The Provost's Message - February 20, 2017

The Provost's Message Header
February 20, 2017
Provost Lynn Mahoney

As President Covino noted in his Spring Convocation address, Cal State LA is thriving—student applications and enrollments are at all-time highs, community engagement on campus is growing, our students continue to excel, and, in recognition of all this, friends of the university increasingly make generous financial gifts in support of our mission. We accomplish all this during unusually difficult times. President Covino again confirmed that “Cal State is a welcoming and inclusive university that prizes learning, critical inquiry, and social justice…At all points, we will continue to protect the richness of our community as an essential element of the public good and our dedication to the free exchange of ideas.”
Our commitment will take many forms—some will attend rallies and forums, others will intensify their work with our community partners, and still others will offer their expertise and support to those most in need at this time. I want to take this time, however, to remind you that by contributing to the essential mission of Cal State LA to provide quality education and upward mobility to our students, you are affirming our values every day. Every student whose success we facilitate and every degree earned is a victory, and your contributions to this demonstrate in the most tangible way the value of Cal State LA.
Thank you for your dedication to the success of our students as we continue working towards our Graduation 2025 initiative.

Admission Proposal: Focus on Transfer Students

In my last message, I highlighted our proposal to change our TRANSFER admissions criteria for Fall 18. I have heard from many of you over the last few days. Thank you for all the questions and feedback. I would like to reiterate the basic goals of the proposal. This is not about increasing selectivity or is it about reducing the university’s enrollment. It is about working with our community college partners to facilitate the success of their students by providing very clear course-based admissions criteria for their transfers. Requiring transfers in some majors to complete some lower-division pre-requisite courses will help all by:

  • providing community college students and their advisors very clear paths to admission.
  • reducing time-to-degree for transfer students allowing them to complete their degree within financial aid limits and move on to careers and graduate schools.
  • promoting clear pathways for freshmen and reduces lower division course bottlenecks; and,
  • increasing access for new students by accelerating graduation for current students by creating more “spots.”

The Enrollment Implementation Team (EIT), which includes faculty representation, will monitor implementation and share Fall 18 admissions data with the Executive Committee of the Academic Senate.

This week we will be holding three public meetings to share the proposal with our community partners and to elicit their feedback. Details can be found on the Admissions Proposal website. Thank you again for reaching out to me, as well as to Tom Enders. Please feel free to contact either of us with questions.

Clae Booth Luce Scholarship Recipients

For the second year in a row, a Cal State LA faculty member and administrator has been awarded a Clare Booth Luce Scholarship for the HERS-CBL Leadership Community for STEM Education. This award provides full tuition, accommodations, meals and travel to women in STEM higher education to attend the HERS Leadership Institute during the summer. Dr. Nancy McQueen, professor of microbiology and associate dean of the College of the Natural and Social Sciences is one of this year’s recipients. Dr. Jane Dong, professor of electrical engineering and interim associate dean of the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology received one of the awards last year.

Congratulations to you both. Read more about the HERS Leadership Institute.

Writing Across the Curriculum Workshops

The Writing Across the Curriculum program hosts a series of writing workshops for faculty interested in enhancing their writing pedagogy. Workshops come in a variety of shapes and sizes, so please consider one that might fit your needs.

Upcoming WAC Workshops
These grab-and-go workshops are designed to engage faculty in conversation and provide them with classroom-ready teaching materials. Learn more about the WAC workshops.

Responding to, Evaluating, and Assessing Writing: Designing Writing Rubrics
Wednesday, February 22, 2017
3:00-4:20 pm
King Hall D4050
Faculty have requested workshops focused on designing discipline and course specific scoring guides and rubrics for evaluating writing assignments. In this workshop, we will discuss methods for balancing course outcomes and writing standards to create three types of scoring guides: trait-based, holistic, and narrative. Bring your syllabus to begin building a rubric today!
Register Now!

Responding to, Evaluating, and Assessing Writing: Using Writing Rubrics
Tuesday, March 7, 2017
3:00-4:20 pm
King Hall D4050
This workshop builds upon the February 22 workshop about writing rubric design. What are the best practices for utilizing writing rubrics? How can faculty use writing rubrics and ensure they are providing their students with useful formative writing feedback? Come to this workshop to discuss methods to provide students with balanced and equitable writing feedback.
Register Now!

Establishing “Standards”: Conventions, Format, and Style Sheets
Monday, March 20, 2017
3:00-4:20 pm
King Hall D4050
During our WAC workshops, discussions of standards often surface, whether participants mention grammar or whether they mention a disciplinary style guide. During this workshop, we will discuss methods for exercising writing standards in writing-intensive courses.
Register Now!

Contact the Office of the Provost with your comments and submissions.