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April 5, 2011

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90 Minute Time Blocks MWF Eliminated

The DePauw University faculty has eliminated 90 minutes classes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday starting in the spring semester of 2012. Andrew Hayes, the Management of Academic Operations head chair, explained it was a combination of reasons why these classes will be removed. A Student Senate white paper which was passed earlier this year specifically mentioned the MWF time blocks are clustered for students who are registering for classes. The faculty was also concerned with the popularity of the afternoon classes. Hayes mentioned the 90 minute time blocks on MWF often overlap many other classes that students either wish to take or are requirements for their major.

The 90 minutes time blocks were initially added after requests from faculty. Professors felt the 90 minute classes were better because it allowed for more discussion as opposed to 60 minute classes. Hayes believes there will be an immediate impact among students following the change. There will be more options for 3 day a week classes and it will work to eliminate the class scheduling problems students tend to have every semester.

Mike Posner Concert

The Mike Posner concert sold out at Kresge auditorium on Saturday. Union Board Advisor, Uzoma Oluka says over 1,000 tickets were sold. Oluka says this met Union Board expectations for a sold out concert. Oluka says there was no record of how many tickets were bought by off campus visitors. Union Board Music Chair, Kiara Williams, was also happy with the concert’s outcome. Williams says the high turnout was the result of new survey practices. Members of Union Board surveyed students about which artists they would like to see in concert. The survey results were used to find artists that appealed to the majority of students. Kelly James, D-J-L, Wale, and Big Sean also performed at the concert. Williams says the event went smoothly with no vandalism during the actual concert.

Hopes to Make Race Safer with New Route for Little 5

DePauw University’s Annual Little 5 race is steering off the track and heading back towards its old roots. Bikers will not ride on the track this year, but on a new route around the campus. The Little 5 planning committee went to a Greencastle City Council meeting back in February to propose the new route. After making some adjustments recommended by the councilmen and women, the revised route was approved in March. The Little 5 Event Co-Chair, Ellie Weed, says the committee is taking extra precautions to make the race as safe as it can be.

WEED: "The riders have all been out on the route, done a couple laps around it, obviously not at speed, but they’ve been exposed to like where they should be mindful of holes in the road and where things are uneven."

Weed says she has received nothing but great feedback about the new route. However, senior rider Jesse Hawkins is hesitant about the new route. This will be her third time riding in the event, but she is not looking forward to the changes.

HAWKINS: "The reason that I understood that they moved it to road was to help prevent a lot of the crashes that happened last year and I think the opposite is gonna happen because it’s a more technically challenging course, especially with the corners and the big group that’s going to be riding around, more crashes are gonna happen and it’ll be a less safe race."

Weed says that the route was not only created to prevent fewer crashes. Another goal was for the event to be more widely accessible to the campus and local community. The Little 5 Race will start next Tuesday with time trials at Dixie Chopper, followed by the Street Sprints and Criterium Race on Friday and Saturday respectively.

Faculty Passes Motion of "Timely Feedback" into Student Handbook

DePauw University’s faculty passed a motion Monday to add a “Timely Feedback” section into the Academic Handbook. The new section expects faculty members to respond to student work in a time frame and manner that allows students to learn from and apply the feedback to later work. Student Body President Christine Walker said she wrote the section in response to broad complaints from students who reported receiving little or no feedback during an entire course. Walker explained what students will gain from the motion.

WALKER: "Students now actually have something that they can point to saying yes, I do need this feedback, and it’s actually an expectation laid out that I should receive this feedback."

Many faculty members argued against the motion, stating it did not properly define the term “feedback” and did not specify a disciplined plan of action for both faculty and students. Student Life and Academic Atmosphere Committee Chair Kathryn Millis discussed why the motion eventually passed.

MILLIS: "It’s basically a good idea to reinforce in the Handbook—and parts of the handbook are statements of values – that giving good feedback is really important and it’s one of the core things a faculty member does."

Millis said her committee will discuss the concerns raised at the meeting in order to please all parties. The new section will be added to the Handbook in the fall.

Copyright 2011, WGRE