This reminds me of the "large group instruction" vs. "small group classes
with emphasis on group dynamics and instructor-student interaction" debates
that went on in the '70's when enrollment within community colleges was
rapidly growing, and we began adapting by raising class sizes and building
more campuses in suburbs of cities with justifications that began to move
our core values away from proactive social democratic access to higher
education and shifting to administrative supported justification from
selective data to show that the "measurable outcomes from objective tests
show no significant differences between large and small class sizes." With
regard to telecourses, web classes and other such technologically supported
individualized learning, the same kind of "data drive" selective arguments
are being brought forth to avoid the necessary regulation of class sizes for
these courses. As a professor who enthusiastically learned and applied new
technologies to my teaching load, including telecourses and web courses, I
can assure you that these applications of technology if well-planned and
carefully constructed by knowledgeable faculty who read and apply the
research available for best practices for web and other such classes,
require a small class size for 'timely intervention' in the learning process
for all but a very small percentage of student learners. Yes, there are some
mature self-confident, and well prepared students from cultural backgrounds
that highly value individualism who can thrive in isolated individualized
learning, but they are rare. Most web class learners, particularly from the
past few generations, need and want constructed learning opportunities for
social communication among classmates in DBoards, for interactive seminars,
for web-based or phone office contact with the professor, and ever more new
applications of social media applied to these classes that need faculty
leadership and attention. A high quality web class is more labor-intensive
than a traditional lecture class, and now that I am working at a university
with professors who lack almost any knowledge base for web courses and have
strong emotionally-based commitments to traditional lecture classes and do
not want to listen to arguments about generations of learners who are MORE
engaged and interactive in web courses than lecture classes. I think it is
a 'simple' (hah) matter of controlling class sizes and restoring faculty
led involvement in curricular development and regulation.
From: Lloyd Miller
Sent: Saturday, March 16, 2013 11:40 AM
Subject: Re: [SACC-L] California: Leading(???) the Way in Online Education
and Digital Textbooks
Think over 100,000 students in several courses, Phil--one from Stanford. I'm
sending you my article on this.
On Mar 15, 2013, at 6:22 PM, Philip Stein wrote:
> Thank you Laura for sending us the letter on the bill allowing online
> transfer credit in California. It is cause for concern. It is interesting
> that yesterday we had our exist report for our accreditation (we did
> well!). One of the issues in our accuratation was to insure that our
> online students were getting individiualized attention. One member of the
> accreditation team examined my online course and since Moodle logs in all
> activities I noted with interest that this person not only looked at the
> syllabus but paid close attention to the interaction between student and
> teacher through the various forums. I have between 40-50 students in my
> online class, and it is very labor intenstive. I wonder about the quality
> of the interaction in a commercial online course that enrolls hundreds of
> In light of the SACC project to create a digital cultural anthropology
> textbook, California is moving ahead with its project to create 50
> college-level digit textbooks for the California colleges and
> universities. I've copied for you the annoucement that was sent out a few
> days ago. Very interesting!!!
> From: ASCCC information [mailto:info@...] On Behalf Of
> Sent: Tuesday, March 12, 2013 10:42 AM
> To: Curriculum Chairs; senatepresidents@...
> Subject: OER Council - Response needed by March 18
> Greetings! Please share this message with potential interested parties.
> Please note that the response deadline is firm.
> SB 1052 and SB 1053, approved last year, support expanding the use of Open
> Educational Resources (OERs) in our colleges and universities and building
> an open digital library so as to reduce the cost of course materials for
> students. The ASCCC is seeking CCC faculty with an interest in or
> experience with using OERs to serve on the council to implement this
> process. If you are interested in being considered for this position,
> please review the position description below and submit a letter of
> interest and CV by March 18, 2013. Please note that these positions are
> contingent on matching funds yet to be secured.
> California Open Education Resources Council (COERC)
> Established by SB 1052
> Position Description – Three CCC Faculty,
> 1- to 3-Year Project
> Contingent on funding
> Facilitate development or acquisition and publication or release of high
> quality, digital open source textbooks and related materials for use in 50
> courses at the University of California, the California State University,
> and the California Community Colleges.
> Nine members, three members from each higher education segment selected by
> their respective academic senates, with appointments made no later than
> April 1, 2013.
> According to SB 1053, the COERC shall be responsible for accomplishing all
> of the following:
> Select up to 50 lower division courses in the public postsecondary
> segments to target for the development and acquisition of digital, open
> source textbooks and materials.
> Create and administer a standardized, rigorous review and approval process
> for open source textbooks and related materials.
> Promote strategies for production, access, and use of open source
> Regularly solicit and consider input from each segment’s respective
> statewide student associations.
> Establish a competitive request for proposal process in which faculty
> members, publishers, and other interested parties may apply for funds to
> produce the high quality, affordable, digital open source textbooks and
> related materials in 2013.
> Explore methods for reviving classic or well regarded, out-of-print
> textbooks in digital, open source formats.
> Reporting Requirements
> Report regularly to Senator Steinberg and the Intersegmental Committee of
> Academic Senates (ICAS) about progress.
> Report to the Legislature and the Governor the progress of the
> implementation no later than July 1, 2013.
> Submit a final report to Legislature and Governor by January 1, 2016.
> Faculty Qualifications
> Full-time CCC faculty;
> Available to commit 8 hours per week beginning April 1, 2013 (stipend).
> During the academic year, reassigned time is anticipated. Appointment
> shall be for a one-year renewable term, subject to an annual review and
> evaluation process. The position is contingent on continued funding;
> Demonstrated experience in the use and/or development of Open Educational
> Resources and/or in authoring/reviewing/editing scholarly materials such
> as journals and textbooks;
> Demonstrated experience promoting curricular or pedagogical innovations to
> Demonstrated leadership/administrative experience (department, college,
> university level);
> Demonstrated experience or interest in working collegially with faculty in
> other segments of higher education;
> Desirable qualifications: Experience with accessible technology
> guidelines; online instruction; general education; management of large
> projects; staff supervision.
> Application Process
> Submit your letter of interest and curriculum vita (5 pages maximum on CV)
> by March 18, 2013 to oerapplication@....
> Please address questions to Michelle Pilati at mpilati@...
> Michelle L. Pilati, Ph.D.
> President, Academic Senate for California Community Colleges
> Professor of Psychology, Rio Hondo College
> Providing leadership, empowerment and voice to California community
> college faculty
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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