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Certain courses require extra fees

March 5, 1997

By Jennifer Bjorgaard

Lariat Reporter

Most students do not realize many departments require course fees. Questions, however, about how those lab and course fees are used have recently been raised in the Faculty Senate.

Students are required to take certain classes and are also charged extra course fees beyond their tuition for these required classes.

Human performance classes, for example, are required of most University graduates. A student obtaining a bachelor of arts degree is required to take four credit hours in the health, human performance and recreation department. This department is in the School of Education, which charges extra course fees for these required human performance classes.

Most students believe that these fees for their human performance classes are used to pay for equipment used in those classes.

'The fee must be going towards the equipment because the courts obviously have not had any work done on them in recent years because they have cracks all over,' said Nicole Fain, a Bedford freshman.

Other students believe the maintenance of the tennis and racquetball courts needs to be improved. Currently, the tennis courts next to Penland Residence Hall have seven courts with nets and four without nets.

'No improvement on the courts next to Penland has been made because a few of these courts have not had nets since I came to Baylor in the fall,' said Joy Forster, a Maryville, Tenn., freshman. 'Some people even try to play on the courts without nets.'

The School of Education receives all of these student course fees and then combines them to form their budget. The course fees for the human performance classes support many aspects of the School of Education.

Dr. Betty Jo Monk , associate dean for administrative programs and associate professor of educational administration in the School of Education said the school then distributes this money to cover the cost of equipment, the costs paid to Baylor for use of the bowling lanes and the marina and also the cost of paid employees that do not generate money for the department.

'The School of Education does not build buildings,' Monk said.

The money that is budgeted by the School of Education for the health, human performance and recreation department is spread throughout the department to cover the departmental costs for the year.

The University allocates funds for the upkeep and maintenance for the University. The University is responsible for the maintenance of these courts in bad condition.

In the College of Arts and Sciences, many introduction level courses require laboratories and their associated fees. In the physics department some of the introduction classes require group laboratory sessions, and the lab consists of watching a series of videos. Some students wonder what that laboratory fee is being used for.

'The physics department, as with other departments, has a budget and uses these funds appropriately for the needs of the entire department,' said Dr. Darden Powers, chairman of the physics department. 'The money goes into the operation and upkeep of all of the lab equipment.'

Each department assesses the individual course and lab fees for their classes.

'I try to keep the cost as low as possible so the parents and students don't have to pay as much,' Powers said.

Dr. Wallace L. Daniel, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, said they are presently looking at this particular issue.

'Presently they (lab fees) don't flow back to the specific department,' Daniel said. 'We want to attain clear evidence to trace the flow of lab fees...and measure the impact on the college and other units,' Daniel said.

The School of Engineering and Computer Science charges students fees for different classes that require the use of expensive equipment.

'Lab fees don't go directly to equipment because they do not come anywhere near making a dent in the cost of our equipment,' said Dr. James A. Bargainer, dean of the School of Engineering and Computer Science. 'Baylor provides the equipment and we charge a lab fee that helps offset the costs of the lab, and that then comes off of the bottom of the budget.'

The Faculty committee on Physical Facilities will examine this issue and report back on new information obtained.

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