Schools Training

Humanities could be replaced by ‘7 Habits’ self-help

17 FEB 2014

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Lectures on “putting first things first” and “beginning with the end in mind” could soon replace those on world civilisations and logic for some students enrolled in San Antonio area community colleges.

Bruce Leslie, chancellor of the Alamo Colleges, is hoping that the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board will approve his bid for a course heavily influenced by the popular self-help book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People to become part of the core curriculum, in place of a humanities course. But faculty and administrators at one of Alamo’s five colleges are opposing the proposal, raising both curricular and procedural concerns.

“We understand that the district administration is proposing the inclusion of EDUC 1300 to replace the additional humanities requirement” in the core curriculum, the Northwest Vista College Faculty Senate said in a letter to the state coordinating board, which will either approve or deny the course’s place in the core by 1 March.

In addition to faculty, a handful of administrators, including the institution’s president, Jackie Claunch, have signed the letter. It continues: “We are writing to inform you that the faculty and administration at each of the five colleges were effectively left out of the process of creating the proposed changes.”

The letter says selected faculty and staff members were invited to discuss the proposed course in the autumn, but that there were “no formal discussions about the [the course’s] placement in the core. Decisions about the final content and direction of this course are still under way.”

Beyond procedural concerns, faculty members also are worried that the proposed course, called “Learning Framework”, would replace one of only two, three-credit humanities requirements in the 42-credit core curriculum for Alamo Colleges. Instructors say that those six credits were one of only a few places left within the curriculum for students to explore such topics as philosophy, English and history.


Read full article: Times Higher Education