The California Community Colleges Chancellor's Office proposed funding for the 1996-1997 fiscal year for pilot applications to study the feasibility of deploying value added applications in three key application areas: instruction, administration, and student services. A list of 18 projects emerged that were subsequently prioritized by participants at an October 1995 review conference.
One of the guiding principles in the ultimate selection was that all projects be integrally connected to yield the best combined result in advancing baseline inter-related applications in instruction, student services, and administrative services. In addition, these projects selected were those deemed most immediately applicable to support the teaching and learning process.
Criteria for Application Pilots
- Must identify service delivery area of either instruction, students, or administrative services
- Must show potential significant impact on the telecommunications infrastructure
- Development as a pilot must help to establish a key anchor in the telecommunications infrastructure by building on a widespread community of interest
- Must gather/collect data and information as a key objective and activity
- Collected data and information that must drive the decision-making process to continue
- Must test the feasibility and impact of a telecommunication application on a statewide network
- Must have a synergy with other application pilot projects to produce an overall greater impact than if they were not interrelated; a bigger than the sum of its parts effect
- Each project should be one to two years in length
Instructional Application Pilots
1. Distance Education
There was one project selected (project selections). This application pilot project was funded with 1997-98 funds. An augmentation will fund the project with 1998-99 funds and allow it to continue for another year. The pilot will develop and implement a statewide delivery system for distance education through the use of four telecommunication technologies: television, computer conferencing, audio/audio-graphic conferencing, and videoconferencing. The application pilot will include a variety of modes in the above areas. The implementation of this pilot will allow for a broad pattern of development for distance education programs designed to meet the learning styles and needs of the adult learner. The pilot will include online multimedia instruction, computer-aided instruction at a distance, and voice-mail boxes for students enrolled in distance education classes.
2. Virtual Faculty Resource Center
One project was selected (project selections). The application pilot project was funded with 1997-98 funds. This augmentation will fund the project with 1998-99 funds and allow it to continue for another year. This application pilot will help to facilitate the development and improvement of curriculum and instruction in the California Community College (CCC) system. This project will allow for online instructional content databases, online multi-media tools database, online course outlines, syllabi, model practices, etc. Faculty will be able to access a Curriculum and Standards handbook with dynamic links to video on demand when developing or revising curriculum, which would facilitate instructional points and show good instructional practice as applicable. This project has a fundamental connection to the training center project described later.
3. On-line tutorial support/study groups
There was one project selected (project selections). This application pilot project will be funded with 1997-98 funds. An augmentation will fund the project with 1998-99 funds and allow it to continue for another year. This application pilot will provide tutorial support to students online through the use of voice-mail, conferencing, and e-mail technologies. Tutorial support would be provided for both traditional and distance education classes. Students enrolled in classes would be able to access a tutor and/or study group in a related subject area. The tutorial support could be either e-mail, voice-mail, or a combination of the two. This project would provide information on instructional support usage and potential.
Student Services Application Pilots
1. Student Friendly Services Program
The instructional element is the primary focus of the student when they attend a higher educational institution. However, the student services element often serves as a means for retaining the student. The introduction of student services from a consumer's perspective into the logic of preparing the CCC system for the technology wave is a prerequisite. The determining factor in the battle for the distance education student may be won on the quality of the distance student services programs, assuming comparable quality and rigor of the courses.
This is a program of the California State University (CSU) that has significant intersegmental implications for the CCC system. The program combines a variety of student services in an electronics format for students that can be transported using the new telecommunications and information storage technologies. The CCC system will conduct a preliminary evaluation of this program in the academic year 1997-98. The outcomes of the evaluation will help to determine the level of involvement with this program and the development/adoption of the program for the CCC system.
2. UC Pathways Project
This is a program of the University of California (UC). The Telecommunications and Technology Infrastructure Project (TTIP) will support a variety of pilots to explore the methods by which the CCC system may take advantage of this program.
3. Online counseling/advisement
There were seven projects selected (project selections). The projects address the counseling and advisement needs of both traditional and distance education students. Students would be able to access transcripts and consult with their counselors online via e-mail and/or voice-mail. Students may be able to access other community college catalogs that are online in the preparation of an academic program. This project requires colleges to provide catalogs online for systemwide access. This pilot would provide a significant community of interest for the distance education student who may be taking courses from several institutions remotely.
Administrative Services Application Pilots
1. College Telecommunications Plans
There were 13 projects selected (project selections). This application pilot advances the proposal to require all colleges to develop and submit a telecommunications plan to the Chancellor's Office. Specific college hardware, software, and applications standards would be identified for minimum college telecommunications requirements. The college would be required to address telecommunications in existing and future facilities. The long-term funding and buildout of a telecommunications infrastructure will require this significant level of detail. Each college site must operate at a minimum level not only in accessing the telecommunications backbone, but also in providing universal access to all members of the campus and district sites. Telecommunications plans would be required for all new facilities and would be required to adhere to systemwide standards.
In both of the first two years of the Telecommunication and Technology Infrastructure Project (TTIP), the training needs of the faculty, staff, and students of the CCC system were addressed through a variety of programs, including the implementation of a coordinating center, two model application programs, and funds for colleges to support local training efforts.
1. The California Community Colleges Center @) Outcomes Network for Educators (4C@O.N.E.)
The 4C@O.N.E. center will develop a training process to enable faculty and staff of the system to learn how to use current hardware and software to design effective learning experiences, and how to integrate such experiences with other forms of instruction, both traditional and innovative. The Chancellor's Office completed a RFA process that selected De Anza College as the site for the center. We propose to continue support of this project.
Priorities for the TTIP are to improve student outcomes, expand access, and/or reduce per student costs by increasing the effectiveness and efficiency in administration, student services, and instruction. Such goals can only be achieved if faculty and staff are given ample opportunity to gain the technical expertise necessary to use such tools and the instructional expertise to make the highest and best use of such tools to improve learning.
2. Faculty and Staff Development Fund
In 1997-98, the Faculty and Staff Development Fund for Technology was implemented in the TTIP. We propose to augment the existing fund. This fund will allow the CCC system to continue to invest in its human resource element.