Minutes: AAC, February 12, 2013

Report of the meeting of the ACADEMIC AFFAIRS COMMITTEE of Erindale College Council held on Tuesday, February 12, 2012 at 11:10 a.m. in Ante Chamber, Room 3129, William G. Davis Building.

Present: N. Woolridge (in the Chair), A. Mullin, U. Krull, B. Katz, D. Crocker, I. Whyte, E. Levy, J. Simalchik, D. Smith, X. Shi, M. Havelka, R. Day, D. Brownfield, T. Bowen, S. Sumra, D. Kreuger, S. DaSilva, S. Kamenetsky, S. Stefanovic
Regrets: D. Saini, K. Hannah-Moffat, M. Lettieri, N. Lacetera
In attendance: M. Berger, M. Daley, M. Masood

  1. Approval of Minutes of the Previous Meeting

The report of the previous meeting was approved.

2. Reports of Committees and Officers:

The Chair called on Ms. Crocker to present the Office of the Registrar Annual report as well as a Graduation and Retention Report.

  1. Report of the Registrar and Director of Enrolment Management, Diane Crocker – For Information

The Annual Report of the Office of the Registrar for 2011-12 is attached hereto as Appendix A.

Ms. Crocker reported that enrollment targets were surpassed and noted that applicants who indicated UTM as their first choice increased by 8%.  First year entry applicants were over target by 250.   She reported that international students are expected to grow to 20% of total enrolment and that most of these enrolments are from local international high schools such as Peel, Bronte, and Columbia International. 

Applicant and student engagement via the web and social media has been greatly increased, with much-expanded Facebook, Twitter, Blackboard and Mobile applications activity.  In addition, student success and transition programming has been expanded to proactively advise at-risk first year students.

Ms. Crocker reported that in-person attendance at the frontline of the Office of the Registrar totaled 35,834 during 2011-12 and that academic advising appointments totaled 12,630, for the same period.  She also presented a comparison of petition numbers versus enrolment between 2006 and 2012. 

Ms. Crocker reported that there were no scheduling conflicts for the December 2012 exams and added that while 37,869 examinations were prepared, 32,213 were actually written.

She reported that June 2012 saw the graduation of 1630 students, which was an increase from the previous year by 15.6%.

Referring members to the Graduation and Retention Report, which is attached hereto as Appendix B, Ms. Crocker noted that the data selection criteria included all summer and fall new year 1 admits since 2003 and excluded  summer and fall non-degree students, three year programs, transfer students and those who never registered.

She noted that in these reports, she based the numbers on the September count data.  Between the September and the November counts, there is some attrition of students.  

The cumulative graduation rate by entering year of 2003 was 33.95% at 4 years and 72.73% at 10 years.  By entering year of 2009, this same figure was 34.13% at 4 years.  The year one to year two retention rate by the entering year of 2009 was 89.8%.  The international student graduation rate by the entering year of 2009 was 41.6% at 4 years.  The year one to year two retention rate for 2011 was 89.2% for all students and 86.4% for international students.

Ms. Crocker showed a comparison among students graduated in 4 years in HBSC/BSC programs was 45.4% in 2012, 48.4% in 2011 and 51.4% in 2010.  The comparison among students graduated in 4 years in HBA/BA programs was 40.4% in 2012, 43.9% in 2011 and 44.0% in 2010.   These same numbers for BCOM were 73.3%, 77.8% and 79.8% respectively.  The percentages going back to 2003 are available in the appendix to this report as noted.

The Chair opened the floor to questions.

In response to a member’s question about whether or not there is a correlation between the graduation rate and entering averages, Ms. Crocker noted that this would have to be examined in a future report to the committee. 

Ms. Crocker noted that the biggest problem relating to graduation were students in their 4th year struggling to get into courses they needed in order to graduate.  In future the Office of the Registrar plans to interact more closely with students and departments to work on this issue.

Ms. Crocker continued her report with a summary of some registration and service improvements as follows:

  • Helping students graduate (Dean’s Promise):

This is a commitment on the part of the university to assist a student in their final year who is unable to enroll in a course which they need in order to graduate. The Office of the Registrar makes every attempt to invite graduating students in for advising appointments preferably before they enroll in their final year of study, to meet with their program advisors to check on appropriate enrolment to meet program requirements. The Office of the Registrar makes every effort to enroll students where the Dean’s promise applies.  Unfortunately, where a course is full this is difficult.  If a course cap indicates that the course is full be the room still has capacity to seat additional students and we are not exceeding fire code regulations then we will add a few more students at the beginning of term, after consulting with the appropriate department.  On the other hand if the room cannot accommodate any additions, then we will also be urging the department to search for other courses, or minor modifications to program requirements, in order to assist a student with graduating.  Where a department is aware of specific course enrolment challenges we encourage them to prepare in advance for such events. 

  • Credit/No Credit policy addition: 

If a student has specified the CR/NCR option in a course in which he or she commits an academic offence, the Office of the Registrar is considering making a change to the policy so that the CR/NCR option would be revoked and the percentage grade would stand as the course grade.

  • Enforcing the course overload policy previously approved by the AAC:

Students who wish to carry a course overload must complete a course overload petition, which must be approved prior to registration.  The online course overload petition is available at the Office of the Registrar’s website. If after the end of the first week of classes, a student is found to be in a course overload situation without approval by petition, the Office of the Registrar will remove them from this course overage by deleting the last course(s) added. Every effort will be made, prior to enforcing the policy, to contact any students found to be in unapproved overloads, advising them to drop courses of their choosing, rather than having the Office of the Registrar drop for them. 

  • Wait Lists Management by the Office of the Registrar:

The Office of the Registrar brought forward to the Academic Affairs Committee further information regarding management of wait lists to maximize course enrolment and to treat all requests fairly. Currently wait lists close the last day to add/drop courses on ROSI (September 23, 2012, January 20, 2013). The result is that some students get into courses off wait lists at 11:30 pm and do not see this until the next day; which is too late for them to drop. Once the wait list disappears, departments request late adds (enrolment exceptions) and students who were never on the wait list are given unfair advantage if space becomes available.   In the future, the Office of the Registrar will capture the wait list information and if space becomes available in a course, late enrolment may be granted by petition. In the future late exception requests will no longer be processed.

  • Updates on Measures taken by the Office of the Registrar to Ensure Student Identity:

The Office of the Registrar is taking measures to gather missing student information. In January 2013, the Office of the Registrar began gathering student information during all in person visits or phone calls to the office.   To further ensure academic integrity and use of the T-Card for identity purposes, the Office of the Registrar is working with the T-Card Management board to gather and retain one single T-Card photograph for each student. We hope this will improve our ability to reach out to students at risk and to students during potential campus or personal emergencies.

  1. UTM Graduate student enrolment report: Professor Bernard Katz, Vice-Dean Graduate (acting)

Professor Katz provided graduate student enrolment figures for students in the research stream as well as professional Master’s programs.  The presentation is attached hereto as Appendix C

Professor Katz listed UTM’s professional graduate programs and described them briefly. 

He announced that the Provincial government had recently approved the Master of Science in Sustainability Management (MSSM).  The program is unique among science and management graduate programs by providing a strong foundation in sustainability management while offering an opportunity to specialize in a management or science stream.

The Chair opened the floor to questions.

In response to a member’s question about obtaining long-term graduation data for graduate students, the Registrar noted that she would work together with the Vice-Dean Graduate to have this kind of data ready for a future meeting of the Academic Affairs Committee.

3. New Business:

The next meeting of the Academic Affairs Committee is Tuesday, March 26, 2013.

The meeting adjourned at 12:40 p.m.



Chair ________________________  Secretary ____________________