The Greek philosopher Theophrastrus once said: “Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend.” As faculty, we often spend our time on professional development activities. Workshops, research projects, and sabbaticals support our personal and professional growth and lead to improvements in our students’ achievement and learning. One way to invest our professional development time is to work toward the implementation of Open Educational Resources (OER) in your classes.
In 2002, the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) moved from ten standards to four standards with subsections. One of the major changes was a focus on student learning outcomes (SLOs). At that time, SLOs and the idea of SLO assessment were new to California community colleges; even though assessing student learning was not new to faculty, the systematic cycle of documenting SLO assessment was.
With the inception of the California Community College’s Doing What Matters for Jobs and the Economy initiatives, an urgent emphasis has been placed on maximizing all things related to career technical education (CTE), including efficiently run advisory committee meetings. While this emphasis may seem like yet another hoop through which faculty are asked to jump, these meetings can provide some valuable insight into program need and industry trends. This article will provide suggested practices and tips to maximize the use of your advisory committees.
For the benefit of mankind, can someone please man-up and agree to man this table, which is man-made, because we are one man down and need more manpower tomorrow.
Students always face challenges at the start of the fall term: what courses to take; where to find parking; how to ensure that they receive financial aid, or Board of Governors (BoG) fee waivers; or whatever else they may require to be able to balance college and life. This fall, many of our students face an additional challenge: the threat of arrest and/or deportation due to the United States’ Attorney General’s announcement of the government’s intent to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, within the next six months.
With the fall term in full swing, local senates are developing their recommendations for faculty hiring priorities. Given the recent attention to expanding career education in the California community colleges, it is increasingly urgent that we address the need to recruit and hire more career education faculty with industry experience, including any challenges associated with fulfilling that need. When used effectively, the equivalency process should play an important and complementary role to the hiring process.
There has been much work regarding the transfer pathways for our students to four-year institutions over the last year. At its September 2017 meeting, the Board of Governors adopted a Vision for Success with specific goals, including “increasing by 35% the number of CCC [California community college] students system-wide transferring annually to a UC or CSU.” As guided pathway programs are considered in the structure of our institutions, transfer will continue to be a significant area of focus.
If you have ever worked with Taxonomy of Program (TOP) codes before, you likely encountered frustration, either due to a lack of sufficient details about which programs would be appropriate to the code, or because there was no code that really fit the program. To address these challenges, the TOP Code Alignment Project developed a process to work with local colleges to aid in the identification of appropriate codes. This process engages discipline faculty in the local review of TOP codes while improving accuracy in all statewide data tracking systems.
Colleges regularly examine their board and administrative policies to ensure that they are up to date and aligned with statute and regulatory changes. In doing so, the academic senate is consulted regarding establishing or changing any policy that falls within academic and professional matters—the 10+1—or other policies related to faculty as designated in statute such as faculty evaluations, faculty hiring, minimum qualifications, administrator retreat rights, and the appointment of representatives to college bodies.
On August 22, 2016, the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges lost one of its former leaders when Leon Baradat, ASCCC President in 1978-1979 and ASCCC senator emeritus, passed away.