Chapter 2: Course Outlines

Contents

Course Outlines of Record

The preparation of course outlines of record and proposal packages requires considerable effort and attention to detail. The following sections of this handbook provide assistance in all areas of the process. This section is designed as a reference and tutorial.

This chapter is divided into these major sections:

  • Section 2.1, Process, gives an overview of the paperwork, timeline, and meetings involved in developing a new course or revising an existing course. Knowledge of the process is important to avoid delays and unnecessary work.
  • Section 2.2, Principles of the Course Outline, discusses the types of courses we have, and basic principles originators should use to tie the various parts of a course outline together.
  • Section 2.3, Course Outline Details, discusses the format of our course outlines, and gives specific directions developers should use to ensure an outline conforms to our standards.

  

2.1 Process

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This section details the types of actions that the originators, department chairs, Curriculum Committee, and Office of Curriculum staff take with course outlines. It includes a discussion of process and paperwork.

The Curriculum Committee web site has supporting documents, calendar of meetings, minutes, and more.

2.1.1 Types of Course Outline Actions

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Proposal Agenda Items vs. Informational Agenda Items

Some actions with course outlines are handled by the Committee as Proposal Agenda Items; others are Informational Agenda Items. Department Chairs must attend meetings where Proposal Agenda Items are considered so that they may present the outline and answer questions. Department Chairs often bring subject matter experts to the meeting to answer specific questions. Informational Agenda Items are reviewed prior to the meeting and do not require Department Chair presence at the meeting.

Developing a New Course

The first step in developing a new course is to prepare a New Course proposal within CurricUNET and build your course outline of record. Please be sure to use the correct proposal for the type of course being submitted (credit -- degree applicable, credit -- non-degree applicable, noncredit). Much of the rest of this chapter is dedicated to the details of that course outline.

After you complete your new course outline and submit it through CurricUNET, it will go to Technical Review. This early review is conducted by Curriculum Committee members, and will ensure that the course outline of record conforms to the requirements of this chapter before it can move further in the approval process.

All new courses are Proposal Agenda Items. All new courses require Curriculum Committee and Board of Trustees approval.

Revising an Existing Course

Revising an existing course follows much the same process as developing a new course: the Originator will prepare a Modify Course proposal within CurricUNET and modify the course outline of record as appropriate. After the proposal is submitted, it is reviewed via Technical Review before continuing through the approval proccess. After the Curriculum Committee approves the revision, the outline moves on to Board approval andis implementation by the Office of Instruction.

The major concern regarding revising a course is that upon revision, the course must still be the same course. A revised course that is no longer the same course must become a new course (with a new course number).

Many outline revisions are handled as Informational Agenda Items by the Curriculum Committee. Revisions that are handled as Proposal Agenda Items include changing the number of hours or units and revising the description, outcomes, and/or contents outside the scope and/or framewook of the current approved course outline. Consult with the Curriculum Committee chair for further guidance on course revisions.

Course Deletion

Submit a Delete Course proposal within CurricUNET. Course deletion is an Informational Agenda item.

Prerequisites, corequisites, and advisories

Creating and updating course prerequisites, corequisites, and advisories are actions that are considered by the Curriculum Committee and integrated with the approval of a course outline. See Chapter 6 for details.

Distance Education Addenda

Creating a distance education section of a course (e.g., an online class) is a two-step process:

  • First, a course outline must be on file for a traditional (face-to-face) version of the course.
  • Separately, the department must submit a Distance Education Addendum proposal through CurricuNET.

See Chapter 3 -- Distance Education Addenda for details.

Honors Addenda

Departments can create an Honors section of an existing course by submitting an Honors Addendum proposal through CurricuNET. See Chapter 3 -- Honors Addenda for details.

  

2.1.2 Course Approval Process

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The list below is an overview of the steps required in developing a course. Revision of a course may involve many of the same steps, depending on the amount of revision. Additional details on specific steps in the process are provided below. Departments are advised to consult with the Curriculum Committee Chair early and often in the process.

  1. Draft a proposal
    Responsible Person: Faculty Originator
  2. Conference with departments where there might be overlap or requisites
    Responsible Person: Faculty Originator, Department Chair, and Faculty and Department Chairs of related departments Notes: Sort out any content overlap issues before proceeding
  3. Conference with Educational Technology Coordinator if a Distance Education Addenda
    Responsible Person: Faculty Originator
  4. Submit proposal through CurricuNET
    Responsible Person: Faculty Originator
  5. Departmental Approval
    Responsible Person: Department Chair
    Notes: Course proposals are made by a department, not an individual faculty member.
  6. Technical Review
    Responsible Person: Curriculum Committee member, Requisites Coordinator
  7. Final Departmental and School Approval
    Responsible Person: Department Chair and School Dean
  8. Pre-agenda Review
    Responsible Persons: Curriculum Committee Chair, Articulation Officer, Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction, Assessment and Prerequisite Coordinator
    Notes: Group reviews all submissions before Curriculum Committee meeting to help streamline meeting
  9. Curriculum Committee Approval
    Responsible Persons: Department chair, Curriculum Committee chair
  10. Respond to stipulations and finalize proposal per instructions provided by Curriculum Committee
    Responsible Person: Faculty Originator
  11. Final Standards Approval
    Responsible Person: Curriculum Committee Chair
    Notes: Signature upon completion of any approval stipulations
  12. Entry into Banner Catalog | Responsible Person: Office of Instruction
  13. Entry into Schedule | Responsible Person: Office of Instruction
    Notes: Courses may be offered pending further approval
  14. Approval by Board of Trustees | Responsible Person: Office of Instruction
  15. Approval by State Chancellor’s Office | Responsible Person: Office of Instruction
    Notes: Not required for Standalone Credit courses

Roles of the Originator and the Committee

The department that prepares a proposal is solely and entirely responsible for the content of a proposal and, although during the approval process the content of a proposal may be cited for review or explanation, at no time is the expertise of a presenter in a subject discipline being questioned. It is the role of the Curriculum Committee to review and determine the merit and expression of a proposal.

Departmental Approval

Ultimately a proposal is the product of a department, not of an individual. It is the department that makes the proposal.

  

2.1.3 Technical Review

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The members of the Curriculum Committee are responsible for reviewing and approving the academic merit of the proposal. They are also responsible for seeing that the course outline conforms to the requirements and guidelines for form and style. To ensure that course outlines of record meet the requirements of this chapter, all submitted proposals to the Curriculum Committee first go through technical review. Consult the Curriculum Committee calendar for submission deadline dates.  

  

2.1.4 Content Overlap

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During the development of a course outline, developers consider whether the content of a proposal may overlap the content subject matter of another department. Such overlap is a very common occurrence and many proposals are approved with overlapping content. The following sections discuss the mechanics and principles to be applied in reviewing content overlap.

Mechanics of Content Overlap Review

  1. Course outline developers consider whether their proposed content overlaps with content taught in one or more other departments. If overlap is possible, developers should ask their department chairperson to discuss the proposed course with the department chairperson(s) of the potentially overlapped department(s). Names of individuals involved with these discussions as well as notes of these discussions are entered into the course proposal in CurricUNET.
  2. Once course outlines are submitted to the Curriculum Committee through CurricUNET, they undergo technical review. The Curriculum Committee members conducting this technical review will also consider whether proposed content overlaps with content taught in one or more other departments. If possible content overlap is found that has not already been identified by the originator, the Curriculum Committee members will advise the proposing department to consult with the potentially overlapped departments.
  3. Department chairpersons review and approve course outlines before they are considered by the Curriculum Committee. During review, department chairpersons are required to similarly consider whether there is any unrecognized proposed content overlap with content taught in one or more other departments, and, if so, consult with the potentially overlapped departments, using the Principles of Content Overlap Review to justify the overlap.
  4. School deans review and approve course outlines before they are considered by the Curriculum Committee. During review, school deans should similarly consider whether there is any unrecognized proposed content overlap with content taught in one or more other departments, and, if so, encourage their department chairperson to consult with the potentially overlapped departments.
  5. The preparation for a Curriculum Committee meeting includes a pre-agenda review meeting. This meeting is led by the Curriculum Committee chair and includes the Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction, the Articulation Officer, and the Assessment and Prerequisite Coordinator. Any still unrecognized content overlap can be identified during this review, and if discovered, the Curriculum Committee chair will strongly encourage the proposing department chair to seek sign-off. The Curriculum Committee chair will also alert the chairs of the potentially overlapped departments and will provide them with a copy of the proposed course outline.
  6. The Curriculum Committee agenda is posted online one week prior to the meeting. Department chairpersons should review the proposed agenda for proposals that may overlap their discipline(s). Department chairpersons may contact the chair of the proposing department, the Curriculum Committee chair, or the Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction for a copy of the proposed course outline, and are encouraged to discuss any concerns they have with the chair of the proposing department, the Curriculum Committee chair, or the Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction prior to the meeting.
  7. Curriculum Committee members get proposed course outlines one week prior to the meeting. As part of their review, members should review course proposals for possible content overlap. If possible content overlap is seen during this review, a Curriculum Committee member may bring this to the attention of the Curriculum Committee chair prior to the meeting and/or raise a question during the Curriculum Committee meeting.
  8. Curriculum Committee meetings are open to all members of the City College community. If a department chair feels that a proposed course outline overlaps their department, the department chair or designee may attend the meeting and raise this question.
  9. If a question of content overlap is first raised during a Curriculum Committee meeting and there has not been any mediation meeting, the committee may vote to table the proposal pending further review.

Responsibilities of Reviewing Departments

When reviewing a proposed course outline for overlap, a reviewing department may determine that (1) no content overlap exists, (2) the content overlap is acceptable, or (3) the content overlap is inconsistent with the Principles of Content Overlap Review.

  • If no content overlap exists or if the content overlap is acceptable, the proposal originator will record that information along with the name of the chair consulted on the content overlap section of the course proposal in CurricUNET. This information helps inform Curriculum Committee members who might otherwise have content overlap questions.
  • If a department feels that the content overlap is inconsistent with the Principles of Content Overlap Review then they shall articulate their concerns to the proposing department, using the principles as the basis of their review. Any negotiation on content overlap between departments will be conducted using the process outlined below.

Principles of Content Overlap Review

The following principles are guidelines for the review of content overlap. These principles establish the basis for the consideration of overlap by departments involved in the review process and, if necessary, the Curriculum Committee; however, it is not assumed that a course would have to meet all of the criteria to be approved. Reviewers should use the text of proposed and existing course outlines of record during their review.

  1. The primary goal in the review of content overlap is to ensure that students are well served by the content of a course and, when significant content overlap is necessary, there are discipline-specific rationales for the overlap that the proposing department can clearly articulate.
  2. Content overlap will be justified by establishing that the overlap is part of the core instructional mission of the department. Departments will avoid unnecessary duplication of coursework available through other departments’ established, regularly offered courses
  3. Content overlap will be limited to specific skills and knowledge needed for student success in the overlapping course. Significant overlap will be permitted when such overlap provides the student with specific skills and knowledge within the accepted scope of the academic discipline of the proposing department. The proposing department is responsible for determining the skills and knowledge necessary for student success within the proposed course.
  4. The instruction provided in the overlapping content will be sufficient to meet the student learning outcomes for the proposed course.
  5. If the course title or catalog description contains reference to overlapping content, the course title or catalog description should provide students with clear and logical information regarding overlapping content to ensure that students understand the relationship of a course’s content to the student’s educational goals.
  6. When courses are revised, the review of content overlap should address the extent to which the revisions maintain the original scope and framework of the course.

All courses must be in a discipline. Some courses may be placed in more than one discipline, indicating that a faculty member from either discipline would be qualified to teach the course. Other courses may not clearly fall within a discipline, in that they might combine two or more disciplines to such a degree that they need to be taught by someone with some preparation in each of the constituent disciplines. These courses are designated as interdisciplinary.

For credit courses, the discipline lists are taken from the “Minimum Qualifications for Faculty and Administrators in California Community Colleges”, which contains two lists: “Disciplines Requiring a Master’s Degree”, and “Disciplines in which a Master’s Degree is not Generally Expected or Available.” For noncredit courses, Title 5 Section 53412 establishes qualifications for instructors of noncredit courses.

Emerging fields often do not fall cleanly within existing disciplines; technological developments change the nature of work within disciplines; developments in pedagogical practices often point towards interdisciplinary approaches. Since the initial publication of discipline lists by the State Academic Senate, there have been revisions every three years. A discussion of content overlap can be seen as something to be avoided, and that discipline areas are territories to be defended. Rather, content overlap is, in some instances, inevitable and desirable. Departments are encouraged to innovate, and work collaboratively where such collaboration is seen as mutually beneficial for students and pedagogically sound.

  

2.1.5 Curriculum Committee Approval

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Once the Committee approves a proposal and all committee stipulations are met, the Committee Chair provides final approval through CurricUNET and the proposal moves to the Office of Instruction for implementation.

  

2.1.6 Board Approval

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All Curriculum Committee approved courses are forwarded through the Office of Instruction to the City College of San Francisco Board of Trustees for local adoption.

  

2.1.7 State Approval

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Some courses and programs require approval from the State Chancellor’s Office. Also, some vocational program proposals approved locally may then require regional approval in addition to state approval. The Office of Instruction typically handles the details of this approval process.

  

2.2 Principles of the Course Outline

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2.2.1 Course Types

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There are five different course types that can be proposed and approved. All types of courses require the approval of the Curriculum Committee.

Permanent

A permanent course is approved by the Curriculum Committee and entered into the catalog. A permanent course remains in the catalog until the department proposes and the Curriculum Committee approves its deletion.  

Experimental

An experimental course is, by virtue of its content or methodology, a new exploration of a portion of a discipline or disciplines. It is expected that the nature of the course will change during its experimental period. Experimental courses can be developed by a combination of departments, and as the course evolves the most appropriate discipline can be determined.

After three offerings, the course must be approved as a permanent course or it is automatically deleted.

Experimental courses do not appear in the catalog, but do appear in the schedule of classes.  

Limited

The limited course type is a variant of the experimental course type. A limited course is designed to meet a particular purpose for a specific period of time, no more than two years. At the end of the time specified the course is deleted. As a variant course type, limited courses are subject to less Curriculum Committee scrutiny than are experimental courses.

Limited courses do not appear in the catalog, but do appear in the schedule of classes.  

Umbrella

An umbrella course is a theme basis for one or more topical courses (see next). A department can have different umbrella courses, each the theme basis for one or more topical courses. The theme basis for umbrella courses is often “selected topics.” Students enroll in the topical course, not in the umbrella course.

The umbrella course is approved by the Curriculum Committee and appears in the catalog. Umbrella course outlines should have a catalog description that describes the basic theme and objectives of its topical courses. Umbrella course outlines do not have Sections IV through VI (Major Learning Outcomes, Contents, Instructional Methodology).  

Topical

Topical courses “belong” to the umbrella course that has the same theme basis, and are given the number of their corresponding umbrella course. Each topical course is assigned a distinguishing letter (typically in alphabetical sequence). Students enroll in the topical course, not the umbrella course. The alphabetic sequence is not meant to imply that the set of topical courses are to be taken in sequence. The course number and title of a topical course are all that appear in the catalog. Topical courses appear in the schedule of classes. See below for examples.  

Umbrella course: CS 151 Topics in Computer Science

  • Topical course: CS 151A Artificial Intelligence and Computer Games
  • Topical course: CS 151B Embedded Systems
  • Topical course: CS 151C Databases and Data Mining

Umbrella course: ENGL 46 Survey of Literature in English

  • Topical course: ENGL 46A Chaucer through Milton
  • Topical course: ENGL 46B Late 17th Century through Mid-19th Century
  • Topical course: ENGL 46C Mid-19th Century through 20th Century

Summary

Attributes of the five course types:

  • Permanent
    • Outline is approved by the Curriculum Committee.
    • Becomes a permanent part of the curriculum.
  • Experimental
    • An outline is approved by the Curriculum Committee but the contents and methodology may change as the course evolves.
    • Does not appear in the catalog.
    • Automatically deleted after three offerings unless approved as a permanent course.
  • Limited
    • Does not appear in the catalog.
    • Approved for two years or less.
    • Automatically deleted.
  • Umbrella
    • Required to offer theme related, topical courses (see next type).
    • Appears in the catalog
  • Topical
    • Approved under the umbrella (theme basis) course.
    • Permanent part of the curriculum.
    • May or may not appear in the catalog  

To determine the appropriate course type, consider the following:

  • If the course will be a permanent part of the college/department curriculum, choose Permanent.
  • If the course content/discipline will evolve over the first few offerings, choose Experimental.
  • If the course is offered only a few times and then will be deleted, choose Limited.
  • If the course is the basis for a series of related, permanent courses, choose Umbrella.
  • If the course is one in a series of related permanent courses, choose Topical.

Title 5 does not distinguish between experimental and limited. City College of San Francisco was advised by our accrediting organization to separate experimental into experimental and limited and to undergo additional inspection and supervision on experimental courses.

  

2.2.2 Title 5 Course Classifications

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Title 5 allows for four course classifications. The following are brief descriptions of the attributes of courses in the four classifications. The complete definition of the course classifications is contained in Title 5 Division 6 Chapter 6 Subchapter 1 Article 1 Section 55002, Standards and Criteria for Courses.

CREDIT / DEGREE APPLICABLE (meets all standards of Title 5. Section 55002 (a)).

These are lower division, college-level courses, many of which may be transferable to four-year institutions. Degree applicability applies to the associate degree.

Summary of the attributes of such courses.

  • Approved by the Curriculum Committee.
  • Requires a permanently recorded, graded evaluation of student performance based on demonstrated proficiency in the subject matter.
  • Units are granted.
  • Treats subject matter with a scope and intensity that requires students to study independently outside of class time.
  • May require prerequisites and/or co-requisites.
  • Requires college-level critical thinking.
  • Requires an official course outline of record.
  • Taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with the specifications defined in the course outline of record.
  • May be repeated in accordance with Title 5 regulations.

Title 5 Standards and Criteria -- Credit, Degree Applicable Courses

  • The outline shall specify the unit value, the expected number of contact hours for the course as a whole, the prerequisites, corequisites or advisories on recommended preparation (if any) for the course, the catalog description, objectives, and content in terms of a specific body of knowledge. The course outline shall also specify types or provide examples of required reading and writing assignments, other outside-of-class assignments, instructional methodology, and methods of evaluation for determining whether the stated objectives have been met by students.
  • Measurement of student performance is in terms of the stated course objectives and culminates in a formal, permanently recorded grade in accordance with Title 5, Section 55023. The grade is based on demonstrated proficiency in subject matter and the ability to demonstrate that proficiency, at least in part, by means of essays, or, in courses where the curriculum committee deems them to be appropriate, problem solving exercises or skills demonstrations by students.
  • The course grants units of credit based upon a relationship specified by the governing board between the number of units assigned to the course and the number of lecture and/or laboratory hours or performance criteria specified in the course outline. The course also requires a minimum of three hours of student work per week, including class time for each unit of credit, prorated for short-term, extended term, laboratory and/or activity courses.
  • The course treats subject matter with a scope and intensity that requires students to study independently outside of class time.
  • When the curriculum committee determines, based on a review of the course outline of record, that a student would be highly unlikely to receive a satisfactory grade unless the student has knowledge or skills not taught in the course, then the course shall require prerequisites or corequisites that are established, reviewed, and applied in accordance with the requirements of this article.
  • If success in the course is dependent upon communication or computation skills, then the course shall require, consistent with the provisions of this article, as prerequisites or corequisites eligibility for enrollment in associate degree credit courses in English and/or mathematics, respectively.
  • The course work calls for critical thinking and the understanding and application of concepts determined by the curriculum committee to be at college level.
  • The course requires learning skills and a vocabulary that the curriculum committee deems appropriate for a college course.
  • Each section of the course is to be taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with a set of objectives and with other specifications defined in the course outline of record.
  • Repeated enrollment is allowed only in accordance with the provisions of section 51002, article 4 (commencing with section 55040) of subchapter 1 of chapter 6, and section 58161.

CREDIT / NON-DEGREE APPLICABLE (meets all standards of Title 5. Section 55002 (b)).

These courses are not applicable to the associate degree. These courses prepare students to complete college-level work. Figure 2-2 summarizes the four types of nondegree-applicable credit courses.

Summary of the attributes of such courses.

  • Nondegree-Applicable basic skills.
  • Courses designed to enable students to succeed in degree-applicable credit courses.
  • Pre-collegiate career technical preparation courses designed to provide foundation skills for entry into degree-applicable credit career technical courses or programs.
  • Essential career technical instruction for which degree-applicability is not required.

Nondegree-applicable credit courses have similar attributes as degree applicable credit courses:

  • Approved by the Curriculum Committee.
  • Requires a permanently recorded, graded evaluation of student performance based on demonstrated proficiency in the subject matter.
  • Units are granted.
  • Treats subject matter with a scope and intensity that prepares students to study independently outside of class time, and includes reading and writing assignments and homework.
  • May require prerequisites and or co-requisites.
  • Requires an official course outline of record.
  • Taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with the specifications defined in the course outline of record.
  • May be repeated in accordance with Title 5 regulations.

Title 5 Standards and Criteria -- Credit, Nondegree-Applicable Courses

  • The course outline of record shall specify the unit value, the expected number of contact hours for the course as a whole, the prerequisites, corequisites or advisories on recommended preparation (if any) for the course, the catalog description, objectives, and content in terms of a specific body of knowledge. The course outline shall also specify types or provide examples of required reading and writing assignments, other outside-of-class assignments, instructional methodology, and methods of evaluation for determining whether the stated objectives have been met by students. Taken together, these course specifications shall be such as to typically enable any student who successfully completes all of the assigned work prescribed in the outline of record to successfully meet the course objectives.
  • The course provides for measurement of student performance in terms of the stated course objectives and culminates in a formal, permanently recorded grade based upon uniform standards in accordance with section 55023. The grade is based on demonstrated proficiency in the subject matter and the ability to demonstrate that proficiency, at least in part, by means of written expression that may include essays, or, in courses where the curriculum committee deems them to be appropriate, by problem solving exercises or skills demonstrations by students.
  • The course grants units of credit based upon a relationship specified by the governing board between the number of units assigned to the course and the number of lecture and/or laboratory hours or performance criteria specified in the course outline. The course requires a minimum of three hours of student work per week, per unit, including class time and/or demonstrated competency, for each unit of credit, prorated for short-term, extended term, laboratory, and/or activity courses.
  • The course provides instruction in critical thinking and generally treats subject matter with a scope and intensity that prepares students to study independently outside of class time and includes reading and writing assignments and homework. In particular, the assignments will be sufficiently rigorous that students successfully completing each such course, or sequence of required courses, will have acquired the skills necessary to successfully complete degree-applicable work.
  • When the curriculum committee deems appropriate, the course may require prerequisites or corequisites for the course that are established, reviewed, and applied in accordance with this article.
  • All sections of the course are to be taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with a set of objectives and with other specifications defined in the course outline of record.

NONCREDIT (meets all standards of Title 5. Section 55002 (c)).

Noncredit courses have distinctly different attributes from credit courses. One of the key differences is the subjects that are applicable to noncredit. Title 5 Section 58160 stipulates that, in order to receive state apportionment, noncredit courses must fall into one of ten funding areas.

Applicable funding areas.

  • Elementary and Secondary Basic Skills courses and other courses such as remedial academic courses in reading, mathematics. and language arts
  • English as a Second Language, including Vocational ESL
  • Short-term vocational courses and programs with high employment potential
  • Workforce preparation in the basic skills of speaking, listening, reading, writing, mathematics, decision making, problem solving skills, and other courses required for preparation to participate in job-specific technical training
  • Citizenship for Immigrants
  • Parenting
  • Courses for persons with substantially disabilities
  • Older Adults
  • Home Economics
  • Health and Safety

In addition to the funding area limitations, Noncredit courses have other distinctly different attributes:

  • Approved by the Curriculum Committee
  • Must have a course outline of record that specifies:
    • Number of contact hours normally required for a student to complete the course.
    • Catalog description
    • Objectives and contents in terms of a specific body of knowledge
    • Instructional methodology
    • Examples of assignments and/or activities
    • Methods of evaluation
  • Taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with the specifications defined in the course outline of record.
  • May be repeated as needed.

Title 5 Standards and Criteria -- Noncredit Courses

  • The course is described in a course outline of record that shall be maintained in the official college files and made available to each instructor. The course outline of record shall specify the number of contact hours normally required for a student to complete the course, the catalog description, the objectives, contents in terms of a specific body of knowledge, instructional methodology, examples of assignments and/or activities, and methods of evaluation for determining whether the stated objectives have been met.
  • Repeated enrollment is allowed only in accordance with provisions of section 58161.
  • All sections of the course are to be taught by a qualified instructor in accordance with the set of objectives and other specifications defined in the course outline of record.
  • In order to be eligible for state apportionment, such courses must be approved by the Chancellor pursuant to article 2 (commencing with section 55150) of subchapter 2 of this chapter and satisfy the requirements of section 58160 and other applicable provisions of chapter 9 (commencing with section 58000) of this division.

COMMUNITY SERVICE (meets all standards of Title 5. Section 55002 (d)).

Community Service Offerings do not require a complete course outline. Community Service Offerings are not state funded.

Summary of the attributes of such courses.

  • Are acknowledged by the Curriculum Committee prior to a fourth offering.
  • Are designed for the physical, mental, moral, economic, or civic development of enrolled students.
  • Provides subject matter content, resource materials, and teaching methods appropriate for enrolled students.
  • Are conducted according to a pre-determined strategy or plan. The Curriculum Committee reviews the plan.
  • Are open to all members of the community willing to pay fees to cover the cost of the offering.

Title 5 Standards and Criteria -- Community Service Offerings

  • The course is conducted in accordance with a predetermined strategy or plan.
    Content designed for physical, mental, moral, economic or civic development of persons enrolled therein
  • The course is open to all members of the community willing to pay fees to cover the cost of the offering.
  • Approved by the district governing board
  • Provides subject matter content, resource materials, and teaching methods which the district governing board deems appropriate for the enrolled students
  • May not be claimed for apportionment purposes

  

2.2.3 Integrated Course Outline

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The main portions of the course outline are the Student Learning Outcomes, Contents, and Instructional Methodology sections. These sections work together to define the scope and level of the course. It is important that these sections of the course outline be integrated. Specific examples of these sections of the course outline are provided in the remainder of this chapter.

Student Learning Outcomes

The Student Learning Outcomes section of the outline states the objectives of the course – that which the student will be able to do upon completion of the course. The Student Learning Outcomes of the course must be assessable or measurable. The assessment of learning outcomes is the basis for course and program improvement at the College. See the College’s SLO web site (http://www.ccsf.edu/slo) for details on this process.

Contents

The Contents section contains the actual topics covered in the course. It is not a course syllabus, in that it does not contain classroom activities or assignments that the students will do (put those in the Instructional Methodology section). The Contents section provides the subject matter that leads to implementing the learning outcomes of the course. The Contents also provides the subject matter for assignments the student will complete and evaluation of the student’s achievement.

Instructional Methodology

The Instructional Methodology section is a specification of the work the student will do in the class and out of class, how the student will be evaluated and what resources (textbooks, etc.) the student and instructor need to conduct the course.

The assignments and evaluations sections of the methodology section specify, by example and in the context of the Contents section of the outline, at which level of the subject matter assignments and evaluation will be conducted.

Getting Started

When writing a course outline, developers sometimes have difficulty getting started. Consider the following:

  • If you have a specific set of objectives that you want students to be able to demonstrate upon completion of the course, start by expressing those as Student Learning Outcomes, then write the Contents and Instructional Methodology sections.
  • If you have a body of knowledge that you want to cover in the course, start by expressing that in outline format in the Contents section, then write Student Learning Outcomes and Instructional Methodology to support that content. “History of the United States: 1900-2000” would be a good example of a course where you would write the Contents section first.
  • If you have a particular Instructional Methodology in mind, such as a set of assignments to complete, or an iterative design process, start by writing that section.

Integration

The form and expression of the course outline requires that these main sections of the outline be integrated. To achieve this, please keep in mind the ideas below when creating these three sections.

Integration of Student Learning Outcomes, Contents, and Methodology

  • Student Learning Outcomes (IV)
    • Ensure that each major topic in the Contents outline links back to one of the student learning outcomes.
    • You do not need to link every sub-major or detail level topic of the course back to a student learning outcome, however you can do so if they are unusually important components of the course.
  • Contents (V)
    • Organize this section in either chronological (presentation) or subject order (they may be the same).
    • Provide sufficient detail under each sub-major topic to completely document the contents of the course. This will normally require more than one page and can take several pages in high unit courses (3+ units).
    • Be sure that each student learning outcome has sufficient content support.
  • Instructional Methodology (VI):
    • For each type of assignment give one or two examples from the Contents section of the outline of the subject matter covered by assignments. Distinguish between in-class and out-of-class assignments.
    • For each type of evaluation give one or two examples of the subject matter and/or student learning outcomes covered by a projects, quizzes, or tests, etc.
    • Use examples to illustrate the relative course content and outcome level at which the student will do assignments and be evaluated.

Below is a generic model for integrating the learning outcomes, contents, assignment and evaluation sections of a course outline (see actual examples in 2.3 Course Outline Details). First, a segment of a “contents section” is provided. Then integrated learning outcome, assignment and evaluation examples for the content are given. In an actual outline, “Major Topic ...”, “Sub-topic ...” and “Detail ...” are replaced by actual course topics.

Generic Contents

The examples below illustrate that the outcomes and the contents are related (integrated). Please review 2.3.6 Student Learning Outcomes (Section IV) before composing outcomes.

Note that the examples below may be the only outcomes derived from the above content. Do not create outcomes for each sub or detail topic. Other outcomes, not shown, would integrate with other content, not shown.  

Generic Student Learning Outcomes (IV)

  • These outcomes relate to major Contents items, and are the most common form:
    • Analyze the structure of a Major Topic C
    • Define the use of Major Topic D
  • This is a “global” learning outcome (linking major topics):
    • Compare and contrast Major Topic D and Major Topic E.
  • Learning outcomes related to the detail or sub-topic levels of the content are only for particularly important components of a course:
    • Describe instances of Detail 23.

Examples below shows assignment and evaluations from the above learning outcomes and content. Text and materials (Section VI.C) are not shown.

Generic Assignments (VI.A)

One or two examples of each type of assignments are required.

  • Several short essays on topics such as Detail 11 and Detail 22.
  • One research paper on topics such as Sub-topic K or Sub-topic ...
  • Weekly laboratory assignments on topics such as Detail 11 and Detail 12.

Generic Evaluation (VI.B)

One or two examples of each type of evaluation are required.

  • Weekly quizzes on topics such as: Detail 11 and Detail 12.
  • Midterm examination on topics such as: Sub-topic L or ...
  • Written final examination on topics such as Major topic .

  

2.3 Course Outline Details

2.3.1 Overview

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The following sample course outline of record was produced by CurricUNET. As long as you enter your course outline information through CurricUNET following the instructions provided on each screen and the guidelines that follow, your proposals and final outlines of record will match this format. Note: Section IV, Title V classification, is automatically added based on the proposal type chosen.

Course Outline of Record

2.3.2 General Description (Section I)

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The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Most of these fields are entered automatically by CurricuNET.

Section I

Course Number

A course number is a combination of a subject identifier and an alphanumeric identifier for the course within that subject.

Subject identifiers are chosen first in CurricUNET from a drop-down menu. Note: it is possible for a department to have more than one subject (e.g., ANAT and NUTR are both subjects under the Biological Sciences department). Department, Chairperson, and Dean are automatically captured by CurricuNET after a course subject is chosen.

When determining the alphanumeric part of the course number, please take the following into consideration:

  • The numeric part of the course number for a credit, degree-applicable course is a number in the range 1 through 799.
  • A credit, non-degree applicable course may have a number 800-999 (e.g., MATH 840), or may start with a letter (e.g., MATH E1)
  • Credit course numbers may also contain a trailing letter. Often letters are be used to indicate course sequences (e.g., CS 160A and CS 160B).
  • Course numbers for experimental courses should end in the letter X (e.g., CINE 172X)
  • Numbers for noncredit courses are four-digit numbers.

Examples of course numbers:

  • CNIT 132 -- This is a credit, degree applicable course.
  • ENGL S -- This is a credit, nondegree-applicable course.
  • COMP 9022 -- This is a noncredit course.
  • ASTR 16X -- This is an experimental course.

Course numbers are forever associated with a specified catalog description, set of learning outcomes, and content. Over time, minor changes may be made to these components of a course. Substantial changes to the catalog description, learning outcomes or content of a course may require that the course be proposed as a “new” course — with a different course number.

Once a subject and course number combination has been used, it cannot be re-used for a new course. There is no time limitation to this rule. Choose wisely.

Course Title

Specify a descriptive title for the course. Avoid the use of ambiguous abbreviations.

Examples:

  • General College Chemistry
  • Reading and Composition

Please note – the official course title (on the course outline and in the College Catalog) has no length limitation. However, the semester Schedule of Classes (“time schedule”) course title is limited to 30 characters including space characters. CurricUNET has fields for entering both the full title and the short title. Only the full title of the course will appear on the official Course Outline of Record.

Originators and Approvers

Approval Date is automatically entered after approved by the Curriculum Committee.

The Course Outline Originator is the individual whose CurricUNET account is used to start and complete the course outline proposal. Faculty members can submit course proposals only for subjects within their department.

Signatures and approval happen through the workflow process, which begins once a proposal is submitted. During that process, department chairs and deans will review the proposal and eventually sign off.

  

2.3.3 Course Specifics (Section II)

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The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Proposal originators will enter all these data into CurricuNET. Please follow the guidelines described below.

Section II

Hours

Credit Courses. Hours are the total number of hours spent in lecture, laboratory, conference, or work experience over the course of the class.

For credit, degree-applicable classes, Title 5 Section 55002.5 specifies the hours to units ratio as a minimum of 48 hours of lecture, study, or laboratory for each unit. The following table lists the implications of this ratio.

  • Lecture and Conference -- Typically we assume a 2:1 ratio of outside study to lecture and/or conference. 48 hours of lecture and study works out to 16 hours of lecture and 32 hours of study. So, a class that meets one hour of lecture or conference per week for 16 weeks is worth 1 unit.
  • Laboratory -- Typically we do not assume outside study for laboratory hours. A class that meets three hours of lab per week for 16 weeks is worth 1 unit.
  • Work Experience -- Five hours of work-experience per week for 16 weeks is one unit.

Note that the number of hours specified above is the minimum number of hours. It is possible to specify a higher hours to units value.

When calculating units for a short-term course or any other course with an atypical number of hours, units are normally rounded to the nearest ½ unit.

Credit hours must be specified by category: “lecture”, “conference”, “laboratory”, or “work experience.” At City College of San Francisco, in a three unit lecture class scheduled for 17.5 weeks, a student is expected to spend 52.5 (3 x 17.5) hours in lecture and 105 (6 x 17.5) hours in study for a semester total of 157.5 (52.5 + 105) hours.

Some courses can be written with a variable number of hours. One example of variable hour courses are internship courses, where the amount of work experience hours may vary depending on the internship. Variable hour courses will typically have a variable unit value. Contact the Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction before planning a course with variable hours.


Examples of Hours Specifications for Credit Classes:

  • Lecture: 52.5 total -- This would be a three-unit course
  • Lecture: 35 total + Laboratory: 52.5 total -- This would also be a three-unit course
  • Lecture: 16 total -- This would be a one-unit course
  • Lecture: 28 total -- Mathematically, this would be a 1.625 unit course. We could round up to 2 units, or down to 1.5 units.
  • Work Experience: 87.5, 175, 262.5 total -- An example of a variable hour, variable unit course.

Noncredit courses. For noncredit courses specify the total number of hours the course meets. This specification is independent of how the class is scheduled. Typically, noncredit courses have one of the following values for hours: 180, 90, 45, or 22.5. While it is possible to specify a range of hours for noncredit courses, the range should be reasonable, such that the learning outcomes of the course are covered equally throughout the range of hours.

Examples of Hours Specifications for Noncredit ClassesA. Hours

  • 180 hours
  • 45-54 hours

   

Units

Credit Courses. For most credit courses, the units value is a single number. Units should be expressed in half-unit increments. Some credit courses (e.g., internship classes) are written with a variable unit amount.

Noncredit Courses. CurricUNET noncredit course proposals do not include this field.

Unit examples:

  • 1
  • 3
  • 0.5, 1, 2

See the Hours discussion above on calculating units for a course.

  

Requisites

Enter all prerequisites, corequisites, and/or advisories in CurricuNET. For each requisite you enter, you will need to complete justification and get agreement from the departments whose classes are among your requisites. Notes of that discussion will be entered into CurricuNET. After the proposal is submited, this section will be reviewed by the Requisites Reviewer (from the Office of Matriculation) before moving forward in the course proposal process.

Note Title V language: §  “A degree-applicable credit course should have requisites when a student would be highly unlikely to receive a satisfactory grade unless the student has knowledge or skills not taught in the course. If those skills include communication or computation, the requisites should include eligibility for associate-degree level English and/or math courses.”

Examples of Prerequisites, Corequisites and Advisories Specifications:

  • Prerequisites: ENGL 1A
  • Prerequisites: MATH 60 or placement in MATH 90
  • Prerequisites: BEMA 52 or demonstration of BEMA 52 exit skills
  • Prerequisites: Eligible for ENGL 96 and MATH 60
  • Corequisites: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in PHYC 2A
  • Advisories: MATH 60

Note: “Consent of instructor.” cannot be specified as a prerequisite. The Curriculum Committee approves all prerequisites, corequisites, and advisories. See Chapter 6 for more details on this process.

CurricuNET instructions: 

Each individual requisite listed is treated as an “AND” UNLESS you have chosen a condition from the submenu. Examples:

  • 3 requisites, no conditions chosen means A + B + C.
  • 3 requisites with an “or” chosen for the second requisite means A + (B or C).

If you will be entering multiple requisites, and the relationship is not a simple “and”, the entry you choose from the CONDITION menu will represent the relationship THIS requisite has with the one that appears after it in the ordered list at the main requisite screen.

  

Course Justification

The course justification answers the question: “why is this course being proposed?” or “why do we have this course?” Unlike the catalog description, which is intended to be read by students, the course justification is read by the curriculum committee, articulation officers, administrators, and faculty.

For active participatory courses in visual and performing arts and physical education that are related in content, be sure to include the name of the course “family” to which this course belongs.

The following are examples of categories of course justifications. Any justification requires some elaboration.

  • Required for transfer.
  • New developments in a field.
  • Evidence of employer demand (vocational).
  • Other unique criteria (e.g. matriculation).
  • Departmental/instructor interest.

See also 2.3.5 Catalog Description (Section III).

Examples of Course Justifications:

  • This course is designed to meet the AA degree requirements and CSU-GE and IGETC requirements in quantitative reasoning. This Liberal Arts Math course provides a way for the general transfer student to meet these requirements without taking those courses designed to meet major preparation requirements in science and engineering (Pre-calculus and Calculus) or in biological, business, or social sciences (Bio/Bus/SS Calculus and Statistics).
  • This is an introductory science class that combines physical, biological, chemical, and geological sciences
    into an overview of how the oceans work. It is designed to fulfill the basic science requirement for CCSF graduation.
  • This course in Art History grew out of increasing student demand for more on this subject than was currently being covered in the popular Western Art History course.
  • This course reflects a new requirement in hazardous materials technology now required for certification in fire science.
  • This is an intermediate courses in Chinese Brush Painting, the second of a series of three. It is a member of the “Watercolor and Chinese Brush Painting” family of courses.

  

Field Trips

Field trips are supervised excursions that are integral to the completion of the course and are done during the course’s regularly scheduled class time or in lieu of one or more class sessions.

Choose“Yes”, “No”, or “Optional.” Use “Yes” when field trips are a required element of the course. Use “Optional” when instructors may choose to take the class on field trips. Otherwise, use “No.”

When specifying “Yes” or “Optional”, include some specifics of the field trips in the in-class portion of section VI.A. Assignments.

Title 5 has requirements about field trip costs – please consider these prior to deciding a class will have mandatory field trips:

  

Method of Grading

Credit Grading Examples

  • Letter only
  • Letter OR Pass/No Pass
  • Pass/No Pass only

Noncredit Grading Examples

  • Letter OR Pass/No Pass OR SP
  • Pass/No Pass OR SP
  • No Grade

  

Repeatability

The concept or attribute of repeatability applies only to credit courses. Repeatability and repetition are two distinctly separate concepts.

Repeatability

  • Repeatability is an attribute or characteristic of a course, allowing any student to re-take the course after having successfully taking it before. Course Repeatability is requested by the department, and is subject to approval by the Curriculum Committee.
  • Nearly all credit courses have repeatability of zero.
  • These courses can have repeatability specifications of 1, 2, or 3:
  • Courses for which repetition is necessary to meet the major requirements of CSU or UC for completion of a bachelor’s degree
  • Intercollegiate Athletics
  • Intercollegiate academic or vocational competition
  • Students in cooperative work experience education may also re-take a work experience education course in an area, up to a certain number of units.

Repetition

  • Repetition is not an attribute of a course.
  • A student may initiate repetition.
  • The most common circumstance allowing a student to repeat a class is his or her having received a substandard grade. There are several other circumstances.
  • A course that has a repeatability specification of “0” can be taken again in accordance with repetition regulations.

For additional information, please read the sections on “Repetition of Credit Courses” in the “Academic Policies and Procedures” sections of the College Catalog, or contact the Associate Vice Chancellor of Instruction, or refer to Title 5.

Credit Classes. For credit classes, specify a number (0 through 3) or a maximum number of units. Specifying a repeatability factor of “0” means the course can be taken once. Specifying a repeatability factor of “1” means the course can be taken twice. The maximum number of times a course can be taken is four times (repeatability 3). When the description of the course is written into the College Catalog and Time Schedule, this will be translated in terms of the maximum number of units a student can earn (e.g. “Repeat: max. 9 units”).

For classes supporting cooperative work experience education, specify a maximum number of units - at most 6 units for general work experience, and at most 16 units for occupational work experience education.

Examples of Credit course Repeatability Specifications (II.G)

  • 0
  • 2
  • Max 8 units

Noncredit Classes. All noncredit classes have “as needed” for this section.

  

2.3.4 Catalog Description (Section III)

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The catalog description is a brief description of the course and can be as simple as a list of major course topics. The catalog description is directed towards students, and should help them decide whether the course is suited to their educational goals by identifying critical or key content areas. The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Proposal originators will enter all these data into CurricuNET. Please follow the guidelines described below.

Section II

Length

The average catalog description is about 40 words. Catalog descriptions longer than 50 words may be subject to editing during the approval process. While complete sentences are preferred, using incomplete sentences can help reduce catalog description length. In addition, avoid phrases like “This course...”, “Introduction to ...,” “How to ...,” or “Survey of ...”.

  

What to Include; What to Omit

Do not make promises or guarantees: say “Helps prepare students for the CCNA exam”, rather than “Student will be able to pass the CCNA exam”

You may notice courses in the Catalog that have designated CSU and UC transferability. The transferability of a particular course is not part of the catalog description, and should not be included on the Course Outline. Any transferability designators will be added by the catalog editor.

Examples of Catalog Descriptions (III):

  • Asian Studies -- Description and analysis of the Chinese American community from a sociological point of view. The historical background, family and district organizations, power structure, immigrants, cultural pattern and conflicts, and the socioeconomic problems of the Chinese American community.
  • Earth Sciences -- The ocean environment. Physical, chemical, biological, geological, and ecological aspects of the oceans, including the origin and extent of the oceans; nature of ocean basins and crust; causes and effects of currents, waves, tides; biogeochemical cycles; plant and animal life in the sea; marine ecology.
  • English -- The second half of University-Parallel Reading and Composition: further instruction in expository writing in conjunction with the reading of literature.
  • English as a Second Language -- Intensive practice in and review of basic grammatical structures and forms, both in sentences and in short narrative and descriptive passages and paraphrases. Practice in reading short passages that serve as models for writing as well as reading with emphasis on contextual prediction, vocabulary expansion, and comprehension.
  • Mathematics -- Fundamental operations on integers, rational numbers, polynomials, and algebraic expressions; linear and quadratic equations; linear inequalities; integer exponents and square roots; graphing; systems of equations; and applications.
  • Physical Education and Dance -- Lectures, readings, films and discussions on theory and development of dance from its evolution in anthropological sources to 20th century contemporary dance. The historical basis of dance and the history of classical ballet, American/European modern dance, African-Haitian dance, and the American idioms of tap and jazz.
  • Apprenticeship -- Instruction in the preparation of pastries, needed equipment, use of equipment, tools of the trade, sanitation, merchandising the product, management principles, supervision of the pastry facility, and historical background pertinent to the trade.
  • Computer Science -- Analysis and design of computer algorithms and the underlying data structures using an object-oriented approach. Analysis in the timing and efficiency of algorithms. Study of lists, stacks, queues, trees, searching, sorting, and recursion. Introduction to graphs, tables, hashing, and direct access files. Further study of abstract data types.
  • Cinema -- Development and execution of short, single- camera-style projects focusing on the skills of directing and editing.
  • Humanities -- Examination of the creative process by studying the history of women in the arts from pottery, ritual chants, and storytelling to painting, sculpture, jazz, novels, and performance art. Recognized “greats” as well as anonymous women of diverse cultural and ethnic backgrounds. Films, tapes, slides, and a field trip to complement class lectures and discussions.
  • Business -- Focuses on delivering technical information that is logically organized, clearly and concisely expressed, and suited to the reader’s needs. Emphasis on planning appropriately; organizing materials; creating sentences which are clear and concise; choosing layout for maximum effectiveness and readability; proofreading and editing effectively.
  • Journeyperson -- Provides basic knowledge and skills in the preparation of facility emergency plans; fire prevention and protection; life safety systems; evacuation and relocation procedures; earthquake preparedness; management of various emergencies and coordinating with emergency responders.

  

2.3.5 Student Learning Outcomes (Section IV)

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The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Proposal originators will enter all these data into CurricuNET. Please follow the guidelines described below.

Section II

Please review Integrated Course Outline above before composing learning outcomes. Student Learning Outcomes must be supported by the course content, in-class and out-of-class assignments, evaluation methods and learning resource sections of the course outline.

Student Learning Outcomes are a list of descriptions of behavioral attributes that a student will acquire as a result of completing a class with a passing grade. Student Learning Outcomes must be measurable, so that their assessment can be used as the basis of course and program improvement. Course Outline originators should review the College’s SLO Handbook for more details of how to write good student learning outcomes.

NOTE: Credit-degree-applicable courses must construct SLOs using verbs from the higher-order Bloom's Taxonomy (higher-order critical thinking). Selective use of lower-order thinking verbs can be used as well, but only if sufficient critical-thinking-oriented verbs are also used. For more information, refer to SLO Handbook -- BLOOM'S TAXONOMY.

  

2.3.6 Contents (Section V)

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The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Proposal originators will enter all these data into CurricuNET. Please follow the guidelines described below.

Section II

Please review Integrated Course Outline before creating this section. In particular, please be sure that the Contents support the Student Learning Outcomes of Section IV, and are cited in the Instructional Methodology of Section VI.

Outline format. The Contents section is organized using outline format. Use capital letters to enumerate the major topics, then alternate numbers and letters.

Capitalization. Use initial capital letters (sentence case) for this section; limit other capital letters to terms that are normally capitalized. (e.g., “Parts of speech”, not “Parts Of Speech”; “Geographic areas of the United States”).

Wording. Wording of content may include the perspective from which the topics are taught, such as “historical development of the periodic table.”

Scope. The outline is detailed enough to fully convey the topics covered but not so lengthy that a quick scan cannot be used to ascertain the scope of the course. Compile a complete list of all topics taught in the course, major topics, sub-topics, and supporting detail. Arrange the list by topic with sub-headings. One page is not enough.

Requirements. Keep in mind that the content listed in the course outline is required to be covered by all faculty teaching the course unless marked as optional. Furthermore, the listed content does not limit instructors from going beyond the topics in the outline.

Level of detail. A one-unit course might have one or one and a half pages of content outline. A two or more units course may require two or more pages of content outline.

Not a Syllabus. Do not include syllabus items, such as course introduction or explanation of grading policy. Do not include details of in-class activities, student assignments, or evaluation in this section – include those in Section VI. Instructional Methodology.

Format. Please use the outline format noted in the example at the top of this section.

Organization. Although content outlines are often done in chronological form, this is not required. Another common organizational form is topic-subject list order. The content outline is not a lesson plan. See example excerpts below.

Mandated contents. In courses that have mandated content (e.g. certification, etc.), departments are required to revise the course outline each time the mandated content changes.

Multicultural perspective. When appropriate, outline preparers are encouraged to include in the contents section reference to a multicultural approach to the course material.

Caution. The instructor (department) is responsible for the content of its courses and the documentation of that content in the course outline of record. Using the contents table from a textbook as the Contents section of a course outline may cause the course and/or the course outline to become out of date should a new textbook be used. As the course outline of record states what the department specifies is to be the contents of a course, instructors are required to cover, at a minimum, the topics listed in the outline.

Sample Excerpts of Contents Outlines:

Sample Excerpts of Outline Contents
More Sample Excerpts of Outline Contents

  

2.3.7 Instructional Methodology (section VI)

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The example below shows the details of this section of the course outline. Proposal originators will enter all these data into CurricuNET. Please follow the guidelines described below.

Section II

Please review Integrated Course Outline before proceeding. In particular, please be sure that the Instructional Methodology assesses the Student Learning Outcomes of Section IV, and cites the Contents of Section V.

This section of the course outline is divided into three major sections with each having various possible subsections. This section serves as a guide to how the course is to be conducted, to the work students will perform, evaluation of student’s work and learning, and the resources typical to implement the course. The three sections are:

  • Assignments
  • Evaluation
  • Textbooks and Other Instructional Materials

Note: Descriptions of how a course is conducted: lecture schedules, number of tests, grading criteria and grading system are components of the course syllabus (not the course outline) unless such items are mandated by department policy and/or external agencies.

  

Assignments

Use this section to indicate types and examples of assignments that assist the students in achieving the student learning outcomes of the course. Assignment areas may include:

  • Readings from textbooks and other resources
  • Discussions and other small group work
  • Problem-solving exercises
  • Written assignments, including reflection papers, essays, papers
  • Oral presentations

When developing the Assignments section, consider the following:

  • Credit courses must have clearly delineated in-class and out-of-class assignments, separating these into two subsections. Out-of-class assignments must show independent work.
    • Be sure to sort your assignments list so that the in-class asignments appear first and the out-of-class assigments are last.
    • See examples below.
  • Noncredit courses may include out-of-class assignments, but they are not required. See examples below.
  • Assignments must support and reflect coverage of student learning outcomes.
  • Provide detail to each assignment that clearly shows the linkages to Student Learning Outcomes and Contents (e.g., not just “Readings from the textbook”, but “Readings from the textbook on topics such as...” or “Readings from the textbook on topics including...”).
  • The level of detail depends on the outline and the department. Include sufficient detail to clearly describe the level of rigor of the course and to accurately reflect departmental expectations of instructors. Avoid including so much detail that course revision is required for relatively minor changes. For example:
    • An essay assignment for a composition course in the English Department might include a minimum word count, reflecting the requirements of that department.
    • Specifying that there will be 10 homework sets in a Chemistry Department course may be too specific – consider dropping the specific number, giving a range, or using words like “approximately” instead.
  • Assignments requiring extensive reading and/or writing may need English and/or ESL prerequisites or advisories. Consult with the Matriculation Office for advice.
  • Critical thinking. Degree-applicable courses must include tasks/assignments that require students to think critically and apply concepts taught in the course.
  • Information Competency. With some exceptions, degree-applicable courses should require students to demonstrate information competency by completing a research project that includes evaluation of printed and electronic sources, and proper citation and format.
  • Field Trips. If the course has required or optional field trips, describe those field trips in the in-class portion of this section.
  • Assignments during Unscheduled Lab Hours. If the course is designed to include lab work that students perform during unscheduled lab hours, provide a description of these assignments in the in-class portion of this section.
  • Assignments are items that students perform. Do not include items like guest lectures.
  • Do not include purely evaluation methods, such as quizzes or exams. Include them in the evaluation section.

Examples of Assignment Section, Credit Classes: 

Examples of Assignment Section, Credit Classes

Example of Assignment Section, Noncredit class with no out-of-class assignments: 

Example of Assignment Section, Noncredit class with no out-of-class assignments

  

Evaluation

Use this section to indicate types and examples of evaluation methods that will be used to measure students’ achievement of the major learning outcomes of the course and determine the students’ final grade. Evaluation areas may include:

  • Quizzes, tests, and exams, including midterm and final exams
  • Items from the Assignments section that are to be graded
  • Essays and papers
  • Projects
  • Oral presentations

Consider the following when preparing the Evaluation section:

  • Examples. Each evaluation component must include one or two examples of work or test material. As with Assignments, the level of detail depends on the outline and the department. Include sufficient detail to clearly describe the level of rigor of the course and to accurately reflect departmental expectations of instructors. Avoid including so much detail that course revision is required for relatively minor changes.
  • Evaluating learning outcomes: Procedures for evaluating student performance must measure the degree to which the student achieves the student learning outcomes stated in the course outline of record. Methods of evaluation must be consistent with the student learning outcomes, and must document coverage of conceptually diverse components of the student learning outcomes. For outcomes that involve skills and the “ability to do things” evaluated by observation of performance, state the level of competency required.
  • Final examination. Methods of evaluation must include a written final evaluation procedure. For degree-applicable courses, grades must be based on demonstrated proficiency in the subject matter and the ability to demonstrate that proficiency, at least in part by means of one of the following: 
    • Substantial writing assignments, including essay exam(s), written homework, research paper(s), laboratory or reading report(s) or
    • Computational or non-computational problem solving exercises, including exam(s), laboratory report(s), field work, homework problems or
    • Skills demonstrations, including class performances, field work, performance/proficiency exam(s).
  • Items that are explained in the Assignments section that will be evaluated should be cited in the Evaluation section. For example:
    • Laboratory exercises as specified above.
  • Attendance and participation. Credit courses may use student participation (e.g. class recital and items listed in the assignments section examples) as evaluation criteria. Instructors may use attendance records to assist in evaluating a student’s in-class participation. Attendance in itself, separate from participation, may not be used in student evaluation except in cases as described below (clinical and internship hours).

Example A:

  1. Quizzes: Questions which assess the student’s knowledge and comprehension of such concepts, theories and data assimilation, the “push-pull” model, 19th Century labor union policies toward Chinese workers, and changes in immigration patterns after 1965.
  2. Essay final examination: assess the student’s ability to synthesize course readings. Lectures, and discussions, on such topics as a comparison of employment opportunities and economic strategies among Chinese, Mexicans and Jews during the period 1900-1950, or changes in gender roles and women’s opportunities among European, Chinese and Mexican Americans from 1920 to the present.

Example B:

  1. Tests and quizzes: Slide identification, multiple choice, and essay exams will test the student on pivotal works of art discussed in the television lessons and illustrated and discussed in the texts by testing the student’s ability to recognize works of art, distinguish them for artist, style, and time period, interpret the meaning, and evaluate each work of art within its cultural context.

Example C:

  1. Listening identification of composer, genre and historic period.
  2. Written report reviewing a concert.
  3. …  

Example D:

  1. Student participation in discussions and critiques as described above. Students will be assessed on their use of an architectural vocabulary and their ability to analyze design.
  2. Students will be evaluated on their demonstration of professional work habits during their college internship, including attendance, customer service skills, and telephone and email etiquette.
  3. Students must satisfactorily complete 80% of the required clinical hours in order to pass the class.

CAUTION: Unacceptable example:

  1. Quizzes
  2. Tests
  3. Midterm Examination
  4. Final Examination
  5. Research Paper
  6. Final Project

  

Textbooks, Websites, and Other Instructional Materials

The main text plays a remarkably strong role in articulation of a course. It should be clearly recognized by those in the discipline at other institutions as a major work that presents the fundamental theories and practices of the subject. Textbooks, websites, and instructional materials should be completely referenced. CurricuNET screens will describe the exact input format.

See below for some specific examples (not an exhaustive list):

Textbooks

a. Davis, Barbara, Tools For Teaching, Jossey-Bass, San Francisco, 1993
b. Jeanette D. Bragger And Donald B. Rice, Allons-Y! Le francais par étapes, 5th ed., Boston: Heinle and Heinle, 2000., (text and workbook).
           French 1a covers chapters 1 through 3
c. …

Websites

a. USGS San Francisco Bay Water Quality Data Access: http://sfbay.wr.usgs.gov/access/wqdata/
b. Open Source Digital Image Gallery, University of XYZ, http://www....

Other Instructional Materials:

  1. Instructor developed materials
    a. …
  2. Library resources
    a. Examples of Reference Works
    b. Examples of Periodicals
    c. …
  3. Internet resources
    a. Examples of web sites
    b. …
  4. Laboratory resources
    a. Examples or names of software
    b. …
  5.  Media resources
    a. Audio
    b. Video
    c. …
  6.  …

Specify text and references or list textbooks and references that the department has evaluated and determined to be representative of the kinds of college level materials appropriate for the course. When necessary, indicate the basis for assessment (i.e., primary source, standard text, readability analysis). Cite the course text using the standard professional format for the topic discipline or the format as indicated in the Textbooks tab of CurricUNET proposals.

Arrange multiple listings in alphabetical order. Where possible, references and texts should reflect currency in discipline, gender, and global and multicultural perspectives.