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Cathy Bareiss <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 21 Mar 2016 13:50:18 +0000
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I think we need to be very careful in the things that we do as a group.  There are many things that concern those involved in liberal arts!  However, a good number of those things are not unique to liberal arts degrees.  A simple example would be what language to use in CS1.  Some things are concerns of small departments (which include a good number of liberal arts degrees), some things concern computing general education requirements, etc.  However these things are not unique to liberal arts programs.  

If we are not careful and let "scope creep" happen, we risk much.  We might duplicate other efforts, not have enough time/energy to do the things that matter, etc.  So let's be careful before we start "any" activity to ask the question:  "Is this a liberal arts issue or something else?" and keep our focus.

I would also suggest that we wait on any survey (or anything else) until we determine what we want to accomplish first (after defining what we are).  Once we know our next goal(s), then we can determine the right questions to ask to get the data we need.


It does appear to me as if we have a good understanding of what we mean by liberal arts (that conversation has died down) -> A smaller degree that allows for more breadth for each student to pursue additional areas and efforts to make students a well-rounded individual in today's society -> not just a focused computing professional.  I think we need a few folks that are great with words to finalize a definition that maybe we can all "vote" on to make it official.

In my opinion, the next step after that would be to take suggestions as to what the first task should be for the group.

Just my opinions on what we should do next (and a danger that is before us if we are not careful).

Cathy Bareiss
Olivet Nazarene University

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