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Liberal Arts Council Minutes

21 February 2007, 2:00 pm, FH 313

Presiding: Dean Ann Marie Ellis
Recording: Associate Dean Daniel Lochman
Council Members: Frank Barrios, Vicki Brittain, Susan Day, Frank de la Teja, Jennifer Forrest for Robert Fischer, Nancy Grayson, Michael Hennessy, Vince Luizzi, Jon McGee, Philip Suckling

1. Approved LAC minutes for meeting on 2/7/07 (review of policies and procedures for tenure and promotion, CAD update, programming new building, college planning and learning outcomes, personnel, other).

2. Congratulations: (a) To Sue Beebe (ENG), who along with Steve Beebe (COMM) authored the sixth edition of Public Speaking: An Audience-Centered Approach that received the “book of the year award” from Allyn and Bacon from among all revised books they published during the preceding year. (b) To Dagoberto Gilb (ENG), for an outstanding, well-attended book launch on February 10 that featured many notable writers of Mexican American literature collected in Hecho in Tejas, a book being published by New Mexico University Press for the Southwestern Writers Collection. (c) To the Legal Studies Program and its students (POSI), the latter having published thirty-one articles in national and statewide venues within the past year. (d) To James Housefield (ART), the current NEH Distinguished Teaching Professor, whose Honors class was filmed for an upcoming series on higher education, to be broadcast beginning 2/22 on KLRU, Austin. (e) To the award winners at the 2007 Alumni Scholarship Gala, including the following from Liberal Arts: Steve Wilson (ENG), winner for the second consecutive year of the Alumni Teaching Award of Honor, and Andrea Powell, 1999 International Studies graduate and winner of the Walter Richter Humanitarian Award. Also, congratulations to students named Alumni Scholars at the same event from the departments of English, Geography, History, Psychology, and Sociology. (f) To Frank Bartley, first Board of Regents Student Regent (POSI) who was celebrated by the President and other luminaries. (g) To Katherine Chapman and Olivia Alley, Anthropology graduate students who were honored in February at the annual conference of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, in San Antonio.

3. Liberal Arts in the News. Dagoberto Gilb (ENG) authored the cover feature and lead article, “Hecho in Tejas” for The Texas Observer (1/12/07). The article celebrates Mexican American authors in Texas and the volume of the same title.

4. Curriculum: Review of Course Proposals. Council reviewed and approved all proposed additions, deletions, and changes to courses in Liberal Arts, as well as two courses in support of the proposed MA in Applied Philosophy, with the exception of course proposals that are to be revised and returned before March 1.

5. Presidential Award nominees. Council reviewed and recommended the following Liberal Arts nominees for the 2007 Presidential Awards for Excellence: (a) for Service at the Professor/Associate Professor rank (Paul Hart and Gary Hartman) and at the Assistant Professor / Instructor / Lecturer rank (Irene Hindson and Nancy Wilson); (b) for Scholarly/Creative accomplishments at the Professor/Associate Professor rank (David Butler and Kent Reilly) and at the Assistant Professor / Instructor / Lecturer rank (Valentina Glazar and James McWilliams); (c) for Teaching at the Professor/Associate Professor rank (Priscilla Leder and James Pohl) and at the Assistant Professor / Instructor / Lecturer rank (Anadelia Romo and Susie Tilka).

After the vote, Council discussed the nomination and application processes. Dr. Hennessy suggested that procedures for candidates would be simplified and the number of nominees increased if the University streamlined the process. He noted, and other Council members confirmed, that other universities permit many fewer supporting materials than does Texas State. He proposed, and Council unanimously approved, the following motion, whose adoption requires only minor rewording in paragraph 15 of PPS 6.11:

Liberal Arts Council recommends that the maximum size of application binders for Presidential Awards, in all categories, be reduced to one inch.

The motion will be forwarded to the Provost.

6. Liberal Arts Awards Certificates. Following a discussion led by Dr. Grayson, Council determined that only completed courses should be used in the determination of the GPA for students nominated or eligible for Liberal Arts awards.

7. CAD update.

a. Student Information System Project. Dr. Lochman, who substituted for Dean Ellis at CAD on 2/20, reported on a presentation regarding the Student Information System project, which is now underway. Joe Williams and Don Volz of Instructional Technology (IT) noted that IT is soliciting ideas from deans, associate deans, chairs, directors, and administrative support staff regarding information needed about students, so that the University may procure the best system for the needs of Texas State.

b. San Antonio needs survey. Dr. Lochman summarized the results of a needs survey conducted among potential students for Texas State programs if a site is found in north San Antonio. The Provost asked the deans to inform him of any interest in programs at the advanced undergraduate or, especially, at the graduate level, that may be offered there.

c. 120-hour policy discussion. The Provost affirmed his intention to follow the will of the faculty, as represented on General Education Council, the General Studies Advisory Council, the University Curriculum Committee, and the Faculty Senate, as regards any changes to the University’s core curriculum.

d. Textbook Cost Bill – HB956. Dr. Bourgeois drew the deans’ attention to a draft of House Bill 960, proposed legislation that would require faculty at state universities to use the same text(s) for three years unless faculty submit an application to change the same to the governing board. The University is following the progress of this and other bills during the legislative session.

e. Travel. Dr. Bourgeois reported that personnel changed in the Travel office
are now complete.

8. Other. On Yvette Morales’s behalf, Dr. Lochman circulated students’ evaluations from this year’s Scholars’ Day. Ms. Morales asked Dr. Lochman to emphasize the importance prospective students attached to this event.

9. Liberal Arts personnel: new faculty. Dr. De la Teja reported that History has hired Elizabeth Bishop, who earned a PhD from the University of Chicago and is completing a book manuscript on the history of modernity in the Middle East while holding a fellowship at the New York Public Library. Dr. Day reported that Sociology has hired Deborah Harris, soon to receive a PhD in Sociology with an emphasis in the Sociology of Health. Ms. Harris is active in the Social Research Center at Mississippi State.


• Friday, February 23, 2:30-5, Centennial Hall Teaching Theatre: Academic Deans present College Plans
• Friday, February 23: Deadline for students to register for the 9th annual Spring Break Job Shadowing Program. For information, contact Karen Julian, Assistant Director in Career Services at 512.245.2645 or
• Thursday, March 1, 2:30-3:30, JCK 1100: Provost Moore presents plan for Academic Affairs
• Thursday, March 1: Deadline for nominations for all of the following: LBJ Outstanding Senior Student Award, Sallie Baretta Award, Alumni Teaching Award, and Walter Richter Award
• Friday, March 2: Provost presents draft academic plan in open forum
• Friday, March 2: Applications/Nominations for Outstanding Undergraduate and Graduate students due to departments/IS
• Wednesday, March 7, 2 pm, FH 313: Liberal Arts Council meets
• Friday, March 9, 5 pm, Dean’s office: Deadline for Applications/Nominations for Outstanding Undergraduate and Graduate Students & for names/addresses of students receiving Academic Excellence Certificates
• By Monday, March 19, 10 am: Liberal Arts Presidential Award nominees to turn in four-inch binders with supporting documents
• By Monday, March 19: Departments / centers provide Dean’s office with names and addresses of students to be recognized for Academic Excellence
• Wednesday, March 21, 2 pm, FH 313: LAC meets to review applicants/nominees for Outstanding Undergraduate and Graduate students
• By Friday, March 23: Departments’ and centers’ Upper Level Scholarship Committees meet to consider candidates
• March 28: Applications from departments’ and centers’ Upper Level Scholarship Committees are due to the Dean’s office (see PPS 6.05, section 11, regarding number of applicants that may be forwarded); College Committee meets April 2-6 to review applications
• Friday, March 30, 3 pm, Evans 245: Liberal Arts Study Abroad Council meets
• April 9-13: Draft of revised and extended University Plan presented to University community
• April 10: Dean forwards names for Upper Level Scholarship to the University Scholars Coordinator
• Thursday, April 19, 6 pm, Alkek Teaching Theater: Liberal Arts Awards Ceremony
• Wednesday, April 25, 2 pm, FH 313: Liberal Arts Council meets to review measurements of learning outcomes
• May 30: President’s Cabinet approves division plans and University plan
• By June 30: Chairs and directors to submit results of learning outcome measurements and any needed follow-up actions to the Dean for review

Around the table.

Dr. Day asked Council members to discuss and clarify the Provost’s plans to convert course fees to tuition.