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FAQs for GEOC Members

Q: I cannot make any of the scheduled GEOC meetings this semester.  Will I be penalized for not attending?

A: Officially, no.  GEOC meeting dates and times are determined by the results of an online survey near the beginning of each semester.  The GEOC Program Assistant attempts to accommodate as many people and disciplines as possible within the schedule, but we understand that we will not be able to accommodate all members.

Be advised, if a GEOC member does continue to miss meetings in back-to-back to semesters, they are fair game for gossip at meetings when urgent business is in short supply (don’t worry, it never is).

In all seriousness, though, if issues with committee attendance persist more than two semesters, the GEOC member should consider resigning and asking to be replaced by someone whose schedule will allow them to participate more fully on this committee.

Q: The course proposal my subcommittee reviewed is full of typos and grammatical errors.  How did this instructor ever graduate with an advanced degree?  More importantly, what should I do about it?

A: Well, we can’t all be English majors. The form can be long, so we’ll give proposers the benefit of the doubt.

In the meantime, make a note of any obvious or egregious typos and grammar issues and send them to the GEOC Program Assistant (email a list of corrections or provide a print-out with circled items).  The assistant can make minor corrections on the webCAR before the next full GEOC meeting.

If there are any significant grammar issues that you feel cannot easily be corrected or that may affect the overall understandability of the proposal, you may either email the proposer to request corrections (CC the GEOC Program Assistant) or make a note of the issues in your subcommittee report so they can be discussed at the next GEOC meeting.  The Senate Courses and Curricula Committee takes ultimate responsibility for editing catalog copy and can address your concerns when the proposal gets to them if they see fit.

For more information about subcommittee workflow, please see the Subcommittee Workflow Org Chart.

Q:  The syllabus and/or CAR form provided by the instructor is incomplete or has some glaring flaws.  Should I email the instructor and ask him/her to revise it?

A:  It depends.  The university just recently instituted guidelines about what should be included in a syllabus, so some information is more strenuously recommended.  Your subcommittee’s primary responsibility is to evaluate the course to determine whether or not it adequately addresses your content area criteria.  If the inadequacy of the syllabus prevents you from making this determination, then you can either reject the course outright or send the syllabus back to the instructor and/or Departmental C&C for revision.

If the problems with the syllabus do not affect your determination of the content area criteria, make a note of the issues in your subcommittee report, and they can be discussed at the next GEOC meeting.  If you feel it is appropriate, you can send an email to the instructor as courtesy to let them know that the syllabus appears to be missing some items and that the Senate C&C will likely ask them to revise it eventually. Ultimately the syllabus must reflect what is stated in the CAR form.

Currently the GEOC policy is that the CAR form itself must be fully completed by all course proposers, even for so-called “minor” edits to a course, such as a title change.  The CAR is the permanent record of changes made to General Education courses, so it must be filled out completely and accurately.  Moreover, courses that have been reviewed by the GEOC within the last five years are normally exempted from the Course Alignment Process, so the GEOC must be careful to actually review all courses comprehensively when they are submitted for revision, since this may be grounds for later exemption.  This is an opportunity to “spot check” General Education courses to be sure that they still adhere to guidelines and that GenEd instructors are aware of these guidelines.

For more information about subcommittee workflow, please see the Subcommittee Workflow Org Chart.

Q: I’m completely lost and have no idea what I’m doing.  I want to be a model GEOC member, but I don’t know where to start.  Who can I ask for help?

A: The current GEOC Chair is certainly a resource, but please feel free to contact the GEOC Program Assistant since she will likely have whatever information you need.  (Providing homemade baked goods with your request for assistance is always appreciated.)  Your current GEOC administrator is Karen Piantek, and she can be emailed directly at karen.piantek@uconn.edu or at geoc@uconn.edu. Phone: 486-1195. The current GEOC Chair is Eric Schultz.

For more information, see the Contact GEOC page.

Q: As a new GEOC member, should I expect to be hazed?

A: The University of Connecticut is an institute of higher learning and does not condone hazing in any form…officially.  Unofficially, watch out for whoopee cushions on your chair at your first meeting.  And welcome to GEOC!