Clarify and Strengthen the Ethnic Studies General Education Requirement

Fall
2020
Resolution Number: 
09.04
Contact: 
Category: 
Curriculum

Whereas, the current wording in Title 5 §55063 (b) (2), which states that "Ethnic Studies will be offered in at least one of the areas required by subdivision (1),” is written in such a way that it does not clearly define ethnic studies, allowing for different interpretations and inconsistent applications of this requirement across the state of California;

Whereas, Ethnic studies is an interdisciplinary and comparative study of race and ethnicity with special focus on four historically defined racialized core groups—Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, and Latina/o American—offered through various disciplines including ethnic studies, chicana and chicano studies, Latina and Latino studies, African-American studies, black studies, Asian-American studies, Native-American studies, Africana studies, Mexican-American studies, indigenous studies, Filipino studies, la raza studies, and Central American studies;

Whereas, Ethnic studies disciplines are listed in the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office’s Minimum Qualifications for Faculty and Administrators in California Community Colleges handbook under “Disciplines Requiring a Master’s Degree,” ensuring that the professors who teach courses within these disciplines meet the required minimum qualifications; and

Whereas, Courses offered from ethnic studies disciplines engage students in dynamic and rigorous instruction through discipline-specific theoretical lenses that teach them about the history, expressions, and contributions of the diverse cultures that make up California and the U.S. and also how to engage in a critical analysis of these cultures in relation to each other and to society overall in order to understand and address how they are impacted by such things as systemic racism and classism;

Resolved, That the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges work with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office through existing processes and recommend that Title 5 §55063 (b) (2) be removed from the California Code of Regulations; and

Resolved, that the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges work with the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office through existing processes to establish an ethnic studies general education requirement for California Community colleges by adding a fifth area to Title 5 §55063 (b) (1) entitled (E) Ethnic Studies.

MSC