May 4, 2007



TO:                  Carmen Wilson, Chair

                        Faculty Senate


FROM:             Rebecca LeDocq, Chair

                        Committee on Academic Policies and Standards (CAPS)


RE:                   2006-2007 Final Report



According to Faculty Senate Bylaw II. B. The Academic Policies and Standards Committee, the duties and responsibilities of the committee shall include:


  1. Formulating and reviewing local policies and standards concerning admissions, advising, retention, advanced standing, probation, dismissal, readmission, the grading system, and graduation honors for undergraduate students.
  2. Ensuring equitable application of standards by the undergraduate schools and colleges.
  3. Supervising the administration of these standards and formulating procedures for hearing student appeals and petitions on academic matters not resolved by administrative offices of the university.



The following is a summary of the activities of the 2006-2007 CAPS in accordance with these standard committee duties:


  • Heard appeals from students concerning readmission to UW-L, as well as appeals from faculty and/or departments concerning J-term and summer term policies. (See Table 1)




Type of Appeal

Number of Appeals

Number Approved

FALL ‘06




Replace failing grade with grade from another school



J-term time waiver











Summer start date



Text Box: Table 1



  • Approved the Office of International Education (OIE)’s request to accept the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam as a measure of a student’s English language proficiency. For details, see CAPS Minutes for 9/15/06.
  • Discussed and approved extending the deadline for submission of midterm grades from Friday of week 7 at 8:00 a.m. to Monday of week 8 at 8:00 a.m. It was argued that midterm grades are now reported and received electronically, so the extra time to get results out to students is no longer necessary. This would allow faculty in many departments to complete grading of midterm exams in order to give students a more accurate picture of where they stand in their course.
  • Endorsed the Comprehensive Admission Review Report.
  • CAPS chair served on the committee for reviewing Excess Credit Appeals as well as the Enrollment Mix and Planning Team for Growth and Access.


In addition to its usual duties, CAPS was asked to consider and report on the following special charge:


“Complete a report on transfer students including for example, but not limited to, the number of credits transfer students transfer to LaCrosse, the types of courses transfer students generally take, retention rates, time to graduation, etc.”


In response to this charge, the committee completed and submitted a report to the Faculty Senate on November 16th, 2006. A copy of this report can be found in Appendix A of this report.



Additional issues were brought to the attention of CAPS this year by committee members and/or guests during meetings. CAPS would like to request that the Faculty Senate Executive Committee consider the following:


  • The Committee on Academic Policies and Standards needs to have a set meeting time as is the case with the Faculty Development Committee, the Budget Committee and others. Considering the size of the committee and the diverse schedules of its members, finding a reasonable meeting time is nearly impossible. This past year, several committee members felt they needed to resign because their schedules conflicted with the majority of the other members. Committee members feel that rather than forcing people to resign and trying to find replacements that do not have the same time conflicts, it seems like a much better approach to allow faculty members to know of any possible scheduling conflicts before they decide to request being placed on such an important committee.


  • As the result of a request received by the College of Business concerning the possibility of awarding a degree to a student who died prior to their graduation, a set of guidelines for awarding a posthumous degree designed and passed by CAPS on March 10th, 2000 was brought to the attention of the current committee. Apparently, the Faculty Senate never reviewed these guidelines because the Graduate Council didn’t/couldn’t agree on all of the “considerations” and the issue was dropped.


While awarding posthumous degrees is extremely rare, it could be helpful to have a set of faculty approved guidelines (not necessarily an official process) for the colleges and administration to use should the need arise again. With this is mind, CAPS discussed and revised the original guidelines. The committee approved a revised document, Guidelines for awarding a posthumous degree, which we summit to the Faculty Senate for review. A copy of this document can be found in Appendix B of this report.



  • During the committee’s review of J-Term appeals, the question of whether or not required, core courses should be offered as J-Term courses was brought up within the committee.   Some committee members indicated serious doubts that some core courses can be covered effectively in that short time span.  Also, it was believed that the original intent of J-Term offerings was to make some short courses, seminars, umbrella courses, off-campus travel courses, etc. available as added options to the established curriculum. Due to time constraints, the committee was not able to continue the discussion of this important issue. This issue probably deserves more attention and could perhaps be a charge for next year’s Committee on Academic Policies and Standards.


This summarizes the work of the committee for this year. If you require any additional information, please feel free to contact me.