Queen’s will be suspending admissions to the Physical and Health Education program starting September 2017.
The decision was announced Friday afternoon at the Arts and Science Faculty Board, according to the Queen’s Gazette. Susan Mumm, the dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science, said the suspension will last one year.
Mumm agreed to suspend admissions following a recommendation from the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies in September.
The School of Kinesiology and Health Studies will be responsible for revising the program along with Mumm. The suspension will provide the School with the necessary time to explore the options of the program’s future, Mumm said.
“A temporary suspension of admission will allow the Faculty time to consult with students, alumni and other key stakeholders about the long-term viability of the program moving forward,” Mumm wrote in an email to The Journal.
Students currently enrolled in the program and graduate students supervised by faculty members in the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies will be able to continue their studies without disruption, she added.
Mumm said various factors contributed to the decision, including the considerable overlap of curriculum content with the Kinesiology program and the decrease in PhD programs in the field, which has reduced the number of available teachers.
Mumm also noted that higher education and the health industry have shifted away from physical education programs.
“The number of opportunities for physical education teachers within the school system is decreasing. Many universities, including Queen’s Faculty of Education, are no longer offering a teaching subject in this area,” she wrote.
According to Mumm, the decision could go one of four directions: suspending the program another two years; resuming admission; restructuring the program and resuming admission; or completely closing of the program following Senate policy and procedure.
Despite the program’s suspension, Mumm said students in Kinesiology or Health Studies can still pursue physical education courses due to curriculum overlap, especially in the first two years of the program.
She also said Queen’s may move physical and health education courses to fit them into the Kinesiology or Health Studies programs.
“Part of the process will be looking at courses that still meet the needs of our learners and the industry and ensuring that they fit elsewhere in the School of Kinesiology and Health Studies programs,” Mumm wrote.
For example, physical and health education practicum courses (called PACT courses) could be offered in part or in whole to students in Kinesiology and Health Studies.
The process for reviewing the program will be determined by Mumm, who will provide an interim report to the Faculty Board at the end of the year of suspension.
Six months before the expiration of the program suspension, she will advise the Provost and Senate about her intentions concerning the program’s future.
The decision to suspend the program was made in accordance with Queen’s Senates’ Recommended Procedures Concerning the Temporary Suspension of Admissions to Academic Programs. As outlined by the procedure, Mumm will explain the decision to the Queen’s Senate at their meeting on March 22.
Projections for Kinesiology are taken from the 2015-16 Enrolment Report. Projections for PhysEd are based on the recent suspension.
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