Graduate Council – Minutes
East Tennessee State University
March 27, 2006 – 1:15 p.m.
President’s Conference Room – Dossett Hall

  1. Approval of February MinutesFebruary 27, 2006 minutes were approved with corrections.
  2. Curriculum Committee – Dr. Martha Pointer

a. Correct proposal to reflect the graduate number (5547)

This course has been replaced by THEA 2530 Dramatic Structure as a requirement for the major. We no longer have the faculty to teach this course nor does the faculty in Theatre feel this is an important course to teach with our degree program. It will not be offered again.

Action Taken by Graduate Council: Approved

a. check to see if there is a new edition of the textbook (1961)

b. Recommend changing the word “hone” in Course Learning Outcomes

c. Revise and clarify Attendance Policy – no clear application

d. Add dates and complete citations for the information in the Bibliography – may want to update this information

e. Delete the “a” before “one-page typed paper” in the Poetry Journal section

Students will benefit from a French poetry course because it will enhance their general literary knowledge. This course will also familiarize them with literary and linguistic devices and techniques. Students will see French grammar and syntax in a practical context. There is no comparable course currently available to students of French.

Action Taken by Graduate Council: Approved

a. Include the title of the course on the first page of the proposal

b. Include the title of the course and the course number on the first page of the syllabus

c. Change the Proposed Catalog Description so that the section contains EXACTLY the information in the catalog – prefix, number, credit hours, description

d. Shorten the Proposed Catalog Description

e. Check for newer editions of the Required Textbooks

f. Change “their” to “his or her” in line 3 of the Semester Projects

g. Change “their” to “his or Her” in the eighth line of the Semester Projects

h. Include a grading scale for graduate students

i. Include some example readings in the Bibliography section

j. Be more specific in the “more sophisticated” graduate student semester projects (perhaps give an example)

The department recognizes the importance of this course as a physics elective within the major requirements. Three credit hours has been found to be inadequate to allow for coverage of the numerical techniques contained in this course in addition to the necessary instruction in the use of computer programming languages and operating systems. We are proposing an increase in credit hours to provide more time for formal instructor/student interaction, especially in allowing more time for programming related instruction.

Action Taken by Graduate Council: Tabled/Deferred

The department is undergoing minor changes in the curriculum for physics majors. Among these changes is an effort to make it easier for students to take more specialized course in sub-disciplines of physics (such as Astrophysics, Biophysics, etc.). Also, the department is reviewing existing courses to see that they most effectively meet the most critical curriculum needs of the physics major. Currently, students are asked to take PHYS 3110 (Thermodynamics) as a prerequisite for Kinetic and Statistical Physics. However, students often do not take these courses in sequence and a significant fraction of time is spent reviewing the material taught in Thermodynamics in the Kinetic and Statistical Physics course. The fundamental concepts of thermodynamics are introduced in the calculus based introductory physics course sequence PHYS 2110-20 which is required of all majors. Thus, the department has decided to integrate the most important advanced concepts of the course PHYS 3110 (Thermodynamics) into the Kinetic and Statistical Physics course. This will avoid the duplication of material which was an inefficient use of faculty resources and also give majors the opportunity to add an additional physics (or mathematics) elective in a different subject area to their curriculum. The course title is also being changed to reflect the content change with the formal addition of material in thermodynamics. Concurrent with this proposal to modify the course PHYS 4117/5117 we are submitting a proposal to delete the course PHYS 3110.

Action Taken By Graduate Council: Tabled/Deferred

C. Graduate Faculty Sub-Committee

    1. New Application for Graduate Faculty Status

Name Current Recommended Remarks

Dotson, Deborah New Interim

Faust, Charles New Associate

Hales, Cynthia New Interim

Lehwall, Harry New Associate

Nave, Jerry New Associate

Ramsey, Michael New Associate

Smith, Suzanne New Associate

Wronecki, James Interim Associate

Action Taken By Graduate Council: Approved

Name Current Recommended Remarks

Davenport , Mary Jo Interim Interim

Ecay, Tom Full Full

Pfeiffer, Phil Full Full

Schweitzer, John Full Full

Steadman, Mark Full Associate

Trogen, Paul Associate Full

Warner, Carla Associate Associate

Williams, Duane Interim Interim

Wondergem, Robert Full Full

Woodruff, Michael Full Full

Wronecki, James I Interim Associate

Action Taken by Graduate Council: Approved

  1. Old Business -none
  2. New Business
    1. Proposal for Alternate Thesis/Dissertation Format Option

Proposal for Alternate Thesis/Dissertation Format Option

In the fall of 2005, there was a request for a meeting to discuss and consider the possibility of accepting an alternate (manuscript/journal) thesis/dissertation format. The program proposal for a Ph.D. in Environmental Health Sciences also indicated interest in this idea. The Alternate Format would embrace including organization of the major part of the thesis or dissertation into scientific journal article format. An ad hoc committee was formed to start a dialogue and to look into this further. Current members of this committee are:

Kevin Burke, chair, Dept. Physical Education, Exercise, & Sport Sciences

Kurt Maier, Dept. Environmental Health Sciences

Mitch Robinson, Asst. Dean Biomedical Sciences Grad. Program

John Taylor, “retired”, Curriculum and Instruction

Don Hoover, Biomedical Sciences

Celia McIntosh, Asst. Dean Graduate Studies; also Biological Sciences

The committee has met several times to discuss options and formats, to find facts on other programs allowing this format, and to draft a thesis/dissertation guide that includes this as an option. Information on these topics is presented below.

Part I. Rationale for Alternate Format Option for Theses/Dissertations

As Robert Day (1998) stated, "A scientific experiment, no matter how spectacular the results, is not completed until the results are published." While the traditional “chapter” style for theses and dissertations has deep roots within academe, the advantage of the alternate (manuscript/journal) format for theses/dissertations is that students (and faculty) will have published, submitted for publication, or be ready to submit one or more manuscripts to scholarly journals upon completion of the thesis/dissertation. For this reason, the ad hoc Alternate Thesis/Dissertation Format committee recommends this format be added as an option for thesis/dissertation preparation at ETSU.

Once students (with faculty approval and assistance) have completed their thesis/dissertation projects, there may be some resistance from the students to the task of revising their thesis/dissertation for publication as a peer-reviewed article. Many times the students have worked so hard on their individual documents that, once completed, they simply do not want to go through the process of editing and reformatting the thesis/dissertation for submission to a journal. Often, this leaves the thesis/dissertation director with the task of “readying” the manuscript for submission. This may result in a long delay before publication or the manuscript may “slip through the cracks” and never be submitted for publication. However, many of the student research projects done in collaboration with faculty mentors are worthy of publication and dissemination to a wider audience.

The Alternate Format facilitates timely submission of completed thesis/dissertation research for publication by substantially reducing the amount of editing that would normally be necessary using the traditional format. By establishing the Alternate Format as an option, students and faculty will be encouraged to submit theses/dissertations with a component that is essentially ready for review by a peer-reviewed journal. In other words, there will be very little (and in some cases no) editing required before submission for publication to a scholarly journal. The Alternate Format encourages a “climate of publication” at the university and provides another valuable and practical learning experience for the students.

The Alternate Format allows students to include one or more manuscripts as a significant part of the thesis/dissertation with each full manuscript contained in its own chapter. This format also allows for the inclusion of manuscripts that have content based on the thesis/dissertation research but have been published prior to the actual writing of the thesis/dissertation. For the Alternate Format, each manuscript must be formatted in the appropriate style for the journal of interest. It is imperative that students discuss possible journals with their Thesis/Dissertation Directors so the appropriate thesis/dissertation chapters will be developed in the appropriate style. The style must be agreed upon by the thesis committee and the student at the thesis/dissertation proposal meeting. Although the students will use the style of an appropriate journal, the School of Graduate Studies still has requirements that can take precedent over journal requirements. Please see the most recent School of Graduate Studies “Guide for Preparation of Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD)” for specific guidelines.

Day, Robert A. 1998. How to Write and Publish a Scientific Paper. 5 th ed., The Oryx Press, Westport, CT., pg ix.

Part II. Examples of Schools Accepting this Format for All or Some of Their Programs: (note – use seems to be more prevalent in science-related programs)

    1. Cornell
    2. Florida State
    3. University of Georgia
    4. University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
    5. Iowa State University
    6. Duke
    7. Tulane
    8. University of California Davis
    9. Michigan State University
    10. University of Minnesota
    11. North Carolina State University
    12. Ohio State University
    13. Georgia Southern University
    14. York University ( Canada)
    15. Georgia State University
    16. Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences

Part III. Conditions and Process for Use




Part IV. Revised “Guide for Preparation of Electronic Theses and Dissertations (ETD)


The revised guideline is attached. Highlighted portions in the Table of Contents indicate components added to incorporate the Alternate Format. (The complete guidelines is placed with the March minutes)



Part V. Committee Recommendation


The ad hoc committee recommends that the Graduate Council approve the Alternate Format as an additional OPTION that may be used for a thesis or dissertation under the specified conditions. This would take effect in Fall 2006. If approved, the School of Graduate Studies will immediately disseminate information to program chairs and coordinators, include this information in the annual graduate coordinator meeting in the fall, update its ETD site, update and post the Thesis/Dissertation Format Guideline Document (on the web), and incorporate this information into future ETD workshops.


Action taken by Council with one opposed: Approved with corrections of language regarding multiple authors.

Dr. Maria Tedesco opposed


  1. Defining terminal degrees – Dr. Wallace Dixon


The definition of a terminal degree relates to the highest degree in a discipline. For example, in the College of Education, the highest degree is a doctoral. Therefore, the appointment-reappointment form will have two boxes for the dean and chairperson to check. Some terminal degrees will be grandfathered, and if not current, will require justification.


Action taken by Graduate Council: Approved with amendments

  1. Other - none
  2. Adjournment –


The meeting adjourned at 2:20 p.m. – Dr. Scott Champney, Chair.