Draft of Minutes for General Education Meeting

March 3, 2008

325 GMH

 

Members: Current, Fields, Galbraith, Kahl, Kraemer, Loh, Sloan, Prucha, Ragan,

Consultants: Bakkum, Dittman, Morgan, Burckhardt, Clow;

Guests: Balfany, C. Crase, Knudson, Ready, Ritterling Scherwitz, J. Terpstra, K. Terpstra, K. Vico;

Excused: Pribek

 

Call to Order:

The meeting was called to order by Chair Galbraith at 3:35 pm.

 

M/S/P to approve minutes of the February 4, 2008 meeting with two minor corrections

 

Proposals to add specific courses to the current General Education Program

The committee then discussed specific proposals to admit additional courses into various categories in the current General Education Program.  Presentations of the courses were made, committee members asked questions, and answers were provided by relevant instructors and department chairs.

 

[1] PHL 229: Multicultural Philosophy in the United States

Philosophy department members presented and answered questions about this proposal.

 

M/S/P  To waive the second reading and to admit PHL 229 into the General Education Program

            in Category II-A: Minority Cultures.

 

[2] ART 160: General Art Foundations

Members of the Art department presented and answered questions about this proposal.  This course is intended as a general education offering for potential major and minor in Art, and as an offering for General Honors students.  Discussion ensued regarding the restricting of a General Education course to students from specific programs.  After considerable discussion suggestion was made and accepted to change the prerequisite of the course to “Art majors and minors, Art education majors, honors students, and by consent of the instructor.”

 

M/S/P to waive the 2nd reading and approve the course as a General Education course in

Category II-F: Arts: the Aesthetic Experience, subject to approval of the above change in prerequisites from the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee.

 

[3] ART 301: World Art

Members of the Art department presented and answered questions about this proposal, which is to replace Art 201 in the Art major curriculum.  Explanation was given of the “Junior Standing” restriction.  The committee was assured that, although this is to be a “topical” course, the course would clearly satisfy the three major world cultures guideline for Global Studies courses proposed by last year’s GEC Global Studies subcommittee.

 

M/S/P to waive the 2nd reading and approve the course as a General Education course in

Category II-B: Global and Multicultural Studies

 

[4] ART 402: Educational methods and Perspectives in Art, Culture and Society 

Members of the Art department presented and answered questions about this proposal, which is to be restricted to students satisfying the prerequisite of “Admission to Teacher Education”.  Numerous concerns were expressed about the appropriateness of this course as currently restricted for admission to General Education.  Some members questioned whether a General Education course should be restricted to students in a single program.  Many concerns were raised in connection with this course.  These included concerns about the appropriateness of [a] having as General Education course a course that could also serve as a graduate level course, of [b] having a 400-level course count at the “intermediate” level, of [c] having a relatively narrowly focused course, namely on art methods, count as a general education course, and of [d] putting an art course into the Self and Society category of General Education.  

 

No Motion: Given the outstanding questions and concerns about this course as a General

Education course, the GEC did not entertain a motion to approve this course as a Gen Ed course at this time.

 

[5] MUS 317: Musical Classroom

Members of the Music department presented and answered questions about this proposal, which is to provide a music appreciation experience for students who are interested in becoming classroom music teachers.  Concerns were expressed about limiting this course to students who had been admitted to Teacher Education.  It was suggested and agreed to change the “Other restriction” language to: “Most appropriate for Teacher Education”.  Although concerns were expressed about whether this course was too narrowly focused to count as a general education course, other comments were made supporting the course as an appropriate arts appreciation experience.

 

M/S/P to waive the 2nd reading and approve the course as a General Education course in

Category II-F: Arts: the Aesthetic Experience, subject to approval of the above change in prerequisites [“Most appropriate for Teacher Education”]from the Undergraduate Curriculum Committee and any other appropriate bodies.

Questions to guide further discussion

As a result of today’s discussion, members raised concerns that department would propose inappropriate courses as General Education course unless certain matters were clarified.  Such clarification involves discussing and answering serious questions, and concern was expressed that the General Education Committee to address questions such as the following at our next meeting:

 

[1] What are the basic criteria for a General Education Course?

[2] Is it appropriate for narrowly focused courses to count as a General Education course?

[3] Is it appropriate courses limited to a specific program to count as a Gen Ed course?

[4] Is it appropriate for a student to fulfill a significant portion of their major by taking General Education courses? 

[5] If not, what is the appropriate limit?

 

It was generally agreed that these questions should be discussed and policies clarified to prevent confusion in the future.

Adjournment: 

The meeting adjourned at 5:40 p.m.

 

Respectfully submitted by Eric Kraemer