General Studies Committee Minutes
January 9, 2002
3:10-4:10 p.m., Knutti 203


Voting Members Present:, Dan DiLella (NS&M, 2002), Denis Woods (B&SS, 2002), Jerry Thomas (A&H, 2002), V. J. Brown (B&SS, Div.Ch.), Joseph Simplicio (PS, Div. Ch.), Sylvia Shurbutt, GSC Chair (C&I, 2002)

Non-voting Members Present: Jim Pantle (NCA Coord.), Karen Austin (T&CC Program Coord. for General Studies), Patricia Dwyer (Assessment Coord.)

Voting Members Not Present: Don Henry (NS&M, Div. Ch.), Dow Benedict (A&H Div. Ch.) Mike Jacobs (PS, 2002),

I. Announcements:

1) Shurbutt met with Student Affairs staff in their December staff meeting to talk about the GS Curriculum. Copies of the brochure was distributed and a good discussion ensured since many new staff members were not familiar with the curriculum nor the processes that occurred during the past few years to articulate and formally assess the GS Program. Professors Shurbutt, Dwyer, Kipetz, and Dotson will meet later in the month to talk specifically about the subject of diversity in the curriculum, the issue that elicited the most interest during the Student Affairs staff meeting.

2) Tim Haines has completed the GS webpage, now easy to find under the "Academics" link on the College page. The GSC wishes to thank both Tim and Dr. Michael Austin for their contributions to the page.

3) A February 21-23 conference on "General Education and Assessment of Student Learning" will take place in Dallas, Texas. If anycommittee member is interested in attending, please contact Dr. Shurbutt asap. Expenses will be picked up by the Assessment Office.

II. Approval of Amended November 14 Minutes: MSP (attached)

III. State Assessment Template for GS Education at Shepherd and narrative questionnaire: After short discussion, the GSC approved the wording and preparation of the template (prepared from the 2000-2001 GS Assessment Report) so that we could forward on to Dr. Dwyer and the Assessment office. Final draft is attached.

IV. Writing Across the Curriculum Survey: The GSC discussed the results from the faculty survey (attached). The response was good (52 faculty responded, including 10 adjunct staff and 8 faculty who did not teach GS courses but still wished to give their input). The consensus was that there appeared to be a good deal of faculty support for and interest in the concept of Writing Across the Curriculum and that some WAC efforts are actually occurring in the GS Curriculum.

While there appear to be ways that the GSC could encourage WAC participation among GS faculty, the consensus was that a college-wide WAC Program could become a fixture in the proposed Learning Center. Certainly, a Learning Center would be the appropriate place to house a formal WAC program at Shepherd.

The GSC will share the results of the WAC survey with the greater faculty and also ask for their suggestions about resources they might find useful for utilizing Writing Across the Curriculum in their GS classes.

V. Spreading the News about GS Innovation in the Curriculum: The GSC agreed that it might be helpful to have committee members attend division meetings sometime this semester to share information about the new courses proposed for the curriculum: HIST 100, ENGL 103 and 104. The following individuals agreed to make the presentations:

1) NS&M: Dr. DiLella

2) B&SS: Dr. Woods

3) PS: Dr. Simplicio

4) A&H: Dr. Shurbutt

The next GS Committee meeting will be March 13, 3:10-4:00 p.m., Knutti 203. GSC members are asked to mark their calendars for the NCA visitation February 25-27, which will suffice for our regular February meeting, unless events require otherwise.

Dr. Sylvia Bailey Shurbutt, GSC Chair

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