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THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY

 

T H E S E N A T E R E C O R D

 

Volume 31 ------ DECEMBER 2, 1997 ------ Number 3

 

The Senate Record is the official publication of the University Faculty Senate of The Pennsylvania State University, as provided for in Article I, Section 9 of the Standing Rules of the Senate and contained in the Constitution, Bylaws, and Standing Rules of the University Faculty Senate, The Pennsylvania State University 1997-98.

The publication is issued by the Senate Office, Birch Cottage, University Park, PA 16802 (Telephone 814-863-0221). The Record is distributed to all Libraries across the Penn State system. Copies are made available to faculty and other University personnel on request.

Except for items specified in the applicable Standing Rules, decisions on the responsibility for inclusion of matters in the publication are those of the Chair of the University Faculty Senate.

When existing communication channels seem inappropriate, Senators are encouraged to submit brief letters relevant to the Senate's function as a legislative, advisory and forensic body to the Chair for possible inclusion in The Senate Record.

Reports which have appeared in the Agenda of the Meeting are not included in The Record unless they have been changed substantially during the Meeting or are considered to be of major importance. Remarks and discussion are abbreviated in most instances. A complete transcript and tape of the meeting is on file.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. Final Agenda for December 2, 1997

A. Summary of Agenda Actions

B. Minutes and Summaries of Remarks

II. Enumeration of Documents

A. Documents Distributed Prior to December 2, 1997 ------ Appendix I

B. Attached

Door Handout - Special Committee on General

Education - Committee -------------------------------------- Appendix II

Door Handout - Special Committee on General

Education - Felix Lukezic ----------------------------------- Appendix III

Door Handout - Special Committee on General

Education - Bill Lasher ------------------------------------- Appendix IV

Door Handout - Special Committee on General

Education - Scott Kretchmar ----------------------------- Appendix V

Corrected Copy - Special Committee on General

Education - S. Kretchmar Door Handout -------------- Appendix VI

Corrected Copy - Special Committee on General

Education Report ------------------------------------------ Appendix VII

Attendance -------------------------------------------------- Appendix VIII

III. Tentative Agenda for February 3, 1998 --------------------- Appendix IX

 

 

FINAL AGENDA FOR DECEMBER 2, 1997

 

 

A. MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING -

Minutes of the October 21, 1997, Meeting in The Senate Record 31:2

B. COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE - Senate Curriculum Report

(Blue Sheets) of November 21, 1997

C. REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL - Meeting of November 11, 1997

D. ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE CHAIR -

E. COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY -

F. FORENSIC BUSINESS -

J. *INFORMATIONAL REPORTS -

Senate Committee on University Planning

Costing of the Special Committee on General Education Proposal

G. *UNFINISHED LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS -

Special Committee on General Education

Final Report and Recommendations of the Special Committee on General Education

H. LEGISLATIVE REPORTS

Committees and Rules

Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure

I. ADVISORY/CONSULTATIVE REPORTS -

J. INFORMATIONAL REPORTS -

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid

Reserved Spaces Program

Report of High School Nondegree Students Enrolled in Credit Courses

Faculty Benefits

Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities

Annual Report for 1996-97

Intercollegiate Athletics

Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97

Student Life

Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing

Undergraduate Education

Grade Distribution Report

Mid-Semester Evaluation Process 1992-96

K. NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS -

L. COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY -

M. ADJOURNMENT -

 

SUMMARY OF AGENDA ACTIONS

The Senate passed two Legislative Reports:

Special Committee on General Education – "Final Report and Recommendations." This was the final report of this special committee and called for the adoption of the Vision, Mission and Goals for General Education, ten recommendations and the framework for General Education at Penn State. (See Record, page(s) 18-44, Door Handouts Record Appendices II, III, IV and V, Corrected Copy Record Appendices VI and VII and Agenda Appendix "C.")

Committee on Committees and Rules – "Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure." This report eliminates a system of dual membership that was originally established to try to maintain better liaison between five of the standing committees. (See Record, page(s) 45 and Agenda Appendix "D.")

There were no Advisory and Consultative Reports.

The Senate received nine Informational Reports:

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid - "Reserved Spaces Program." This is an annual report to track the reserved spaces for admission by selected categories. (See Record, page(s) 45-46 and Agenda Appendix "E.")

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid - "Report of High School Nondegree Students Enrolled in Credit Courses." This is an annual report to identify the number of high school nondegree students enrolled during the preceding year. (See Record, page(s) 46 and Agenda Appendix "F.")

Committee on Faculty Benefits – "Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges." This report collates the benefits of faculty retiree in a single document. A brochure published by the Office of Human Resources will keep these rights and privileges updated. (See Record, page(s) 46 and Agenda Appendix "G.")

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities – "Annual Report for 1996-97." This is an annual report on the activities of the committee with caseload comparisons over the last 9 years. (See Record, page(s) 47 and Agenda Appendix "H.")

Intercollegiate Athletics – "Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97." This is the annual report of the NCAA Faculty Athletic Representative regarding eligibility and scholarships. (See Record, page(s) 47-48 and Agenda Appendix "I.")

Student Life – "Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing." This report is a part of an information series on alcohol-related issues and the effect of alcohol on the academic environment at the University. (See Record, page(s) 49 and Agenda Appendix "J.")

Undergraduate Education - "Grade Distribution Report." This is an annual report on the distribution of grade data for baccalaureate students. (See Record, page(s) 49-51 and Agenda Appendix "K.")

Undergraduate Education - "Mid-Semester Evaluation Process 1992-96." This is a report to inform the University community concerning the effects of feedback of any grade of less than "C" to first and second semester students at the end of the sixth week of classes. (See Record, page(s) 51 and Agenda Appendix "L.")

 

 


The University Faculty Senate met on Tuesday, December 2, 1997, at 1:30 p.m. in Room 112 Kern Building with Louis Geschwindner, Chair, presiding. One-hundred-sixty-five Senators signed the roster.

Chair Geschwindner: It is time to begin.

MINUTES OF THE PRECEDING MEETING

Moving to the minutes of the preceding meeting. You have received The Senate Record, providing a full transcription of the proceedings of the October 21, 1997 meeting. It was also sent to all University Libraries. Are there any corrections or additions to these documents? All those in favor of accepting the minutes, please signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: Opposed? The minutes are accepted. Thank you.

COMMUNICATIONS TO THE SENATE

You have received the Senate Curriculum Report for November 21 in the mail.

REPORT OF SENATE COUNCIL

Also, you should have received the report of the Senate Council, the meeting of November 11. This is an attachment in The Senate Agenda for today’s meeting.

ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE CHAIR

Announcements by the Chair. I refer you to my remarks to Senate Council that are contained in the minutes attached to today’s Agenda, and I will avoid repetition of these items.

The Faculty Advisory Committee to the President met on November 11. Chair-Elect Berkowitz reported to Senate Council on that meeting as recorded in the minutes of Senate Council attached to today’s agenda.

The Senate Chair is your representative on a number of University Committees. I would like to report to you on some of those committees at this time.

The first of these is the Summer Session Steering Committee. The responsibility for the Summer Session is vested in the Office of Undergraduate Education, particularly Associate Dean Ingrid Blood. A survey is being prepared to be distributed in January to assess student needs and interest in summer study at Penn State. The survey will be distributed via the internet. Early in the new year, faculty will be asked by their deans to encourage students to respond to the survey. I, too, ask you for your support as this study is undertaken.

I also serve on the Martin Luther King Commemoration Planning Committee. I have written a memo to faculty who are scheduled to teach diversity courses for the spring semester, encouraging the inclusion of the Martin Luther King events as appropriate in your classes. I would also like to encourage everyone to participate in the various events in January, as your schedules permit.

The last committee I wish to comment on briefly is the Schreyer Honors College Dean Search Committee. The Committee has made significant progress, and you will be hearing about the next steps in the process also in January.

I received a request from Dean Barbara Shannon, chair of the search committee for Dean of the College of Education, that encourages us all to help identify outstanding candidates for this Dean position and communicate nominations to her. If you are not able to find a position announcement through other sources, you may contact the Office of the President. That concludes my remarks.

COMMENTS BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNIVERSITY

We now move to "Comments by the President of the University." President Spanier is here today and will make some comments.

Graham B. Spanier, President: Thank you very much. In the interest of time with regard to today's agenda, I'm going to be very brief and restrict my comments to the forthcoming discussion on the general education curriculum and hope that you would limit your questions to me on that topic, as well, unless there is something very pressing. I want to begin by commending the committee and the leadership of the Faculty Senate for the hard work that they have invested over the last year and a half in getting us to this agenda item today. As you know, the Senate leadership last year and I together were strongly encouraging this particular process, and I feel very good about where it has ended. If I could just go back to something I said to the general education committee very early in the discussion, it seems to me that there are two very key questions that were on the table when this process began. The first is, what is unique about a Penn State education? We talk about Penn State education and the Penn State experience as if it means something in particular, and I would like to suggest that, while for some students and some of our alumni, as they think back, their connection to Penn State may have to do with the name, the brand label, the feel of the place, the environment, friendships, where they lived, and what organizations they were in. Surely coming to a University like this, whatever campus the student might be on, has something to do, and I would hope predominantly, has to do, with the quality of the educational experience--what happens in the classroom. Really, there's only one set of experiences, academically, that all students have in common, and that's the general education curriculum. Once they get sorted out into their majors and into their colleges, they are all doing something different. What every Penn State student has in common, and, therefore, what is unique about a Penn State education in contrast to any other college or university, is the general education curriculum. So, taking up this issue is very important to begin with and a very important part of our identity. But, the second overriding question is, what set of knowledge, exposure and skills in academic experiences do we expect an educated citizen, an educated graduate, an educated family member, an educated leader, to have as a part of their academic repertoire in the 21st century? What do we, the faculty of this University, believe a student ought to have in their bag of skills as they go out? What kind of exposure do they need to have to build on as a part of their continuing and life-long education? So, addressing those two issues really more than anything else, as simply as I can put it, forms the basis for discussing what should be in that general education curriculum. Now, I would suspect that virtually everyone here is probably in about the same boat that I am. You've read the report. You like most of what's in there--maybe 90 percent; maybe 95 percent; maybe 99 percent. There probably aren't too many people who like 100 percent of it. That's probably true of the Committee, as well, because it took them a year of debating with each other to decide what exactly should go in and how to fine tune it. We will never as a University community reach a point where we all agree 100 percent on what should be in there, and if that were to be our goal in deciding on this, we would probably not be able to come to a resolution of this today and reach approval. But my view I hope is like many of yours in here, that you get as close as you can and you have a little bit of faith in what the Committee had to struggle through to get there, and then you have a little bit of faith in the implementation process where there will be quite a bit of oversight and continuing discussion about the fine-tuning of this in the hope that it will all fall into place very nicely. So, this is a round about way of my saying that I am strongly supportive of the process that we've been through and believe that it's important for the future of this University and how we talk about ourselves, how we sell ourselves, how we present ourselves to new students and their parents and families. We need to be able to embrace and wrap our arms around a new general education curriculum and really have it provide the academic foundation for the future of this University, at least in the next several years, and then move ahead with it. I can say--and Provost Brighton is prepared to say more about the specifics of this later--but I can say quite clearly to all of you that the University administration is prepared to invest some new resources into this. We have for the last year or so been looking at new funds, reallocation of funds, the transfer of funds that are currently designated for temporary purposes to permanent uses, to support the implementation of this general education curriculum. We believe, from our perspective, it will be a very substantial investment, and we also believe it is quite consistent with the goals of long-range plans and other recent budgetary decisions where our first priority has been to invest in new faculty positions, and particularly new faculty positions that are designed to enhance faculty-student ratios and reduce faculty workloads. We believe we can direct those same principles toward general education, bring in some additional faculty, and enhance smaller class sizes. We believe that we are prepared to do this under almost any scenario. So, it's important for me to say to you in my remarks today that we are prepared to support this financially. Well, that's my pitch for this afternoon. Now, let me open it up to any questions you'd like to pursue along these lines with me.

M. Susan Richman, Capital College, Penn State Harrisburg: Ever since the Pepsi deal a few years back when University Park got, wasn't it $6 or $12 million, and everyone else…

Senator: Fourteen.

M. Susan Richman: Fourteen million. …and everyone else got $50,000 to split among them, I've been rather alert to the divvying of funds. When I read that the plan was to maybe give $1 million to University Park and $1 million to everywhere else, I got some figures, and while they're rough, I came up with roughly 35 percent of the freshman at University Park and 65 percent everywhere else. And, while I expect the sophomores to be a little bit different, not totally out of line with that, and so I wonder why this 50/50 split with the resources.

President Spanier: Well, I'm not sure the way you've summarized the methodology is quite the way it works. It's much more complex than that. First of all, there isn't some big huge pot of funds out there that are ready to be divvied up according to some formula. Any funds that are given out will be given out according to principles that are in place right now for how we operate the budget of the University. Much of our funding right now, especially at the campuses, is enrollment driven, and that would continue to be the case. We have funds right now that we have identified in this year's budget that are ready to be allocated, and that will continue to be the case on our enrollment-driven formulas. Now, keep this in mind: there is nothing in the general education curriculum that will result in a net increase of student credit hours at Penn State University. We're talking about replacing a 45- or 46-credit hour general education curriculum with a slightly different--it's not dramatically different, actually--general education curriculum of approximately the same size. So, there is not going to be a huge infusion, there's not going to be any infusion, of new students as a result of this general education curriculum. The two costs that are likely to exist will be transitional costs, because there's some retooling in curriculum planning and there might be some bulges here while it dips here, and there will be costs, I assume, associated with the extent to which some of the new general education curriculum results in a movement towards smaller class sizes. There will be some additional needs there. Now, many colleges already operate, for example, the freshman seminar in small class sizes. And it's unclear how much greater demand there will be. On most of our Commonwealth College campuses freshman classes are rather small. I don't think there are any freshman classes on your campus, are there?

M. Susan Richman: No, but within the college.

President Spanier: Within the college, right. At the Schuylkill Campus, there would be some. And at University Park, there could be a significant change in culture in some colleges perhaps which don't do that now. So, all of this needs to be looked at with a combination of variables relating to current deployment of funds, enrollment-driven models, how enrollments may shift over time, colleges that have already made a substantial investment in this direction and, therefore, maybe should not be penalized in any way but should be rewarded for it, but also colleges that may have significant additional needs because of that. So, we're not going to impose some brand new funding model, and you know as President and John Brighton as Provost, we try to be a little stingy in operating the University because any dollar we spend one place is a dollar we don’t have to spend somewhere else. We do have in the back of our minds this idea that in the end we're not generating additional credit hours. Our role is to fully support this and to get the right and the most fair distribution of resources to make it work properly. That's a challenge from an administrative standpoint as well. But, the good news in all of that unlike efforts like this that maybe have been undertaken in the past at Penn State, and I know have been unlike efforts that have been undertaken at other universities--is to try to do something like this thinking it doesn't cost anything, and we believe it does. We believe there will be transitional costs, and we believe that if a class was now taught with 200 students and we're going to have four sections of 50 or eight sections of 25 or 10 sections of 20 or whatever it might be, that you're going to need some additional faculty to do those things. We see that as a good investment for the University generally because we do not propose to use those new resources to go out and hire a cadre of instructors or graduate assistants to do it. We primarily anticipate investing those funds in new professorial-level faculty members, which, of course, has the added benefit of bringing in new colleagues, new researchers, new people who are providing service and so on. So, it will benefit the University in other ways as well.

Chair Geschwindner: Other questions for Dr. Spanier?

Brian B. Tormey, Altoona College: I'm still having trouble , I guess, because it isn't quite clear to me. I still am aware of the $1 million you spread across the CES campuses, and yet at the CES campuses, at least at some of them, we are trying to develop new degrees of courses, and that does mean staffing positions and certainly at upper-level courses. The only way I see this happening is by reallocation of money--existing money. And yet, it doesn't seem to add up if 65 percent of the freshman are at CES campuses.

President Spanier: I need to be very clear about something. We have never announced that we are divvying up $1 million across CES campuses for this purpose. Maybe you're referring to an e-mail message I got from somebody yesterday.

Brian B. Tormey: No, I was referring to the Provost's remarks at Council.

President Spanier: Okay. Well, we are not divvying up $1 million for this purpose on CES campuses. So, you have to look at the fine print, I guess the footnotes or something. There is approximately $1 million that we anticipate that we are very close to being able to distribute to CES campuses, principally from the following sources, that we have, for the last couple of years, as our CES has rebounded and enrollments have come to life once again, and according to the normal funding formulas, been able to redistribute some additional funds to those campuses. They had been designated as temporary funds because, according to the formulas and the funding principles, the enrollments hadn't been secure enough and around long enough over a three-year cycle to say we really believe that you have these on a continuing basis. Because of the rebound in enrollments and because of the enrollments that we experienced this fall and that we anticipate for next fall, we believe that it will be somewhere in the neighborhood of $1 million of new funds--and John could probably give you more precise numbers--that we are ready to distribute either in the form of new money that the campuses have never seen before or money that they may have been allocated temporarily that we're now prepared to say are permanent. And by making them permanent, they can go out and hire more faculty and do something with them. Those funds would be distributed primarily the way they always have been, and that is according to the normal enrollment-driven formulas. Now, it is up to the campuses--it's up to the campus executive officers and the deans in consultation with the Provost--to decide what to do with those monies, but what we have said to the deans, and we've had lots of meetings with the deans to talk about these things, is that we in the central administration want them because it's the number one University priority to deploy those funds in relation to the new (if it's approved) general education curriculum. So, the funds are there. Now, decisions have to be made on how to use them. Those decisions will be made by the campuses in consultation with the Provost, just like we always talk about what to use new monies for. The same thing applies on the University Park campus. Those discussions involve the deans on this campus and the Provost in terms of new funds that they would be allocated. Those funds that go to the campus are not related to where the freshmen are. The costs of implementing a new general education curriculum are not necessarily investing X number of dollars in freshman seminars. That may not be where the need is in a particular college or particular campus. You have to look at the whole picture and you have to look at it very carefully. I can guarantee you we will not be able today, and I don't think John Brighton who's prepared to talk about this, will be able to stand up here and as part of the debate divvy up funding. I would encourage you to stick to the merits of the curriculum. That is a very important faculty responsibility. It's my job and the Provost's job to figure out how to pay for all of this, just as we have to figure out how to pay for everything else. What I'm here to tell you today is we're prepared to put some money into this in conjunction with the deans and the campus executive officers and others to try the best we can to make this work. We think, overall, it's fairly generous. If we didn't do this, we would take those funds and not necessarily use them this way at all. We would look for what else is on the high priority lists for the University. But, like anything else, we kind of do the best we can to make sure that the funds are distributed equitably.

Peter Deines, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences: As we're thinking about setting priorities, I was wondering, we have a limited amount of funds. We have ten recommendations that we are going to address. Does this body this afternoon have any chance of setting priorities amongst these ten recommendations? What I'm thinking of is this. As we are thinking to make our general education program stronger, then there are ways to do it. The two items that have come to the floor that cost us more money probably are the freshman seminar and the instructional support for doing the things that you mentioned, smaller class sizes, more interactive learning. So, if I'm considering the question of a certain number of dollars available, then do we have this afternoon a chance to think about whether this would be spent more worthwhile in supporting the instructional support for the general education courses as compared to the freshman seminar? I personally think that probably doing the job as supporting the way we teach undergraduate education courses, the way we assess them, the way we keep track of them, probably is very important, and I think maybe more important than instituting a freshman seminar. So, if I were asked this afternoon what would you want to support, I would like to say something, but I'm not sure whether I have that freedom to say this or that.

President Spanier: Sure, it would be useful feedback to have, but the way I view it is, it's our responsibility to support the whole package. It's not an either/or. There are a lot of worthwhile goals there, and we have to make it all work. If we thought most of it was not very important and one thing was important, we could just do one thing, but that's not what the whole discussion has been about. I think we have to support it all. There are some very exciting concepts in here, I think, that would be worth doing, but I think we should try to do them all. John and I would never have encouraged this to get to this point if we didn't think we could make it happen according to some customary Penn State standards. We are not a wealthy University that can throw an unlimited amount of funds at every objective, so there are obviously some limits to what we have to do, and there are trade-offs there. You know, if we want to have a reasonable tuition increase this coming year, that helps set a limit for us. The legislature is in a zone of what they'll do for us, and they're not probably going to give us any more because they like one component of the general education curriculum or another. So, we could put more money into it if we had more money. We just have to find a way to get from here to there. And unfortunately, I think the committees that have looked at this have done this the right way, not like what might happen at some universities where the faculty passes new curriculum and the administration says, "Well, great, but we don't have any money for it." We've already been saving and identifying the money and have it sequestered for this purpose. But, it's not going to be millions of dollars. It might be a couple of million, but we think with the amount of funds available, we can get an awful lot of this done in a very positive way. What we don't want to get into, because resources may put some limits, is saying we declare every freshman seminar must have 20 students. And get somebody saying, "No, no, we believe they should have 25 students." Maybe freshman seminars don't even have to be tiny, itty-bitty seminars. We have to allow the faculty in different colleges to decide how they can best handle these things. So, I don't think we want it to be too prescriptive. There's got to be an implementation process where we expect differences between campuses and colleges. Every college has already made decisions over their history that have gotten them going in different directions with regard to the deployment of resources. So, again, we just try to do the best that we can. Some of the things that I think we may want to put money into are not even the things that would necessarily occur to you from reading the report. I'm very excited, for example, about our efforts to put more writing intensive activity into all the general education courses. One of the things that means, and John Cahir has already been doing some expansion and reorganization of activity in this area, is making available much more extensive training programs for faculty members to teach you how to integrate writing into your classes more than you have, and providing you the help and the resources and the advice and the seminars and the training and the workshops to make that happen. So, that's something we might need to put a little money into. The same might be true for some of the other things that are represented in the curriculum, like the growing internationalization focus that we hope to see in some courses. So, it's really not just about how do we divvy up resources for freshman seminars; it's a lot of other things as well.

Peter Deines: Well, that is quite true. But, in the end, there's a lot of money. In my mind, if I want to do something right in support of the instruction of curriculum, I can't figure that out. At the moment I don't know what it will take. I think that the balance between the freshman seminar and what to do in order to really make our courses special, we don't know. I'd like to know because I realize that the institution has limited funds, and I don't want to ask for money. All I'm asking probably at this point is, do we have a choice to think about one possibility or another? I don't think there's enough funds to do it all well. I think we can do a lot of things, but I think to make a real impact on the quality of the undergraduate education or the general education area, we need to focus on what we do in the courses; assess the courses. So, I guess I understand what you're saying.

President Spanier: And I understand your point. I would just say we don't do it all now. So, if the option is let's do nothing, or let's do it all, or let's do something, I don't know what the right answer is. So, we sort of have the legislative process set up, which I think is designed to say, well, let's try to do all of this as well as we can and it will all be better than it is now. But, I think it's got to be a leap from where we are right now. We do need to make some progress in my opinion.

Charles F. Gunderman, DuBois Campus: You mentioned a variety of different things, and I have read the Senate Council minutes of Dr. Brighton's point there might be a million dollars here, a million dollars there, which is a "might," all right? Then, I read his letter here to the Chair, and I'm sort of concerned about the funding. If we're going to do this, we at the campuses are on an equity model. You say there's only one pool of money. If we're going to do this and we're looking to add faculty to our campuses for the new four-year programs, we have to attract quality faculty. We've got to offer them salaries. Our salaries at the campuses are kind of low. So, when you go through a search process and you want to hire somebody, can we meet what their salaries are if we want to maintain the quality of Penn State there? If we only had these limited funds in an equity model, and we're going to add these freshman seminars, and we're not going to get any new money, something is going to have to give: whether it's lower salary increases at the end of the year--instead of 2.5, it's one; whether it's we can't hire the faculty member or the candidate because we can't offer them the salary that maybe they could command elsewhere, our quality may suffer. And it's important that we at the campuses get these four-year programs off to an excellent start. But to do that, we need the resources. If we're going to take resources out of the equity model and there's no new money, something is going to suffer. So, if you can tell us that, in fact, that, "Yes, this isn't a 'might,' there will be dollars to do this," then maybe a number of us would support this.

President Spanier: Well, it's no longer a "might." I mean, this year there are new dollars which we have reserved for this implementation. The extent to which new dollars continue to be available in future years depends upon a number of variables which we've spoken about before. But, in relation to the variables that you have just raised, let's be very clear that we have never said anything other than this: that your implementation of four-year degree programs at your campuses have to be funded by new tuition revenues that are associated with increased enrollments that are associated with your offering of the four-year degree programs. So, by offering those degrees, you will presumably attract additional Penn State lower-division students to remain at your campus and take upper-division courses, and they will each be paying $6,000 a year or so. If you have enough of those students--and every campus has projections which have come from you, not us--then you will be able to hire these new faculty, pay them quite adequate salaries and so on. The funding for general education that we're talking about in no way should be in competition with the funds related to expansion of four-year degree programs. If a campus--and all of you have said you could do it--loses enrollment, it's very difficult to justify a growing expansion of four-year degree opportunities. The idea is to help you grow your enrollments by doing that. So, these funds won't be in competition for each other, I mean, except at the most basic level for any administrator, any campus executive officer, where decisions have to be made each year about how to deploy the dollars currently available. Again, that's very much a local decision with consultation up the line to the Provost. But what we're not trying to do is to say you have X number of dollars coming to you this year, and with that, you must offer four-year degrees, implement general education and solve all of the other problems you have. Those get fed into the larger budget issues, which are more complex.

Arthur C. Miller, College of Engineering: I guess also on a resource part of it is that a few years ago the Senate implemented the writing across the curriculum and there was new money that was made available but on a temporary basis. Do you see the same thing happening with general education, or is it more of a continuous basis?

President Spanier: Well, the funds that we have identified at this point are what we call permanent. Now, what does permanent mean? I mean, it's a designation of the budget. Once we allocate it, you've got it unless, in a given year, it doesn't materialize. So, nothing is truly permanent forever. But, it's not like other categories we have in our budget that we really do call temporary, and where we give it out to you and you know and we know we've only given it to you once this year. We are talking here about principally permanent allocations, and then assuming you maintain enrollments and everything goes the way it should, yes, they would be there.

Philip A. Klein, College of the Liberal Arts: I realize that budgeting this whole thing is very complicated, but if I read what we're being told, the University Planning Committee thinks that the whole thing will cost somewhere between $2 and $4.5 million, and you have said that there might be $2 million available from the central administration. Dr. Brighton in his letter to Lou says, that "some funds will need to be provided from the ongoing budgets of the various colleges and campuses," which I think is maybe $2 million, and I think we've got to be upfront about whether we think that this is important enough--if that's what we want to do, rearranging the money. Or am I misinterpreting something?

President Spanier: Well, I'm reluctant to wade into this too deeply because I think the two experts on this topic will follow me in the discussion here. The chair of your committee that has made those assessments and Provost Brighton are prepared to talk about them in more depth. So, let me just give a very general answer, and that is that this new curriculum as near as I can tell will not result in any increase in student credit hours. So, anybody who takes a course that they weren't taking before is taking one less course somewhere else. Ultimately, deans and campus executive officers have to be prepared to reallocate some resources. If a department that was teaching 100,000 credit hours per year four years from now is found to only be teaching 60,000 credit hours per year, hey, any good administrator is going to take note of that and see where the bulge is and reallocate resources without disrupting a department unduly. Those decisions are made all the time. So, yes, I think over time there will almost certainly be some reallocation of resources, but we all do that anyway every year now from department to department. The other thing, though, is that I am not in a position to vouch for whether the number is $2 or $4 million. We think that $2 million is a very generous contribution to this effort. There are very few things in Penn State's history--Penn State's 142-year history--where we have ever said, "Hey, that's a good idea; let's put $2 million into it." As you know, that doesn't happen too often. So, we consider this a phenomenal investment. We think you should all be sending us congratulatory e-mail for being willing to make some tough decisions and make this happen. On the other hand, I don't know where the $4 million--I think I sort of know where the $4 million--estimate as the upper limit came from. It's that the committee asked the deans, "Hey, send me your best idea of what you think it might cost." I know some of these deans. I wouldn't be surprised if they gave a number at the upper limit rather than the lower limit because they are in a competitive situation as far as that goes. So, that's all got to be sorted out. They are as honest as they come, these deans, but you do have to look at the number. It's not an exact science. But, most of what's in there gives them a whole bunch of choices and a lot of flexibility and who knows exactly how that will sort out right now? That's why for a good administrator, from we in Old Main on down, it's not a good idea to necessarily rush out and totally commit and spend every last penny that we have and then find out, "Oh no, we've got a problem over here." It's got to be done very carefully, in a very measured way, and so on.

Philip A. Klein: God forbid that we should not say thank you for the $2 million, but whether or not it's phenomenal or not depends on what it ends up costing.

Chair Geschwindner: Dr. Spanier, if you would permit me, since you introduced this as the "experts are coming next," it might be a good idea …

President Spanier: I think it would be a good time on that very positive, congratulatory note, which has been duly recorded. Thank you.

Chair Geschwindner: Thank you very much. As we begin our discussion of the reports, I will remind you to please stand and identify yourself and the unit you represent before addressing the Senate.

FORENSIC BUSINESS

None

ALIGN="CENTER">INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

SENATE COMMITTEE ON UNIVERSITY PLANNING

Costing of the Special Committee on General Education Proposal

Shelton S. Alexander, Chair

Let me note here that Senate Council has approved a reordering of The Senate Agenda so that the next item on our agenda is the informational report from the Senate Committee on University Planning on the costing of the Special Committee on General Education proposal. I call on Shelton Alexander to present the report.

Shelton S. Alexander, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences: My remarks will be addressed specifically to the cost of implementation of the proposal, not other competing priorities for University funds. I'll draw your attention to Appendix "B" in the agenda for today. This is a summary report that we put together three or four weeks ago. What's represented there is the information available to us at that time. Let me just make a couple of remarks as to how we set out to gather the information. As President Spanier said, basically what we did was to decide to go to the academic units and get their estimates of what they thought the implementation cost would be, recommendation by recommendation, in the gen ed proposal that you've all seen. In particular, we asked them to try and break down internal recurring costs once the proposal is implemented; transition costs, internally; and then additional new funds that would be needed to implement the proposal, as well as new money for transitional costs to do the implementation. It was fairly easy to get back qualitative assessments of this, more difficult to get quantitative responses. What I would like to do is present to you very briefly the results of that gathering of information. I need to use the overhead. This is just the table that you have in the Appendix, but I would like to comment on it just briefly. At the time this was put together, we had responses from 16 academic units. That included all the colleges plus several of the campuses in the Commonwealth College. So, what you see here is a breakdown, again, qualitatively, of estimated costs, if they're regarded as minimal, moderate and substantial. No numbers are attached to that, but minimal is essentially no costs or practically no costs. Moderate would be up to a few thousand dollars per year, say 10, maximum 15 or so. Substantial would be amounts recurring beyond that. So, what you can see fairly clearly from just this qualitative table is that Recommendations #1 and #4 stand out as the dominant ones in terms of substantial costs. Indeed, that's what is reflected also in the quantitative estimates. It turns out that recommendation #4, which you recall is the integrative recommendation, it shows up actually with a fairly even distribution amongst the units that assess that in terms of some saying little or no costs, some saying modest costs and others saying very large costs. That’s the one where there's the biggest dispersion of answers. I think in almost all cases the freshman seminar, Recommendation #1, shows up as a substantial cost.

Okay, just to give you the aggregate numbers first. The numbers that were in this initial report for the round of about two million going up to about $4.5 million--and the $4.5 really results from essentially one unit and the run-out costs of fully implementing Recommendation #4. I think the numbers now are slightly bigger than that for the lower end, but not much. I'll just spend a couple of minutes summarizing the results. This is for University Park only. The bar graph shows on the left the estimated total additional resources that would be required on a recurring basis. The next column is the internal recurring cost which would represent redistribution or reallocation of internal resources to fully implement the proposal. These other two are the two-year transitional costs of bringing those up to speed. As I pointed out just a moment ago--and what we did, by the way, until just yesterday when I got some more numbers from all of the non-University Park campuses--we were using an upper limit of the $1 million per year that you heard discussed a few minutes ago. The fact is that using the now current numbers, the totals brought in from all of the other units actually come in a little bit less than that. So, we're in bounds with that as an upper limit as of the most current information. So, what this means is that approximately $1.5 million of new resources for all of the campuses on this, and at University Park approximately $1 million together comes out to be about $2.5 million on a recurring basis. With factoring in the higher estimate of fully implementing recommendation #4, you can simply add about $2 million to these first two columns as the upper bound--each of those two. I'll just show a couple of examples--and this is by recommendation, a breakdown of the cost, again at University Park (the other campuses more or less follow)--attract this type of proportion, and what you see is about a little less than $800,000 per year recurring in new funds would be what the academic units estimate, and about $4.5 million of reprogrammed internal costs are then transitional costs that are actually less. Recommendation #4, as I pointed out, is the other principle one. Here you see costs roughly comparable, slightly less than I just showed you for the freshman seminar. If you factor in the one additional $2 million increment, of course, then these two bump up to be the highest cost of the whole set. Just a comparison--I'll just show you one or two others; I don't want to prolong this--but on a similar basis say, Recommendation #2 for the same scale you see those types of numbers; Recommendation #3, small numbers, relatively speaking. I guess probably five, maybe the third one in the whole set. You can see it, too, compared to those others is more or less down at the lower level than the whole proposal. So, bottom line of the whole exercise is that we think that the overall costs for the entire University in recurring new funds would be about $2.5 million per year, and less but roughly comparable amounts of internal recurring costs for reallocation to accommodate it, and possibly higher costs if you factor in the one additional college for number four. All of the others, besides number four and number one, are really something we I don't think need to worry about too much in terms of cost. As far as other types of resources, there will be pressures on the classroom space. The gen ed report addressed that to some degree, and we think that probably the freshman seminars in the smaller number can be accommodated with the existing space. Depending on how Recommendation #4 goes, that could become an additional problem. But, I think it's manageable right now. The other cost would be--testing was in there--we don't think that would be a significant additional cost. There will be a lot of Senate committee time to approve courses and really work on the transition of this end of this new program if it is adopted. So, I think I'll stop there and entertain any questions you have.

Chair Geschwindner: Before we take any questions, I would like to call on Provost Brighton to make comments. Then we will have questions directed to both of our presenters.

John A. Brighton, Provost: Okay. With that previous information and the President answering many of the questions, I'd like to cover, then, sort of an overall plan for the budgeting of the general education courses. I think Shelton has made a valuable effort to establish the cost of implementing the general education proposal. This is a very complicated issue, quite frankly, and certainly it's been a struggle over the past several days and weeks to try to come up with how you would lay out the estimates that have come in from the various deans. Actually, they raise from several hundreds of thousands of dollars in one college to zero in some others. Most estimates, I believe, are rather modest. What I'm going to talk about is a specific plan for funding the overall proposal and a method of allocating the funds among the colleges at University Park in addition to talking about the other campuses. But, first, I would like to make a couple of comments about the proposed changes that we're considering here today. I believe that we stand at a crossroads in considering fundamental change in educational experiences of all of our undergraduate students. We are considering important changes in the core of undergraduate education. This is the core around which the rest of undergraduate education is built for all of our students. This is one of the things that we do as educators which I think is very, very important. The Special Committee on General Education of the Faculty Senate has worked on this issue for over a year and a half while gathering input from a wide variety of sources, and the Committee has presented a proposal which I think reflects significant improvements in many of the areas of undergraduate education. We've been urged by people from many quarters, both inside and outside of the University, to pay more attention to undergraduate education, and here today we have an opportunity to take a major step forward in that area. Once these recommendations are adopted, there will be a lot of work to do to implement the changes. Implementing the changes, in fact, will require the dedication of department heads, the deans, the Senate and the faculty. In fact, probably, it's hard to come up with a plan. Obviously, we're going to struggle with that today. But, it's going to be even harder to carry out the implementation with a lot of dedication and energy on the part of a lot of people. I think the first step here, though, is to adopt the proposal or some variation of the proposal so that the processes for implementation can begin. President Spanier, as he indicated here, also said some time ago that some funding would be identified for implementing general education. For the colleges and campuses offering baccalaureate courses, needed support will be provided from funds available through enrollment changes that have taken place over the past two years. We recently completed the review of fall semester 1997 enrollments and tuition income projections for each of the campuses, which we view as cost centers for the University budgeting. The cost center budgeting is a new process for budgeting in the University. Last week, the campus college deans were informed of the funding projected to be available for them for the academic year. For Behrend, Harrisburg and Schuylkill, Abington, Altoona, Berks-Lehigh Valley and the Commonwealth College, income projections exceeded the permanent tuition income budgets by a combined total of $8.4 million. Of this amount, approximately $2.8 million results from enrollment growth experienced just this year. Now, admittedly these are not uniform across all of these campuses, and we would have to work through that process, but there is significant money that comes through enrollment changes over the past couple of years. And, particularly in this current year, the amount is $2.8 million. At these cost centers, the respective deans will determine the best approach for allocating funds to meet the general education program. We are asking the deans to give general education funding the highest priority based on the resources that are being allocated. So, if we make the decision to allocate the resources, what we do at every campus must be done within those resources. For University Park, which is the largest of the cost centers, tuition income projections have also exceeded the budget plans. Unlike the campuses, we do not return the enrollment income directly back to the colleges. From these funds, President Spanier has given approval for $1 million to support the general education plan--an additional $1.5 million for hiring college faculty with the purpose of addressing primarily general education needs. The funds would be distributed to the University Park colleges according to the following approach. There would be $750,000 based on new freshman enrolled in each college. So, the college that has the largest number of new freshman enrolled would have the largest amount of money from this pool. $750,000 of the money will be based on student credit hours taught in general education courses. $750,000 will be based on total student credit hours taught in undergraduate education. We're going to hold $250,000 for possible special needs and allocation based on unevenness of the funding available for various units. We're also planning to allocate up to $300,000 for transition needs to begin course and program development during the spring semester of 1998 and summer of 1998. So, just with these few comments, overall, I think, we are in a good position with respect to the budget. In my view, there will be sufficient funding to support moving forward with the implementation of the general education program. I want to offer my support and effort to work with the deans, the Faculty Senate, and all who are involved to help implement this very important plan. Now, we will be happy to answer questions.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Before we take any questions, let me invite my friends in the platform party to come back and join me, so the daggers that fly don't only come towards me. Let me remind you again that when you're recognized, to give your name and your affiliation. Since we have two different perspectives here in terms of the presentation, make sure you address your question to the person that you would like to answer it. Also, let me remind you that at this point we are not discussing the motion from the special committee but rather the costing report and whether we have information to understand what the costs and the administration's response to that will be.

Deidre E. Jago, Hazleton Campus: I have a question for Shelton. You had some overheads that showed graphically what those costs would be for University Park. Do you have any prepared graphs that would show non-University Park locations?

Shelton S. Alexander: Not in that detail. My problem was that I did not, until almost as we speak, get quantitative numbers from the Commonwealth College, although I've gotten some numbers from some of the campuses, but the cost breakdowns at the campuses fall closely. I'm not sure I'm answering the question that you asked, but the cost distributions amongst the different proposals actually on the campuses tend to be focused primarily on the freshman seminar as opposed to any of the other ones. So, the dominant costs that are coming back from non-University Park campuses are focused dominantly on the freshman seminar, to a lesser extent on Recommendation #4, and then the rest are down, although there are some exceptions to that from one unit to another. The aggregate costs, as I mentioned to you, up until just now, we've been using this $1 million for an upper limit for the aggregate total on University Park. The new numbers--I have them here somewhere--come out to be around $800,000 or in that ballpark. I'm not sure I answered your question exactly, but that's the answer.

Deidre E. Jago: Well, you didn't have that material far enough in advance to prepare some type of a graph.

Shelton S. Alexander: That's correct. And, also, the numbers there were, I believe, focused primarily on new money cost as opposed to giving much of a breakdown of what internal costs might be. So, basically, the internal costs that the campuses show show up as much smaller proportionally than they do on this campus. So, the weighting is heavily towards new funds on the non-University Park college campuses.

Deidre E. Jago: Were there any significant factors that jumped out? I have heard, and let me explain where I'm coming from, that the figures were all over the board. There was not very much consistency in the way those were reported. Is that what you found, or were there similarities?

Shelton S. Alexander: I think the greatest similarity is in the initial charge which shows amongst the different units there were some differences in terms of moderate versus small costs and large costs. But the things that came out consistently high in cost were Recommendations #1 and 4. Some of the others bumped up for some campuses, not others. But, in terms of whether or not this whole thing is affordable, I was trying to get its bottom line number to see what the aggregate cost would be. As John has pointed out, the actual numbers that would be allocated would be negotiated with the individual campuses or colleges.

Peter D. Georgopulos, Delaware Campus: The number $800,000, is that based on the campuses that responded or is that a prorated amount?

Shelton S. Alexander: No, now that represents essentially 100 percent response. I got one response collectively for the Commonwealth College that subsumes every one that we've gotten.

John A. Brighton: To follow-up the comment that may be helpful in the discussion, I mentioned the funding that is available through enrollment changes is fairly significant overall. What remains as an issue and a problem is that it's not balanced in all campuses in the same way. We will find ourselves, I think, in a position of having to help balance that by providing some additional funding, probably, particularly for the Commonwealth College and possibly Abington College, as two examples. Obviously, some of the colleges, the new colleges particularly, have some very significant increases in funding and others very modest. So, we would look for ways to supplement that to have a better balance.

Jean Landa Pytel, College of Engineering: A question for you, John. In the resources which you mentioned were available, perhaps, I wonder where DUS would come into that because a significant number of our entering students are in DUS system-wide, not just at University Park, and I would expect that they will be providing, if this goes through, some programs for freshmen.

John A. Brighton: This has come up, and I've thought a little bit about it for University Park, and I don't have a solution for all of the campuses. But for University Park, in talking to a couple of the deans, the way we would handle DUS is we wouldn't allocate monies to DUS because the freshman seminars, for example, would occur with the colleges. So the DUS students would be assigned either from a selection process or an assignment to a particular college, and the college would be supported in proportion to those particular students as well.

Charles F. Gunderman: I have two questions here. I assume that you just got the figures for the outlying campuses, that you couldn't prepare visuals. Is that correct?

Shelton S. Alexander: I've gotten partial responses from the individual--I'm talking about now the Commonwealth College--I've gotten responses from some, but not others from there, and so my next task was to go to the Commonwealth College and ask if they could give me an aggregate estimate, and that just came through.

Charles F. Gunderman: So, we've got a figure that's up here that we're pulling out that we're not really sure of. My concern is, why is the information from these campuses coming to you so late? Is it because they were not given adequate time to do this, or what was the problem? I mean, we should have had some visuals showing the same identical costs and we don't, which means that it's still hanging. Is that correct?

Shelton S. Alexander: Well, it's not now. I can quote you the numbers if you like right now. I just don't have the visual to it.

Charles F. Gunderman: Actually, I thought Deidre had asked that.

Shelton S. Alexander: Yes. But those are aggregate numbers for the Commonwealth College, if that's what you're asking, not an individual breakdown.

Charles F. Gunderman: Abington and all the others as well?

Shelton S. Alexander: Yes. So, the aggregate of all of those--roughly, I think, about--the Commonwealth College was about a little over half of this aggregate total that I mentioned to you. The other colleges would represent the other half of the roughly $800,000 to $850,000, according to what the others had reported.

Charles F. Gunderman: The concern was brought up with the largest number of freshmen being out there, that there would be a larger pool of new money there, which leads me to my question for Dr. Brighton.

Shelton S. Alexander: I would say that, again, in terms of the apportion of the dollars from all of the other colleges, it's heavily focused on the freshman seminar as opposed to, say, four and some of the others. So, proportionately, a larger amount of the estimated funding for the non-University Park colleges is focused on the freshman seminar.

Charles F. Gunderman: Dr. Brighton, could you explain to me why there is a difference in the funding between the non-University Park campuses and the University Park campus? You indicated in the Senate Council minutes and in this letter to the chair that there are some differences. Could you maybe clarify that a little bit more for me as to why there is a difference with the campuses that are on the equity model? The non-University Park campuses offering baccalaureate degrees and courses will be provided the needed support from funds available through projected enrollment and the previous redistribution of central CES funds, whereas, the allocation across University Park is based on FTE.

John A. Brighton: Well, all of the campuses are on a cost center budgeting model. The non-University Park campuses are being distributed the money based on a formula which is on the basis of the enrollments or enrollment changes that occur within those units. The University Park colleges do not get the money distributed on the basis of the same formula--on an enrollment-driven model. So, these are done in terms of a process through the University Planning Council and other processes that take place throughout the year. So all of the money goes out to the campuses that they generate based on enrollment. They don't come to the colleges based on enrollment. That's the difference. That's why we're in this situation, because when we allocate the money that's generated back, then within that money that's generated the support will have to be provided for general education. I guess my main point is that there's very significant money overall that has been generated to enrollments in these campuses in the past couple of years. The amount of general education support required based on Shelton's analysis and the input that he's gotten is a fairly small proportion of the overall budget changes.

Sandra R. Smith, Fayette Campus: I have a vague recollection when this first came on board about restructuring general education that there was supposed to be some savings that were going to happen. I've heard nothing about savings and only about the expense. Has there been any analysis of what we are going to save by implementing this general education proposal?

Shelton S. Alexander: Maybe it's not too surprising, but the deans didn't point out savings that could be realized by this process. No, I think that it's obvious that the whole thrust of this is to go to smaller classes and things that inherently raise the per capita cost of the general education program. So, economy is like having, for instance, increased class sizes and having one instructor. In fact, it goes the other way, I think. So, there probably are savings in terms of efficiency and the delivery and so on, but those certainly haven't been called out as prominent factors in the costing.

Zachary T. Irwin, Penn State Erie, The Behrend College: Do the estimates of costs for non-University Park locations reflect the use of part-time faculty who often teach first-year courses?

Shelton S. Alexander: I think that the response there…of course, the legislation calls for more experienced faculty to teach the freshman seminars. I think a lot of the internal and new costs, too, would reflect how you compensate for that in terms of the other instruction. In part, that would be covered by part-time people. I don't know that that's common to all of them, but that would certainly be in the picture for how the individual units might choose to reallocate their faculty resources to meet this requirement in the freshman seminar.

Dennis S. Gouran, College of the Liberal Arts: I am not sure how I can use the responses to the questions that have been asked to inform my vote. So I would like to ask a bottom-line question: Is it the best considered judgment of your committee that what is proposed is affordable when considered in conjunction with the new monies to be made available and such reallocations of existing monies as may be necessary?

Shelton S. Alexander: The short answer is, yes.

Chair Geschwindner: It seems to me that's a good time to move beyond the discussion of costing because now we know the answer is yes. Thank you, Shelton and John, for your reports.

UNFINISHED LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS

SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON GENERAL EDUCATION

Final Report and Recommendations of the Special Committee on General Education

Robert N. Pangborn, Chair

We now move back in the normal process to "Unfinished Legislative Business." Our next item is the legislative report from the Special Committee on General Education. Before we begin our deliberations on this important topic, I want to outline a few procedures that we will be following. The agenda for today’s meeting includes, in Appendix "C," all of the material which is to be voted on as presented at our last meeting. I reiterate that none of the background information, listed variously as Rationale or Guidelines in the October 21 agenda, will be voted on. If the result of our deliberation today is the passage of any new General Education legislation, the requirements will be implemented for students entering the University in fall 1999.

Prior to the October Senate meeting, Senate Council accepted the Special Committee's recommendation that the matter before us be voted on as a unit; thus, that is what is currently before us. In response to the discussion at the last Senate meeting, the Special Committee has clarified its intent on three items and has presented revisions to the motion. These revisions are on the door handout you received and, unless I hear an objection, we will proceed with the motion as modified by the Special Committee through that door handout.

My final preliminary comment relates to the actual process of our discussion. I would like the discussion to proceed sequentially through the items in Appendix "C." Thus, I will first ask for comments on the Motion and follow that with a request for comments on the Vision, the Mission, the Goals, and each of the numbered recommendations. That does not mean that I will not permit discussion to return to a previously discussed item, but I would ask that you not move forward through the items until we are assured that we have had sufficiently discussed the previous items.

I have received a request for the privilege of the floor from Karl Newell and John Pfau, which I have granted. They will be recognized as appropriate.

I now call upon Rob Pangborn, Chair of the Special Committee on General Education, to present the motion.

Robert N. Pangborn, College of Engineering: Good afternoon. I would like to discuss the substance of the motion; in particular, the modifications that were included as the door handout.

Following the last meeting of the Senate, the special committee met twice to consider the discussion on its motion and any proposals for modification that had been received. The door handout identifies several changes the committee has accepted and made to its original motion.

The first change is a sentence we have added stating the details for each recommendation will come back to the Senate as informational reports in advance of implementation. This procedure will provide an opportunity for the Senate to review the implementation plans and process for each of the recommendations as they unfold over the next couple of years. If anything seems to be going seriously astray, there will be ample opportunity for Senators to point this out. We understand the concerns voiced by the caucus of Liberal Arts Senators and others over the lack of specificity in the motion itself. We have viewed our charge from the very start as that of formulating a coherent framework for refocusing and improving the general education curriculum. Thus, in the recommendations, we have tried to identify key components of the new curriculum and to provide ideas and illustrations of how these would be structured. These details are contained in other parts of the larger report and will, along with the broad recommendations, guide the implementation process. To make clear our intention that the Senate will be informed and have oversight of the development policies and procedures, we have added, after the basic statement of the motion, the following provision: "Implementation, consistent with the Report, will be supervised by a Senate Implementation Committee which will present informational reports on the planned implementation of each Recommendation."

We have also adopted a minor rewording of Recommendation #6 on the Health Sciences requirement. The Recommendation will now read: "Restructure the existing, 4-credit, Health Sciences and Physical Education requirement to create a new, 3-credit, Health Sciences requirement that emphasizes theories and scientific research concerning health and which may include physical activities that focus on lifespan wellness and fitness." In revisiting this recommendation, the committee acknowledges the strong feelings of some that activity-centered courses could be used to satisfy this requirement. However, we continue to believe that exercise and sports activity, if used to meet the requirement, should be strongly coupled to the knowledge and understanding of health sciences. Our proposal to formulate the requirement as a knowledge domain and to encourage active learning has received widespread endorsement during the committee deliberations and offers a flexible and academically sound approach.

I will also call your attention to the addition of the two words, "critical thinking," to the second bullet under the framework for general education, in the box pertaining to active learning elements that may be selected for incorporation into the domain knowledge courses.

Finally, the committee reiterates its support of the first-year seminars for all incoming, first-year students. Our extensive investigation of the best practices, both external and internal to Penn State, has convinced us that there may be no other mechanism that could have a more important and significant impact on our undergraduate programs and students--on recruiting, on retention of students at risk, on their understanding of the academic community and the faculty, and on their appreciation of general education and the expectations for scholarly work. To require that students take a seminar is consistent with our approach to many other highly-valued curricular elements, both in general education or the academic majors, and ensures that the students who most need them will, in fact, take them. The committee recognizes the potential costs and trade-offs that implementing the first-year seminar program will entail, but it feels strongly that, rather than compromising on the requirement, we could be flexible on the details of implementation and on the implementation schedule, and cognizant of the needs and limitations that will govern the response by each academic unit. Through a combination of imaginative programming, the option of having one-credit versions as well as more comprehensive 2- and 3-credit offerings, new budget resources as identified earlier in this discussion, and the overlap with existing curricular requirements and course offerings, we believe that a high-quality first-year seminar program is attainable within the availability of resources at all locations.

Once again, I would like to thank the committee members for their hard work, for their willingness to wrestle with so many passionate and, sometimes, conflicting views throughout this long and very open dialogue, and for their devotion to carrying through on this project. I think that all of you, too, deserve thanks for your many suggestions and input. I hope that you will accept our motion and recommendations as a whole, not because they represent a finished and polished product, but because they represent a coherent starting point and a framework which, through continued attention and improvement, will constitute a source of pride and identity for the entire Penn State community. Thanks very much.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. I remind you that we want to proceed through the discussion somewhat orderly. Are there any comments or questions concerning the first paragraph, the Motion? Okay, seeing none, at this point, can we move on to the Vision? Are there any comments or questions relating to the vision? I suppose if I go fast enough… I'll stay far enough ahead of you that we'll get all the way through. Remember, if we pass it by and you want to go back to it, that's okay. Any questions on the Mission Statement? How about the Goals? Rob, do you want to stop there, and we can, you know. Okay. We get to Recommendation #1. Seeing none. (Laughter)

Felix L. Lukezic, College of Agricultural Sciences: I'm sort of confused about this Recommendation #1. It says, "Establish a first-year seminar experience for incoming, first-year students, provided by each of the colleges and campuses as part of the general education program." It doesn't say in there it's required. Yet, you go into the rest of it--in the background--it says it is required. But the last paragraph that you give us as far as what the committee wants, is kind of wishy-washy. Anyway, I wish to make a motion to change Recommendation #1. This comes from the caucus of Agricultural Science to support this. I strongly support the concept and believe in the worth of a freshman seminar at Penn State; however, I also believe making such a course mandatory will be counter-productive unless the faculty claim ownership.

I think one of the main reasons that we have a strong seminar in the College of Agricultural Sciences is the commitment of the senior faculty to the freshman seminar. We've studied it; we've seen a need for it; we've created it; we own it. It is not the result of some decree from higher up. We teach it without a reduction in our normal teaching and research load. We happened to ask for excess money for the fall. We meet as a group before the semester starts and during the semester to discuss it and work out what did and what didn't work. I think as a result of the excitement by the teaching faculty, there is usually a reserve of faculty that will teach sections if needed.

If other college faculty shared this commitment to teach the course because the students wanted to be in it, I think we would have many sections of courses in all of the colleges. Every student would know what a positive experience it is and most of them would be signing up without it being required. For example, in our college right now, we have 93 percent of our freshman taking our class--the freshman seminar. That's 93 percent taught in sections of 20, and we have two faculty in each one, and they are tenured faculty. As one of the founding fathers of AG 150, I have spoken to several representatives of the different colleges and at several campuses. The general response has been that they are not interested in teaching. That being the case, the teaching responsibility of the mandated course will probably fall to graduate students or part-time staff. These people can do a superb job but the message sent to the new student is that the University does not care enough to have senior faculty involved directly with them. This is too bad because most of the literature I have read indicated that the first six weeks that the student spends at a college determines whether they stay or leave. Hence, again, I'm very much concerned about the faculty doing this in the second semester, possibly the third semester. It's too late.

I am also concerned that if the University Senate mandates the course and much of its content then the faculty will feel that they have no ownership and someone else should teach it. That someone else will be DUS or some other University-wide requirement such as for English or the sport exercise requirement. The problem with that is students usually cannot get the courses until late in their academic experience. Some of my students take it when they are seniors. I think it's too late.

In addition, quite a few students, at least ten percent of those enrolled in the College of Agricultural Sciences, opted not to take the course because they feel they don't need it. Some of them had prior experiences as parts of courses in summer sessions or advanced studies in various programs, such as the alternative program at State High. Many had siblings that helped them adapt. Why penalize them? In one section of AG 150, I taught yesterday, and I asked the students, what would you think if this wasn't mandatory? It was unanimous that they liked the class, but they don't like it mandatory. Because when you make it mandatory, the philosophy changes. "You are making me take this class. I won't take the class."

So, we as representatives of the caucus of the College of Agricultural Sciences and instructors currently involved in AG 150 Be A Master Student! think a better recommendation would be: "Establish an optional first-year seminar for incoming, first-year students, provided by each of the colleges and campuses that could be part of the general education program." I think that's also important because in our situation we have a two-credit course requirement. If you make it a 3-credit course, you might have to jump through someone else's hoops. Right now that course is ours because we want it. We'd have to go through another subcommittee and then Curricular Affairs to get it approved. I think we know what to do.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. You all have the motion printed on a yellow or so sheet. Do I have a second for the motion?

Felix L. Lukezic: It came from caucus.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Rob, do you want to make any comments before we open it for discussion?

Robert N. Pangborn: Well, let me just offer a clarification. I think towards the end of your comments you said that somehow this would force you to go to the three-credit requirement which is not the case. This is a variable credit requirement.

Felix L. Lukezic: To compete with the other ones.

Robert N. Pangborn: To compete with the other one?

Felix L. Lukezic: Yes, if you want to make it general education, you have to go to three because it's very difficult to find a one-credit general education course.

Robert N. Pangborn: I think I've made myself clear as to where the committee stands on this. I think there are other members of the committee who feel strongly--if they want to comment.

Chair Geschwindner: Do we have anyone who would like to comment on the motion?

David Byman, Worthington Scranton Campus: I would simply say that in regard to our campus, I would fear that the students who would most need to take such an orientation course would not take that.

John F. Cardella, Hershey Medical Center: In Recommendation #1 as it's written in the white sheet, it is not clear whether this is a mandatory requirement or not. What is the intent of the freshman seminar? Is this to be mandatory?

Robert N. Pangborn: That is the intent. That is made clear in the rationale or the guidelines for the recommendation which are not admittedly part of the motion. We've indicated in all our comments before the Senate for the record that, when this is implemented, we would expect that attention would be paid to our guidelines as stated in the larger report, and that as the implementation unfolds, those details will be worked out and brought back to the Senate as informational reports. But in those guidelines, the intention clearly of the committee was to make this a requirement for all students.

Philip A. Klein: I did want to say, it seems to me that the whole purpose of a general education requirement is to speak to the question what all Penn State students have in common if they get a Penn State degree. I think what the committee is trying to say to the first-year seminar is something that all students have experienced and, therefore, I would move that Recommendation #1 you insert the word "all" to make clear that it would be an experience for all first-year students.

Senators: Point of order.

Chair Geschwindner: The motion that's on the floor is making it optional. We need to address the motion that's on the floor. If that is turned down, then we can go back and, in fact, I think the committee could insert a word or two as an editorial. But, let's address the motion that's on the floor which is to make it optional.

Richard A. Wilson, College of Agricultural Sciences: I have to speak on behalf of making it optional, not to argue with the gentleman who said that the people, the ones who need it most are the ones who might not take it. That really hasn't been our experience. We do not sell this course. We do not coerce it. We have 93 to 95 percent of our students taking it because they want to take it, and I think it has to do with the history that has gone before them. They hear about the course, how good it is, and then they take it on their own accord. So, I don't think by making it non-mandatory you're going to miss those who need it most. They seem to understand.

Jean Landa Pytel: We had a similar discussion in our caucus meeting and felt that the students who really needed such a course would not take it if it were optional. Particularly in a curriculum that tends to be a little heavy on the credit loads, if people are trying to make up for deficiencies they are less likely to take optional courses. I think that if we firmly believe that such an experience ought to be part of the general education package, that it be mandatory as are all the other requirements in the general education package, okay. We give students choices as to what quantitative courses they take. We don't say the quantitative courses are optional.

P. Peter Rebane: Since we allegedly are voting only on the recommendations as printed, am I correct?

Chair Geschwindner: This one.

P. Peter Rebane: Well, either the motion or the original recommendation.

Chair Geschwindner: We're voting on the motion to make it optional.

P. Peter Rebane: I understand that. But, in both instances it does not specify the number of credits for these seminars. Yet, there is an asterisk and an explanation of one credit minimum on the back page that has those nice little squares. So, I was wondering, if I'm really voting on either the substitute motion or on the original motion, should there not be a statement indicating whether the number of credits in the seminars be fixed or flexible? Because I am voting on something which becomes legally binding. It seems to me if I'm only voting on the recommendation or the substitute motion, I should know what the total number of credits that is. All right. If you look at the other box, it says, "one credit minimum." I'd like to have some understanding of what the total amount of credits of that seminar will be.

Chair Geschwindner: I suppose that you could make it ten credits if you wanted to and you could get Curricular Affairs to approve it. But, it says one credit minimum.

Louis Milakofsky, Berks-Lehigh Valley College, Berks Campus: Just a follow-up to Peter. On a practical matter, if that one credit were to supplement even the skill, the knowledge domain, where would that be? Most of these other requirements are three credits. Even if we make it three, which most would have to do on a practical nature, forget the dollars, this says add more general education requirements than we have now which in turn stands at what, 46? This would be somewhere between…. Where would be the one-credit supplement to the seminar if you made it the minimum?

Robert N. Pangborn: Well, I think it was the committee's view that there may be a number of courses to meet general education requirements that would have variable credit and that the college could work with. A given college could work with other colleges to make sure that, if the students were using one credit of seminar to meet some requirement, they could access another two-credit course to finish out the requirement for that specific part of general education. So there's going to have to be some collaboration amongst the colleges to make that work for students, but it's certainly something that we're looking at as very conceivable under the more open, flexible kind of program that we envision.

Louis Milakofsky: That would be a problem for me in the skilled areas, especially the writing areas and the quantitative areas where I find somewhere at least in science that the quantitative area is weak and needs even strengthened, but this would be a minimum requiring six credits.

Chair Geschwindner: I think it would be fair to say that we talk about some of these issues--they are implementation issues--and there are things that will have to be approved by the appropriate committees. Curricular Affairs approves general education designations. So, we are not, if we were to approve this one credit or any other, bypassing the other channels that we normally have for curricular processes. You have to keep that in mind. I don't believe this means that just because you have a course that is a freshman seminar, a department or an advisor or a student is going to be able to say, "Well, I think I'll substitute that for quantification."

Caroline D. Eckhardt, College of the Liberal Arts: I want to say only that this was written very collectively. Liberal Arts, at the present time, has the possibility for freshman seminars to count as a humanities requirement, or the possibility of counting towards the social science requirement. It's not necessarily an additional three credits, or however many credits. It's simultaneously overlapped with other gen ed functions for the major.

John W. Moore, College of the Liberal Arts: I'd like to follow-up on what Carrie has just said about this freshman seminar. I think that as the Planning Committee numbers which Shelton Alexander posted indicate there's probably nothing more important that we're going to discuss today than the question of the freshman seminar. I'd like to recapitulate some of the discussions which we had inside our committee to explain why it is we felt we really had to go with the mandatory requirement. I know how difficult the concept mandatory is and how attractive the concept optional is. One of the reasons we wanted it to be mandatory is almost the same reason that Felix said presented: we really do believe that what happens to a student in the first six weeks at the University is going to color and shape what is required of that person academically. We want to be able to gather together 15 or 20 students in their first semester at the University and provide them with the best experience we can think of. Let's say, since I'm in the English Department, and we gather together 20 students who are thinking that they would like to study literature, and we get them all together with an experienced and good literature teacher and have them interact at a level that the student and the instructor both think are their best. So, in this way students can discover what is their best right away. So, if students are here for the purpose of intellectual expansion, they can get it right away. That will, then, color the rest of their studies and set expectations for the rest of their training. We felt it was so important that we wanted to make it mandatory. But let me use an example, a parallel. The English Department has a senior seminar. Not a day goes by that I don't have a senior come into my office trying to get out of the senior seminar requirement. " Oh my God; I have to go into a room with 15 alert people. I'm going to be exposed. It's going to be difficult. It's going to be horrible." We teach ten of these a year. At the end of the semester, no class we teach in English gets higher SRTE scores than the senior seminar. Students are so thrilled they were treated in this particular way; they're so thrilled to have had this intellectual excitement. They then reward the faculty member who taught it. So, I think this idea of a freshman seminar is a real tribute to our students and we on the committee would love to make this gesture towards them. But, I think the other side of it is that by saying we want to have all our students have a small class right away, we're saying to them that we don't want you to have only large classes because we know how important it is for you to have this intense and spirited experience right away in a course that, as Carrie said, would be a literature course which would substitute a humanities requirement or a social science course would fulfill that requirement. So, there's no extra courses or credits here. Rather, it's a way of allowing the students to fulfill a regular general education requirement but in circumstances which I think we all would acknowledge are the best that a university can provide, and we would like to provide that best experience to all our students in their very first semester at the University.

Chair Geschwindner: We thank John for reminding us that the issue we are discussing is simply optional versus mandatory. That is the motion that is on the floor right now. Murry Nelson.

Murry R. Nelson, College of Education: I'm going to have to reiterate something that I mentioned last meeting, I guess it was last month. We're faced in our college with a conundrum and it deals with what Felix has raised, and at the same time it has implications for what John has just mentioned. That is, approximately 60 percent of our undergraduates start at one of the other campuses, at the Commonwealth College or whatever campus, and come to us, for the most part, in their junior year, some in the second semester of their sophomore year. The problem then becomes one of requiring--mandating, as John has said--seminars in our college, where we have no control over most of the students in our college and the seminar topic they would have. The option that Felix offers is, again, something that has some attraction, but it would then end up being taken by some and not others. By offering it through the colleges, we end up having actually very little control and may ultimately have students that get punished, as it were, by not being in the college. What we would prefer is something I think that I said last month, and that is our anticipation was that this would be something that would not be done within the colleges, that indeed it would be done as a series of topics across the University. And if indeed, as Rob said the last time, that was the anticipation, it still does not seem to be clear in the proposals that we have. We would hope that this would not be done by the colleges, that, indeed, if such a thing was going to be done, a freshman seminar, it would be done throughout the University and would not fall on the colleges to either require it or make it optional, but, indeed, to have it done as a University requirement--done as part of a student's mandated course work rather than saying the college should do something, and then it ultimately ends up getting an introduction to education, to agriculture, to business or whatever. That's the feeling that we have, and, thus, the option that Felix has offered in one sense provides a better solution for us but in another sense doesn't really deal with the spirit of what we would like to see here.

Robert N. Pangborn: Let me just comment on this. The committee does see this as a University requirement. Students would be free to take the seminars anywhere they could have access to them. So, if you offered provocative seminars in the College of Health and Human Development that would attract students from other colleges, great. This is a wonderful way to gain access to students who might not otherwise be thinking of majors that might be available in your college. So, we truly see this as a University requirement fully portable so that students apply whatever seminar they take wherever they take it to meet the general education requirement of a first-year seminar.

Robert Secor, Vice Provost: I'm nervous about the optional requirement really undermining the whole concept of the freshman seminar because I see how it works in the College of Agricultural Sciences where 95 percent of the students take it because there is, as Felix has argued, great commitment on the part of the college's faculty. So, what happens when you have a college and faculty who doesn't have that commitment and it becomes optional? It would become very easy then not to schedule enough courses, not to worry about whether they're competing with other more attractive options, you don't have to worry whether your students need the course, not just for the general education requirement. There's no way to put pressure on colleges and deans to offer freshman seminars if it's simply optional. If they can't get it, don't worry about it, or find some other college that offers it, and if they can't find it there, we have a problem. I think you have to have a commitment.

Elizabeth A. Hanley, College of Health and Human Development: I know that many of us are nervous about change. I am, for sure. We don't know exactly what a freshman seminar will hold, and some of us may not want to do it. However, if underneath all of this there might be some benefit toward the students, especially for freshmen coming in, then I think we ought to just go with it and give it a try and give it our enthusiasm and our best shot if it's going to be of value to them. If it's not of value to us, it will never be of value to the students. It should be mandatory if we're going to do it.

Julie Cain, Student Senator, Penn State Erie, The Behrend College: From a student's perspective, I just wanted to point out that I'm in favor of the optional first-year seminar. I would be very hesitant to take something that was mandatory. We also haven't pointed out there's also a situation in location. At Behrend College, my entire first year I had small, interactive classes. So, I'm not exactly sure what an additional mandatory first-year seminar course would offer me since I'm already receiving that. However, at the University Park location, I think it would be very valuable if you offer it there. But, again, I'm in support of the optional part of that.

Michael E. Broyles, College of Arts and Architecture: First, I would say if it's small, interactive courses as you described, that's great. But, that's not what I wanted to comment on. It's interesting, we phrase this to take a certain way: optional versus mandatory. I'd like to phrase it a slightly different way. I'm on the committee, and I’m speaking for myself now, not the committee, but in the long debate about this, what we've looked at and tried to look at in the broadest way, was what are we talking about in terms of a common educational experience. This is what President Spanier referred to. I, personally, see the seminar as being very much at the heart of this common educational experience. I think if you accept the amendment, the substitute motion, what you're doing is taking this out of the general education requirement as a common educational experience, and I would hate to see that happen.

David W. Lubkemann, Student Senator, College of the Liberal Arts: I'm working with the political committee of Academic Assembly. Our responses were diametrically opposed, very negative towards having a mandatory freshman seminar. As opposed to that, they were very positive to it being offered as an optional requirement to take. Making it mandatory has a negative impact to the class. With the discussion that we had, it's hard for me a little bit because I thought you led us to believe that it would be mandatory for the college to offer it, but not that it be mandatory to take. Just a comment. If it is mandatory and different colleges can have one to three credits, how could there be an equitable way of transferring a one-credit class or a three-credit class that's supposed to be transferable between college to college? If you switch majors, can you just take a one-credit class and substitute it for a three-credit class? I don't understand that.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. I have five more names on my list. I'd like to go through those five and hope that we are at a point where we can make a decision on this motion at that point in time.

Felix L. Lukezic: Bob's statement is the thing that scares me. "We will make the college offer it! We will make the faculty offer it!" That's what scares me. I think it will kill it. Because when the faculty want it, and I think the students realize how important it is, but whenever we as a Senate say the college will do it, I think the college will say, "Fine, that's your course, you teach it."

Jean Landa Pytel: Well, I think in terms of the topics covered in the freshman seminar, there's been a lot of emphasis on sort of major kinds of issues and hope that seminars would be offered in a major. My understanding of the idea here is that students can choose from any number of different types of seminar courses that may be directed toward a major or just use of University resources. I think the main idea is a small group of students getting together for whatever the purpose may be, whether it's related to a major or not, with a faculty member. We already have the transferability of courses. If the freshman seminar requirement is met anywhere, it's met everywhere. So, whether or not, I think it's just a requirement being met regardless of how many credits that is. Right now, students, when they transfer and they change majors, can't use all of their courses anyway for the remainder.

Gregory R. Ziegler, College of Agricultural Sciences: With all respect to the gentleman's passionate plea, the recommendation reads that the student will take it in their first three semesters. So, we're still not getting to whether we mandate it in the first three semesters or the first six weeks. Like Felix, I'm concerned that if we have… Dr. Secor asked what happens to an optional seminar if the faculty aren't committed. And I'd ask, what happens to a mandatory seminar if the faculty aren't committed? It would be a lousy course. So, mandating a lousy course I don't know if that is what we want to do. I don't think we can look past totally implementation questions. The one question that I have is, already making it mandatory or not, is to make it mandatory the student takes this course within their first three semesters, and if a student doesn't take that course in their first three semesters, what can we do then? What actions do we take as far as the student goes? One last comment as far as the common experience. We talked about the Penn State experience or the common experience, yet each college is going to be able to offer this independently. I assume that Curricular Affairs makes sure that these are all offering some kind of common experience and those common set of goals.

Chair Geschwindner: Rob, do you want to comment a little on that?

Robert N. Pangborn: I would just say that I think the issue of what we do with students who don't take it in the first three semesters, certainly, we're going to rely, as we do now, heavily on our advising system to make sure students are taking what they're supposed to take. There are certainly many other instances where we have legislated that students should take certain things by a certain time. We now have a foreign language requirement for entry that has to be taken care of by a certain time. We have mechanisms to handle those students who for one reason or another get caught. So, I think we do a very good job of handling the isolated cases where students may not have been able to access what they were supposed to access when they were supposed to take it. We would use those kinds of procedures.

Peter A. Thrower, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences: I am puzzled. I thought we were discussing requirements. I can't imagine Pennsylvania having a requirement that in order to drive you pass an optional driver's test. Sorry.

Dennis S. Gouran: That was my point exactly. We're talking about general education requirements, not general education options. The motion seems to me to be entirely inappropriate in light of what is being considered here. If you don't like the requirement, vote against it. But, I don't think we can go through these ten propositions or recommendations and sort of piecemeal say, "This one should be optional; this one should be required and so on." They presented a packet of requirements, and so, that's what we should be voting on.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. That's the end of my list of five. Now, unless someone has something totally new on the optional versus required, I would like to ask for a vote.

Brian B. Tormey: I still think it's appropriate to mention that we're taking the approach that one shoe size fits all in suggesting that the seminar is necessary to all campuses. There was a feeling at a recent poll that we took at the Altoona Senate that we are already doing a good job meeting the needs of our students in small class environments at the freshman level and that this would be an additional burden on our allocation of resources.

Robert N. Pangborn: It sounds like you have your seminar in place.

Cheryl L. Achterberg, Acting Dean, The Schreyer Honors College: I find it ironic in this discussion when I think of what the core issue is here: It's how do we build on the best set of experiences in one college or a particular program and transfer that University-wide? What this recommendation is trying to do is guarantee that all students have access to a freshman seminar that we know on the basis of our experience here at Penn State and institutions across the country contribute substantially to the freshman experience and a college experience all together. That's what this motion is about--guaranteeing access to every student at this University--access--so that they can participate in this experience. Many students on the other campuses in the University already receive that experience. That's great. We want all students to receive that experience. The requirements are written so that they're very general, very flexible; existing courses can be adapted. We just want to make sure that every single student at Penn State has this chance.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. I'm going to call for a vote on the substitute motion. This is the motion on the yellow sheet that you all have in front of you. It says, "Establish an optional first-year seminar for incoming, first-year students, provided by each of the colleges and campuses that could be part of the general education program." All those in favor of the substitute motion, please indicate by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: The opposed have it.

Senators: Count.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Only Senators can vote, I remind you of that. All those in favor of the substitute motion, raise your hand. All those opposed to the substitute motion, raise your hand. As I said, the motion failed. I think that's the first I've ever had to do that. I was pretty lucky I did it right. So, we are back to discussing Recommendation #1. Let me suggest that we not repeat all the same sort of things that we've already said. So, is there anything new to discuss on Recommendation #1.

Robert N. Pangborn: I think there was a suggestion that we add the word "all." We would be happy to do that to clarify the motion.

Chair Geschwindner: Where do you want that?

Robert N. Pangborn: for all incoming…

Chair Geschwindner: For all incoming? Are there any objections to having the committee add that? Okay. That will be added. So, Recommendation #1 reads, "Establish a first-year seminar experience for all incoming, first-year students, provided by each of the colleges and campuses as part of the general education program."

Robert Zelis, College of Medicine: I have a question as to whether or not it's required. It doesn't state that here, but is it the understanding of the chair as a part of the general education requirement that this is required. Do we need to put the term in or do we not? My assumption is that we don't need to put it in.

Chair Geschwindner: My feeling is that since the background material is going along to the implementing committee, that that will be a part of it, and if they bring forward an implementation procedure that is contrary to the will of the Senate, we will deal with it at that time.

Deidre E. Jago: Just a point of clarification that I request. Are we including the implementation part when we vote?

Chair Geschwindner: When you vote, you are voting what's on pages one, two three and four of Appendix "C" of today's agenda. That's what you are voting on. The rest of the information in the report that was in the agenda last month will be passed onto whatever committee is charged with implementing it. If this motion passes with the revised motion in the beginning and Recommendation #10, those people will be bringing back the implementation as informational reports. Now, if there is an objection on the part of the Senate to any of that implementation, there are procedures within the Senate to have new motions, new legislative business and have committees submit reports. There are ways to change what's going on in the implementation procedure. So, we're not voting on anything other than the pages in this agenda.

Deidre E. Jago: Why I bring that up is because somebody a few minutes ago mentioned about the first three semesters, and we made reference to the fact that the first six weeks are the critical part. I can understand why the first three semesters may be important because of students not being able to schedule one of these seminars during that time. I'm asking the question about the implementation part because the intent is that we try to get students to have these experiences early on. We're not voting on that section of it right now.

Chair Geschwindner: Right. We're not voting on the first six weeks or the first three semesters. But, the implementation committee could come forward, and one would hope that that committee will read our discussion, read what the original report said and deal with those things and come forward with a recommendation for implementation that's consistent with this.

Louis Milakofsky: Since there were some concerns with regard to the implementation, I'm asking you, Mr. Chair, how will you charge this committee? I know there are a number of questions with regards to cost of Recommendation #1. You've gotten basically a verbal. We've got three different stories. Plus, a vote today would be irresponsible if you're going to allow this implementation committee to be charged, and we're certainly busy enough. Will they then be in charge of, say, for example, that the cost could become too prohibitive? Will they come back and say this recommendation can't be implemented by 1999 or the resources aren't? How will you charge this committee?

Chair Geschwindner: Well, that is certainly a possibility that the implementation committee could come back to us and say, this was a really neat idea, but it is not going to work at Penn State and we recommend that you withdraw that approval on Recommendation #39 or something. So, the idea here is we are setting the stage for a general education program. One of the things within that program is a first-year seminar, mandatory, for all students. But the implementation committee is going to have to deal with the questions that were raised by Murry about what college is offering them. Where do you take them? If I take a three-credit one while I'm enrolled in this college, does it count for a one-credit one when I transfer to that college? All those kinds of things. If they come up with a recommendation, for instance, that every seminar is to be a one-credit seminar taught in classes no larger than ten students by full professors with 30 years of experience, then probably someone out there in the audience would raise an objection. So, that's why it will come back here so that we have that final review of what's going on.

William C. Lasher, Penn State Erie, The Behrend College: I think the whole proposal is really excellent, and I am very supportive of the freshman seminar. However, I'm concerned about the cost, and a few other people in here are also concerned about the cost. I think part of the problem comes from the ambiguity with respect to implementation, and I understand the reasons for that. What I would like to do is simply provide explicit instructions to the implementation committee to consider cost and would like to, therefore, propose the following addition to Recommendation #1: "Implementation of the freshman seminar requirement will be contingent on the establishment of adequate permanent funding for every location within the University system."

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Does that come from a caucus?

William C. Lasher: No.

Chair Geschwindner: That does not come from a caucus. You're getting this on a blue sheet being passed out. Is there a second?

Senators: We haven't gotten it yet.

Chair Geschwindner: All right. I have a second. Those who have it, have any comments? All right. Can we keep the noise down so I can hear.

Senator: Does every location have freshman students?

Chair Geschwindner: No, every location within the system does not have freshman students. Okay. The motion is to amend Recommendation #1, Implementation will be contingent on the establishment of adequate permanent funding. Rob, do you want to comment on that?

Robert N. Pangborn: I can only reflect the committee's discussion on this. It was our intention that we would pass along our recommendation through the comments I made earlier to the implementation committee, that every consideration be given to the particular needs and resources available at each campus as this implementation process unfolds. We really think it will be necessary as each campus tries to address this new general education component that there be flexibility exercised. I think to add this particular requirement implies that there hasn't been appropriate costing done. We've heard a costing report for the whole proposal. I think this would be, and this is, personally, very, very problematic to start making issues of funding contingent to any kind of legislation we pass that has a curricular character. The costing report is supposed to satisfy that particular concern.

Tramble T. Turner, Abington College: I happen to be on the committee, but I'm speaking individually and actually want to comment on what Rob just said, and then a question for Senator Lasher. Rob was mentioning the flexibility and as there's been discussions of the possible costs impact that is a great concern. There was a costing report, but I guess that might be discussed later. In terms, specifically, though, to this motion, my question would be, in the last line, is the intent for it to read, "funding for the requirement at every location within the University system?"

William C. Lasher: Yes.

John W. Baer, Student Senator, CCSG Representative: I like the way this is stated, but as President Spanier was speaking earlier, he seems to think we already have established that this is going to be coming out of our budget and the same funding that we're using now is going to be that which should also be coming out of the budget.

Dennis S. Gouran: I don't know how you could establish adequate permanent funding for every location within the University system when you don't know, at this point, what courses are going to be included or what the cost of delivery would be. It seems to me it would be up to the implementation committee to determine the feasibility rather than try to legislate what I think is another back door of effort to prevent the requirements from going through. So, I'm opposed to this, as I'll probably be opposed to every other modification offered this afternoon. But we, as a body empowered to approve what to do, are in power to take away. So, if these recommendations upon later consideration by the appropriate body do not appear to be feasible, it's entirely in our purview to change our attitudes toward the recommendations that have been proposed, and I hope we are going to vote on it. Otherwise, we're going to be here until about 4:00 in the morning.

Chair Geschwindner: Well, I have a class tomorrow afternoon at 2:30. I thought we might want to be done before then. One last comment on this one. Shelton.

Shelton S. Alexander: First of all, just a comment that not every location has freshmen. With that aside, the costing numbers that I gave you came not from the central administration, but from each of the units that are going to be responsible for implementing this particular recommendation and the others. So, given that the available funds appear to be there to implement the entire thing, including the freshman seminar, I really don't believe that the funding here could really present an argument.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. I'd like to call for a vote. All those in favor of the amendment to Recommendation #1 as presented on the blue sheet, signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: It's been rejected. I'd also like to ask that we move on to Recommendation #2. Are there any comments or questions concerning
Recommendation #2?

Sharon Crowley, College of the Liberal Arts: I'd like to ask the intent of the committee or the background on the very last part of this recommendation about exemption. What were you thinking about the number of students that might want to exempt once we get this better machinery in place. Were you talking about ten students, 40 percent of the students?

Robert N. Pangborn: I don't know if I can answer that real accurately. I think we gave you some numbers on the students who are exempting out now. I think we felt that there are students who are taking courses that they don't necessarily need because we don't have good diagnostic instruments to establish that they already know the work and that the taking of these courses would be redundant. In many cases, we think that the student would be much better served by moving on and taking advanced courses or moving to other requirements that they need to meet. At the same time, I think this whole recommendation will improve the ability with which we can determine where a student should start in a sequence of courses so that they're not starting with a course that's too far advanced, having to drop it, costing us time and energy in terms of having then to find their appropriate starting point. So, I'm not sure that we have a real accurate guess on the numbers of students involved here. It may be significant for certain groups of students. Certainly for the Schreyer scholars, there may be a number of those. That's a fairly significant proportion of our student body.

Sharon Crowley: I would like to point out that the Recommendation says "placing out all together." Once I've pointed that out, I'll remind you of all the discussions we've just heard about mandatory courses in the original requirement, and it strikes me that while we are imposing another requirement with the freshman seminar, we are virtually saying if we accept this proposal, that many students, or perhaps a few, will not have to take the requirements that are already in place. I have spent a lot of time administering and studying one of the University requirements, not only here but across the country, and I can tell you that when, say, 40 percent of the student body are exempted from such a requirement, the remaining 60 percent are not happy. That does not make for a productive classroom environment.

Chair Geschwindner: Other comments on Recommendation #2?

Timothy T. Creyts, Student Senator, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences: It is more unproductive to have a professor grade work and a student do work that is repetitive than it is to exempt.

David Byman: I would have a question. I know as part of the General Education materials that we looked at last time that it was proposed that FTCAP exams and question materials used to place students in different courses would be placed on the Web. I think that would be quite unfortunate. Now, my question would be: if this recommendation were passed, would we still be given the opportunity to remove that particular item if it were later determined to be a bad idea?

Robert N. Pangborn: I don't know if I can answer that.

Chair Geschwindner: I have a feeling that the office that runs FTCAP would decide whether to place their tests on the Web. But, we have committees--like the Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid Committee and other committees--that would have the opportunity to review the actions of John Cahir's office and John Romano's office and those folks. So, we would have an opportunity for input. I don't think that part of it is really something that we need to concern ourselves with in terms of a vote. Other questions on Recommendation #2? Okay. Let's move on to Recommendation #3. Any comments on Recommendation #3? Okay. Comments on Recommendation #4? Let's move on to Recommendation #5. Yes.

Donald E. Kunze, College of Arts and Architecture: The recommendation to include active and collaborative learning is a good idea, I think, but it's hard to know how it might impact on classes with large enrollments. For people who teach very large sections quite successfully, are such cases simply regarded as 'inappropriate' for this recommendation?

Robert N. Pangborn: What number are you on? Oh, we're back at four.

Chair Geschwindner: Don, are you on four?

Donald E. Kunze: Yes.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. I'm sorry.

Robert N. Pangborn: The question was, to try to implement this in a very large section would be inappropriate, is that correct?

Donald E. Kunze: Would it be regarded inappropriate for such classes, or would the requirement be mandated?

Robert N. Pangborn: I think I'm convinced that there are many ways that you could introduce active-learning elements for classes of many different sizes, including very large ones. We're not restricting these active-learning elements to what happens in the classroom. They could be things that students do outside of the classroom. Certainly, I think it's fair to say that the committee's intent was to put somewhat downward pressure on what has historically been some very large survey courses to get students to be a little more active and to hopefully mean that that occurs in a classroom environment that's not quite so big.

Donald E. Kunze: Let me redirect. Your mentioning downward pressure indicated that you would like to have a smaller class size.

Robert N. Pangborn: Yes.

Donald E. Kunze: I wanted to question whether small class size per se had been shown to be pedagogically better or more appropriate. I was looking for evidence, not just opinion.

Robert N. Pangborn: Well, I think there may be those in this room who are a lot better qualified than I am to answer that.

Chair Geschwindner: Anybody on the committee want to comment on that?

Cary L. Libkin, College of Arts and Architecture: I'm a member of the committee. I think that there are classes--Theatre 100--that have 350 students at a sitting. It's highly interactive, full of team work, and I'm sure that there are other classes that do that same thing. I don't think there's necessarily correlation in a large classroom that isn't active, participatory.

Chair Geschwindner: Any additional comments on number four? Okay. Number five? Okay. Let's move on to Recommendation #6. Scott Kretchmar.

R. Scott Kretchmar, College of Health and Human Development: I have a substitute motion to read. It reads as follows: "Restructure the existing, 4-credit, Health Sciences and Physical Education requirement to create a new, 3-credit, Health and Activity requirement that emphasizes promotion of an active and healthful lifestyle. Courses will focus on the theory and practice of lifespan wellness and fitness activities, and on the knowledge, attitudes, habits, and skills needed to live well relative to such matters as alcohol consumption and drug use, sexual health awareness, stress management, diet, exercise, the wise use of leisure time, and personal relationships."

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Just as matter of information, you're getting a green sheet. You should be receiving a green sheet which shows the motion as a substitute motion for Recommendation #6.

R. Scott Kretchmar: I want to say a few things in favor of the motion. I'm waiting for people to get it.

Chair Geschwindner: Do we have a second of the motion? It's seconded. Thank you.

R. Scott Kretchmar: I have a couple of comments in favor. First of all, we mentioned skill. One of the subsequent changes here is to open the door for skill-oriented classrooms. When we're talking about that, we're talking about classes that are taught by qualified instructors and to which educational accountability is available, not activities like intramural or some club activities that are more on the recreational side. I say that because some of the accompanying material on the first draft that we had spoke about those kinds of activities counting as educational experiences. We do not believe that. So, that's a footnote for the implementation committee in case this amendment passes.

The argument. First, we think that our amendment constitutes a relatively small and reasonable change. The originally-recommended shift from four credits to three would remain. The opportunity for students to fully satisfy the requirement by taking theory-oriented courses would remain. The possibility of combining theory with a movement laboratory experience would remain. The only change is one that opens up an opportunity for students to choose courses that focus on skill development in a lifetime motor activity.

Second, we believe that the spirit of the requirement is one that would have us educating students toward living a healthy life, not just understanding the theories of healthful living. Thus, we have added language that speaks of habits, attitudes, and skills--acquisitions that are crucial to changed behaviors, not just new understandings.

Third, we believe that the amendment retains important pedagogical flexibility. Students already spend, on average, some 130 credits on their way to a bachelors degree sitting and thinking critically. We want to retain opportunities for students to stand and even move while perhaps still thinking critically. We are not convinced that all good thinking occurs when one is largely immobile or even when one is reflective.

If we are committed to providing embodied human beings at Penn State with a human education, that would give them the skills to think well reflectively and intuitively and to craft sentences made up of words and, say, dance vocabularies, and to have the freedom to explore both virtual space and real space, then retaining the opportunity--not requirement--to learn motor skills would not seem to be unreasonable.

Dennis S. Gouran: I see no need for amending the recommendation along these lines. I think you will have the opportunity as a college to add to the general education curriculum in the personal category courses that have these characteristics.

Chair Geschwindner: Other comments or questions on the motion?

Peter A. Thrower: I must say that one of the problems I have with this report as a whole is the fact that it doesn't exemplify the sorts of things that I like to teach in writing courses which is conciseness and preciseness. I get worried, for example, if you'll indulge me for a minute, in the first recommendation that we don't have a first-year seminar; we have a first-year seminar experience. Here, both versions that we have talk about lifespan wellness. It's well known that we all spend more years dead than alive. Perhaps we should concentrate on the deadspan wellness.

Chair Geschwindner: The unusual thing about today is that you're still all here to here that. Do we have any additional comments on the substitute motion?

Deidre E. Jago: I'd like to just mention the Surgeon General's report of July 6, 1996, which probably only about one-third of the people have even heard of. But, I do want to say that the major conclusions of this report emphasized that this was based on a comprehensive review of the latest scientific evidence linking physical activity and improved health, and the results were that people of all ages, both male and female, benefit from physical activity. Significant health benefits can be obtained by including a moderate amount of physical activity on most days of the week. Additional health benefits can be gained through greater amounts of physical activity. Physical activity reduces the risk of premature mortality in general, particularly from coronary heart disease, hypertension, colon cancer and diabetes mellitius. We have to also recognize that we have approximately 50 percent of the American adults who do not regularly participate in physical activity. I support the recommendation that Senator Kretchmar has given before us. I think that Penn State in the past has been very, very supportive of physical activity. We have something that we can give to our students: a lifetime of wellness, a lifetime of movement-oriented activities so that their quality of life will be enhanced. I would urge all of you to take into account this 1996 report on physical activity and health. Think about your own health. How many of you have hypertension? How many of you have coronary heart disease? How many of you have some of these maladies that are direct results of the inactivity that we get by sitting here from 1:30 on? I think that the proposed amendment is in spirit with what's in the best interest of our students. Many of the students do like the idea that they can learn skills that they can take with them for their lifetime. I would urge all of you to support this amendment.

Barton W. Browning: I'd like to speak in support of what I believe to be the spirit of this motion, although the phrasing of the motion is just a little hard to get through. It seems to me that there are a couple of things that this motion implies. One is that it keeps the original intent, which is to have a requirement that can be fulfilled without physical activity. In other words, you can fulfill this health science requirement without any of the performance courses. That seems to be a desire of many faculty and students. What I think this motion speaks to is the question of the skill development courses--the courses in dancing; the courses in tennis; or the courses in golf--that we now offer. The motion that originally came from committee was not quite clear and seemed to imply that the acceptable sort of skill-development course would consist of say, 3/4 lecture and theory with perhaps 1/4 of the course actually going out onto the tennis court or into the swimming pool or into some other activity. If I'm understanding the current motion correctly, it's saying yes, these are different ways of knowing, just as a musician actually needs to play an instrument in order to develop his or her skills, and someone in the arts needs to actually go in the studio and paint and draw in order to develop those skills, and not just to hear a lecture about them, then in order to develop lifetime physical activity skills, we need to actually go onto the playing field or courts or into the pool. And, to that extent and in that spirit, I'd like to support this motion.

Jean Landa Pytel: When I read Recommendation #6 as proposed on the white sheet when we came in the door, and I read the proposed amendment here, I don't really see any difference. It just doesn't appear to me that there's any difference. I don't seem to understand the rationale of this amendment because of Recommendation #6, the way you have it here, which may include physical activities that focus on lifespan wellness and fitness. It's just a different way of saying the same thing.

Robert N. Pangborn: I think the difference, if I can try to clarify this, is that the committee viewed the new requirement as something that resides in the knowledge domain component of general education, not the skill component--in the knowledge domain. And that such could involve skills as a coupled part of that study in a knowledge domain, just as we include active learning and other writing skills and communication skills in the other domains. In fact, we've recommended that as part of
Recommendation #4. So, that's the way the committee is viewing this requirement. What I think is proposed here is the idea of using pure skill courses--courses that are now offered as a skill in some exercise and sports activity to meet some or all of the requirement. That's not consistent with what the committee is hoping to accomplish here. We're looking for a coupling between a knowledge--an understanding of a knowledge domain, that being health sciences--and the physical activity that could be a part of that experience.

Chair Geschwindner: Scott, is that a….

R. Scott Kretchmar: Yes. I think that's a fairly accurate rendition of the difference here. I think the implications of the difference are fairly significant because those of us who teach in this area and try to promote healthy living are arguing for a more expansive bag of tools, if you will, to promote the healthful lifestyle. Part of that bag of tools involves moving people into the environment where they develop the skills, the attitude and the comfort zone and so forth to want to be in those places. Theory doesn't do that directly. It does it indirectly. We want to have the flexibility that I think most skill teaching departments have to use theory appropriately for the objectives of the course. There's no way we're opposed to theory. We've got many theory courses, and it would be expected that we would use theory in many of the activity settings. What we object to is the required linking and the implied legitimization of performance only if it's linked to theory. I think the original proposal would dramatically change the current possibility to our students in terms of their ability to gain skill development, because it would require the theory component as a linked experience to any skill that would occur. We think that's hard to restrict.

Michael Navin, Dickinson School of Law: I would like, I guess, to speak in favor of the substitute motion; however, I wonder in a document such as this, which seems to me would probably be transcended over a period of time, whether it wouldn't be better stated, Scott, in the fourth line from the bottom to put a period after the word "well."

R. Scott Kretchmar: The remaining language there drew some chuckle at the start. I think as long as this record is going to accompany this, I think the spirit of the amendment is still retained. Do I hear any objections from people who have consulted with me on that?

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Do I understand correctly that on the fourth line up, "needed to live well." And everything after that has been deleted? Okay. The mover has changed that, and I assume the seconder has. So, we will continue the discussion.

Cheryl L. Achterberg: I just want to express a different point of view from what Scott had presented. The original proposal, I think, is more flexible than the amendment here. Some of the ideas that the committee was thinking about were different kinds of courses altogether. We would like to see, for example, a course about heart disease and its prevention, where that course is really focused over the course of the lifespan with what heart disease is, how to prevent it and it could incorporate physical activity as well. People would learn, perhaps, how to assess their fitness and so forth and put it all together in one comprehensive package. Really rethink what's taught or how it's taught in order to truly promote lifespan wellness.

John Pfau, Director of Exercise and Sport Science: I stand here and strongly support Scott's recommendation as amended to Recommendation #6 and to add some clarity on a few things. First of all, there is an assumption by the committee--I don't think the committee took, and I'll take part responsibility for this as Director of Exercise and Sport Science--there is miscommunication between the committee and our department. There are 96 percent of the activities offered on this campus by our department which are lifespan fitness and wellness activities. We don't roll out the basketball and play basketball for 50 minutes. Everything I've read indicates a hint at that kind of understanding of what we do. This Recommendation #6 that sits here--and Dr. Newell has spoken to us and Scott has spoken to us--to this recommendation, puts activity and skilled human movement in the position of a second class citizen. My colleague over here just suggested that activity could ride into a particular course on the coattails of theory. We are suggesting that the natural evolution of a curriculum, that this is already happening and will continue to happen, if you have the very strong leadership that we have in the department with people like Scott and Karl. The whole idea that skillful human movement should be relegated to a position of second class citizenship, which we feel as the department that this recommendation did, is just unacceptable to us. So, I would prevail upon you to go with this recommendation that has been very well thought out by our colleague, Scott Kretchmar.

Dennis S. Gouran: I've just done an inventory of my physical condition. I've got to keep my apoplexy under control. I see nothing in Recommendation #6 as it was presented to us at the beginning of this meeting that precludes what Scott's motion would enable us to do. Am I misreading the revised version of Recommendation #6?

Chair Geschwindner: Dennis, I believe the discussion that both Rob and Scott had to the same question that was asked over here addressed that. So, I believe there is a feeling on the part of the mover that there is a difference. Scott, do you want to reiterate that?

Dennis S. Gouran: Are we talking about what they originally had in mind?

R. Scott Kretchmar: To respond again to that. The committee originally wanted a mandated link relationship between theory and skill. Our revision breaks that link and allows the opportunity for a skill-emphasis kind of educational experience. I want to respond very briefly to Cheryl's comment. We're excited about those kinds of classes. In our field, they are being taught around the country now with varying degrees of success. Our amendment does not preclude the development of that class. It doesn't go against it. That kind of class would still be allowed and it's a combination of creative class between interaction of theory and performance and so forth. So, there's really nothing in the amendment that would preclude development from occurring.

Chair Geschwindner: Have you had enough discussion on the substitute motion?

Senators: Here, here.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. Let me ask for all those in favor of the substitute motion as given on the green sheet with the last three lines plus the words "relative to such matters as" in the fourth line being struck. All those in favor, signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: The amendment has been approved and becomes a part of the motion. I believe it's appropriate if we move on to Recommendation #7. Do we have any comments on Recommendation #7? How about any comments on Recommendation #8? Recommendation #9? Recommendation #10? Do we have any other comments on the entire package that is before us at this time?

John W. Baer: I personally don't feel comfortable voting on this issue until I've had a chance to take the numbers back. I've heard a lot of numbers, and until the students have had a chance to see it, I would like to move to postpone the motion until the next University Faculty Senate meeting.

Chair Geschwindner: I'm going to move that that is out of order. We can reject this and deal with it. We have a motion…. Peter would you like to… Can I reject that? I want to reject it. Okay. We have a motion to postpone it until the next meeting. Is there a second? I have a second. Is there any discussion?

Timothy Creyts: I'm a student, and we've been trying for the past month to get these numbers out to students. It hasn't happened until today. I think we should vote on this today and now.

Chair Geschwindner: Any other comments?

John Baer: I haven't received those numbers until I got here today. There's no way I could have gotten them to the 40,000 students at the Commonwealth campuses.

Chair Geschwindner: Any other comments?

Michael Navin: Point of clarification. What numbers?

Chair Geschwindner: I think we're talking about the costing numbers that were presented earlier which were not in the printed agenda. Are you ready for the question? Okay. The motion is to postpone. All those in favor of postponing, signify by saying, "aye.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner Okay. We will not postpone it. Any other comments on the overall motion? Let me remind you that included in the motion--we haven't talked about and I apologize for forgetting it--is the framework for general education which is on the back of page four. The page is not numbered, I don't believe, but it is the graphic. This is part of it. Are there any comments on that? Are you ready for the question?

Charles F. Gunderman: I've been asked to request a paper ballot.

Chair Geschwindner: You have?

Charles F. Gunderman: Yes.

Chair Geschwindner: Okay. This is not debatable and it will require a majority vote to approve the request for a paper ballot. All those in favor of requesting a paper ballot, signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: It has been turned down. We will have a voice vote. All those in favor of approval of the general education recommendations as presented in the handout in Appendix "C" of today's agenda as modified by the green door handout on Recommendation #6, signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign.

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: The motion has passed. I'd like to compliment the committee and all of you for sticking it out. Unfortunately, there is still more business. If you're leaving, please leave quietly. Isn't that what you tell your students?

Peter C. Jurs, Eberly College of Science: Scott and I a year and a half ago appointed the special committee to investigate general education. Now that we have finished it and passed the motion today, Scott and I would like to join in thanking especially Rob for his leadership and also all the members of the special committee. They've put a lot of effort in trying to make Penn State a better place for its students.

Chair Geschwindner: Thank you, Peter.

LEGISLATIVE REPORTS

SENATE COMMITTEE ON COMMITTEES AND RULES

Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure

Sabih I. Hayek, Chair

We now move on to "Legislative Reports." The Committee on Committees and Rules, "Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure." Nancy Wyatt will present the report.

Nancy J. Wyatt, Delaware Campus: Thank you for staying. I want to point out that what I'm doing today is kind of ironic following our recent discussion, because what we're doing now is trying to amend some unaccepted consequences of good intentions. That is, we have required dual membership on two committees in order to create liaison between those committees, but there are easier ways of doing this. It is still impossible for one body to be in two places at the same time.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions on the proposed legislation? Seeing none, we'll take a vote. All those in favor, signify by saying, "aye."

Senators: Aye.

Chair Geschwindner: All opposed, same sign. The motion passes. Thank you very much.

ADVISORY/CONSULTATIVE REPORTS

None

INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

SENATE COMMITTEE ON ADMISSIONS, RECORDS, SCHEDULING AND STUDENT AID

Reserved Spaces Program

Frank J. Kristine, Chair

We now move on to "Informational Reports." The first report is from Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid on "Reserved Spaces Program." Frank Kristine is here to present the report.

 

Frank J. Kristine, Mont Alto Campus: This represents the annual report to the Senate that has been faithfully made since 1984 by Dr. Robert Dunham, outgoing Senior Vice President and Dean of the Commonwealth College, one of his many assigned responsibilities during his distinguished career at Penn State. Our Committee would like to recognize the progress made in the Reserved Spaces Program since 1984, reducing reserved spaces from about 28 percent of the freshman class to about 5 percent this year. Thanks, Bob, for this fine job. Our Committee hopes your successor is able to maintain the integrity of the program. If you have any questions on the report, I'd be happy to address them.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions for Frank on the Reserved Spaces report?

SENATE COMMITTEE ON ADMISSIONS, RECORDS, SCHEDULING AND STUDENT AID

Report of High School Nondegree Students Enrolled in Credit Courses

Frank J. Kristine, Chair

Okay. Let's move on to the "Report of High School Nondegree Students Enrolled in Credit Courses."

Frank J. Kristine: This also represents a regular report to the Senate from our Committee that was established by legislation passed in 1988. I'd like to direct your attention to Table 2, the pie charts. Due to the method used to extract this data, the GPA distribution is a little misleading. In the wedge on each of the pies that's labeled 0.5 - 2.00, it's important to point out that less than 3 percent of the students earned less than a 2.00 grade in each of those wedges. So, thus, over the last three years only about 3 percent of high school students enrolling in credit-bearing courses for a grade earned less than a "C." Our Committee would like to thank our fellow committee member David Roth as well as Ann Rohrbach, Assistant Director of Admissions, for preparing this report. Again, if you have any questions, I'll try to give an answer to them.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions on the high school nondegree student report? Thank you, Frank.

SENATE COMMITTEE ON FACULTY BENEFITS

Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges

S. Diane Brannon, Chair

The next item on the agenda is Faculty Benefits, and with your indulgence, I'm going to skip over that. Hopefully, we can find Tom Daubert.

FACULTY RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILIITES

Annual Report for 1996-97

Leon J. Stout, Chair

We'll move on to the Faculty Rights and Responsibilities "Annual Report for
1996-97." Lee Stout will present the report.

Leon J. Stout, Chair, Faculty Rights and Responsibilities: This represents the annual reporting responsibilities of FR&R. I won't read the document. You all have it. Just, I guess, two comments that I would like to make. We did see fewer cases in the last year than we've seen in the previous four years. I think this can be credited to several different reasons, but at least one I should acknowledge I think is the job that Bob Secor is doing as Vice Provost in going out to the colleges and to the campuses to provide the most in-depth workshops that we've had in many years on the promotion and tenure process. I think we have a much better understanding of this process now across the University than we have had in quite a long time. Also, just to comment on the point of the increasing numbers of cases that cite claims of discrimination, we have spent a lot of time talking about how we should respond to these. We felt that our take on it, to refer those to Affirmative Action before we would do anything about them, was confirmed by University Counsel. I will admit that we were a little surprised when University Counsel said that people who were dissatisfied with their outcome from Affirmative Action could come back to Faculty Rights and Responsibilities. However, at the same time, Counsel did say that--if I understand correctly--many cases going to Affirmative Action do not actually reach the stage of a formal finding, and those that do most of them tend to go to Harrisburg to the Human Relations Commission and other avenues to pursue further concerns. But, this may well come up in the future. It will be a new area for us.

Chair Geschwindner: Are there any questions for Lee? Thank you very much.

SENATE COMMITTEE ON INTERCOLLEGIATE ATHLETICS

Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97

Charles E. Yesalis, Chair

Our next report is from the Intercollegiate Athletics Committee. It's the "Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97." The report will be presented by John Coyle, the NCAA Representative. Since John has been in front of us many times before, let me thank him for sitting through the long meeting. He obviously knew that was going to happen, and we appreciate his sticking it out.

John J. Coyle, NCAA Representative: I might add that it was déjà vu to some extent because I had been a member of the Senate for 28 years and served as chairman at one time, and I've heard the debate on general education at least three times, and I was a member of the committee twice that reviewed it. So, it was déjà vu. It was a good report, and I'm glad you were able to move on with it.

This is an annual report, as was indicated, and if you want to look perhaps at the table, we're comparing previous years. You can see that the number of student athletes that were screened last academic year increased to 1788, but as noted in your report, there is some double counting here because we review student athletes for participation of eligibility, both in the fall and the spring, and if they participate in a two-semester sport, they're counted twice. The number of students not approved for eligibility was 45, as you can see. That represents approximately 2 percent of the total number. The reasons for not being approved are primarily usually academic: either they don't meet what we might call the qualitative requirement, which would be the GPA requirement, or they don't meet the quantitative requirement which would be the number of credits required, although occasionally there could be other reasons for not being approved, such as the NCAA transfer rule or the Big Ten transfer rule. But for the most part, it's academic. That number of the approximately 2 percent, I think, is relatively small. We are allowed to make exceptions to the quantitative requirements for normal progress as long as the student athletes meet both the NCAA and the Big Ten requirements. So, exceptions are to the Penn State requirements which are higher than the other two, as you know probably from previous reports. These individuals were approved. Typically, they are within three credits, and typically in their last year where it's obvious they are going to graduate. To that point, I might add that recently we were provided data comparing graduation rates at all Big Ten institutions, and Penn State, as many of you know from having read the papers several months ago when this information was published for Penn State, student athletes graduated in the last report at a three percent higher level than the general student body. In other words, 81 percent of student athletes graduated and 78 percent of the general student body. And that is in the Big Ten report that was recently released, we're number two in terms of student athlete graduation rate. Number one was Northwestern. We're number two, and we're number two by a large majority. Then, the final part of this is the total number of scholarship athletes. These are students that receive financial aid from the Athletic Department. There were 470 of those during the previous academic year. I should note, as I typically do, that this does not mean that all these students receive full athletic grants. Some of them are on what are called partials in some of the sports. So, I'm ready to answer any questions.

Chair Geschwindner: Are they any questions for John? Okay. Thank you very much.

John J. Coyle: Thank you all.

SENATE COMMITTEE ON STUDENT LIFE

Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing

Jean Landa Pytel, Chair

Let's move on to Student Life's report on "Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing," given in Appendix "J," and Jean Landa Pytel will present the report.

Jean Landa Pytel: Thank you. This report is the last of the informational reports that the Committee on Student Life will be presenting on issues dealing with abuse of alcohol. We're planning to make some recommendations and are asking for your ideas and suggestions for programs that may address the problems associated with the abuse of alcohol. Please contact any member of the Student Life Committee or the Senate Office. We can be reached through them, and we would appreciate any input that you may have. To help answer any questions today, Ms. Karen Feldbaum is here. She's the Associate Director of Residence Life. She and Andrea Gaspardino, the Associate Director for Greek and Community Life, provided us with the information for this report. I'd like to also mention that Linda Friend, a member of our Committee last year, did most of the work in putting this report together and is gratefully acknowledged.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions for Jean? Thank you very much.

SENATE COMMITTEE ON UNDERGRADUATE EDUCATION

Grade Distribution Report

Arthur C. Miller, Chair

We next move to Undergraduate Education. We have two reports. The first is the "Grade Distribution Report," Appendix "K." Art Miller will present that report.

Arthur C. Miller: I'd like to present the informational reports. The data is put together in the Registrar's Office by Gary Hile. The first one is on the Grade Distribution, and what I've done if you take a look just briefly at Table 1, I put together three graphs trying to explain a little bit of maybe what the grade distribution might look like. They're not statistically necessarily significant. It's our interpretation of some things I'll explain here in a minute. One of the things that, if you look at with the number of "Fs," "Ws," and the late drops on Figure 1, they have increased over the last 23 years of the data. However, they go up in plateaus, and they go up in plateaus by how we changed the eight-week drop rule to the ten-week drop rule to the twelve-week with the 16-credit late drop rule, and it's really one plateau, second plateau and third plateau as they've increased. Sometimes, some of the faculty are interested in, is there grade inflation or not. It's very difficult with the database that we have in order to break that down. What I've done on Figure 2 and Figure 3 is that I've plotted two graphs. One of the graphs, Figure 2, is accounting for all the "W" and the late drop people as a statistic, basically, saying they are part of the whole lump. So, they would be in a sense not given any grade, but they would be part of the total numbers. So, it's essentially pulling that out. If you count that, then the line that goes across is about the average, and so there would be no differences in the grades that you would look at with that as a statistic. Figure 3 is done a little bit differently, and what that does is it takes the withdrawals and the late drops and it doesn't count those students as part of the statistic, and so what you have is only the grades reported as A-F in over the first maybe 20 years. If you look at the date, there really is not much difference. There is a slight change as you would look at the last ten or 12 years, and there may be an indication that there may be some slight grade inflation. However, those are the two extreme statistics. The breakdown of the other, as far as by college and by departments and by years are on the other tables.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions on this first report?

Peter Deines: I think it was more than six years ago that I have commented yearly on this rise in the GPA. When are we going to do something about it? I think this report has reasons for being presented, which is to offer to see what the institution does with its grading. It seems to me the trend is obvious that we should stop to think about what to do about it.

Arthur C. Miller: I'm not so sure the trend is so obvious. There are a couple of things that occur. One is that where this trend goes up is at about 12 years. You also have the plus and minus system, which has a lot to do with this. You also have the University having, I think, a little bit higher standards in looking at retention and some things as well. The trend that you see from the scales that we have are fairly well distorted also. The "Y" axis which you're looking at as far as the GPA is a very narrow band, if you want to look at that. I'm not sure if the trend is actually absolutely showing a grade inflation.

Peter Deines: Well, may I ask the question of what date we will devise the test to say whether we do or not?

Arthur C. Miller: Well, I think we could probably devise the test. I think that has to…

Peter Deines: Then, let's do something. I mean, I understand what you're saying, and I'm willing to listen, but I also see the sign going up and up and up year after year. So, we should have the tendency to say, "Yes, this is real or this is not." So, every year we come back with the same discussion, and we have the same explanation. When are we going to sit down and say, "Okay, we've had a test"?

Arthur C. Miller: We will attempt to do that for next year.

Peter Deines: Good.

David P. Gold, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences: Would you maybe accept a friendly amendment with the captions on pages 2 and 3.

Arthur C. Miller: Sure.

Chair Geschwindner: Well, Duff, since this is just an informational report, perhaps it would be best if you just suggested what would be a better title.

David P. Gold: Okay. I suggest dropping this statement and just put in parenthesis "includes student grades." It might be easier to just drop it out.

Arthur C. Miller: Okay.

John J. Cahir, Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Education: As I do every year with my colleague, Peter, I remind him that we have lots and lots of activities going on across the entire University aimed at retention and improvement of teaching and so forth. I would hate to think that 40 years from now, once the Schreyer Institute and the Center for Excellence of Learning and Teaching and all the rest have done their success, that this number would continue to be exactly flat, which is what Peter seems to want it to be.

Chair Geschwindner: Any other comments on that report?

SENATE COMMITTEE ON UNDERGRADUATE EDUCATION

Mid-Semester Evaluation Process 1992-96

Arthur C. Miller, Chair

Okay, Art, would you like to present the next report?

Arthur C. Miller: The next report is on the "Mid-Semester Evaluation," and that has been instituted since 1992. Table 1 of page one of that, probably the easiest one to look at, is on the unsatisfactory part of the report at mid-semester University Park. Let's just look at a couple of numbers. One is fall of 1996. There were 3,310 unsatisfactory evaluations given, which is around 11 percent. And, if you flip the page to page two of that and go down to the bottom of that, out of the 3,310, about one-third, one-third and one-third fall into the category of passing the course, "D" or "F," and the other third just plain dropped. So, that's kind of the conclusion that would come out of that.

Chair Geschwindner: Any questions for Art on that report? Okay. Thank you very much.

Let's move back to Faculty Benefits. The Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges Report is given in Appendix "G." Tom Daubert was not planning on making any comments, but was planning on being here to answer any of your questions. Let me suggest that we accept the report as an informational report along with all the others. But, if you have any questions, if you will e-mail me, I will see that they are passed on to Tom and that you get a response. That's acceptable; that's how we will proceed with that one.

NEW LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS

None

COMMENTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE GOOD OF THE UNIVERSITY

None

ADJOURNMENT

Let me thank you all for staying. May I have a motion to adjourn? The December 2, 1997 meeting of the University Faculty Senate adjourned at 4:35 PM.


Appendix I

12-2-97

DOCUMENTS DISTRIBUTED PRIOR TO DECEMBER 2, 1997

 

Curricular Affairs - Curriculum Report (Blue Sheets) of November 21, 1997

University Planning - Costing of the Special Committee on General Education Proposal (Informational)

Special Committee on General Education - Final Report and Recommendations of the Special Committee on General Education (Legislative)

Committees and Rules - Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure (Legislative)

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid - Reserved Spaces Program (Informational)

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid - Report of High School Nondegree Students Enrolled in Credit Courses (Informational)

Faculty Benefits - Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges (Informational)

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities - Annual Report for 1996-97 (Informational)

Intercollegiate Athletics - Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97 (Informational)

Student Life - Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing (Informational) 

Undergraduate Education - Grade Distribution Report (Informational)

Undergraduate Education - Mid-Semester Evaluation Process 1992-96 (Informational)

 

 

Appendix II

12-2-97

Amendments to Report of the Special Committee on General Education

 

 

 

Appendix III

12-2-97

 

MOTION MADE BY FELIX LUKEZIC

(AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES SENATE CAUCUS)

 

RE: GENERAL EDUCATION REPORT

 

The following is a substitute motion for the wording in Recommendation #1:

 

ESTABLISH AN OPTIONAL FIRST-YEAR SEMINAR FOR INCOMING, FIRST-YEAR STUDENTS, PROVIDED BY EACH OF THE COLLEGES AND CAMPUSES THAT COULD BE PART OF THE GENERAL EDUCATION PROGRAM.

 

 

 

 

Appendix IV

12-2-97

 

MOTION MADE BY BILL LASHER, PENN STATE ERIE

 

RE: GENERAL EDUCATION REPORT

 

The following is a motion to amend Recommendation #1 by addition of the following:

 

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE FRESHMAN SEMINAR REQUIREMENT WILL BE CONTINGENT ON THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ADEQUATE PERMANENT FUNDING FOR EVERY LOCATION WITHIN THE UNIVERSITY SYSTEM.

 

 

Appendix V

12-2-97

 

MOTION MADE BY SCOTT KRETCHMAR

 

RE: GENERAL EDUCATION REPORT

 

The following is a substitute for the wording in Recommendation #6:

 

RESTRUCTURE THE EXISTING 4-CREDIT, HEALTH SCIENCES AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENT TO CREATE A NEW 3-CREDIT HEALTH AND ACTIVITY REQUIREMENT THAT EMPHASIZES PROMOTION OF AN ACTIVE AND HEALTHFUL LIFESTYLE. COURSES WILL FOCUS ON THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF LIFESPAN WELLNESS AND FITNESS ACTIVITIES, AND ON THE KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDES, HABITS, AND SKILLS NEEDED TO LIVE WELL RELATIVE TO SUCH MATTERS AS ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION AND DRUG USE, SEXUAL HEALTH AWARENESS, STRESS MANAGEMENT, DIET, EXERCISE, THE WISE USE OF LEISURE TIME, AND PERSONAL RELATIONSHIPS.

 

 

 

 

Appendix VI

12-2-97

 

CORRRECTED COPY

 

MOTION MADE BY SCOTT KRETCHMAR

 

RE: GENERAL EDUCATION REPORT

 

 

The following is a substitute for the wording in Recommendation #6:

 

RESTRUCTURE THE EXISTING 4-CREDIT, HEALTH SCIENCES AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENT TO CREATE A NEW 3-CREDIT HEALTH AND ACTIVITY REQUIREMENT THAT EMPHASIZES PROMOTION OF AN ACTIVE AND HEALTHFUL LIFESTYLE. COURSES WILL FOCUS ON THE THEORY AND PRACTICE OF LIFESPAN WELLNESS AND FITNESS ACTIVITIES, AND ON THE KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDES, HABITS, AND SKILLS NEEDED TO LIVE WELL.

 

 

 

 

Appendix VII

12-2-97

 

************************************************************

 

FINAL REPORT

AND RECOMMENDATIONS

of

The Special Committee on

General Education

for The University Faculty Senate

 

 

************************************************************

 

 

MOTION: To adopt the Vision, Mission and (amended statement of) Goals for General Education at Penn State as given in The Senate Agenda for 10-21-97, Appendix "B," pages 7 & 8, the ten recommendations as presented in Appendix "B," pages 9-27, and the framework for General Education at Penn State as given in Appendix "B," page 32.

 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

VISION [from Appendix "B" page 7]

 

To develop and deliver a general education program that emphasizes learning, that functions as an integral, provocative, and enlightening part of students' higher education and that represents a source of pride and identity for the entire Penn State community.

 

MISSION [from Appendix "B" page 7]

 

The General Education program at Penn State reflects a deep conviction by leaders in all professions that successful, satisfying lives require a wide range of skills and knowledge.

 

Scientists and artists, administrators and teachers, and public policy makers and private entrepreneurs in both their professional and private lives need the skills to reason logically and quantitatively and to communicate effectively. All need broad overviews of the world they live in--of the sciences that make sense of its natural and manufactured environments, of the cultural movements that have shaped its diverse values, and of the enduring art that best expresses, inspires, and continually challenges those values.

 

GOALS [from Appendix "B" pages 7-8]

 

General education encompasses the breadth of knowledge involving the major intellectual and aesthetic skills and achievements of humanity. This must include understanding and appreciation of the pluralistic nature of knowledge epitomized by the natural sciences, quantitative skills, social and behavioral sciences, humanities, and arts. To achieve and share such an understanding and appreciation, skills in self-expression, quantitative analysis, information literacy, and collaborative interaction are necessary. General education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. General education, in essence, aims to cultivate a knowledgeable, informed, literate human being.

 

An effective general education program enables students to:

 

  1. acquire knowledge through critical information gathering--including reading, listening, computer-assisted searching, and scientific experimentation and observation;
  2. analyze and evaluate, where appropriate in a quantitative manner, the acquired knowledge;
  3. integrate knowledge from a variety of sources and fields;
  4. make critical judgments in a logical and rational manner;
  5. develop the skills to maintain health, and understand the factors that impinge upon it;
  6. to communicate effectively, both in writing and orally, and using the accepted methods for presentation, organization and debate particular to their disciplines;
  7. proceed independently and in collaboration with others in seeking and sharing knowledge;
  8. gain understanding of international interdependence and cultural diversity, and develop consideration for values, lifestyles, and traditions that may differ from their own;
  9. comprehend the role of aesthetic and creative activities in expressing both imagination and experience.

 

RECOMMENDATIONS [from Appendix "B" pages 9-27]

 

Recommendation #1: Establish a first-year seminar experience for all incoming, first-year students, provided by each of the colleges and campuses as part of the general education program.  

 

Recommendation #2: Improve the diagnostic instruments and measures used in the placement of entering students in skills courses and reduce the incidence of students taking courses with content that they have already mastered by encouraging placing out or exemption when proficiency has been attained and/or demonstrated.

 

Recommendation #3: Identify the specific competencies and levels of proficiencies expected for, and constituting college-level mastery in, each of the skill areas (writing, speaking and quantification); identify the subsets of these competencies that are relevant for students intending on entering majors within each of the broad disciplinary categories (natural or applied sciences, business, social sciences, humanities, arts, communications, etc.); where needed, revise or develop new courses that will emphasize and help achieve these learning outcomes.

 

Recommendation #4: Integrate key competencies for active learning (writing, speaking, quantitative reasoning, information retrieval and computer literacy, problem solving and critical thinking, collaboration and teamwork, intercultural and international competence), as appropriate, in all general education courses in the domain-knowledge areas (health sciences, sciences, arts, humanities, social and behavioral sciences).

 

Recommendation #5: Develop policies, procedures and guidelines for the general education curriculum and its attendant requirements that will stimulate creative, collaborative approaches, both in terms of curriculum development and delivery and in the ways students may meet the spirit of the requirements.

 

Recommendation #6: Restructure the existing, 4-credit, Health Sciences and Physical Education requirement to create a new, 3-credit, Health and activity requirement that emphasizes promotion of an active and healthful lifestyle. Courses will focus on the theory and practice of lifespan wellness and fitness activities, and on the knowledge, attitudes, habits, and skills needed to live well.

 

Recommendation #7: Refine the guidelines used in approving courses intended to develop intercultural and international competence, to emphasize student engagement and active learning.

 

Recommendation #8: Institute a new option to substitute 3 credits of study in a second language (at the third semester level or above) towards satisfaction of the general education requirements.

 

Recommendation #9: Initiate a systematic, formative, assessment mechanism: namely, a faculty-oriented, administratively supported, general education assessment interest group. The goal of this initiative is to gain timely, practical insights into what students should be learning, what and how well they are learning, the opportunities provided by Penn State's curriculum, and how the University can continually improve general education.

 

Recommendation #10: The University Faculty Senate leadership shall develop an appropriate mechanism for oversight of the implementation of the recommended changes to the general education curriculum. This shall include making necessary revisions to the "Guide to Curricular Procedures;" examination and refinement, as warranted, of the faculty committee/subcommittee organization for course approvals; study of the process used for submission of, and action on, course proposals; and monitoring and coordination of the implementation process and schedule.

 

Appendix VIII

12-2-97

 

THE FOLLOWING SENATORS WERE IN ATTENDANCE AT THE

DECEMBER 2, 1997 SENATE MEETING

 

 

Akritas, Michael
Alexander, Shelton S.
Arnold, Steven F.
Asbury, William W.
Askov, Eunice N.
Baer, John W.
Bagby, John W.
Bakis, Charles E.
Becker, John C.
Berkowitz, Leonard J.
Bise, Christopher J.
Bittner, Edward W.
Blumberg, Melvin
Brannon, S. Diane
Brasseur, James G.
Bridges, K. Robert
Brighton, John A.
Browning, Barton W.
Broyles, Michael E.
Burgess, Robert L.
Burkhart, Keith K.
Burrows, Meredythe M.
Byman, David H.
Cahir, John J.
Cain, Julie
Cardella, John F.
Carpenter, Lynn A.
Casteel, Mark A.
Chirico, JoAnn
Christy, David P.
Clark, Katharine E.
Comiskey, C. Michael
Coraor, Lee D.
Creyts, Timothy T.
Crowley, Sharon
Curtis, Wayne R.
Das, Jayatri
Daubert, Thomas E.
Davis, Dwight
de Hart, Steven A.
Deines, Peter
De Jong, Gordon F.
Dempsey, Brian A.
Dempsey, Richard F.
De Rooy, Jacob
Donovan, James M.
Drafall, Lynn E.
Dunham, Robert E.
Eckhardt, Caroline D.
Elder, James T.
Ellis, William C.
Englund, Richard B.
Fahnline, Donald E.
Ferriss, John A.
Fisher, Kenneth J.
Floros, Joann
Fortney, Virginia L.
Fosmire, Gary J.
Franz, George W.
Friend, Linda C.
Galligan, M. Margaret
Georgopulos, Peter D.
Geschwindner, Louis F.
Ghilani, Charles D.
Glasmeier, Amy K.
Gold, David P.
Goldberg, Marc D.
Goldman, Margaret B.
Gouran, Dennis S.
Gregory, Monica E.
Gunderman, Charles F.
Hanley, Elizabeth A.
Harmonosky, Catherine M.
Harwood, John T.
Howard, Robert K.
Irwin, Zachary T.
Jackson, Thomas N.
Jago, Deidre E.
Johnson, Ernest W.
Jurs, Peter C.
Kallas, Nabil
Kayal, David M.
Kerstetter, Deborah L.
Klein, Philip A.
Kretchmar, R. Scott
Kristine, Frank J.
Kunze, Donald E.
Lamancusa, John S.
Lasher, William C.
Laubach, Julie
Lesieutre, George A.
Libkin, Cary L.
Lilley, John M.
Lippert, John R.
Lucas, Veronica Burns
Lukezic, Felix L.
Lunetta, Vincent N.
Lyday, Margaret M.
Marshall, Louisa J.
Marsico, Salvatore A.
Mastro, Andrea M.
Michael, Erica B.
Milakofsky, Louis F.
Miller, Arthur C.
Miller, Linda P.
Mitchell, Robert B.
Mookerjee, Rajen
Moore, John W.
Morganti, Deena J.
Munn, Mark H.
Murphy, Dennis J.
Myers, David J.
Navin, Michael
Nelson, Murry R.
Nicholson, Mary E.
Oz, Effy
Ozment, Judy
Pangborn, Robert N.
Pauley, Laura L.
Phillips, Allen T.
Platz, Michael D.
Price, Robert G.
Pytel, Jean Landa
Rebane, P. Peter
Reed, Rodney J.
Richards, Winston A.
Richman, Irwin
Richman, M. Susan
Ridley, Jane M.
Robinson, James W.
Romano, John J.
Romberger, Andrew B.
Romero, Victor
Roth, David E.
Roth, Gregory W.
Royse, Daniel J.
Sandler, Karen W.
Scanlon, Dennis C.
Schmalstieg, William R.
Schneider, Donald
Secor, Robert
Smith, James F.
Smith, Sandra R.
Spampinato, Carie
Spanier, Graham B.
Strasser, Gerhard F.
Stratton, Valerie N.
Sutton, Jane S.
Swisher, John
Thigpen, Kenneth A.
Thrower, Peter A.
Tormey, Brian B.
Trevino, Linda K.
Turner, Tramble T.
Weiss, Beno
Welch, Susan
White, Eric R.
Wilson, Richard A.
Wyatt, Nancy J.
Young, James S.
Youtz, Susan C.
Yucelt, Ugur
Zavodni, John J.
Zelis, Robert
Ziegler, Greogry R.

OTHERS ATTENDING

FROM SENATE OFFICE

Bugyi, George J.
Clark, Helen F.
Lehner, Brenda L.
Price, Vickie R.
Simpson, Linda A.

 

153 Total Elected
5 Total Ex Officio
7 Total Appointed
165 Total Attending

 

 

Appendix IX

12-2-97

 

TENTATIVE AGENDA FOR DECEMBER 2, 1997

 

Curricular Affairs - Senate Curriculum Report (Blue Sheets) of

November 21, 1997

Committees and Rules – Revision of Standing Rules, Article II: Senate Committee Structure (Legislative)

Special Committee on General Education – Final Report and Recommendations of the Special Committee on General Education (Legislative)

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid – Reserved Spaces Report (Informational)

Admissions, Records, Scheduling and Student Aid – Report of High School Students Enrolled in Nondegree Credits Courses (Informational)

Faculty Benefits – Faculty Retiree Rights and Privileges (Informational)

Faculty Rights and Responsibilities – Annual Report – 1996-97 (Informational)

Intercollegiate Athletics – Annual Report of Academic Eligibility and Athletic Scholarships for 1996-97 (Informational)

Student Life – Alcohol Abuse Issues Related to Organized Student Housing (Informational)

Undergraduate Education -- Grade Distribution Report (Informational)

Undergraduate Education Mid-Semester Evaluation Process 1992-96 (Informational)

University Planning – Costing of the Special Committee on General Education Report (Informational)