General Education DTF End of Fall Survey
General Education DTF Request for Feedback
Our conversations with you, particularly at the Faculty Retreat indicate areas of our task where we have some extent of agreement, though not consensus. However, given that many of the elements we are working with could be employed in variety of ways within an overall proposal package, we would like to get some clarification from you as to your current preferences. Please respond to this survey and send paper copies to Brian Price at Lab I 1006. The survey is also available at the General Education Web Crossing site in a format meant to stimulate conversation among the Evergreen community. Please participate in the conversation.
1) Expectations: There seems to be some agreement on the broad content of the current Expectations list, but less on how they might be deployed. We see the major options as follows:
a) Expectations as graduation requirements. Students are not required to take any specific programs, but are expected to demonstrate their fulfillment of the Expectations prior to graduation. A sign-off sheet would be added to each student's transcript upon graduation.
b) Expectations operate only as a guide to faculty advising during Academic Plan conferences each Spring quarter. They do not carry implicit "requirement" status, and nothing official goes into the student's transcript.
c) Expectations addressed by each program are noted in catalog descriptions, program histories, etc. (as in Chuck Pailthorp's model), and discussed at the start of each program. They could help guide advising and Academic Plan conferences.
2) Academic Plans: These seem to have reasonably broad appeal, but in combination with Expectations, they could be put into operation so as to be more or less binding.
a) During Spring quarter Academic Planning days, Academic Plans encourage students to be reflective about their academic intentions, program choices, and address of the Expectations. They are not binding, but are focused advising tools.
b) During Spring quarter Academic Planning days, they enable students to figure out how they are going to fulfill Expectations as graduation requirements
3) Covenant: Some interest in this, but more discussion is needed as to whom it applies and with what degree of force.
a) College-wide covenant through which the faculty agree to ensure broad availability of quantitative reasoning, arts to non-arts majors, sciences to non-science majors, and all of the skills noted in the Expectations, and students agree to fulfill the Expectations. The Covenant is binding and faculty retention meetings address the effectiveness of faculty in living up to the terms of the Covenant. Student graduation depends of fulfillment of the Expectations.
b) Faculty covenant through which the faculty agree to ensure broad availability of quantitative reasoning, arts to non-arts majors, sciences to non-science majors, and all of the skills noted in the Expectations. The Covenant is binding and faculty retention meetings address the effectiveness of faculty in living up to the terms of the Covenant.
c) College-wide covenant understood as a non-binding statement of the College community's intentions. Faculty agree to ensure broad availability of quantitative reasoning, arts to non-arts majors, sciences to non-science majors, and all of the skills noted in the Expectations. Students agree to take the Expectations and Academic Plans seriously in making their academic decisions.
d) Faculty covenant understood as a non-binding statement of faculty intentions. Faculty agree to ensure broad availability of quantitative reasoning, arts to non-arts majors, sciences to non-science majors, and all of the skills noted in the Expectations.
4) LRC Support: Fair agreement on the importance of LRC support and for giving priority to General Education programs, though discussion is still needed on the status of the Writing and Math Coordinators.
a) Writing and Math Coordinators should have faculty status on a par with library faculty, without reversion rights, but with the right to teach in the curriculum for one quarter out of nine.
b) Writing and Math Coordinators have faculty status, but without reversion rights, or the right to rotate into the curriculum for one quarter out of nine.
5) Support for Faculty: There is broad agreement about the need for substantial faculty support to make General Education meaningful and to make conversations leading to different combinations of faculty forming cross-divisional teams possible.
a) Paid, public planning time through Summer Institutes.
b) Planning days built into each quarter of the school year.
c) Summer Institutes oriented to writing, quantitative reasoning across the curriculum.
d) Support for faculty research oriented to the College's General Education needs.
e) Support faculty conversations by mixing up faculty office locations.
6) Hiring: Needs more discussion, but below are options raised by faculty, as well as DTF members.
a) Attach a statement about the desirability of demonstrated quantitative reasoning teaching skills to all faculty job descriptions.
b) Deliberately give priority to increasing the number of generalist mathematician or math-across-the-curriculum faculty hires.
7) Goal of Increasing Student Access: See the November 15 Faculty Meeting handout or the General Education DTF Web Page for detailed structural options for altering the curriculum. Here we will list their titles and ask you to discuss model/s you support or oppose, or to describe hybrids or alternatives you would like to see considered.
a) Model 1: "The Comprehensive Proposal"
b) Model 2: "Spring Festival."
c) Model 3: "The All-Inclusive Model."
d) Model 4: "The A + B Model of Gen Ed."