ASG introduces new academic resolutions to count pass/fail class toward distribution credits


Allie Goulding/Daily Senior Staffer

Adam Downing, Speaker of the Senate. ASG Senate introduced two pieces of legislation in Wednesday’s meeting.

Amy Li, Assistant Campus Editor

An Associated Student Government senator introduced two new resolutions to reform the structure of Weinberg distribution classes during Wednesday’s ASG Senate, proposing to allow students to count pass/fail classes toward distribution requirements.

“As far as distributions are supposed to help students to explore different academic areas, it kind of doesn’t make sense for us to say, ‘You have to take it for a grade. It has to affect your GPA,’” Weinberg senator Matthew Wylie said.

The resolution will not attempt to make all distribution classes pass/fail, but rather allow one less than half the total number of distribution requirements to be taken pass/fail or have AP credits applied — for example, if a student needs 12 distribution requirements, five of those could be fulfilled with either an AP class or a pass/fail class.

Wylie said some schools have more lenient requirements, and it’s not uncommon for peer institutions to adopt similar ideas.

Another resolution concerning academics was introduced at Senate. Wylie said ASG is considering legislation on double-counting rules for academic credits, creating more transparent major and minor requirement sheets and making academic standards for each major clearer for students.

Last spring, ASG voted to reapportion Senate seats by undergraduate school rather than by residential area. Given this shift, Wylie said he felt it was time to enact some change in the undergraduate schools, especially because many students consider their school as their “primary home” at the University.

“I feel optimistic currently,” Wylie said, referring to the two resolutions. “I think we have some good momentum and I think people care about it.”

Weinberg sophomore Katherine Conte, vice president of analytics, also spoke briefly to ASG-funded student groups concerned with how University department budget cuts may affect their emergency funding.

“ASG-funded groups should not worry about anything,” Conte said. “Our money is safe.”

Conte said ASG will decide how the money will be distributed among student groups this Sunday.

In addition, Weinberg freshman Carl Morison from Project Wildcat said he was disappointed by New Student and Family Programs’ abrupt discontinuation of PWild for the summer of 2019. He said he hopes to find a clearer explanation with the help of ASG.

NSFP notified this year’s PWild participants that the program will be temporarily discontinued in an email on Tuesday night. Morison said the decision was sudden and students did not know there were any deliberations going on before the verdict was reached.

“They did this abruptly, with no transparency whatsoever.” Morison added. “It’s a community that’s really special to me — it’s really special to a lot of Northwestern students — and we had no idea this was going on.”

This story has been updated to clarify that a Senator introduced the resolutions and that ASG discussed its emergency fund.

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