February 6, 2007

Undergraduate Academic Council
Meeting Date:
Tuesday, February 6, 2007, 12:00 Noon-12:45 PM.
Jeanette Altarriba, Scott Barclay, Ivan Edelson, Chris Faugere, Susanna Fessler, Carolyn
MacDonald, John Monfasani; Dan Smith; Brian Tregerman, Lisa Trubitt
Minutes from both the November 29, 2006 and December 6, 2006 meetings were reviewed and
corrections acknowledged. Both minutes, with required updates, were approved.
Changes in the Senate Charter Apropos the UAC and Its Committees:
From the last Senate meeting, Section X. 3.1 has a change in the composition of the academic
council. The director for the general education program is no longer ex officio on the
Undergraduate Academic Council. The Chair pointed out it is in the best interest of all to have
clearer lines of responsibility between faculty governance and administration by not
overstocking governance committees with administrators from the same office. Also, to the same
end the stipulation in the charter (X.3.10.2) that the Director of the General Education Program
ordinarily be the chair of the Gen Ed committee has been eliminated.
The change in Section X.3.10. change affects the committee on the gen ed program. The Vice
Provost of Undergraduate Education is no longer an ex officio member of the Gen Ed
Committee. It was pointed out that the Dean will still be able to attend Gen Ed meetings.
The Gen Ed committee assessment is now blended into the Academic Assessment Council. The
Chair pointed out that governance should be independent of administration since the governance
committee is overseeing gen ed.
Warning on Excessive S/U Courses:
Students are restricted to designating a total of two courses for S/U grading. If a student attempts
going beyond the two course limit, no warning would be given until after a student has
According to Ivan Edelson, Maria Brown mentioned that a warning has been implemented into
the system where a student is now currently alerted when exceeding their two S/U limits.
Unfortunately, the software still will not block a student from actually registering for a third S/U
course. The question was raised as to whether a two course S/U limit warning can be placed in
the system immediately after a student registers for their first S/U course. Ivan will discuss the
suggestion with Maria and update the Council.
Mechanism for UAlbany Colleges to Limit the Number of Transfer Students:
This subject originated from the School of Business’ need to reduce the number of transfer
students in order to stay within the accreditation rules. How do other displaced transfers affect
other colleges? It was requested that both UAC and UPC study the matter and its impacts. One
UAC Minutes, 2/6/07
Page 2 of 2
member mentioned a previous discussion with the Registrar that colleges now can restrict
numerical limits, versus GPA limits. The Chair will broach the subject with Bob Gibson and
provide an update to the Council at a future meeting.
Other Business:
General Education Exceptions and Substitutions:
A discussion ensued on the final decision for student-requested gen ed exceptions and
substitutions. Once the Gen Ed Committee gives a stamp of approval for a student’s request,
it is forwarded for departmental approval. It was suggested that following a four week wait
of not hearing from the department, the Gen Ed Committee would inform the student their
request for gen ed credit has been granted. The Council approved the four week wait. Gen
Ed approvals will not affect future classes since a class syllabus change would be required.
The Gen Ed Committee may believe a course meets gen ed requirements, but the department
may have enrollment or other issues to contend with and prefer not to designate a particular
course as meeting gen ed requirements.
A suggestion was made to place on the University’s website a list of courses that under no
circumstances would be designated as meeting particular gen ed requirements. Perhaps an
explanation could be provided that the courses were appealed previously for meeting gen ed
requirements and were turned down.
How far back should the University grant a student’s request for a course to be counted as
fulfilling gen ed requirements? The committee suggested a two year limit. An example was
given where a graduating student may find themselves in a bind regarding courses taken their
freshmen year. In such cases, the student’s circumstances would become a case-by-case
review situation. The Chair suggested the time limit proposal be placed on hold for a future
Subcommittee Reports:
A member suggested committees provide occasional updates to the Council of subcommittee
discussions and findings. The Chair will e-mail committee Chairs requesting each committee
provide a report, even if only one page, to keep members informed. The Chair also
mentioned the Senate requested a list of all council and committee members. Although some
of the Senate-requested information has been forwarded to the Chair, not all chairs have
Next Meeting:
The next Undergraduate Academic Council meeting will be held Tuesday, 2/27/07, 12:00 Noon,
Minutes Taken:
Notes taken by Joanne Baronner, Undergraduate Education.