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August 27, 1968 - Image 39

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Publication:
Michigan Daily, 1968-08-27

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Tuesday, August 27, 1968

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

T ~ s a, A gs.7 9 5T H C I A A L

Curricular innovations

By DAVID MANN on about a dozen proposals for
The literary college will be tak- changing the requirement, which
ing a fresh look at some old and range from abolishing language
troublesome issues this year, in- grades, as was eventually sug-
cluding the language requirement gested by the steering committee,
and the extension of the pass-fail to lengthening the requirement to
option to underclassmen. three years.
The language requirement re- As the winter semester ended,
ceived considerable attention last the curriculum committee had
year both from the college's cur- received snggestions from the Ad-
riculum committee and the lit- ministrative Board of the college,
erary college student steering com- and the steering committee in ad--
mittee. dition to those it had developed.,
Inquiry into the requirement While considering whether or
was prompted by what was viewed not to modify the requirement, the
as an inordinate number of re- question of inability on the part
quests to drop either a language of some students to learn a sec-
course, or petitions to waive the ond language arose. James W.
entire requirement. George R. Shaw, assistant dean of the col-
Anderson, assistant dean of the lege, requested a study of diffi-
college, and his two assistants culties students face in learning
hear over 600 such requests per foreign languages.
year. ~ A study was initiated to find if,
The steering committee started in fact, it may be impossible for
a review of the requirement in some to learn a second language;
the fall, as did the curriculum or if it is possible for all to learn
committee. Out of the two studies another language, what kinds of
many different opinions emerged problems make it so difficult for

so many students. The study is to
be completed this year.
Many of the proposals for
modification of the requirement
suggested a two track approach
to the requirement. This would
involve teaching reading and cul-
tural aspects of a language to
students who take a foreign lan-
guage to satisfy the requirement,
and a full linguistic approach
similar to the current' one, for
those who plan to go on in the
study of languages,
There are two opinions' on the
two track system.? It is favored by
many because it will lighten the
teaching load on the department
of :=romance languages. Presently,
the teaching -fellows who teach
the first four semesters of lan-
guage are forced to present a
staggering amount of material to
their students in too short a time.
The proponents of the two track
method assert that if only read-
ing is taught in the bulk-of the
courses, which would be the case.

if the plan were adapted, the
reading course load would be
suited to the amount of class time
available to teach it.
The linguistic track, they say,
would have a much smaller en-
rollment. This would allow assign-
ment of the more qualified teach-
ing fellows to the track with the
more difficult material.
Those opposing the two track
plan include JamestO'Neil chair-
man of the department of ro-
mance languages. In his opinion,
language cannot : be divided into
its component parts; but must be
presented as a whole.
O'Neil further points out that
the period of rapid enrollment
increase is over for the Univer-
sity. With enrollment leveling off,
the number of introductory lan-
guage students will not continue
to spiral, and eventually decrease
because of better high school
language preparation. This will
. allow the romance language de-

threatened
partment to catch up in its teach- Teaching who is doing the study
ing chores under the present lan- at the request of the curriculum
guagerequirement. committee, is among those who
Whatever action the curriculum would have pass-fail extended.
committee takes concerning the Calling grades a manifestation of
requirement must be accepted by "educational conservatism," Pas-
the college faculty before going cal favors a general application of
into effect, however, which is a pass-fail.I
lengthy process. For the near The steering committee sug-
future, then, it appears as though gested extension of the option to
students will have to continue all students except first semester
suffering with the requirement, freshmen.
Prof. Roy Pierce of the political
The pass-fail option, currently science department, last year's
available to all upperclassmen in curriculum committee chairman,
good standing' also was the subject indicated that considerable study
of discussion last year. of pass-fail is yet to be done.
The current option allows one "Although the committee has been
non-concentration, non-distribu- discussing pass-fail for quite some
tion requirement course per se- time, any recommendation for
mester for upperclassmen with changing the option is still quite
pass or fail grading only. A stu- far off."
dent of pass-fail which will not When a recommendation does
be completed until April, leaves come from the committee, it, like
some hoping the option will be other curriculum changes, will
extended before that date. have to be cleared with the col-
Charles E. Pascal of the Center lege's faculty before going into
for Research on Learning and effect.

t

1

Academic discipline shaken by more than cribsheets

I

Languagelabs could be deserted

iw i

By DAVID MANN
The easy-going disciplinary sys-
tem of the literary college and the
entire University was shocked out
of its long slumber last fall, and
repercussions of the shock con-
tinue to be felt,
The Administrative Board of
the literary college normally
handles discipliuary cases involv-
ing academic dishonesty (cheat-
ing, plagarism, and similar of-
fenses). Controversy flared when

it was revealed that.Vice President
for Student Affairs Richard L.
Cutler had requested the Board
to academically discipline Mrs.
Karen Daenzer '70, then chair-
man of Voice-SDS, for participa-M
tion in what was considered to be
a disruptive protest against war
research.
Student leaders, expressing the
view of many on campus, felt if
any kind of disciplinary action
should have been taken, a dubious

move to begin with, it should have
been through the civil channels,
channels that the University ad-
ministration refused to use.
Vice President for Research A.-
Geoffrey Norman said after the
October 11 protest no action
would be initiated to discipline the
students involved either through
University or civil channels.
The Cutler letter asking for dis-
Daenzer came to light December 1,
The Administrative Board, after
a month of debate, declined to
accept initial jurisdiction of the
case. "Throughout the debate, the
Board never knew exactly which
student or students were involved,"
said James Shaw, assistant dean
of the college and chairman of
the Board. The Board was con-
sidering the case in the abstract-
considering whether or not to hear
it. Previously the Board had
heard only traditionalacademic
cases.
Soon after the Daenzer case, it
was revealed, letters had been sent
to the graduate school asking ap-
propriate academic discipline be
used against Eric Chester Grad,
and Sam Freidman Grad, both
members of. Voice, who had par-
ticipated in the October war re-
search protest.
The graduate school administra-
tion declined to act on Cutler's
fequest. "The whole thing became
a dead issue after the literary col-
lege and the grad school refused
jurisdiction," according to Ches-
ter.
The issue, however, is not quite
dead.
In the wake of the Daenzer case,
there is a policy vacuum concern-

r _ "r

ing discipline. It is not clear what3
disciplinary body should have jur-1
isdiction over non-academic of-
fenders. Nor is it clear what ex-.
actly constitutes the difference
between academic and non-aca-j
demic offenses.
An academic offense is inter-
preted as anything that disrupts'
the functioning of the University,
'according to a Board statement.
This would include disruptive sit-
ins and demonstrations. Many stu-
dents, however, feel that those
sorts of offenses are non-academ-
ic, and their participants should
not be Qeld liable for them by the
University.
Academic status should not be
endangered by political activities'
outside the University's academic
sphere in the opinion of manyl
students.
In the present nebulous state of
the University's disciplinary sys-
tem, the Administrative Board
"has reserved the right to consider
hearing cases involving students of
the college accused of disruptive
activity as well as traditional aca-
demic offenses. But the Board
would rather not be the discipli-
nary body in such matters," .said
Saw.
The 'procedures to be followed
in the event of the Board refusing
to hear a case have not been de-
ternmined. Judicial alternatives
are currently being worked out,
with final approval resting with
the Regents.
The - proposal now under con-
sideration by the administration,
the faculty, SGC, and the Grad
Assembly involves implementation
of the Hatcher Commission Re-

port. The report recommends a
tri-partite University Council that
would have jurisdiction over all
possible discipline cases. Final
approval of the measure, which
must be written into the Univer-
sity's bylaws and approved by the
Regents has been the, object of
considerable negotiation during
the summer.-
The bylaw proposals have left
the Board in doubt as to its future
role. The summer planning ses-
sions have not elucidated the role
of the individual college judicial
systems, and some members of the
Board are concerned that faculty
members of other colleges might
be involved in making decisions
effecting literary college students.
The Board would serve, if the by-
law were adopted, only as an
appeal body.
'While the issue of the college's
disciplinary autonomy remained
vague, the Board began to estab-
lish a written policy of due pro-
cess procedure for all cases that

one that will let the student know
exactly where he stands with the
Board, what his rights are, what
the possible penalties he may face,
and what his rights of appeal are.
The due process statement is
currently in fits third draft form,
and is in the hands of the stu-
dent literary college steering'com-
mittee.,
The steering committee has
been charged with the responsi-'
bility of presenting the statement
to the students of the college in
any' manner that it feels will a-
low the committee to accurately
determine student opinion on the
matter. The steering committee
will make any check of studies
open in the fall. It will then work
out a final proposal with the
Board.
As yet, however, there is no
assurance that the statement will
ever be eriployed by the Board,
because the Board's role in the
future of the University discipli-
nary system awaits action by the
larger bodies of administration,
faculty, and student opinion.

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