Good Work

Friday, February 29th, 2008

Yipes, what a couple of weeks. But it has been good work. There’s lots to do at the course level, the program level, and the institutional level, and work with our fellow institutions in the state on transfer, articulation, and ability-based approaches.

Over the years the college system in Connecticut has been working on a common system of course numbering so that every college in the state declares common course numbers for courses that share more than 80 percent parity of content. The question is, how should courses define 80 percent parity, given than this is a quantity, and we typically don’t think of content in terms of quantity. For example, is a Shakespeare course the same at Tunxis as it is at Central Connecticut or Trinity if one teacher does 4 plays, another 3, and yet another 5? This may be a trivial question. Then what makes for parity? Experts can argue about this. Better yet, a course on Shakespeare can be summed up in terms of its expectation stated as a set of competencies, skills, or abilities, such that if a student demonstrates similar ability given similar expectations, and professors share those expectations among their peers, then a Shakespeare course can be better defined. This is a discipline question also and go pretty deep and can be defined in other area differently, for example in a course on C#, or game design.

Some are moving in the ability direction given that disciplines, as they change and evolve, can better define themselves in iterative contexts.

There’s lots to do.

One response to “Good Work”

  1. Mary Ellen says:

    I’m telling Big T all about little T’s abilities-based education, and remarkably, they’re not looking at me like I have horns popping out of my forehead. They are also not looking around for the band wagon to jump onto. Eh, from a place that excludes any form of education that doesn’t take place in a classroom, polite interest is probably a base hit. Wouldn’t it be nice, someday? I’ll keep talking…