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Liberal Arts Council Minutes

25 January 2006, 2:30 pm, Flowers Hall 313

Presiding: Dean Ann Marie Ellis
Recording: Associate Dean Daniel Lochman
Council Members: Vicki Brittain, Susan Day, Frank de la Teja, Nancy Grayson, Michael Hennessy, Vince Luizzi, Jon McGee, Theron Stimmel, Philip Suckling.
Guests: Chris Lehman, Hassan Tajalli

1. Minutes approved for LAC meeting of 11/30/05 online LAC minutes of 11/30/05 approved online 12/7/05 (trial of online annual review, report on criteria for Multicultural Studies courses, approval of MA in Applied Philosophy, updates regarding summer enrollments, review of foundation proposals, and CAD items including international baccalaureate credit and Targets of Opportunity).

2. Congratulations. (a) To Floyd Melbye (ANTH), whose work is featured in Skeleton Stories, a six-program series on Discovery Health Channel, beginning 12/9/05. (b) To MFA graduate Darren Defrain, whose first novel, The Salt Palace, was selected as one of the twenty best novels of the year by The Kansas City Star. (c) To Tom Grimes (ENG), who has helped arrange a speaking engagement by Katherine Anne Porter’s recent biographer, Darlene Unrue, on 2/2/06, and in May the inauguration of a postage stamp bearing Porter’s image, both events to take place at the KAP house in Kyle. (d) To the College of Liberal Arts, now the largest college at Texas State as measured in numbers of majors at 5,114, an increase of 271 since Fall 2004-2005. (e) To the Department of Philosophy, whose proposed MA in Applied Philosophy was approved by the Graduate College. (f) To all Liberal Arts faculty awarded 2006 Research Enhancement Grants, including from Anthropology, Britt Bousman and Christina Conlee; from English, Robin Cohen, Susan Morrison, and Teya Rosenberg; from Geography, Le Wang; from History, Pierre Cagniart, James McWilliams, Rebecca Montgomery; from Modern Languages, Catherine Jaffe; from Political Science, Cynthia Opheim, Magda Hinojosa, and Paul Kens; and from Psychology, Crystal Oberle. (g) To Randall Osborne (PSY) on a very successful first Social Psychologists in Texas Conference, held January 13-14. (h) To David Butler (GEO), who will deliver the 2005-2006 Presidential Seminar on Tuesday, February 21. (i) The Council of Academic Deans thanks faculty who adjusted the times of fall final examinations to help our football players.

3. Academic Computing Proposals. Dr. Hassan Tajalli, the Liberal Arts representative on the Academic Computing Committee, provided advice to assist the review and assessment of Academic Computing Proposals submitted by the Departments of English, Geography, and Political Science for 2006. The Council expressed its appreciation to Dr. Tajalli for offering advice and helping to develop and strengthen the proposals. The Council also expressed its appreciation to Mr. Lehman for providing information about computing equipment and the Liberal Arts computing lab.

4. Faculty issues: requests for new positions and faculty retirements. Dean Ellis announced that departments are to develop requests for new faculty positions and bring twelve copies of each to the LAC meeting scheduled for 2/1/06. In developing proposals, departments should consider the need to reduce SCH / FTE ratios, recent growth of undergraduate and graduate programs, programmatic needs, and the potential to increase graduate enrollment. Dean Ellis added that, beginning in 2006, retirees in Liberal Arts are to receive an expression of appreciation from the College.

5. Chair evaluations. The Council reviewed the new University evaluation form for departmental chairs and compared it to the College form used previously. The Council found the forms comparable with no need to suggest additional items.

6. Graduate enrollment growth. Dean Ellis distributed a summary of the College’s plans and requirements for growth in graduate enrollments. Submitted to the Provost and Graduate College, the summary outlines departmental proposals for a 15% increase in graduate enrollments in Liberal Arts by 2008.

7. Mentoring program. The Council received handouts that describe the Texas State Mentoring Program and allow faculty to apply to become mentors to students. A revised Mentor Profile form is designed to improve matches of mentors and students. Dean Ellis urged chairs to distribute the handouts to faculty and to encourage participation.

8. Payroll deadlines. Dean Ellis distributed to chairs a list of payroll deadlines for 2006 and emphasized that they be followed carefully.

9. Student awards / Donors’ recognition. The Council considered ways to involve donors more fully in College awards ceremonies. The Dean will gather more information about existing departmental practices and return to the issue at a future meeting.

10. Presidential Awards. Dean Ellis asked departments to consider and send forward nominees for all categories of Presidential Awards.

11. CAD update.

a. Presidential Seminar. Departments should nominate qualified faculty to deliver the Presidential Seminar and serve on the Seminar selection committee. The revised PPS 6.03 offers guidelines.

b. PPSs. Dean Ellis drew attention to the following PPSs approved by the Council of Academic Deans: 2.03, Out-of-State and Out-of-Country Courses; 2.16, Academic Programs: Distance Education and Off-Campus Instruction; 7.15, Endowed Chairs and Professorships and Operating Guidelines


• Wednesday, January 25: Deadline for reservations for the Study Abroad Fair. Contact Isis Gómez at or 5-2322.
• Friday, January 27, 2:30 pm: Liberal Arts Review Group meets in the Sociology Conference Room (ELA 245)
• Friday, January 27, 2:00 pm: University Curriculum Committee meets. The agenda includes proposals from Modern Languages, History, and Honors.
• Tuesday, January 31: Deadline for departments to recommend to Dean Ellis faculty candidates for Mariel M. Muir Excellence in Mentoring Awards. Also the deadline to nominate staff; submit forms to the nominee’s Vice
President. See PPS 04.04.36 for information and the nomination form.
• Wednesday, February 1: Cathy Fleuriet, Elisa Garza, and Beth Wuest visit LAC to discuss integrating assessment results into Academic Program Reviews.
• Wednesday, February 1: LAC to review and vet requests for new faculty positions
• Wednesday, February 1: Deadline for proposed course changes, additions, and deletions. Forward course proposals to Kathy Scott.
• Wednesday, February 1: Chairs name Departmental Presidential Upper Level Scholarship Screening Committees. Include a committee chair, senior faculty member, and a junior faculty member.
• Wednesday, February 1, 6:30 pm, Flowers Hall 341: Dr. Stephen J. Pyne, Arizona State University, delivers the 2006 Distinguished Lovell Lecture, “American History with Fire in Its Eye: How We Got to a World with Too Much of the Wrong Fire and Too Little of the Right.”
• Thursday, February 2, 10 am to 2 pm: Study Abroad Fair, ASB Breezeway
• Tuesday, February 7: Deadline for chairs to submit reappointment forms for tenurable continuing faculty in their first contract year.
• Friday, February 10: Deadline for information about March 2006 Diversity Month. Forward information about the event to Tina Schultz (; call 5-3541 if you have questions.
• Friday, February 10: Deadline for nominations for Presidential Awards for Excellence. See PPS 6.11 for information and the nomination form.
• Wednesday, February 15, 1-2:30, JCK 460: Program Outcomes Workshop
• Tuesday, February 21, 3 pm: David Butler delivers the Presidential Seminar.
• Wednesday, February 22, 2 pm: LAC meets to vet Presidential Award nominees
• Friday, February 24, 2-4 pm, ELA 245: Study Abroad Council
• Saturday, March 25: Hays County Heart Walk, Bobcat Stadium. Dean Ellis wishes Liberal Arts faculty and staff to consider participating and sponsoring walkers.
• Wednesday, March 29, 8 pm, LBJ Student Center Ballroom: Dale A. Petroskey, President of The National Baseball Hall of Fame, presents the 8th Annual Grosvenor Distinguished Lecture, “Baseball As America.”

Around the Table

Dr. Grayson noted that Bobcat Day Academic Exchange takes place on Saturday, February 11, 10 am to noon, at the LBJ Student Center Ballroom. Departments may reserve tables at the University Admissions Office.