What the Heck is Basic Skills Coding About, Anyway? Or Recoding Basic Skills Courses to Track and Improve Student Success

The Basic Skills Initiative (BSI) has awakened an understanding and motivation to examine data in order to determine the effectiveness of our basic skills efforts and to guide us in improving student success based upon evidence. The Legislature requires annual publication of this data on student success and progression in the Accountability Report for Community Colleges (ARCC), so we must do it. However, beyond simple accountability, we have found the information valuable locally.

Julie's Inbox

The Academic Senate receives many requests from the field, and most of them come through the Senate Office into the inbox of our own Executive Director Julie Adams (hence the name of this column). As you might imagine these requests vary by topic, and the responses represent yet another resource to local senates. This column will share the questions and solutions offered by the President and the Executive Committee. Please send your thoughts or questions to Julie [at]

Dear Julie,

Disciplines List Proposals: What Do They Want to Change Now?

Every two years, the Academic Senate considers proposals to add or modify disciplines in the Disciplines List, the official listing of all the minimum qualifications for faculty in California community colleges. Ten proposals were submitted to the Senate office by the September 30, 2008, deadline, and testimony was heard on the proposals at the Fall Plenary Session in Los Angeles. The current cycle is wrapping up, and the proposed new disciplines and modifications will be submitted to the plenary session delegates in the spring.

Part-time Faculty: Where Are We Now?

No fact of community college life is as problematic as our structural dependence on exploited part-time faculty. One part-time colleague comments, "As a part-timer at [.] College for eight consecutive years, I feel slighted at every turn with the disrespect given me by the District via non-equity pay." A simple comparison of the salary for a full time faculty member and the accumulated salary for a part-time faculty member teaching the same number of classes reveals the second class status our part-time colleagues tolerate, and that's without even considering "fringe" benefits.

Subscribe to December