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Faculty Senate » 2006-2007 Annual Report

Academic Requirements Committee

2006-2007 Annual Report

July 18, 2007

To:  Mike Quinn, President, Faculty Senate

From:  Jeffrey Malone, Chair
Academic Requirements Committee
Academic Advisor, Academic Success Center/UESP

Re: Annual Report for 2006-2007

The Academic Requirements Committee (ARC) met bi-weekly during the summer term, 2006, and weekly during the academic year.  The committee considered 1009 petitions.  Meetings during the academic year averaged two hours a week, with some running as long as three hours around the “peak periods,” i.e., weeks eight, nine, and ten of each term.  Summer meetings averaged between one hour and two hours in length due to lighter petition traffic.  On a few occasions, petitions were reviewed, discussed, and voted on via email initiated by Tom Watts of the Registrar’s Office.  This situation occurred when the decision was especially time sensitive or when a requested item for consideration (medical documentation, instructor’s verification of information/dates, etc.) arrived after the meeting had adjourned. 

Late Course Adds, Late Course Drops, and Late Course/Term Withdrawals are the most common actions requested, but the committee is also asked to consider dozens of requests to “late change the grading basis” from A/F to S/U or vice versa.  At a few of the meetings, the committee was also requested to consider waiving graduation requirements (usually involving the residency requirement in particular). 

Over fourteen percent of petitions resulted in deferrals, which seems fairly high.  While the ARC initiated many deferrals by requesting further documentation (medical or otherwise) from the petitioner, a good percentage of deferrals might be negated if the student and/or instructor/department completed their sections of the petition more thoroughly.  The committee has requested that the Registrar’s Office assist with this issue by not accepting incomplete petitions, but perhaps information could also be disseminated so that instructors responding to petitions are better aware of the Academic Regulations under consideration and, therefore, can comment more appropriately on the situation at hand.

I acknowledge that the time demands of this committee are quite heavy, especially during the regular school year, but nonetheless I feel compelled to mention the inconsistent attendance of some members.  While we all are busy professionals, some members seem to feel that at certain times of the year they are too busy to attend.  This certainly hinders our ability to act as a consistent body when considering student petitions.  Perhaps the length of appointment and extent of commitment could be stressed at the time of appointment to the ARC.  I am under the impression that this issue is not a new phenomenon for the Academic Requirements Committee.

Lastly, I would like to thank Tom Watts, Heather Chermak, and the Registrar’s Office for their assistance with the work of this committee.

2006-07 Academic Requirements Membership

Jeff Malone ’08, Chair Academic Success Center
LeeAnn Baker ’07 University Honors College
Ronald Keil ’07 Mechanical Engineering
Ebi Netto ’08 Industrial Engineering
Nancy Wendt ’08 Speech Communication
Kate Elias ’09 Liberal Arts Student Services
Ken Winograd ’09 Education

Ex-Officio:  Registrar
Tom Watts (fall 2006 & spring 2007)
Heather Chermak (summer 2006, winter 2007)

Executive Committee Liaison:  Moira Dempsey