ISIT Report — May 2013

Issues impacting students and teaching

  1. Effective Student Contact language in Board Policy—is being proposed as section 4B3 that includes requirements to respond within 48 hours to student questions and minimum of twice-weekly faculty-initiated contact. Link to proposed change and link to revision from Porterville College. One suggested change from ISIT to Porterville College's revision is to not explicitly name particular software applications or websites like Turnitin or Moodle but rather name the function that's needed since software applications and websites change frequently. For example in item 5b of the Porterville College revision, change "Use an originality tool like Turnitin to prevent plagiarism" to "Use a plagiarism-detection tool to prevent plagiarism"; in item 5e change "Employ a lock-down browser system, like Moodle's Full Screen Pop-up w/some Java Script security tool..." to "Employ a lock-down browser system with some javascript security tool..."; and finally delete "the class Moodle" off the end of item 7. There is a question from Porterville College of what to do for interacting with the students when the course management system is down. Perhaps a sentence at the end of item 7 could be added: "In the event the district's adopted course management system is down, the instructor may use other avenues of interacting with students while the course management system is down."

  2. The technology work planfrom 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.

  3. 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.

Other Items of Note

  1. Bakersfield College's response to the Accreditation College Recommendation #7—was approved by ISIT. Link to the response to accreditation college recommendation#7 ("final draft" as of May 8, 2013). Accreditation College Recommendation #7 says that the College must "develop and use an assessment methodology to evaluate how well technology resources support institutional goals and use the result of the evaluation as a basis for improvement (III.C.2)." Ways to meet the recommendation will include:
    1. Short-term assessment of new technology implementation. The assessment will include online surveys in conjunction with focus-group type interviews of employees using the new technology after they have had some time using the technology under "real world" conditions. Ideally, the time period would be something like a semester. To meet the deadlines of the accreditation recommendation response (mid-April), we are only surveying faculty using the nine classrooms in Math-Science that have recently-installed smart boards/short-throw projectors and the counselors using the new "thin client" lab in SS151 for orientation of new students, including the creation of their education plans---no focus group interview for them.
    2. Adjusting the Annual Program Review form to include a section for assessment and evaluation of recently implemented technologies and other general technology. The Program Review Committee continues working out how to do this at the degree/certificate level (the Title 5 definition of "program").
    3. Do an annual survey to find out how satisfied campus employees are with the classroom and office equipment and training needs much like the technology questions asked in last spring's accreditation survey. The survey will also include satisfaction with the response rates of the IS+MS departments. Finally, the survey needs to also include the major software applications in use at the college: Curricunet, InsideBC portal, and DegreeWorks and be updated as new major campuswide software applications are installed. Link to a very rough draft of the annual survey . We will also want to find out what hardware people are using that is not BC-provided.

    Pieces of evidence that are in the Recommendation#7 Response include:

    1. Survey responses from the STEM classrooms+SS151 faculty and those committees using the new Committees website (ISIT, PRC, College Council)
    2. Original APR form and suggested addition for assessment of technology
    3. Sample questions for the annual survey
    4. Diagram of Technology Processes that demonstrates participate governance involvement (see graphic below)

    technology assessment processes

last update: May 8, 2013

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Document author: Nick Strobel
Math-Science 101 (Planetarium), 395-4526