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Senate votes to support renaming the School of A&AA



The name of the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts is on track to be changed to the College of Design.

At a university faculty senate meeting on Wednesday at 3 p.m. in the EMU, senators voted to support the proposal by the School of A&AA to reorganize the school and to change the name. During the meeting, the senate also discussed changing course evaluations for students who cheat, and senators voted on a proposal to reaffirm support for transgender students.

The senate was not planning on voting on the renaming of the school at the meeting, but decided to vote after much discussion and debate that went over time and frustrated some senators.

“Looking at the agenda, this is a discussion and I think it’s been a very interesting one,” said a senator, “I respectfully request that we move to the next discussion.”

The School of Architecture and Allied Arts has proposed to restructure the school in the College of Design to contain three schools and one department: the School of Architecture & Environment; the School of Art + Design, the School of Planning, Public Policy, and Management; and the Department of the History of Art and Architecture.

A&AA Dean Christoph Lindner said, “We are conscious of the environment of the limited resources we are working with, and so we tried to design this from the bottom up as a structure that we could implement with our existing budget.”

The School of A&AA currently employs 125 faculty members, 1,800 students and it offers almost 30 degrees. The school offers various programs that are currently grouped together under one school. If it’s reorganized, it will help clearly separate the different types of programs the school offers, according to the policy.

Cheating students won’t evaluate classes

The Senate also debated the possibility of stopping students who are caught cheating from filling out course evaluations. Robert Lipshitz, a UO math professor, has proposed this policy be put into place because of incidences in the math department where cheating students have given instructors poor reviews. Course evaluations affect job prospects for instructors, especially for graduate and post-doctoral students, Lipshitz said.

“Students who have cheated and have been reported for cheating can still fill out the course evaluations, so those students are understandably likely to be very unhappy and often are vindictive,” he said.

The Senate has created a course evaluations task force that will begin meeting next term to discuss the issue further.

At the meeting, the Senate also voted on a proposal to support transgender students. The unanimous vote for the proposal is confirmation that transgender students can have an education at UO with safety and dignity, and have the same protection and assistance as any other student.

The proposal also originally included a request for President Schill to send out a message reaffirming this support. The senate eventually decided to take this out of the proposal because the message was sent out during the meeting.

 

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Emma Henderson

Emma Henderson