Minutes of the Undergraduate Studies Committee

Attending Voting Members: J. Twombly (SSB), R. Steffenson (SSCI), E. Orklu (ECE), S. Morris (PSYC), G. Shobeiri (SGA), CW Adams (ROTC), F. Flury (ARCH), F. Weening (AMAT), G. Pulliam (HUM/CAC), M. Safar (INTM), P. Troyk (BME), X. Guan (CHEM), SH Hong (CHBE), C. Wark (MMAE), N. Menhart (BIO), P. Snopok (PHY), P. Anderson (CAEE), J. Hayek (ITM), (CS) S. Argaman

Also attending: J. Gorzkowski (UGAA), G. Smith (UGAA), N. Novak (Galvin Library), M. Lopez (UGAA), B. Katz (ODL), S. Pariseau (UGAA), R. Ellis (CoS), J. Rosenberg (SSCI), M. Shapiro (SSCI), N. McClain (SSCI) C. Himes (LCHS), J. Hignight (Registrar), V. Foster (Compliance), J. Miller (UGAA), K. Spink (PreHealth), L. Kang (AMAT), G. Papavasilion (BME), B. Haferkamp (BME), J. Wang (ECE), J. Sanjie (ECE), A. Hall (Registrar), T. Arshad (UGAA)

Departments with absent voting members:  MSED

Quorum declared at: 12:45

Adjourn at: 1:45


Documents for this meeting are available at:


Meeting chaired by Ray Trygstad

Minutes recorded by Rebecca Steffenson


1. Minutes of the 1/23/18 Meeting (http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/1-23-18minutes.html)

Minutes approved unanimously.

Old Business

 2. New degree proposal: Bachelor of Science in Science, Technology and Society [J. Rosenberg – Social Science]

Proposal is available at http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/STS_Program_Form_UGSC.pdf


Following from 1/23/18 discussion: The Social Science representatives were again asked about the lack of science and technology courses in this degree program. Shapiro (Social Sciences) responded that other STS degrees like Cornell and UC Davis did not have STEM requirements, that STS programs were not designed for people deeply invested in STEM fields, and that STS was more about design issues or innovation policy. Multiple representatives argued that STEM courses would enhance the student experience and make the program easier to market. STS faculty reported that they had submitted some last minute course plans outlining how students could incorporate STEM classes into the STS degree, but they were not requiring STEM because they wanted to maintain student choice. UGSC members pointed out that the course plans showed that it was feasible to include STEM courses in the degree, that there were many choices of minors, that even with a minor there would still be a substantial number of free electives, and that it was the role of UGSC to make sure that programs have a certain amount of rigor and credibility.  College of Science representatives also noted that the curriculum did not match up with the career outcomes, that it was not appropriate for the curriculum to claim to prepare students for careers as biomedical engineers, medical doctors or bioinformatics scientists without requiring STEM classes, and that their proposal would be greatly strengthened if they could make linkages between social science courses, STEM minors, and career paths. Rosenberg (Social Sciences) noted that these same issues has been debated and discussed internally and that the committee’s recommendations would be taken back to the Department of Social Sciences.


3. New degree proposal: Dual Degree in Biochemistry and Psychological Science [N. Menhart – Biology and J. Miller – Psychology]

Proposal is available at: http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/Bchm-Psyc_Dual_Degree_Program_to_UGSC_v1.0.pdf


Biology noted that the controversial aspect of this proposal is the plan to allow students to count two psychology major courses as S credit towards the core curriculum in order to reduce the overall number of credit hours. UGSC must approve any exceptions to core curriculum rules per the policy established at the November 2015 UGSC meeting.


Under this degree proposal, students would still take courses in two different social science disciplines, and students would not be allowed to count an additional psychology course for the swing course. However, several departments raised concerns about the dangerous precedent this exception could set and argued that allowing departments to dictate H/S courses would limit student choice and could ultimately result in limited social science and humanities course offerings for all IIT students.


This discussion is directly linked to a new policy proposal (see agenda item 6), which would allow students to opt to double count core courses towards dual degrees and double majors. This policy change would be an extension of the current policy which already allows students to double count core credits towards a minor. It was noted that the existing policy does not allow departments to require students to double count core requirements and minor requirements, and that many students do take the extra courses to complete a minor. This proposed policy could help departments reach a compromise that would balance the dual degree program viability and the integrity of the core curriculum. In addition, this proposed policy would maintain student choice in the H/S module.  


4. New degree proposal: Bachelor of Science in Computer and Cybersecurity Engineering [E. Oruklu – Electrical and Computer Engineering]

Proposal is available at



The proposal contains graduate level courses (from Law), but there are not restrictions on requiring a grad course as part of an undergrad degree. CS asked for more coordination with ECE given its interests and expertise in cybersecurity and argued for more coordinated efforts, perhaps a campus wide taskforce, charged with making sure there is not too much overlap across programs. Oruklu noted that there had made revisions based on coordination with ITM. CS asked to be included in future discussions and expressed a desire to see more dedicated cybersecurity courses in the degree program.


5. Discussion: Clarification of language on the web page covering English language requirements for admission [G. Pulliam – Communication Across the Curriculum Director]

This page is at https://admissions.iit.edu/undergraduate/apply/international-student-english-proficiency-requirement


Discussion postponed due to time constraint


New Business


6. Proposal: Allow Core Curriculum courses to double-count in second or double majors or degrees [G. Pulliam –Humanities]


Change the existing double-counting policy for Core Curriculum courses from the current “Students who take the standard core curriculum’s distribution of courses may apply them toward the requirements of any standing minor” to instead read: “Students who take the standard core curriculum’s distribution of courses may apply them toward the requirements of any standing minor, or to a second or double major, or to a second or dual degree program.”


Discussion focused on how to address the option of double counting in order to maintain the integrity of the core and of student choice and members were asked whether this was an internal advising issue or if departments could choose to publish degree programs with variable credit hours to demonstrate what degree programs would look like with and without the double counting option. Members discussed whether this policy change should apply only to the H/S modules? At least one person thought that departments should be able to dictate which IPROs students take.



7. New Degree Proposal: Bachelor of Science in Statistics [L. Kang, M. Pelsmajer, and R. Ellis – Applied Mathematics]

The degree proposal stems from the growing market for data science and jobs requiring statistical skills, and it reflects the expertise of new hires in the department. The program has a computational emphasis and more computer science than other programs. ITM said it would like to convene a task force on data analytics to explore opportunities across colleges.


Proposal is available at http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/BS-Statistics-UG-Program_Proposal.pdf



8. New Co-Terminal Degree Proposal: Biomedical Engineering [B. Haferkamp – Biomedical Engineering]

Proposal text is included in the documents referenced in the next paragraph.


Last year Armour developed six new programs, and it would now like to offer these degrees as co-terminals. They are proposing 29 different co-terminal degree options, all of which have 6 shared credit hours.


9. New Co-Terminal Degree Proposals: Armour College of Engineering undergraduate engineering/interdisciplinary

graduate degrees [B. HaferkampArmour College]

Proposals are available at http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/ArmourCo-terminalProposals(pdf).zip (PDF 3.8MB) or

 http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/ArmourCo terminalProposals(Word).zip (MS Word 737KB) with an additional document at http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/ArmourCo-terminalsUG-MEngMapping2-8-2018.xlsx.


(The UGSC normally does not post documents in any format other than PDF but given the size of the resulting zip file,

they are posted here in MS Word format as well.)


10. Proposal: Use a centralized advising process for new first-year students this summer [K. Spink – Chair, Advising


Proposal is available at



Discussion postponed due to time constraints.


11. New Degree Specialization: Computer Science Honors Research [M. Bauer – Computer Science]

This item is informational and should not require a vote by the UGSC. Documentation is available at



No discussion due to time constraints.


12. Minor Curriculum changes: Bachelor of Information Technology and Management courses [J. Hajek – ITM]

This item is informational and should not require a vote by the UGSC. Documentation is available at



No discussion due to time constraints.


13. Minor Curriculum change: Bachelor of Architecture Site Planning course [C. Torres – Architecture]

This item is informational and should not require a vote by the UGSC. Documentation is available at



No discussion due to time constraints.


14. New Minor: Statistics [L. Kang, M. Pelsmajer, and R. Ellis – Applied Mathematics]

This item is informational and should not require a vote by the UGSC. Documentation is available at



No discussion due to time constraints.


15. Discussion: Apparent need to require more detailed justification of change of grade for reason “Other”

[C. White via R. Trygstad – Chair]

Recently a change of grade form was submitted requesting a change of grade for a student who had submitted late work. In the reasons on the change of grade form, this would be marked as “Other.” Is this acceptable? Does the oneliner of the form attached to “Other” provide sufficient space to explain the circumstances, or should additional documentation be provided? Thoughts? Do we need a policy on grade changes for late work, or do we need a policy on justification for changes of grade for “Other”?


Discussion postponed due to time constraints.


16. Report: Late administration of the Writing Placement Exam / Basic Writing Proficiency [R. Trygstad – Chair]

Proposed new Undergraduate Bulletin language regarding Basic Writing Proficiency was approved by the UFC. The

approved language is at: http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/BWP_Bulletin_Language.pdf


Discussion postponed due to time constraints.


17. Report: Approval of CAC subcommittee review of the College of Architecture and CAEE department [R. Trygstad – Chair]

The report at http://www.iit.edu/~ugsc/documents/ARCH-CAEEreviewmemo.pdf was approved by the UFC.


18. Other New Business


19. The next UGSC meeting will be February 27, 2018 at 12:45pm in WH 115.