Motions and Recommendations passed by the

Academic Coordinating Commission 2014-15

(from Minutes) 

Mark Kuntz, Chair








Voting Status of ACC-CUE Liaison

A motion to make the ACC-CUE liaison a voting member of the Committee on Undergraduate Education (forwarded by David Rossiter, seconded by Doug Clark) passed by a unanimous vote.


Appointments to ACC Standing Committees

The names of nominees to outstanding vacancies on ACC Standing Commitees were presented to commissioners, and a motion to appoint all named individuals (forwarded by the Executive Committee) passed by a unanimous vote.

To Committee on Undergraduate Education (CUE):
            Area A, CSE: Marion Brodhagen, Biology
            Area D, CFPA: Cher Carnell, Theatre & Dance

To International Studies Curriculum Committee (ISCC):
            2014-15 Chair: Liz Mogford, Sociology
            Past Chair: Amir Abedi-Djourabtchi, Political Science
            Cara Jaye, Art
            Shawn Knabb, Economics

To Council on University Programs (CUP):
            At-Large Faculty Member: Cynthia Horne, Political             Science

Election of Vice Chair

Tracy Thorndike was nominated to the position of ACC Vice Chair, and a motion to elect and approve Tracy Thorndike as 2014-15 ACC Vice Chair (forwarded by David Rossiter, seconded by Wendy Wilhelm) passed by a unanimous vote.


Appointments to ACC Standing Committees

A motion to appoint LeAnne Robinson as Woodring representative to the Committee on Undergraduate Education, Roger Sasnett to the Recruitment, Admissions, Support Committee, and Amber Bone as the ACC representative to the Senate Extended Education Committee (forwarded by Tracy Thorndike, seconded by Doug Clark) passed by a unanimous vote.




Repeated Course Grading and Grade Replacement

Steve VanderStaay, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, presented a brief overview of the history of Western’s decision not to allow grade replacement for students repeating courses.  The policy was originally implemented because faculty thought it would help discourage retakes, but it has proved unpopular with students, parents, and Financial Aid.  An analyst in Student Outreach Services has been looking at the consequences and benefits of the policy and has recently issued a report.  Commissioners discussed the desirability of having ACC consider the report and topic and asked questions about the impact that a policy change might have upon financial aid rules.  VanderStaay noted that it has been difficult to create a mathematical model demonstrating whether a policy change would be likely to result in a higher or lower number of repeated courses, and methodological suggestions about how such a model might be created are welcome.

Commissioners passed a motion to review the grade replacement report before making a decision regarding ACC’s collective desire to consider acting upon it (forwarded by David Rossiter, seconded by Amber Bone, 9 votes in favor, 1 abstention).


Policy for Excused Absences

Following the October 28th presentation to ACC by Kunle Ojikutu, Assistant Vice President for Enrollment and Student Services, and Emily Gibson, M.D., Student Health Center Medical Director, regarding written medical excuses for class absences and the burden that providing them places upon the Student Health Center, commissioners conducted informal surveys of constituents to determine how faculty members felt about the possibility of discontinuing the availability of medical excuses from the Student Health Center.  Many faculty members were seen as having been unaware that a student does not have to be seen by a practitioner at the Student Health Center in order to obtain a written excuse, and it was suggested that ACC might consider distributing information about any change to Health Center policy along with clarification of past practices and suggestions about other means by which faculty might consider attempting to address and discourage potential problems with absences.

Commissioners stated that they did not wish to change academic rules granting authority for attendance policies to faculty and expressed reluctance to formally endorse the recommendation of the Health Center.  Several voiced the opinion that a decision on the part of the Student Health Center to discontinue the availability of medical excuses for missed classes would not require a change to existing academic policies administered by ACC, though commissioners expressed appreciation for the Student Health Center’s communication upon the topic.  A motion to request the drafting by Mark Kuntz of informal communications to faculty with background on medical excuses and their impact (forwarded by Doug Clark, seconded by David Rossiter) passed with a unanimous vote.


Academic Grievance Policy

Commissioners discussed proposed revisions to the language of the Academic Grievance Policy that were presented to ACC by Sue Guenter-Schlesinger, Vice Provost for Equal Opportunity and Employment Diversity, on December 2, 2014.  Commissioners agreed that some clarification of existing grievance procedure was desirable, but expressed concern that the phrasing and paragraph placement of proposed revisions might cause confusion.

Commissioners proposed further revision of the presented draft, and a motion to approve Academic Grievance and Appeal Policy and Procedures as revised (forwarded by Tracy Thorndike, seconded by Doug Clark) passed by a unanimous vote.  Approved revisions of the Academic Grievance and Appeal Policy and Procedures are attached as Appendix A.


Council on Universtiy Programs (CUP) Charge Revisions

A motion to revise the charge and membership of the Council of University Programs (CUP) to reflect the inclusion of new interdisciplinary programs in Sustainability and Entrepreneurship, move curricular stewardship of Canadian-American Studies from CHSS to CUP, reduce the number of at-large faculty members on the council from two to one, and change reportage requirements to improve consistency with practical needs and other sections of the ACC Handbook (forwarded by Tracy Thorndike, seconded by Michael Fraas) passed by a unanimous vote.



Motion to forward WSGE Report and CUE framing language to Faculty Senate

A motion (by Tracy Thorndike, seconded by Holly Folk) to forward to the Faculty Senate, as informational items, the WSGE Task Force Final Report and accompanying framing language provided in CUE Minutes of December 4, 2014 passed by consensus.


E-Form Revision

A motion to include a checkbox on ACC e-forms asking whether courses that include international travel have been routed to the Director of International Programs and Exchanges prior to being presented for ACC approval (forwarded by Holly Folk and seconded) passed by a unanimous vote.


Appointments to ACC Standing Committees

Confirmation of Standing Committee Appointments: Commissioners voted unanimously in favor of a motion (forwarded by Doug Clark and seconded) to confirm the follwoing appointments:

To Committee on Undergraduate Education (CUE):
            At-Large Representative: Donna Qualley, English
            Area B, CHSS: Richard Bulcroft, Sociology


Motion to thank recorder

A motion to acknowledge and thank Lizzy Ramhorst for her service as ACC's recorder (forwarded by Holly Folk and seconded) passed by unanimous consent.


Online Teaching Handbook

A motion to adopt the Teaching Hadnbook as an informational resource to be linked from the ACC website (forwarded by John Lund and seconded) passed by unanimous consent.


Election of ACC Chair

A motion to reelect Mark Kuntz to the position of ACC Chair for the 2015-16 and to postponeelection of a Vice Chair until the first meeting of fall quarter (forwarded by Holly Folk and seconded) passed with a unanimous vote. The Commission will seek a Vice Chair willing to consider serving as 2016-17 ACC Chair.