SAH College Committee Minutes for Monday, September 28, 2010

SAH College Committee
Minutes for Monday, September 28, 2010
Present: Marty Allen, Colin Belby, Curtis Czerwinski, Sandy Grunwald, Shauna Sallmen,
Cynthia Berlin, John Greany, David Reineke, Jeff Steffen, Bernadette Taylor, Meredith
Guests: Vijendra Agrawal (Research and Sponsored Programs), Bonnie Bratina
(Microbiology) and Margaret Maher (Biology).
1. As last year’s Chair and this year’s Convener, Dr. Sallmen called the meeting to order
at 4:25 pm. Committee members briefly introduced themselves; we especially
welcome the new members of the committee, Drs. Allen, Belby, Czerwinski and
2. M/S/P to approve the Minutes from our April 12, 2010 meeting (7 yes, 4 abstentions).
3. Dr. Sallmen then briefly described the Committee’s scope of work, and how charges
can be brought to the committee’s attention.
4. Next order of business was elections. All elections were unanimous: Dr. Sallmen as
Chair, Dr. Greany as Co-Chair, and Dr. Thomsen as Secretary.
5. Our main task for the day was to discuss a pre-proposal for a new SAH class focused
on the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR). At the request of Dr. Agarwal,
Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, an ad hoc committee including
several College faculty members has been discussing how best to meet the new RCR
requirements for undergraduates supported by grants from two major federal funding
agencies, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and National Science Foundation
(NSF). As a representative of that committee, Peg Maher attended our meeting to
present preliminary versions of the LX forms for a 300-level, ½ semester, 1-credit
SAH class designed to more than meet the current guidelines for NIH grants
(currently the most stringent of the federal funding sources). The class would be
offered each semester, and students beginning research supported by federal grants
would be required to enroll during the first semester available to them. Current online
training required for students doing research on human subjects or other vertebrates
(IRB and IACUC trainings) would still be required, in addition to the RCR class.
Fortuitously, Bonnie Bratina is teaching a course called Scientific Integrity for the
first time in Microbiology this semester, and she attended our meeting to give her
perspective on the topic.
Our discussion focused on concerns relating to the question of which students would
be required to take the class, and how to make sure that it is general enough to serve
the needs of undergraduate researchers from all areas of the College. There seemed to
be consensus on the committee that, for a class proposal of this type to pass the
required College-wide referendum, an attitude of a multi-disciplinarity should
pervade the entire class, from the instructors teaching it (e.g. rotating instructors from
multiple departments) to the examples discussed in class.
We informally recommended that the ad hoc committee revise the course outline to
make sure the topics are of general interest and pertinence to all student researchers in
our College. We may also return to a discussion of some alternate arrangements
suggested during our discussion, such as making it a “UWL” course rather than an
“SAH” course, or having the Provost’s Office arrange with individual faculty
members to run an RCR seminar on an ad hoc basis. Finally, Committee members
decided to informally discuss the issue of RCR and the proposed course with their
Department members, to raise awareness of the new Federal requirements and how
our College might respond to them.
6. Meeting adjourned at 5:37 pm.
Respectfully submitted,
Meredith Thomsen