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Governance Minutes Archive

October 17, 1990



                        COMMISSION ON GRADUATE STUDIES

                          17 OCTOBER 1990, 3:30 P.M.

                                206 SANDY HALL



  Present: Drs. Boyle, Brown, Norm Dodl (for Michael Moore), Hooper,

           R. Johnson, Roy Kirkpartrick (for James Burger), Lutze, McCoy

           O'Brien, O'Neil, Snoke, Sporakowski, Stephenson, Stout, Mr.  David

           Lush and Anthony Townsend


  Visitors: Ms. Susan Truelove - Spectrum, Marvin Foushee - Registrars





  1.  ANNOUNCEMENTS -  Dr. Arthur Snoke stated that the "D" Grade Resolution

      was reviewed and approved by the Faculty Senate with only one dissent-

      ing vote.


      Dr. Snoke noted that Course History Summary Reports for undergraduates

      are routed through the Colleges to the departments.  Departments may

      not be aware that these grade summaries can be obtained for graduate

      students by submitting a request to Bernard Jones or Jerry Robertson in

      Student Systems Computer Services.


      Dr. Hooper announced that the Nebraska Study - a national survey of

      Graduate Assistant Stipends, has been received by the Graduate School.

      We are analyzing this report and will bring the results to the CGS in

      two tables: (1) comparing VPI against that list of institutions that we

      use as our peer list for salary and other comparisons (2) the nation-

      wide average that covers many departments.  We have not gained any

      ground since last time when we were well below the average.  We will

      share these tables with you at our earliest opportunity.


  2.  Approval of the Agenda - Dr. Hooper added to the agenda the appoint-

      ments of two ad hoc committees (1) fellowships and (1) commencement ad-

      visory group for the CGS.  This was added to the agenda after the

      Graduate Student Assembly report.


      Item 6 - Kathye Johnston is out of town today but will attend our meet-

      ing on November 7.  Dr. Hooper will speak on one item relative to

      stipends in replacement of her discussion today.


      Dr. Hooper also added discussion regarding our calendar for the next

      two CGS meetings.


      The agenda was adopted with the above listed amendments.


  3.  APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF 19 SEPTEMBER 1990 -  the minutes were approved

      with minor corrections.


  4.  GRADUATE STUDENT ASSEMBLY - David Lush and Anthony Townsend addressed

      the following issues:


      Four resolutions were passed:  (1) A resolution on the tuition sur-

      charge by the GSA was approved indicating that the GSA was not opposed

      to the surcharge however we would like some indication as to how much

      of the surcharge monies will be coming back to the graduate community

      in any form.  (2) Racial Harassment Resolution- Supporting University

      efforts to increase civility on campus.  This resolution supports for-

      mation of a task force on ethno-violence.  (3) Graduate Student Parking

      Resolution - States that the parking committee be notified that the GSA

      supports the granting graduate students faculty/staff parking privi-

      leges.  This action follows in response to letters from Dr. Hooper and

      Dr. Goodale in support of the graduate students have the option of

      faculty/staff parking.  (4) Commission on Graduate Studies Resolution -

      A proposal before the University Task Force is a restructuring of Uni-

      versity Governance which establishes a Commission on Academic Affairs

      combining the Commission on Undergraduate Affairs and the Commission on

      Graduate Studies.  The GSA Resolution proposed that the Commission on

      Graduate Studies be retained as it presently is in the governance



      Two of the lecture/discussions (1) Grant Writing and Grant Research

      Proposal Writing and (2) Educational Methodology have been held.  Both

      series will be conducted again in the Spring Semester.  The next

      lecture/discussion to be scheduled for fall will be "Legal and Ethical

      Issues in the Classroom" with Dr. Kern Alexander.  That date is yet to

      be scheduled.


      One issue that has come to the attention of the GSA is the proposal to

      reclassify student organizations at VPI.  The concern that the GSA has

      for this item is that all organizations that are not either university

      student life program organizations or chartered student organizations,

      become registered student organizations which would include all gradu-

      ate organizations and professional societies involving graduate stu-

      dents.  The Student Government Association (undergraduate counterpart

      to the GSA) would have financial control over these registered student

      organizations.  We do not feel that the SGA has the ability or the

      right to provide for graduate organizations.


      Dr. Snoke suggested that a future agenda item for the CGS be the re-

      structuring of the University Council to include a Commission on Aca-

      demic Affairs.  The report, making the restructuring suggestions, will

      be made available to this commission for discussion.   Tony Townsend

      stated that this issue is under negotiation.  The last proposal that he

      made to the committee that would seem acceptable to the graduate commu-

      nity was that we have a Graduate Commission and an Undergraduate Com-

      mission.  Under the Graduate Commission would be a committee of

      graduate studies, a commencement function and a committee on graduate

      affairs.  Under the Undergraduate Commission would be similar group of

      committees that currently function for undergraduates.


      Dr. Stephenson questioned the GSA surcharge resolution.  Dr. Hooper

      stated that Kathye Johnston would be the person to respond to such

      questions and would do so at the November 7 meeting.  David Lush stated

      that the resolution had been forwarded on to Minnis Ridenour's office

      for a response.  Dr. Snoke stated that he had talked with Kathye

      Johnston about this issue and she had concurred that the surcharge was

      simply the changing of the total of dollar amount of tuition that goes

      to the income of education process.


      (4a)  Dr. Hooper spoke about the fellowship programs.  The staff of the

      graduate school has taken a thorough review of all funds available and

      has discussed the accounts with representatives from the foundation.

      What he would like to do is to establish a committee within the CGS to

      advise us on a complete review of what we are now doing and what we

      might possibly do in the future.  Dr. Hooper asked for volunteers for

      this committee.  John Eaton, Mike O'Brien and Bill Stephenson were

      named to this committee.  David Lush stated that the GSA would ask for

      a volunteer for this committee and will notify us.  The charge of this

      committee will be to look very thoroughly at all funds that are under

      the jurisdiction of the Graduate School and to recommend continuation,

      change, etc.



      (4b)  Dr. Hooper asked that Dean Martha Johnson chair a sub-committee

      which will interact with Dr. Kennedy's committee (University Commence-

      ment Committee) to review our needs and thoughts early in the year.

      David Lush will ask for a volunteer for this committee and will notify

      us.  Dr. Hooper will call members of the CGS asking for assistance with

      this committee.


      (4c)  Dr. Hooper reviewed the meeting dates for the CGS for November

      and December.   The November 14 meeting will have to be cancelled due

      to a conflict with the Commission on Research.  Our next meeting will

      be November 7 and the next meeting after that will be December 5.  Dr.

      Stephenson suggested an extension of our meeting to 5:30 for these two

      meetings so all issues can be addressed.  This suggestion was approved.

      The November and December meetings will begin at 3:30 and end at 5:30.



      presented the minutes and they were accepted as submitted.  (Please see

      attachment 2 for the complete committee report.  Mike O'Brien will be

      available to discuss the specific nature of any revisions to course and

      program proposals at 231-5512.)


      Dr. Snoke stated in the minutes last year we had programs that were

      formally approved.  In the report to the University Council all that

      was stated was that the CPCC minutes were approved and the program pro-

      posals were not listed.  Dr. Snoke asked that the minutes of today's

      meeting amend the previous minutes and list these program proposal

      items.  The program proposals are as follows:




                          M.A. -  Philosophy

                          Ph.D. - Philosophy

                          M.A. -  Spanish Studies

                          M.A. -  French Studies

                          M.M. -  Music Performance

                          Ph.D. - Political Science

                          Ph.D. - Exercise Physiology



  6.  GRADUATE  STUDENT SURCHARGE AND STIPENDS - Kathye Johnston could not be

      at the meeting today however Dr. Hooper circulated a letter that he had

      sent to Deans, Department Heads and Graduate Advisors for  the  members

      to  review.   Dr.  Hooper discussed the memo that Dr. Carlisle had sent

      regarding salary actions that will occur in December of this year.  Dr.

      Hooper discussed the 2% reduction in  stipends  and  hourly  wages  for

      graduate  students  who are on those and were given their full 5% raise

      in July.  This does not apply to students who are  on  fellowships  and

      scholarships.    The letter that Dr. Hooper has sent to the departments

      is to clarify the issues for the students and  the  faculty.  (see  at-

      tached letter)



      dressed the issue of a posthumous degree for Ms. Jean Black de Cornejo.

      Ms. de Cornejo was a student in the Department of  Curriculum  and  In-

      struction  with  Dr.  Larry Weber serving as her advisor.  Dr. Dodl re-

      viewed past circumstances involving the awarding of posthumous  degrees

      by  the CGS.  After discussion, the membership voted that the degree be

      awarded contingent upon a letter from the department head in support of

      this award.  There was one dissenting vote and one abstention regarding

      this item.


      Dr. Hooper asked that the Degree Requirements, Standards, Criteria  and

      Academic  Policies  Committee take up this matter and define the stand-

      ards for posthumous degrees.  Dr. James Burger chairs this committee.



  8.  INCOMPLETE GRADE POLICY - Dr. Hooper circulated copies of the page from

      the Policies and Procedures Manual regarding to  the  incomplete  grade

      policy.    He noted that policy, as it is written, is not being carried

      out.  An incomplete grade is to be removed by the end of  the  students

      first subsequent semester of enrollment and if this is not done the in-

      completes  are  changed  to  "F"  grades.    The  practice  is that the

      Registrar's office sends a listing of the incompletes to the instructor

      and asks what the instructor wishes to do about them.    The  professor

      has  various  options  regarding  the incompletes and therefore the "I"

      grades are not being converted to a "F" grade.    Marvin  Foushee  dis-

      cussed  the  procedures  followed by the registrar's office.  Dr. Snoke

      addressed the issue of the course history summary reports  which  could

      be helpful in determining the "I" grades for students.  Dr. Snoke asked

      why  legitimate incomplete grades are automatically calculated into the

      QCA as a F grade.  Mr. Foushee will investigate some of  these  issues.

      The  incomplete  issue  was referred to the Degree Requirements, Stand-

      ards, Criteria and Academic Policies committees for review.


      Norm Dodl asked that the issue of having the advisors name added to the

      grade history reports be reviewed.


      Mike O'Brien asked that when the committee reviews this issue that they

      investigate whether summer enrollment is considered  under  "subsequent

      semester  of  enrollment".   Mr. Foushee stated that summer session en-

      rollment is not a consideration for these reviews.   Dr. Hooper  agreed

      with his statement.


      Mr.  Foushee  stated  that the only reason that he can provide for this

      policy not being enforced now is employee turnover in  the  registrar's




      has taken action on this issue and it is being presented today for  in-

      formation  purposes.    Dr. Snoke asked why this issue is restricted to

      international students.  Dr. Hooper stated that the international  stu-

      dent  issue  was  the first one presented.  The full discussion did in-

      clude whether all students should have mandatory insurance.  One of the

      motions was that we have a requirement for all students and  the  issue

      will come back to us for action.


  10. TRUTH AND PACKAGING POLICY - Vague statements in offer letters have new

      students  concerned  about  the  duration of their support.  Dr. Hooper

      asked that this group discuss the issue and come up  with  some  guide-

      lines and advice for our faculty regarding what we say and don't say in

      appointment letters for graduate students.


      Mike O'Brien noted that it would be helpful to have guidelines for what

      can and cannot be said in recruiting and appointment situations.


      Dr.  Snoke  asked whether the Commission would mainly be presenting ad-

      vice or whether a policy would be established.  Dr. Hooper stated  that

      possibly a recommendation could be presented to the Provost's office to

      make  it a requirement and then put the Graduate School in the position

      of reviewing, monitoring and otherwise enforcing the policy.


      After a brief discussion, this issue was referred to the Graduate  Stu-

      dent Relations Committee for review.  Dr. Mike Moore, chair of the com-

      mittee, is unavailable to serve the Commission until January.  Dr. John

      Eaton  will  head the committee.   Other members will be David Lush and

      Tony Townsend.  Steven Boyle volunteered for membership on this commit-

      tee to review this issue.  The charge of this committee will be to take

      a look at this issue and suggest what things we can  constructively  do

      to prevent and to help people avoid abuses.


  11. SECURING THESES AND DISSERTATIONS - this item is being presented to the

      Commission  as an information item.  We have developed a policy for se-

      curing theses and dissertations.  This will be a future item to discuss

      and resolve at a future meeting.




  12. OTHER  BUSINESS - Dr. Snoke suggested that the consent items be deleted

      from the agenda page.  He also suggested that we leave off "Other Busi-

      ness" on the agenda because that item will be taken care of during  the

      "Approval of the Agenda" earlier in the meeting.


  13. ADJOURNMENT - 5:04 p.m.


                                     Respectfully submitted,





                                     John L. Eaton



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