UCC Minutes 09/01/2010

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Location of Next Meeting: 
Subcommittee on the Core Curriculum
Minutes Text: 

UCC Minutes



Present: Ryan Brown, Caralyn Zehnder, Barbara Funke, Ken Farr, Stephanie McClure, Cara Meade, Sunita Manian, Barbara Roquemore


I) Discussion of 8/31 email from Dr. Jordan regarding new understandings from USG.  Now it seems that the proposal sent to BOR must include a set of new courses but courses already in core do not need to go to BOR for re-approval since they have previously already been approved.

Priority for October however is now Area B and overlays. For Area B we should determine two IDST ‘placeholder’ courses that best fit the proposed course ideas for Area B1 and B2. For now these can possibly be Global Issues in Society for B2 and Interpersonal Relations in Society for B1. This is only for the proposal but we will concurrently be working on new and revised courses that we want in areas B1 and B2. These courses will all adopt a common prefix, perhaps, ‘GCSU’ or something similar.

For overlays – we will table this for next week.

Caralyn is going to clarify with Dr. Jordan exactly what this committee needs to work on for the October proposal and also what this committee has to do in relation to core courses that are switching areas (for example, from B to C) and also that are increasing in hours.


II) Rubrics

The committee engaged in extensive discussion regarding rubrics. Consensus was reached that the proposed rubrics are far too detailed and specific and ask for information that is out of the purview of this committee to consider. Also, we believe that the more we ask for, the more onerous this becomes to the faculty member who may then decide to shy away from the whole process altogether.  Based on those discussions, the following agreements were made:


  1. We will adopt one generic type rubric for all areas, A-E, but which will be customized to each area to include specific instructions for faculty to consider when proposing a course to that area.  These instructions will be derived from the agreements made regarding the specific areas this summer. Also, each area rubric will list the outcome(s) for the respective area.
  2. The purpose of the rubrics and thus nature of them will be to assess (i.e. check for) the alignment of the course outcomes to the core outcomes. The information provided by the professor via the syllabus and mapping chart (see next agreement) will assist the UCC in determining this alignment.
  3. The UCC will provide these rubrics and a mapping chart to the faculty to assist them as they prepare their course proposals. The mapping activity will give them the opportunity to explain how and in what ways their course outcomes map to the core outcomes thus providing the UCC with the rationale of why their course is a good ‘fit’.
  4. The UCC will provide written feedback along with the rubric to the faculty member in order to assist them in making changes (if determined necessary) to their course outcomes so that they more strongly align with the core outcomes. The course can then be resubmitted to UCC based on changes made after considering the feedback.
  5. Course overlay rubrics will be created to assess the alignment of any course (both in and out of Area B) with an overlay, whether it be by choice of the department that the course be considered for an overlay ‘tag’ or if it is required that a course carry an overlay such as in the case of Area B.  So, potentially a course will be assessed using two or more rubrics – one for the area and one or more for the overlay(s).
  6. It was decided by the committee that the rubrics will take the two-fold approach of either ‘evident’ or ‘not evident’ when considering courses. It seems that even a third indicator (approaching, partially, etc…) adds a layer of confusion for a faculty member who is trying to decide what to include or not include in their course and at what ‘level’. It seems more reasonable to establish criteria of what it is that they need to target and also criteria of what will not ‘work’ rather than provide them with criteria of what would partially work.  A clear ‘yes’ or ‘no’ will be more helpful and informative to a faculty member who is building a proposal.


The committee members present unanimously voted on the new rubric structure.


Cara will revise the course rubrics and submit them to the committee for final edits. Each area will check and add to the instructions for their area and final drafts will be shared with the committee for final consideration before releasing to the university community.


Cara will find the LBTC ‘definition’ from strategic focusing initiative and include this in the instructions on the Area B rubrics.  The committee decided that this definition and any supporting explanation of ‘learning beyond the classroom’ will be critical for those faculty members who are building proposals for area B.


Next meeting: Wednesday, 12:00 Terrell 1st floor conference room if it is available. Sunita will confirm the meeting place with us early next week.


Action Items: 
Tentative Agenda: