Index of Topics 12/5/2006

Spring Registration – presentation by Susanna Yunker

                Approved 1/16/07–to Faculty Senate 1/22/07       

MPAcc approved – Motion.  Julie Lockhart congratulated.


Writing Proficiency Report – Karen Perry


Congratulations and thanks to Lauren Balisky





Regular Meeting  --  December 5, 2006


Chair Jim Hearne called the meeting of the Academic Coordinating Commission to order on December 5, 2006, in OM340 at 4:05 p.m.  There were fourteen (14) members present, and six (6) others for a total of  twenty. (20). (See attached roster). 


Approval of ACC minutes

Commissioners approved the minutes of November 21 with minor amendments. 


Spring Registration – Susanna Yunker, Assistant VP for Student Affairs and Academic Support Services

Vice President Yunker supplied a synopsis of early registration proposals and progress on the issue in a written document distributed to Commissioners, most of which is summarized below:


“The Early Registration Pre-Planning Committee of 2001 identified the following significant advantages and challenges for WWU in moving to an early registration process.


Ø       Availability of faculty and staff academic advising for continuing students during time of registration

Ø       Student commitment to continuing at Western prior to leaving in the spring

Ø       Potential opportunity for the University to address enrollment trends and to adjust course offerings accordingly

Ø       Ability of faculty to order course materials earlier to ensure availability for students

Ø       Additional time for continuing students during summer to review and finalize course schedules

Ø       Availability of faculty and staff academic advising for transfer students during time of registration

Ø       Brings Western into line with all of the other four-year public universities


Ø       Need for earlier identification of faculty resource allocations will be necessary for departmental planning

Ø       Impact on planning and workload distribution for academic and administrative departments.  Compression of the timeline will impact course approval processes, other quarter advising and registration processes and summer quarter planning/registration processes

Ø       Difficulty of accurately projecting course demands of transfers students and the need to hold back seats in gateway courses to ensure adequate availability.  This includes the need to identify gateway courses, to develop an effective projection seat hold-back model and balancing the course demand of continuing students with that of potential transfers. Most academic departments on campus agree that the course enrollment patterns of transfer students fluctuate significantly, which will make the process of projecting course demand even more challenging.

Ø       Challenge of setting course limits to ensure enough GUR and gateway course access for freshmen


In addition, the report identified several challenges that needed to be overcome in order for the implementation to be successful.  These included developing different options for the timetable of classes, course fee determination timing, new course approval process, classroom scheduling, challenges around moving some processes back one month, transfer student advising, understanding course demand patterns, fee payment and financial aid. 


A second task force was charged with and recommended solutions to most of the problems many of which have been implemented since including a proposal to phase out the printing of the timetable of classes, course fee determination timing, new course approval process, implementation of transfer articulation and review of fee payment and financial aid.  They also recommended that in order to minimize the impact on academic departments and have the opportunity to pilot the process, that a phased approach be implemented.  I forwarded the recommendations to Dr. Coughlin and to Dr. Bodman.  Since two deans had serious concerns, we did not move forward with the proposal at that time.  At that point, we decided to move forward with the Transfer Articulation and Degree Audit modules of Banner . . . Since implementation of these tools was strongly recommended in the previous proposals, this has positioned us to be better prepared for early registration.”


Comments from Commissioners:

Ø    Hiring Temporary FacultyKathy Knutzen, from CHSS commented that with static resources the recommendations work perfectly.  But CHSS has many temporary faculty and has bigger and more dynamic changes from year to year.  The problem is putting together a “schedule that can be honored.”  Bodman added that we do not have a known level of resources in an odd year, so we do not get State appropriations until May.

Ø    Dividing Timetable.  Commissioners suggested we could worry a lot less about the physical people teaching a class, but rather find out what is the demand for the course from year to year.  Maybe we should think about dividing up our timetable.  Marie Eaton asked if students actually take the courses they register for in spring?  So would this be a true record of the demand?  In response:  From the day before model to an early registration model we did see a much greater shift in registration, but early registration still gives us much more lead time. 

Ø    High demand courses will remain relatively the same, unless something significant happens over the summer.

Ø    Disadvantage to late registration is that we cannot do additional staffing 3 weeks or a month before, much less a day before.  If we know what a demand is for a particular course in May we can figure it out; we can track the number right now.  We would follow students’ particular requests, not sections requested, which solves and helps our subsequent enrollment planning.  This will help us plan for fall quarter. The other quarters have quite a bit of lead time prior to enrollment.

Ø    Students Available in Spring for AdvisingMany departments are not available in August, and students are registering from home.  In the spring they are here on campus and could get access to advisors.  Also we don’t have support services or adequate advising in summer, so it falls on staff and available faculty who already have a very large workload.  From the end of 9-week session and start of fall session is the faculty only free time – so actually a bad time for fall registration. 

Ø    Local Resources.  Another problem:  local resources are becoming skimpier and skimpier.  It is hard to find a faculty member to teach class right before the week starts. 

Ø    EESP.  Stephanie Buck stated that EESP registers and relies very heavily on adjunct faculty, and it is not a safe assumption that they will be able to find qualified faculty.  The adjunct faculty issue is very challenging.  They don’t get their contract signed until 2 days before classes are offered currently. 

Ø    Students Could File A Plan of StudyMichael Meehan agrees there are things about early registration that make it somewhat inaccurate, hard to plan, but regardless, if you can  plan for the nominal case as much as possible, those other things tend to take care of themselves.  The Spring registration issue is simply a first step of a bigger problem that exists here at Western, and that is that we don’t require all students to file a plan of study that shows what they will ostensibly take for the remainder of their time here.  Many of the standard core curricula courses that will satisfy demand will show up and that will help all the departments -- if we had some way of estimating a nominal situation.  If they filed these plans – maybe with the registrar -- we could certainly plan better than we are now. 

Ø    Use “Staff” Code.  Roger Thompson asked regarding the adjunct issue if it would it be possible to identify courses that are taught by adjuncts, put in “staff” code, and then find the actual person later.  Bodman responded this is not a problem; we routinely switch and cancel classes all the time.  No requirement or legal obligation with an online environment; offerings are contingent upon enrollment and availability of university resources.

Ø    Advising and Class Availability for Transfers.  Leonard Helfgott asked would we have to set up advising for freshman and transfer students?  We already have Transitions in July and August.  We currently release a certain number of seats for freshman and transfer students.   Yunker replied that many plan for transfer students already.   Bodman suggested it is a lot more straightforward to do planning if you leave spaces for incoming freshman rather than allow the first-year students to flow around registration.

Ø    Knutzen responded that transfer students are admitted too late to take advantage of early registration.  We would have to continue to register them during transitions.  It is very important that transfer students register with their cohort.  They simply are not ready to make those decisions earlier.  Neither continuing nor transfer students get advising in the fall.  We can at least take one cohort earlier in spring.

Ø    Helfgott reminded members that many courses would be closed in the department by the end of May.  The History department for example would have to develop some system whereby transfer students who are not accepted that early get into classes.  Bodman commented that we are the sole institution among the Washington public institutions not having spring pre-registration.  Bodman suggests that someone has to convince him that “for some reason we are not smart enough as Central or Eastern to make this work”.

Chair Hearne thanked Yunker for her presentation.



            Reading of Curricular Minutes


The following minutes came before the ACC on 12/5/06.






Council on Humanities and Social Sciences


Previously postponed.  Accepted today


Graduate Council


Previously postponed.  Accepted today


Items Added 11/21/06




CBE:  Request for New Master’s Degree:  


MPAcc -- Accepted by Motion of ACC**


General Education Requirements


Postponed; question about CLST117 – Please indicate what category the course belongs to, and is it an FYE?


Council on Humanities and Social Sciences




College of Sciences and Technology




Items for 12/5/06




College of Sciences & Technology


Postponed – questions arose about alpha suffixes


Comments on Minutes

 CBE Request for New Master’s Degree – Julie Lockhart, Guest

Commissioners continued to ask questions regarding the new Master’s Degree in Accounting, the MPAcc, including the methods of assessment, cut-off scores, and that passing the CPA exam is not a requirement for obtaining the Master’s Degree.   The CPA exam is an onerous task, some students have to take it several times and it is just one indicator.  32% as a first time passing rate is the norm.   There is also a licensing requirement and passing the CPA exam does not grant a license.  The CPA firms are more interested that a student is able to sit for the exam, and is prepared.  Helfgott noted that for that 5th year you can only accept 25 out of 90 graduating seniors.  Lockhart reported that only 30% of our students go into public accounting.  Some go into auditing, some into tax.  We think 25 is about right.  We didn’t want to bite off more than we can chew. Students still have other options.

Lockhart reported that Bodman has committed to resources. This does have to go to the HEC Board, which is the next hurdle.  Bodman suggested that Lockhart can anticipate joining him at a future HEC Board meeting to explain.

MOTION:   Shelby Sheppard made a Motion, seconded by Leonard Helfgott, to accept the Graduate Council minutes with implied acceptance of the Masters’ program in Accounting, which passed.   Then Michael Meehan made a MOTION, seconded by Marie Eaton, to formally approve the Master’s Degree in Accounting (MPAcc), which passed.   Commissioners then applauded and thanked Julie Lockhart who has been named the Washington State Educator of the Year in Accounting.

Stefanie Buck reminded Commissioners to consider notifying the library when creating new programs, so the library can provide support, although at present there is no additional money.


College of Humanities and Social Sciences

§    Helfgott expressed enthusiasm that CHSS plans to offer Arabic and asked if there were resources or if an Arabist had been hired. Bodman concurred on the importance of considering language requirements in our focus on global affairs.  Helfgott relayed that Arabic is an difficult language, with the spoken language entirely different from the written and after four years it is still difficult to translate.  If we are going to offer Arabic, we need to make an institutional commitment and to build a goal into the program.  The same for Chinese and Japanese. 

§    Bodman responded that future potential is there, but we have to start at base level and work up; students may not get to translation, but the attempt is to get a beginning. At the moment we do not know our level of commitment – the new director of international studies may come here next year and direct development.  We will have to rely on the people involved in that activity as to where our next direction should be. We finally have made some progress; we should target it so as not to spread out too much.  Commissioners still recommend that we make a follow-up commitment with something at the other end built into the program.


Commissioners Concerns

Lauren Balisky is graduating in two weeks and commented that her degree title has not been reported yet.  Marie Eaton noted the committee cancelled the meeting due to snow but will take care of this today.


Karen Perry reported on the Writing Proficiency enrollment

There are 163 different specific writing proficiency courses, 421 total courses, especially English 302.

The pattern that emerges:  20 to 25% of the courses are specifically required in a major.  Those that are part of a group where the students can choose number about 60%.  About 15% are not required in a major.

Bodman responded that if you have a cluster of 5 courses, and students choose one, only one or two in the group of five are writing proficiency courses.  If we have courses that are part of requirements and are writing proficiencies courses, then the student will get the course.  However, three-quarters of these courses do not fall in that category.

Fractional writing proficiency points could only be assigned toward courses regularly required that count toward the major.  St. Hilaire reported that there were about 30 waivers granted in the past year – the majority of them are because they and their advisor concur that a WP course was not available when they needed it. 


Items from Chair

Chair Hearne and Commissioners expressed thanks and congratulations to student Lauren Balisky for her three years of service on the Commission.  She will be leaving because of graduation next week.  Hearne noted that there was a lot of service done by Lauren that was not visible.  Lauren did a lot of legwork, not always public, on the committee, and was always very orderly and professional.  Lauren will continue in urban planning and community processes.



Commissioners adjourned at 5:17 pm.

Rose Marie Norton-Nader, Recorder, December 5, 2006





Membership (term ending 2007)



Chair – James Hearne 2006-2007



A -  James Hearne, Computer Science, Chair



Vice Chair – Roger Thompson



A -  Jim Stewart, Senator, Physics Astronomy






D – *Grant Donnellan, Music, ( NElig)






E -- George Zhang, Decision Science, CBE



Bodman, Andrew (Provost) (nv)



G – Patrick Buckley, Huxley (Fall Qtr for David Wallin)



Lisa Zuzarte (Catalog Coordinator)



H – Shelby Sheppard, Woodring (Fall Qtr for Marsha







Membership (term ending 2008)



Registrar, Recorder, Guests



A –  Michael Meehan, Senator, Computer Science



Joe St. Hilaire, Registrar



B –*Diana Wright, for Linda Kimball rep to GER-Fall Qtr



Rose Marie Norton-Nader, Recorder



C -  Leonard Helfgott, History



Julie Lockhart, Accounting



C -  Roger Thompson, Senator, History



Karen Perry, former Catalog Coord.



F -  Marie Eaton, Fairhaven



Kathleen Knutzen, Associate Dean, CHSS



I –  Stefanie Buck, Library, rep to EESP



Susanna Yunker, Asst VP, Student Affairs



S -  James Sanders, ASVP-Academics, 2006-2007






S -  Christian Opfer, 2006-07, rep to UPC



Members Present



S -  Eddie Jenkins, 2006-07



Registrar, Recorder, Guest Present



S-   *Lauren Balisky, 2006-07



TOTAL PRESENT  December 5, 2006



      *Not Eligible for Re-election (served 4 yrs)












Members (18)






12 faculty (2yr terms) representing each area with 2 as Senators.  6 more members include:  Provost (nv), Catalog Coordinator (ex officio) and 4 students (1 ASVP).  ACC sends reps:  to UPC and to GER Cte.  Registrar & Recorder are permanent guests