March 3 2011
Elections in Spring 2011
From the Academic Senate Bylaws:
Section 2. Election of Senators
Academic senators are to be
elected for a term of three years so that one third of the academic senate is
elected each academic year. The
executive board of the senate, with the senate's consent, shall communicate the
necessary staggered schedule, which will be conveyed to the individual areas or
divisions listed in Art. III, I. b. by February
1st of each year.
Following the staggered
schedule, each of the areas or divisions listed in Art.
III. I.b. shall entertain nominations and elect its senator from its own
faculty members, in whatever manner it chooses. Senate representatives shall be
selected by March 1st of each year.
The staggered schedule is here:
The following areas should have elections to elect an
Academic Senate representative. There are no term limits for Academic Senate
Division or Area
We agreed on this at the Dec 2, 2010 meeting, and I have
completed this task:
The Academic Senate President, as an agent of the executive
board of the Academic Senate, communicate to appropriate division chairs, deans,
directors or coordinators of these
divisions/areas the necessary staggered schedule and the need for this selection
to take place.
Section 3. Election to Senate Offices
After Senate membership has been determined (by
March 1st each year) senators shall elect officers for the coming
year at the second meeting in March.
Outgoing and incoming senators shall vote (only for these elections) as members
of the senate, and a quorum shall consist of a majority of the total number of
At the second meeting in March, the senate shall
elect from its new roster of members, the president, vice-president, secretary,
the ASCCC representative, and COC chair.
Names shall be placed in nomination with the consent of the nominee. A
ballot shall be prepared by the Secretary of the Senate, and a vote taken. Newly
elected senators who are not already serving on the senate shall have no further
voting privileges until they take office at the first meeting in the fall
semester; until that time sitting
senators only shall vote on all other actions before the senate.
College Council Seat
There has been one volunteer: an adjunct instructor.
College Council bylaws do not stipulate anything about adjunct vs full-time
or tenured vs non-tenured. The bylaws say that the MPC Academic Senate selects
Today I would like to ask the senate to:
1. Prioritize and approve our list of potential keynote speakers for Fall 2011.
Once this list has been prioritized, we will invite the “top” choice speaker
first and then move down the list as necessary.
Kevin Raskoff, we could ask him to speak on a “green” theme....though maybe we
want to save this for a Spring Flex?
Steve Albert, with the current budget crisis this could be timely.
Dave Clemens, a focus on critical thinking, break-out sessions along this theme
would be a great supplement.
Coach Rasmussen, with a focus on learning communities to follow.
2. I would also like to encourage everyone to advertize in their
divisions/areas for new flex content committee members (faculty + staff).
3. Finally, I would like to remind everyone that our Fall Flex Schedule is
filling up rapidly (due to the single day offerings). If anyone would like to
present a breakout session it is critical that we get a proposed title/blurb as
soon as possible so that we can try to include as many of these suggestions as
possible. Please be sure to request these suggestions at your next division
meeting. Thanks you!
4. Sign a small pile of thank you notes....these can just be passed around the
Accreditation Report -- "SLOs"
1. In order to meet the Commission’s 2012 deadline and building upon the
progress made in identifying student learning outcomes for nearly all courses,
program, certificates and degrees, the team recommends that the college
complete the process of assessment to guide improvement of student learning
(IIA.1 and IIA.2).
2. In order to meet the Commission’s 2012 deadline, the team recommends the
college completes the process of identifying course level
student learning outcomes and ensures student information is clear, that
SLOs are described, and that students receive syllabi
reflective of the identified student learning outcomes (IIA.2 and
3. In order to meet the Commission’s 2012 deadline, the team recommends the
college take appropriate steps to ensure that faculty and others directly
responsible for student progress toward achieving stated learning outcomes have,
as a component of their evaluation, effectiveness in producing
those learning outcomes, and that this standard is achieved by the 2012 deadline
established by the ACCJC (IIIA.1c).
4. To increase effectiveness of distance education offerings, the team
recommends the college follow through with a plan to design an evaluation
process and evaluation tool to provide students an opportunity to evaluate the
learning experience specific to online courses (IIA.2 and IIB.3a). Further, the
team recommends that the Distance Education Task Force develop clear protocols
and strategic goals for distance education learners that meet the
institutional outcomes of the college and ACCJC policy on distance
education (IIA.1, IIA.2 and IIA.6).
The team notes and encourages the college to continue to develop and
implement a more effective and clearer strategy for integrating student learning
outcomes with planning, research and resource allocation efforts. The process
should contain an evaluation and improvement component for all educational,
academic support, fiscal, technological and human resources.
The emphasis on student learning is apparent and the college
has begun to identify student learning outcomes for courses, career and
technical programs and general education requirements. While it is attempting to
fulfill its mission of student learning, the college has further work to
do in assessing learning outcomes and using assessment results for improving
instruction in all college divisions and departments. (p. 16)
The 2009 changes to the instructional program review template to include
reflection documents have the potential to provide future evidence about student
learning and learning outcomes, as does the emerging work in Student Services to
articulate and assess student learning outcome accomplishments. Campus
interviews confirm that the college does not report student learning
outcome assessment to a wide audience on campus or to the public. (p.
The college recently adopted a software program to facilitate
the curriculum process. Within that system course level objectives and student
learning outcomes are documented independently. Through interviews with faculty
in multiple venues, the team found evidence that it is unclear to the
faculty at large what the difference is, if any, between course level objectives
and course level student learning outcomes. At this point, it is still
voluntary whether course level SLOs are included in the students’ course
syllabi. Also, the assessment method that faculty choose to use and the results
of that assessment are not shared with the institution; rather, they are kept at
the faculty member or department level. The program review and action
plans may reflect the aggregate results of assessment; however, discrete results
need to be shared at the course and program level for quality improvement
purposes (IIA.1c, IIA.2a, IIA.2b, and IIA.6). (p. 25)
Here are some possible responses:
“Quality” of Program Reflections?
Academic Senate offers no definitions of quality, other than the focus of the
dialog should clearly reflect student learning issues. If the administration
encounters “concerns” with what is recorded on the program reflection forms,
then they should confer with the Academic Senate or other faculty-led group on
what to do.
“Enforcement” of SLO-related issues?
should be entirely the Administration’s responsibility.
Academic Senate encourages the Administration to ensure that all programs
participate in a Program Reflections dialog by deeming the Program Review Annual
Reports incomplete without them.
General Education Outcomes (GEOs) with Institutional Outcomes.
problem is that students enroll in community college for so many different
reasons. Some want to complete a program of study whereas others just want to
take classes that interest them. There is no efficient way to establish a set of
evaluable institutional SLOs for students who do not engage in our programs and
take only random or unrelated courses. Therefore, one possible way to address
this requirement is to equate our general education outcomes with the
The SLOs in the Evaluations Question
Recommend to our
faculty union that when it comes time to negotiate or discuss faculty
evaluation, that there be a clause or question about participating in program
review. Since SLOs “live” in program review, and since program review means
evaluating the effectiveness of our programs and then using the results for
improvement, then participating in program review means that we are
participating in this SLO process. In this way, we incorporate SLOs into our
evaluations without specifically using the “SLO” word and implying any student
From Kathleen Clark:
Thanks for the visit. As a
recap, I suggested utilizing the Faculty Self Report component of the Faculty
Evaluation process to “include SLOs in faculty evaluations.” The evaluatee
guidelines would need to clarify what would be expected to be addressed, i.e.,
reflections, assessment, etc. You suggested that guidelines for the
evaluators relative to SLO commentary would need to be designed.
I thought that was a brilliant idea!
We also chatted about the
confusion between “Program Review” referring to (1) individual faculty member’s
reflections on and progress toward SLOs and (2) the contribution to the “big”
annual “Program Review.” Maybe this is my own personal confusion. If
so, I will get over it!
Thank you for trudging up to
visit with me.
Kathleen Is Right -- we need to better define
I think this term, or another term like it, should be
formulated to recognize all the things we do to improve student learning.
All of us do a lot to improve our teaching and service
delivery. We constantly review our programs and think of ways to improve.
I do this ALL THE TIME. I think most of do this ALL THE TIME.
These efforts should be recognized.
Revise tests and quizzes
This of new projects
Collaborate with peers and representatives from learning
Integrate new software
Integrate new teaching tools
Make sure adjuncts are teaching to the main
objectives/outcomes of the course
Make sure students have the right skills for sequences of
We need to recognize all of these things. Should we call it
"program review" or something else?
Goals and Objectives 2011-2013
(and ways that the MPC Academic Senate can help attain them)
Ways that the Academic Senate can help MPC
attain Goal #1:
Goal 1: Promote academic excellence and student success.
Objective 1.1: Investigate ways to articulate “student success” that represents
the diverse range of our students’ goals, and retains strong academic integrity
and high academic standards.
(Continue conversations in the Academic Senate about “student success”. Move
this conversation to “productive dialog” that produces some sort of document
that articulates how we want to define “student success”.)
Objective 1.2: Improve student experiences by supporting the quality of
instruction and service delivery through
creating a framework for faculty and staff to learn, share ideas, engage in
dialog and collaborate. (This
is the Program Reflections process)
promoting efforts to
improve the level of functionality, integration, and articulation of and between
our many programsanalyze the effectiveness of
programs and make improvements based on the results.
(This is the elevating the
eminence of program review effort)
Objective 1.3: Develop and
prioritize the implementation of an online learning strategic plan that includes
institutional support, protocols, and assessment of instruction.
(This is the
MPC on-line effort led by the Institutional Committee on Distance Education)
Objective 1.4 (a restatement of
old Goal #6): Develop and implement ways to
a. recruit and select the most qualified and most
promising faculty and staff. (These are
the efforts to improve both our full time and adjunct hiring processes)
b. train and mentor new faculty and staff so that
they most effectively serve students and promote learning.
involve reviews of our faculty handbook, mentoring materials and processes, and
a “model” syllabus.)
Plus / Minus Grades
1996 ASCCC paper, reflecting the ASCCC
endorsement of +/- grading and research on the topic.
Title 5 Language
e-mail from Susan Walter:
I searched through Title 5 (always a challenge) to find the
regulations that govern grading policies at the California community college.
What I found was very interesting. Until the major revisions in 2007-2008,
community colleges were not authorized to use plus or minus grading. There
were several sections throughout the years that specified grading policies
(51306/55758), and some community college websites still reference section 55758
in the publication of their A through F grading. The statewide Academic Senate
had at least one resolution to change this policy (I read one that was back in
the 1980s), but it wasn’t until the latest revisions to Chapter 6 that Title 5
actually adopted a new policy with regard to grading. The new regulation
allows the local governing boards to choose a plus/minus system – or not.
I’ve attached section 55023. As it is written, it
addresses some of the concerns I had expressed at our Senate meeting. A
grade of C- cannot be used, which solves the problem of IGETC certification and
repeats. In addition, an A+ grade cannot have a grade point value of more
than 4.0, which is consistent with UC grading policies.