2013 Dec Highlights

Once a month, we highlight departments and programs from across the college that have great things happening motivated by a desire to improve student learning.

December 2013

Women's Studies -- Walk against rape

". . . a revised  course  included modified SLO's that reflect contemporary culture and the changed student demographic. We included an emphasis on the historical creation and growth of feminism and contrasting it to more recent, or "3rd Wave Feminism." Elisabeth Arruda, Chair of Women's Studies

On December 5th, faculty across the campus will celebrate the work and service of Elisabeth Arruda. She will be stepping down as Chair of Women's Studies. Professor Arruda's commitment to student success is clearly evident in the assessment work she piloted. Improvements based on SLO work are highlighted below:

The Women’s Studies Department has made many changes based upon SLO and PSLO assessments. For the Sexual Health Educator Certificate, peer educators developed a new presentation for the HIV/STI prevention class (Health 67) that demonstrated how healthy relationships free of abuse can enhance negotiation skills for safer sex.

For the AA in Women’s Studies faculty developed a survey to assess the PSLO in our Introduction to Women's Studies course, as all students in the major must complete it in order to earn the degree. In Project SURVIVE and Expect Respect SF  adjustments were made in the cycle of violence activity and led peer educators to a plan for a more robust adjustment to the same segment in the Expect Respect SF high school presentations.

In the WOMN 10 Women and Film course, a revised  course  included modified SLO's that reflect contemporary culture and the changed student demographic. We included an emphasis on the historical creation and growth of feminism and contrasting it to more recent, or "3rd Wave Feminism." Now the class is more 'in sync' with student life experiences and encourages the development of their unique critical 'voice' when interpreting films from a feminist approach that 'makes sense,' to them. An additioanl significant change in evaluating student progress is the inclusion of student journals, to be collected three times, strategically scheduled to let students know how well , or not, they are engaging with the readings and films. The first 'collection' will be returned to students approximately two weeks before mid-term, to increase student success.

In our WOMN 20 Her/His/Ourstories, we are planning to include a new quiz on vocabulary to demonstrate students' ability to code switch their storytelling knowledge to academic research concepts.

For WOMN 25: Introduction to Women’s Studies,we updated the pre and post SLO surveys for the class to include information about how many students had taken previous courses in Women's Studies, which courses, and about the major. We included a new question about service-learning for our traditional face to face section for the post-survey. We updated assignment handout with minor edits for clarity on assignments and grading structure. In the online course, deleted forum discussion questions that seemed to not be assessing SLO's well and added new forum discussion questions better tied to SLO's.

Finally, in our WOMN 54 The Politics of Sexual Violence and WOMN 55 Ending Sexual Violence: Peer Education course we are closing the loop on these two courses and updating the outlines and revising the student learning outcomes based on prior revision assessments.

Chair Ardel Thomas at the first annual Lavender Graduation

"In all of these cases, SLO's and PSLO's were compared - and in the case of NVC and SDSU, many of their SLO's and PSLO's have been based on ours at CCSF."

Ardel Thomas, Chair, LGBT Department

LGBT Studies, a pioneer in Queer Studies, offers one of the only LGBT AA degrees in the country. In 2011, the curriculum committee approved the major and its ambitious PSLOs. Ardel Thomas, Chair of LGBT Studies, shares how her well-developed program outcomes were quickly modeled throughout the state and form important partnerships with other college communities:

In Fall 2011, I was contacted by Greg Miraglia, a dean at Napa Valley College who works in the Criminal Justice Program teaching the police academy cadets. He is also the liaison for the LGBT community outreach at Napa Valley College and does the sensitivity trainings for the police program there. NVC was interested to offer a certificate program in LGBT Studies and he had been following CCSF's progress toward an A.A. degree in LGBT Studies. Since NVC is small - 8,000 students - they knew they needed to partner with a larger program that would offer their students more expansive classes for the certificate. With a couple of core LGBT courses offered at NVC and an open policy with us at CCSF, they would be able to have the certificate approved by their curriculum committee.

I gladly agreed to work with NVC because it is incredibly important for our program to network with other programs. In December 2011, I attended the curriculum committee meeting as the spokesperson for CCSF and LGBT Studies. With my documentation and promise that LGBT Studies at CCSF would embrace an articulation agreement, the curriculum committee agreed to move forward (although some were skeptical) with an LGBT Certificate housed through the Early Childhood Development Program.

Once NVC and CCSF had an articulation agreement, Greg and I immediately went to Don Romesberg, the head of Gender Studies at Sonoma State to discuss articulation agreements between all three programs. That was put into place in 2012. Shortly after that, Greg and I also met with Esther Rothblum, the chair of the newly established LGBT B.A. degree at San Diego State. CCSF's LGBT Department also now has an articulation agreement with San Diego State. In all of these cases, SLO's and PSLO's were compared - and in the case of NVC and SDSU, many of their SLO's and PSLO's have been based on ours at CCSF.

For the future, LGBT Studies at CCSF has been asked to help model courses at Lake Tahoe Community College. In Spring 2014, Greg Miraglia and I are going to be teaching LTCC's first ever Introduction to LGBT Studies. As we move forward with plans for this new course, we are working within LTCC's SLO structure, but will be using the CCSF LGBT Studies model for that class.

LALS faculty (from left, Monica Landeros, Edgar Torres, Indiana Quadra, Mark Piper, William Barnes, Gregory Landau, Jose Cuellar, Marco Mojica)

"Current discussion among LALS faculty and chair is looking to see if the post survey can be incorporated directly into regular examinations to reduce workload and paper."-- Mark Piper, CCSF LALS Instructor,

LALS in Academic Year 2012-2013 had 1,044 students enrolled in courses, 853 individual students, the rest taking multiple LALS courses. The core LALS program has 14 sections and 8 different class offerings, along with 13 courses that are housed in Social Studies, Music, Labor Studies, Art and Anthropology departments. In ratings across the college, LALS has a rating of productivity rating of 22.29 with a 73.2 percent surplus, making LALS the seventh most productive department of the college.

 For Spring 2013, LALS has 100 percent compliance in reporting with 62.5 percent of LALS courses closing the loop with Stage 5 assessment.  LALS courses used multiple choice pre and post survey tests to conduct assessments. The consensus was that this method was easiest for LALS faculty to incorporate, tabulate and examine SLO assessment. 

 Current discussion among LALS faculty and chair is looking to see if the post survey can be incorporated directly into regular examinations to reduce workload and paper. This is the method used by faculty member Piper.  Piper also changed from a scantron format to answers marked directly on an examination. This was in response to comments from students that they often make mistakes on scantrons due to confusion in marking the correct answer due to the small type and tight spacing on the scantron. Piper thinks that this may indicate students with unidentified visual impairment such as seen with diabetes.

 Future plans for LALS SLO assessment include recovering other demographic information from students such as income, ethnic identification and gender.   Student Achievement Gap demographics clearly identify Latino students as particularly vulnerable in terms of college level mathematics and English. Such information would  be invaluable in the revision of course materials to empower these students. 

Continuing Student Counseling Lead SLO Counselors -- Standing left to right in back row:  Jack Sparks & Bill Goodyear; Middle row: Dr. Kathleen Mitchell and Sheryl Blumenthal; Seated left to right in front row:  Josephine Ubungen and Dr. Ronnie Owens;  Not pictured:  Grace Hom,  Cynthia Obenchain,  Herving Valiente,  Petrina Chi

". . .Continuing Student Counseling Department had to reinvent itself. Not only was the department committed to complying with the ACCJC recommendations, CSCD realized that this was an opportunity to improve services through the Student Learning Outcomes process." -- Kathleen Mitchell, Counselor

The challenge that faced Continuing Student Counseling was to report Student Learning Outcomes in a way that displayed a united purpose with many paths to that purpose. Some counseling programs have external mandated deadlines and services. Others collaborate with employers and community organizations; still others have deadlines established by State universities and colleges.

Two significant events occurring within a few months of each other formed the direction the Continuing Student Counseling Department took. In May 2012, four counseling services: Career, International, Transfer, and Veteran’s Counseling merged with the Continuing Student Counseling Department. Additionally, in July of that same year, the ACCJC released its Show Cause status for CCSF and the recommendations for the College to maintain accreditation.

In response to these crucial events, Continuing Student Counseling Department had to reinvent itself. Not only was the department committed to complying with the ACCJC recommendations, CSCD realized that this was an opportunity to improve services through the Student Learning Outcomes process.

To respond to the ACCJC recommendation and to integrate disparate but related services that had merged into one department, in August 2012, CSCD appointed a member of the department to serve as the SLO coordinator. The SLO coordinator organized the department into two main components: Counseling Programs and Courses. Included in Counseling Programs are: Academic, Career, Instructional Liaison, International, Transfer, University Intern Training and Development, and Veteran’s. Career courses include Lern 60, Creating Career Options, among others, and the special topical course Lern 52B, Academic and Progress Probation.

A lead counselor was appointed in each counseling program and course to manage the SLO process. The lead counselor’s duties included forming and convening meetings with counseling faculty to discuss the SLO process, constructing multiple measures to gather data about the program or course, assessing and displaying the data, discussing changes and improvements to programs with colleagues, creating timelines to implement changes, and documenting and reporting the SLO progress for the program or course.

A CSCD counseling service or course reached Proficiency level when data have been gathered from multiple measures, assessed, discussed among faculty, and thoughtful and deliberate changes to services were made based on those data assessments. Moreover, to reach Continuous Quality Improvement, not only were data assessed and changes and improvements made, but the process, referred to as “closing the loop,” became standard practice for all services and courses offered within the department.