Office of Academic and Student Affairs
Minutes - Graduate and Professional Studies Working Group Meeting

Minutes - Graduate and Professional Studies Working Group Meeting

May 3, 2002 - Salisbury University

Attendees: Betty Bickell (Towson), Keith Brooks (UMB), Lorna Busch (Baltimore), Angela Crank (Bowie State), Betty Douglass (UMBC), Jerry Isaac (Bowie State), Jan Schmitt (Towson), Angela Tripp (Towson)

The Working Group meeting began at about 10:30 a.m. Because the chair Gary Grodzicki was absent, the discussion proceeded without a formal convener.

Other Working Group Agendas: The agendas of the other working groups were reviewed, and it was determined that there was no need to send a representative to those other meetings.

Miscellaneous Graduate Admissions Issues:

  • Self reported GPAs - The issue of calculating GPAs when that figure is not provided on the transcript was briefly discussed. Studies have shown that self-reported scores tend to be more accurate, the higher the student's GPA is!
  • International GPAs - AACRO will provide international GPAs and tend to do a better job of this calculation than some of the other organizations. They charge $190/student for this assessment. Some Canadian colleges offer only 3-year baccalaureate degrees, and WES will indicate in their report whether the degree is equivalent to a 3 or 4 year American undergraduate degree.
  • On-line Open Houses - Judy Holzer (or Heck?) at JHU is a good source of information for designing a virtual open house.
  • Article on +/- Grades -- An article from C&U Journal titled "A Study of the Effect of the Implementation of the Plus/Minus Grading System on Graduate Student Grades" was distributed.

Recommendations for Future ICC Meetings: There was consensus that this working group does not need to normally meet more than twice a yearin the fall and spring. If ICC decides to either maintain the 4 meetings or cut back to three meetings a year, we will elect not to participate in the winter meetings. Depending on the agendas for the winter meeting(s), the chair or a designated member of the working group might attend another working group's meeting.

Suggestions for improving ICC meetings:

  • There needs to be a clarification of the purposes and goals of the ICC and the expectations of USM for these working groups. In addition, it would be helpful to have information about resources available to the working group and our campuses from USM/ICC.
  • The plenary sessions need to be more informative and substantive with speakers from USM or similar groups.
  • It would be helpful for USM staff to pose questions for this working group so that we are drawn into dialogue about relevant policies and procedures.
  • A representative from USM staff needs to spend at least part of each meeting with this working group, to facilitate a dialogue, answer our questions, and hear our concerns.

Liz Murray joined the meeting and answered some of our questions and concerns. She indicated that on the ICC website is a listserv for each working group, which we can use to send messages to members of this (or any) working group. Meeting minutes and other ICC information are also found on that website. The url for the listserv is: http://icc.usmd.edu and her e-mail is efmurray@usmd.edu. She is available to answer any of our questions about resource availability throughout the USM.

She explained that the purpose of the ICC is to coordinate USM practices, facilitate the implementation of policies, and foster communication among campus administrators.

The policies that typically relate to the ICC are as follows: residency, inter-institutional registrations, records, academic policy, required institutional reporting, program approvals, joint programs, budget, inter-institutional faculty, and PeopleSoft implementation.

Purpose of the Graduate and Professional Studies Working Group: The following draft purpose statement was proposed: The Graduate and Professional Studies working group brings together graduate admissions, advising, and enrollment staff for the purpose of discussing USM policies and practices that relate to graduate studies. This group is a complement to the newly formed Maryland chapter of the National Association of Graduate Admissions Professionals (MD-GAP) that includes representatives from both public and private Maryland universities that offer graduate study.

At a future meeting of this working group we will consider redrafting the purpose as stated on the ICC website, based on the above purpose statement.

SEVIS: Liz explained that SEVIS is an on-line reporting system for international studies that is being developed in the wake of last fall's terrorist attacks. The acronym stands for "Student and Exchange Visitor Information System," and information can be found on the NAFSA website: www.nafsa.org.

Future agenda items:

  • The chair should communicate with other working group chairs to coordinate meeting agendas so that a portion of future meetings could be held jointly with other working groups.
  • Liz will send us a copy of the Council on Law and Higher Education newsletter that discusses disabled students.
  • At the next meeting the working group membership list needs to be updated, as well as our mission statement.

Election of Chair: Keith Brooks nominated Betty Douglass as chair, the nomination was seconded, and she was elected by the consensus of those present.

Note: In the ICC plenary meeting it was announced that the fall retreat will be held at Rocky Gap (Cumberland) from Thursday, September 26 through Friday, September 27. The meeting will begin with a lunch at noon, dinner will be "on our own" Thursday evening, and adjournment will be late morning on Friday.

The meeting was adjourned at 12 noon.

Respectfully submitted,

Betty Douglass

2002-03 Chair-Elect