Report: UTSC Academic Affairs Committee - September 12, 2019

UTSC Council Chamber, Arts and Administration Building, Room AA160


To the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus Council
University of Toronto Scarborough

Your Committee reports that it met on Thursday, September 12, 2019 at 4:10 p.m. in the Council Chamber, Arts and Administration Building, with the following members present:


Elaine Khoo (Chair) , Sonja Nikkila (Vice-Chair), Wisdom Tettey (Vice-President & Principal, UTSC), Maydianne Andrade (Acting Vice-Principal, Academic and Dean), Heinz-Bernhard Kraatz (Vice-Principal, Research), Syed Ahmed, Sauliha Alli, Glenn Brauen, Shelley Brunt, Curtis Cole, Sarah Guay, Angela Hamilton, Alexander Irving, Christopher Kouyoumdjian, Lisa Labine, Alfonso Manalo*, Gillian Mason, Natalie Rothman, Annie Sahagian, Mahinda Samarakoon, Larry Sawchuk, Mark Schmuckler, Mary Silcox, Dorinda So, Jessica Wilson*

George Arhonditsis, Sandra Bamford,
Corinne Beauquis, Christine Bolus-Reichert, Radhapriya Chawla, Shadi Dalili, Suzanne Erb, Arda Erturk, George Fadel, Barry Freeman, Alen Hadzovic, Thembela Kepe, Margaret Kohn, Jacob Koudys, Michael Lambek, Patricia Landolt, Katherine Larson, Andrew Mason, Karen McCrindle, Michael Molloy, Mari Motrich, Juvenal Ndayiragije, William Nelson, Varsha Patel, Rania Salem, Sonia Sedivy, Grace Skogstad, Michael Souza, David Zweig

*Telephone Participants

Non-Voting Assessors: Annette Knott, Shelby Verboven

Rena Prashad (Secretary), Emma Thacker

  1. Chair’s Remarks

The Chair welcomed members and guests to the first Committee meeting of the 2019-20
governance year. She introduced herself and invited members to introduce themselves as well.

  1. Orientation of Members

The Chair, Vice-Chair, and Secretary delivered an Orientation presentation to the Committee. The presentation included the following key points:

  • The distinction and role of university administration and governance;
  • An overview of the unicameral system of governance at the University and the Governing Council and its Boards and Committees;
  • Committee membership composition and areas of responsibility;
  • Expectations of Committee members;
  • The role of Assessors and their priorities for the 2019-20 academic year;
  • Types of decisions made by the Committee;
  • Guidelines on attendance at meetings; and
  • Meeting preparation, agendas, cover sheets, and the Diligent Boards governance portal.

Prior to presenting her 2019-20 Assessor Priorities, Maydianne Andrade, Acting Vice-Principal, Academic and Dean, congratulated Heinz-Bernhard Kraatz, Vice-Principal, Research, on being named a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.

  1. Category 2 Certificate: Certificate in Bioarchaeology

The Chair invited Mark Schmuckler, Vice-Dean, Undergraduate, to present the proposal to the Committee.

Professor Schmuckler reported that three types of certificates existed at the University as outlined in the Policy on Certificates (For-Credit and Not-For-Credit). Under the University of Toronto Quality Assurance Process (UTQAP), Category 2 Certificates followed the same governance approval as minor modifications. Mary Silcox, Vice-Dean, Graduate, explained that the proposed Certificate was being offered in conjunction with an undergraduate degree program. She remarked that students had expressed interest in the field of archaeology, and the Department of Anthropology was able to meet that demand through a curricular focus on the sub-field of bioarcheology. Leveraging the expertise of two faculty members in the Department, a cluster of courses to form the Certificate were established. Professor Silcox concluded by sharing that completion of the Certificate would be documented on students’ transcripts and had the potential to support students’ future applications for graduate studies.

A member commented on the financial resource implications for the development of the Certificate. Professor Schmuckler indicated that because the Department had two existing faculty members to teach the courses associated with the Certificate, no new financial resources would be utilized to offer the Certificate.

On motion duly made, seconded, and carried,


THAT the proposal to introduce a new (Category 2) Certificate in Bioarchaeology, as described in the proposal dated July 11, 2019 and recommended by the Acting Vice-Principal Academic and Dean, Maydianne Andrade, be approved effective January 1, 2020 for the 2019-20 academic year.

  1. Annual Report: 2018-19 Subcommittee on Academic Appeals

The Chair invited Curtis Cole, Registrar and Assistant Dean, Enrolment Management to present the Annual Report: 2018-19 Subcommittee on Academic Appeals, to the Committee.

Dr. Cole reported that the Subcommittee was the third appeal mechanism in the four-tiered appeals structure for undergraduate students at the University. He explained that early resolution at the previous stages (i.e., petitioning process and Dean’s Advisory Committee (DAC)), helped reduce the number of appeals heard by the Subcommittee. He reported that the Subcommittee did not hear any appeals between September 1, 2018 and August 31, 2019. Dr. Cole noted that although the number of appeals heard by the Subcommittee were low, the level of complexity was significant. If students were not satisfied with the decision of the Subcommittee, the option to appeal to the final tier, the Academic Appeals Committee (ACC) of the Governing Council, was available.

  1. Reports of the Presidential Assessors

There were no reports of the Presidential Assessors.


On motion duly made, seconded and carried,


THAT the consent agenda be adopted and that the item requiring approval (item 7) be approved.

  1. Minor Undergraduate Curricular Modifications
  2. Report of the Previous Meeting: Report Number 38 - Wednesday, May 29, 2019
  3. Business Arising from the Report of the Previous Meeting
  4. Date of the Next Meeting - Tuesday, October 29, 2019 at 4:10 p.m.


  1. Other Business

No other business was raised.

The meeting adjourned at 5:05 p.m.