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DOCUMENTS OF THE GENERAL FACULTY

EDUCATIONAL POLICY COMMITTEE RESOLUTION ENDORSING THE RECOMMENDATION FROM THE TASK FORCE ON ENROLLMENT STRATEGY LIMITING UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS TO TEN LONG SEMESTERS IN RESIDENCE

On behalf of the Educational Policy Committee, Professor Archie Holmes, (electrical and computer engineering and committee chair) submitted the following resolution endorsing the recommendation for the Task Force on Enrollment Strategy limiting undergraduate students to a maximum of ten long semesters in residence to complete a baccalaureate degree.

The secretary has classified this as general legislation. It will be presented to the Faculty Council for discussion at its meeting on March 21, 2005.

<signed>

Sue Alexander Greninger, Secretary
The Faculty Council

Posted on the Faculty Council Web site on March 10, 2005. Paper copies are available on request from the Office of the General Faculty, FAC 22, F9500.


3790


EDUCATIONAL POLICY COMMITTEE RESOLUTION ENDORSING THE RECOMMENDATION FROM THE TASK FORCE ON ENROLLMENT STRATEGY LIMITING UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS TO TEN LONG SEMESTERS IN RESIDENCE

Motion: [The Educational Policy Committee endorses the following recommendation of the Task Force on Enrollment Strategy:] The Committee recommends that the provost establish a task force to examine the following recommendation and report back with specific recommendations to the Faculty Council.1

The University should allow its undergraduate students to take a maximum of ten long semesters in residence to complete a baccalaureate degree. Exceptions to this rule may be granted at the deans' discretion. (page 9 of the Report of the Task Force on Enrollment Strategy)

[The Committee also recommends that the provost establish a task force to implement this recommendation.]

Background and Rationale: In the fall of 2004, the provost asked the Educational Policy Committee to review a number of recommendations from the Task Force on Enrollment Strategy. This motion is based on the recommendation quoted above. Given that an important mission of UT Austin is to educate the future leaders of Texas, it is important that the University provide an education to as many students as possible. Given that the number of students who can be enrolled at UT Austin at one time is limited, it is important for students to complete their studies in a timely manner so that other students may come to UT Austin and benefit from the educational opportunities that are available. Given a course load of fifteen hours per semester, the proposal allows for a student to complete 150 hours in residence. The Educational Policy Committee believes that this allows students to complete their baccalaureate degrees and take some courses beyond their degree requirements for personal growth and career preparation.

The Educational Policy Committee suggests that the task force membership include administrators, faculty, advising staff, and students. The Educational Policy Committee also understands that several impediments exist that may hinder the completion of a baccalaureate degree in ten semesters. Thus, the Educational Policy Committee requests that the task force address the following issues:

Measuring the progress towards a degree for all University students so that students falling behind the expected time frame to receive a degree can be identified and helped before their time to complete a degree has expired.

  • Providing mechanisms to help students who do not complete their degree in ten long semesters and do not obtain dean’s approval to continue.
  • Limiting increases in degree requirements in some programs that make it difficult for students to complete their degrees in ten semesters.
  • Providing a cross?]college advising mechanism to help students select a major that is appropriate for their career goals and academic background.
  • Developing effective mechanisms to communicate to students the purpose of the various baccalaureate degrees the University offers and a rationale for that program’s degree requirements.
  • Reducing the difficulty many students have in getting the courses they need to complete their degree requirements. This include course availability, course scheduling conflicts, pre-requisite structures, and add/drop policies that are in place throughout the University.
  • Restricting the number of times students may request a transfer to a restricted college or department.

1 On May 9, 2005, the Faculty Council amended the proposal. The document was updated on May 10, 2005.