The Faculty Senate will establish a working group to study Rice’s distribution credit system at its meeting this Wednesday. According to Student Association Senator Rushi Bhalani, the group will create recommendations for the Committee for Undergraduate Curriculum.
Bhalani, a Baker College sophomore, said the group, which includes professors, administrators and two student representatives, will discuss topics such as the approval process by which courses are allocated as Division I, II or III and consider implementing thematic course requirements serving a similar purpose as the First-Year Writing Intensive Seminar program.
Bhalani said the group is considering decreasing the distribution requirements from the current 36 hours to 30 hours.
“Obviously, with the institution of the 18-hour credit cap, the distribution system requirement might need a few changes,” Bhalani said.
SA President Griffin Thomas said the process of examining the distribution system typically occurs every 5-10 years. According to Thomas, the current recommendations could take years to be perfected before all the members of the Faculty Senate held the final vote for approving any changes.
“One of the last times Rice went through this, it took three years to complete before the recommendations were ultimately voted down by the faculty,” Thomas said.
Thomas and Bhalani said they encourage any student input to the working group.