The technology work plan—from the technology advocates attending the Sloan Conference (see March report) was discussed at the meeting. The work plan's goals are to improve student support for online classes, to improve use of technology in our classes (face-to-face and online), and to increase the number of students participating in and successfully completing online classes. Several items on the work plan are following up on the recommendations from the ISIT Distance Education task force of Spring 2011 (select the link to view it) and will address the first four items in the College's Actionable Improvement Plan #2 (scroll down to page 198 of our self-evaluation report). The fifth item in the AIP #2 (in Standard II.A.1.b) will be covered by the Technology Boot Camp Bill Moseley has put together as well as the regular technology brown bag lunch seminars mentioned in the work plan.
There is the need for Bakersfield College to boost FTES over the next couple of years and increasing the number of students in online classes is one possible way to do that. The concern, of course, is that our student success rates in online classes is significantly lower than in our face-to-face classes and eventually funding from the state will be based on student success rates, including completion. This topic dove-tailed into the debriefing on the MOOCs panel on April 25th. Unfortunately, the panel was sparsely attended but I think the lack of attendance was NOT due to lack of interest/concern but rather to the timing of the event (very late in the semester) and just one advertisement of the session sent in an email on a Friday morning. How could BC do a MOOC (or even a mini-MOOC/super-sized online class) while maintaining student success for a student population such as ours that is not college-ready and needs "high touch" in order to succeed? There are also concerns on student authentication and academic integrity in online classes. The slides from the MOOC panel do show that these concerns are known by our administration. There are also other concerns as well. What positive and negatives effects (unintended consequences) will BC experience by participating in one of the MOOC delivery systems? Hopefully, we will be able to have a follow-up MOOC session (earlier in a semester with plenty of advertising) to explore these issues more because there is quite a bit of pressure from state political leaders to go the MOOC route.
No legal opinion about requiring students to purchase Classroom/Student Response Systems ("clickers") yet. Our district lawyer has sent a draft opinion to the state chancellor's office to see if they will address the issue. As of now (May 8th), we will continue to do what we've been doing with clickers: some instructors requiring students to purchase clickers and other classes using department/program-supplied clickers.
Pieces of evidence that are in the Recommendation#7 Response include:
last update: May 8, 2013