Interdisciplinary? What were we thinking?

Have you ever been to the arcade where the water pistols are used to shuffle the horses along on a race? It seems like it is always the same two horses neck and neck for the win. If these two horses represented questions from the field regarding minimum qualifications, they would be named equivalencies and interdisciplinary. This article focuses on the latter of the two in a FAQ format.

Are interdisciplinary questions curriculum questions or minimum qualifications (MQ) questions?

The Integrated Interview – Re-thinking the Faculty Hiring Process

At the Academic Senate’s Student Success: Basic Skills Across the Curriculum Institute, one breakout was on hiring faculty and what we can do to ensure that we hire the “right” faculty – whomever that might be. While a discussion of the how and what to do was planned, what emerged from this interactive breakout was a new concept – viewing the faculty hiring process, from beginning to end, like a really good course outline – integrated, purposeful, comprehensive, and explicitly planned.

Training New or Potential Faculty: Whose Responsibility Is It?

In the fall semester of 2010, my college began a mentorship program for graduate students interested in becoming community college faculty. I was asked to work with Lee, a very bright young woman in the final semester of her M.A. program. Lee had no previous teaching experience or pedagogical training, but she had tremendous enthusiasm and excellent potential. She sat in on my classes and office hours throughout the semester, discussed assignments, lessons, and classroom procedures with me, and eventually, with my supervision, presented several different types of lessons in class.

Improving Student Access to Financial Aid

Resolution 20.02 S09 of the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges directed the Senate to encourage local senates to review and, where appropriate, act on the recommendations presented in Green Lights & Red Tape (GLRT), a 2007 report published by the Institute for College Access and Success. In an effort to assist colleges in doing so, this article summarizes the key points from the report.

Prerequisites: What Next?

On March 7, 2011, the Board of Governors approved changes proposed by the Academic Senate to change Title 5 §55003 regarding prerequisites. The Senate adopted a paper explaining the advantages of Content Review at the Fall 2010 Plenary Session and a second paper providing practical guidance on the establishment of prerequisites at the Spring 2011 Plenary Session. Changes to the means of establishing prerequisites come as California community colleges face the most abrupt and steep budget cuts in their history.

Starting Students off on the Right Foot and Keeping Them on the Right Track!

Counseling programs in the California community colleges play a key role in helping students succeed. Over the years, the functions of counseling departments have multiplied significantly, further exacerbating the ever-present pressure to serve more students with the same number of counseling faculty. Students are the first to complain of the difficultly of getting in to see a counselor, as evidenced by increasingly long lines at walk-up windows and the two to three week waits to get an appointment.

BOT Oh my!

There are many interesting, and sometimes frightening, stories about faculty not getting their rights and responsibilities given in AB 1725. Some accreditation reports have noted that some colleges do not have processes and procedures that are indicative of mutual agreement with and/or relying primarily on the academic senate. There have been reported incidents of local boards of trustees overstepping into the areas of faculty primacy delineated in Education Code and Title 5.

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