important to build DEI in the structure of graduate education at MSU, such as this proposed DEI committee, not just a series of one-time initiatives
    • Is there a goal for UG education versus GR education?
      • Focus of the Diversity Council and Academic & Diversity Partners tends to be on UG education, there are significant differences between UG and graduate education; UGC has the expertise and focus on graduate education
    • Proposed committee had an equal number of graduate students and faculty—faculty would come from UGC. Governance committee can review the proposed membership.
    • Important for faculty and students to work together on this
    • Important to think about what incentivizes DEI: connection to accreditation efforts. Benefit our programs to use structures that are already there. Accountability and reporting. Many accreditation visits include self-study. Any grassroots efforts might inform self-study.
    • Do other graduate programs have faculty coordinators that could be engaged in thinking about this?
      • Graduate coordinators meet monthly. Would be a great group to loop in.
    • Connect any policy recommendations from this DEI committee into the existing value systems at the department or program level. That’s where the change happens. What work is valued, compensated, and acknowledged.
    • Coordinate with international programs
      • Member from OIP on diversity council
      • A lot of inclusion issues for our international graduate students
      • Governance committee to look at this and revise draft; some members on diversity council could potentially provide feedback; return draft to UGC


Graduate Certificate in Science Teaching in STEM, Level I Proposal

  • Pending response from proposers


Graduate Certificate in Applied Economic Analysis, Level I Proposal

  • Pending response from proposers


Provisional Admission

  • Proposed policy removes provisional admit designation and uses the probation system instead. Leveling courses would be included in offer letter, but the letter would say you’ve been admitted rather than provisionally admitted. If a student doesn’t pass the leveling courses, they feed into probation system.
    • Advantages: doesn’t have initial jolt to student, clarity of what the process is if a student does not pass the leveling courses.
    • Feedback received and adapted: 1) changed from the first term for level courses to the first time that course is offered. If fail: university probation. Second fail: suspended. 2) Request to reduce maximum of 15 leveling courses: suggested change to a maximum of 9 credits of leveling courses
    • CS: many students coming from non-CS backgrounds that need quite a bit of leveling
    • Business: international students – require US tax system course, 9 would be on the low side if need other courses. Suggest 12.
    • Education programs: if student fails a leveling course once, practice of dismissing (ex: MAT). This policy would give the student a second chance. Ask for feedback from those programs.
    • Current phrasing is up to 15 credits, can keep this and allow department flexibility
  • Best practice: have leveling courses documented with a note in DegreeWorks
    • Dean Ogilvie will send updated draft to policy committee


CSAI-CERT, Artificial Intelligence, Level I Proposal (Sheppard and Paxton)

  • John Paxton and John Sheppard in attendance to discuss the proposal and answer questions
  • Three blocks of requirements. First block (at most once course from). Possible that students will already have CS degrees and won’t need those courses. The first 2 sections are core courses. The 3rd category, no more than 2 courses, because these are more supporting courses.
  • If you already have a student with the background in CS, can waive courses that they don’t need. Council read the proposal as students could take 2 statistics courses from the second block, independent study, seminar and have an AI certificate without taking an AI course.
    • It is stated that the independent study or seminar will have to be AI related and pre-approval is required
    • Is AI “relevant” (as stated in proposal) the same as an AI course?
      • AI is very broad. Supporting courses may be very useful depending on the area of focus (e.g., Advanced Data Mining may be needed)
      • Currently hiring 3 faculty. This is based on current offerings, new courses may be added
    • Has anyone had conversations with Provost’s office about moving forward to BOR?
      • Not yet. Dean Ogilvie can work with the proposers to have this conversation with the Provost’s office. Believe concerns raised by the Provost’s office are addressed in this proposal (housed in 1 dept, leads to master’s, no new courses).
        • Provost Office has recently raised concerns with graduate certificates regarding proposals housed in The Graduate School, new courses, and certificates that don’t clearly have a pathway to a master’s program. Ex. Regulatory Science proposal.
      • Provost will attend our next meeting
        • How does this correspond to the master’s curriculum?
          • For a student that wanted to build to master’s thesis option in AI focus, all 12 would apply. If a different area, would need to work with committee. Courses only: all courses should apply.
          • This language should be added to the proposal
        • Clarify advising in proposal, what area the student wants to go into
          • Certificate students would work with a CS advisor to create their program of study
        • Proposers will update pathway to master’s, advising, and explain blocks


Associate Graduate Faculty, Revised Policy Proposal

  • Policy committee still reviewing


Co-convening Policy, Revised Policy Proposal

  • Policy committee working on changes – will have an updated draft for the next meeting


Adjourned at 12:32 pm

Next scheduled meeting – November 9, 2021 WEBEX