CRPT Update for October 2017

Dear Community,

This is the next note in our series of monthly updates to keep you informed about the activities of the Core Review Planning Team (CRPT). As a reminder, this team is composed of faculty, ASHMC student representatives, a staff member, and the president of AABOG, and is charged to lead the upcoming review of the college’s core curriculum.

Our efforts are directed at informing a summer-through-fall process that will, we hope, culminate in a collective understanding of the goals of our core curriculum by the end of the fall term.

Since our last update:

  • Surveys from the alumni, students, faculty, and staff have closed, and we had excellent response rates overall. View the full quantitative results of the survey.
  • The first two CRPT-led fall meetings were held Sept 14/15 and during these meetings some of the survey results were presented. One of the unexpected and delightful results that came out of the surveys is that all college constituencies converged on three priorities for the core:
    1. Inspiring in students a sense of curiosity and excitement about what is possible in a discipline
    2. Building interdisciplinary facility (e.g., equipping students to engage across disciplinary boundaries)
    3. Providing a “technical toolkit” that acts as a foundation for advanced study in STEM
  • Following the presentation of these results, we asked meeting attendants, “What is missing from these three themes?” and heard back responses that we summarize as:
    1. We’re trying to do too much in the core. The three priorities are so broad that they invite the possibility of another “firehose” core.
    2. Impact of our work on society and social engagement. These ideas are in the mission statement but don’t emerge as one of the three themes here.
    3. Constructing a core that is inclusive and supportive of all students.
  • The presentation and notes from the meetings are available.
  • Our next CRPT-led meetings for the faculty and community will be:
    Theme 2: Workload & Performance in the Core
    Thursday, Oct. 19, (noon – 1 p.m.), faculty (Green Room)
    Friday, Oct. 20, 4:15, community forum (Galileo McAlister)

    ASHMC and AABOG may schedule other meetings separately to facilitate discussions among their constituencies.

  • We have begun writing the self-study that will be sent to the external review team in late October.
  • We continue to work with a team of external facilitators from Caltech to help us design, organize, and run a strategic planning session that will take place early in the spring of 2018. This event will also include all college constituencies.
  • We continue to work with the office of institutional research, the registrar, academic departments, the office of admission, and to look outward to other institutions to collect information and data that will inform community discussions of the core curriculum this fall.
  • We continue to work closely with ASHMC and staff representatives, as well as the AABOG leadership.

Best regards,

The Core Review Planning Team

Tom Donnelly, Core Curriculum Director
Erika Dyson, Department of Humanities, Social Sciences, and the Arts
Nancy Lape, Department of Engineering
Ran Libeskind-Hadas, Department of Computer Science
Marissa Lee, ASHMC
Julia Wang, ASHMC
Laura Palucki Blake, Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness
David Sonner, President of AABOG