Committees Educational Policy and Governance Macalester College

Educational Policy and Governance (EPAG)


EPAG Minutes
October 9, 2007
4:30-6:00, CC 215

Kendrick Brown (chair), Pete Ferderer, Terri Fishel,  Ellen Guyer, Dan Keyser, Paul Maitland-McKinley, Diane Michelfelder, Jayne Niemi, Peter Weisensel, Eric Wiertelak,  Karl Wirth

  1. The agenda was shuffled a bit since the planned visit by Danny Kaplan was canceled.
  2. The minutes from October 2nd were approved.
  3. Kendrick updated the group on his activities since the last meeting.  He had a meeting with Mike Monahan about the various international program conversations.  He has a meeting scheduled tomorrow with Jim Dawes about our response to the Human Rights concentration proposal.  He sent us an e-mail about academic structure issues.  He has received a response to the CNS review.
  4. In preparation for the faculty meeting tomorrow, Kendrick reviewed what he planned to report and asked for other suggestions.  Subjects included the ad hoc committee on EPAG, the beginnings of a conversation about concentrations, our role in assessment, future hires, the search for the CST Director, and General Education reminders. 
  5. The IGC Advisory Committee met recently.  Kendrick shared a summary of activities.  He expects that the concentration proposal will be submitted soon.
  6. Karl began a discussion of GER assessment.   Following are comments and questions that came up during that discussion.  We want to know where we are and if we’re accomplishing what we set out to do.  Both objective and subjective material can be helpful.  Any plan should be good for the college and not burdensome to faculty.  One committee member recalled a tentative plan from last year.   MASC agreed to assess the current structure of assessment.  The plan wasn’t to look at specific course outcomes, but the general outcomes for our students.   Can there be a marriage between the general outcomes and course outcomes?  We talked about various possibilities, and what would work best and be most appropriate in our culture.  Does everyone know and use grading rubrics?  Can that be assumed?   To what extent should any process of certification (of GE courses) be tied to using an assessment tool – this is a concern of many faculty.   There are three things we can look at:  what’s the instructor doing, what’s the student getting out of the course, and what is the change that we observe.  The GE Subcommittee need to interact with those who are teaching the GE courses.  Could rubrics be developed during the course of this academic year?   Faculty would need to be willing to report results for their classes.  We need to be sure things are global and simple.  EPAG’s job is not to develop the assessment tool, but provide a direction for assessment.  We think we need to talk about it more because we are unsure.  We like the idea that the GE Subcommittees should meet with the course teachers and discuss assessment and the perceived pros and cons of various “options”. 
  7. We will talk about the proposal for course evaluation next week. 

Adjourned 5:56 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Jayne Niemi, Registrar


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