Board of Trustees

Academic Affairs Committee

December 13, 2007



Members Present:  Mr. Jon LaSalle, Chair, Mr. Alan Ackerman, Mr. Stephen Adamini, Mr. Samuel Benedict, Mr. Brian Cloyd, Ms. Mary Lukens, Mr. Gilbert Ziegler, Dr. Susan Koch, Dr. Les Wong, ex officio


The Academic Affairs Committee meeting was called to order at 2:13 p.m.


Academic Senate Update

Dr. Larry Pagel, Chair, Academic Senate, provided an update on Senate activities.  One of the main goals this year is the review of the Liberal Studies Program.  Two forums were held this semester to discuss the best practices and models of liberal studies programs from other universities.   Another liberal studies forum will be held in early April 2008.


The Admissions and Academic Policies Committee recommended to the Academic Senate that the definition of grades section be eliminated in the Undergraduate Bulletin.  The Academic Senate has sent the recommendation back to the subcommittee for further review. 


Ms. Lukens asked about the activities of the Committee on Internationalization.  Dr. Pagel reported the Committee did not have any official business for the Senate to debate this semester.


Charter School Board Approvals

Mr. William Pistulka, Charter Schools Officer, presented a proposed new board member list for the Burton Glen Public School Academy.    


The motion duly made and seconded the Committee recommends to the Board of Trustees the approval of the list of board members.  This motion is part of the formal recommendations.


Mr. Pistulka shared information on charter school graduation rates and the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.  He also provided two Michigan maps indicating locations of NMU’s Charter Schools and locations of all charter schools.


Teacher Education Accreditation


Dr. Susan Koch presented a position statement supporting the adoption of the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) as the accrediting agency for NMU’s teacher education program.  All Michigan teacher education programs must be nationally accredited within five years.  National accreditation is a way of providing assurance to various constituencies that universities and colleges offer quality teacher education programs and meet the standards set by the profession.  Currently, Northern Michigan University is accredited by the National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE).  Several Michigan institutions are considering switching to TEAC.


The NMU teacher education faculty, the Region 1 Michigan Association of School Administrators, and the Academic Senate support the decision to seek accreditation through TEAC.   Dr. Koch said the process will take at least one year to complete.  Dr. Paul Lang, Interim Dean, College of Professional Studies and Dr. Rodney Clarken, Interim Associate Dean/Director School of Education responded to questions.


AQIP Update

Dr. Koch and Dr. Cynthia Prosen provided a brief update on the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) at Northern Michigan University.  Currently we have three committees working on our active action projects.  Each committee consists of faculty, staff and students.  The three action projects are:  Enhance the Campus Climate for Scholarship; Improve and Expand online Learning; and A More Sustainable NMU.


In November, ten NMU representatives attended an AQIP Strategy Forum designed to help gain understanding of continuous quality improvement.


Mr. Benedict asked if we have improved our ability to measure outcomes.  Dr. Prosen said that we are now requiring every academic and service department to complete their own assessment survey. 


Ms. Lukens asked for clarification on incorporating sustainability in the curriculum.  Dr. Prosen said this could be achieved by adding new classes on sustainability or adding content to existing courses.


Mr. LaSalle said the AQIP process is a continuous improvement program and the action projects are manifests of outcomes.  We need to understand the process from the top down and continue work to implement continuous improvement throughout the University.  He said the Strategy Forum went a long way to get the NMU team on the same page. 


Good of the Order




Mr. LaSalle thanked the Committee and the meeting was adjourned at 3:00 p.m.