VIA THECB: More information on the transition to the new Core

As promised at the last Undergraduate Committee meeting–

Agnes DeFranco and Libby Barlow have passed along the following links for those of you curious about the implications of the transition to the new statewide Core:

  • Link here for the THECB page devoted to the Texas Core Curriculum.  Note also the timeline for implementation:
  • November 2011 – November 2013: Faculty develop and select courses [where we are now]
  • November 2013: Institution’s core curriculum due to Coordinating Board staff for review
  • Fall 2014: Statewide implementation of core curriculum for incoming Freshmen
  • Faculty and Administrative FAQs for those preparing the new Core Curriculum
  • Assessment Guidelines for the new Core, including

In addition to the THECB site, those interested in the assessment issues (and interested in saving themselves time while redesigning Core courses) should take a look at one or two of the following sites:

Let us know whether you find these helpful, or need additional information for implementation.




Education Reform Round-Up

For a number of reasons, I’ve felt for a long time that the debates over K-12 and Higher Ed Reforms are politically and institutionally linked: this is because arguments from one debate tend to get imported into the other, but also because the effects of K-12 reforms like NCLB are already having their impact on things like college readiness.  So here’s a selection of recent pieces I found that discuss reforms and their effects from a number of angles:

  • A long overdue piece by Nick Lemann in the NYer about the overblown “education crisis.”
  • In a critique of yet another accountability/productivity astroturf group’s press release, (The Center for Accountability and Productivity) Daniel Luzer of the Washington Monthly asks, “Just how easy is it to measure what colleges do?”  (Incidentally, does anyone know who is funding the The Center for Accountability and Productivity?) (though I must say they have interesting arguments and data about financial aid and the trends in the higher ed work force)
  • One of my favorite education bloggers, Dana Goldstein, asks “What Happens when Curriculum drives Education Reform?”
  • Observational Epidemiology asks, Which businesses should education model itself on?  Surely not NBC
  • Matt Yglesias picks up an interesting study that shows how public posting of job salaries affects job satisfaction.


Chron of Higher Ed Round-Up

From the latest Chron of Higher Ed:

  • Apparently, a Kennesaw State University study shows that online classes typically experience 15% higher dropout rates than face to face courses, and nothing seems to help.  Should universities already suffering from retention and graduation problems rethink their reliance on such classes, or adjust their mix of face to face to online offerings?
  • The Collegiate Learning Assessment put to the test.
  • Why socioeconomic class often fails to “count” as diversity.