Semester Conversion and Conversion-Plus! offer an exceptional opportunity to redefine the educational experience at Cal State L.A. and to strengthen our institutional commitment continually to align our curriculum, pedagogy, and services with our educational values and goals. Faculty have a rare chance to develop a curriculum that reflects the distinctive mission of the university, evolving disciplinary concerns, emerging best practices for teaching and learning-- all which at the same time address important student success needs. This opportunity allows for a comprehensive reexamination of what has worked—and what hasn’t—in order to better prepare Cal State L.A. graduates for entry into professional and civic life. Curriculum conversion presents an opportunity for the university to align, innovate, and connect all aspects of our academic mission through approaches such as the following.
- Align the CSULA educational experience with the goals of the CSU Graduation Initiative to increase the number of students (especially our under-represented minority students) in our entering first time first year cohorts that will graduate in six years.
- Align the total educational experience of students (major, GE, and university requirements) with institutional learning outcomes.
- Align the curriculum at CSULA with WASC and CSU mandates.
- Cap undergraduate degree programs at 120 semester units (except for those exempted by Title V) with a 24 semester unit minimum for B.A. majors and a 36 semester unit minimum for B.S. majors.
- Aim for 30-36 semester unit graduate degree programs where possible.
- Establish upper division sequences for the Transfer Model Curricula.
- Address the new WASC standard for baccalaureate programs to “ensure the development of core competencies including, but not limited to, written and oral communication, quantitative reasoning, information literacy, and critical thinking.”
- Address the WASC standards requiring institutions to define the meaning of the undergraduate and graduate degrees they confer and to ensure their quality and integrity.
- Align CSULA general education and service course curricula.
- Align all GE courses with new GE learning outcomes and the new GE framework.
- Tailor service courses to the needs of students in the programs that rely on them.
- Increase the utilization of high impact practices in academic programs, including:
- first-year seminars and experiences;
- common intellectual experiences;
- learning communities;
- writing intensive courses;
- collaborative assignments and projects;
- undergraduate research, scholarship, and creative activities;
- cultural and ethnic diversity and global learning;
- service learning and community based learning;
- capstone courses and experiences.
- Develop curricula that are informed by leading research and data on higher education.
- Enhance the curricular experience of first year students who are not college ready.
- Better understand the important role that developmental courses and the courses students take in their freshman year while completing remediation in order to determine how best to expedite their completion of remediation and to enhance their success in college-level courses while they are still enrolled in remedial courses.
- Consider creative strategies in order to shorten the time required to complete remediation successfully.
- Provide faculty and staff with professional development and other resources.
- Address curricular bottlenecks through the use of pedagogical innovations and curricular transformation.
- Encourage new interdisciplinary opportunities and facilitate inter-college collaboration.
- Incorporate leading‐edge information and state‐of‐the‐art instructional practices.
- Connect educational and institutional data and information to curricular design and delivery (for example, data on program retention and graduation rates, course success metrics, and results of program or accreditation review and assessment).
- Encourage creative and collaborative networks among faculty across department and college borders to enhance the learning environment for both faculty and students.