Category Archives: Curriculum

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Mills College Declares Financial Emergency and May Cut 30 to 35 Jobs

Mills College, a liberal-arts institution for women in Oakland, Calif., declared a financial emergency on Tuesday as a first step toward dealing with financial challenges, including a projected $9.1-million deficit in the coming fiscal year.

In a news release and in a statement emailed to faculty, staff, and students on Tuesday afternoon, the college described the Board of Trustees’ approval of the declaration of emergency as a step that authorizes Mills to restructure all of its expenses in p…

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Christian Student in Florida Is Suspended After Dispute With Muslim Professor

A small liberal-arts college in Florida has suspended a Christian student who has been clashing with his Muslim professor for weeks, the Orlando Sentinel reported.

Rollins College, in Winter Park, Fla., suspended 20-year-old Marshall Polston after his religious-studies professor filed a “protection against stalking” request. Mr. Polston told the Sentinel he felt discriminated against by his professor, Areej Zufari. Mr. Polston received a failing grade on an essay for a course in Middle Eastern h…

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Iowa State U. Defends 9/11 Assignment Against Lawmaker’s Criticism

When an Iowa State University lecturer assigned students to write about the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, from the perspective of a terrorist group, he drew harsh criticism from an Iowa legislator, but campus administrators have defended the assignment.

The 500-word paper was part of an online course taught by James Strohman for the university’s department of world languages and cultures, The Des Moines Register reported. The assignment has been part of the course for years, but it r…

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Adjuncts at Colorado Community Colleges Lack Academic-Freedom Protections, AAUP Says

The American Association of University Professors is citing the firing of a Colorado adjunct instructor as evidence of a broader lack of academic freedom for part-time faculty members throughout that state’s community-college system.

The case of Nathanial Bork, who lost his job at the Community College of Aurora last fall after he complained to its accreditor about a new curriculum there, “exposes the absence of adequate procedural protections for the adjunct faculty in the regulations of the …

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Colleges Are Accused of Using Civics Instruction to Promote Liberal Activism

Colleges can expect to see their civics-education offerings come under fire from conservatives as a result of a report issued on Tuesday by the National Association of Scholars, an advocacy group.

The NAS, which takes a traditionalist view of higher education, argues in its report that a “New Civics” movement in higher education has supplanted objective teaching about the United States’ system of government with efforts to encourage students to engage in liberal or leftist political activism.

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Professor Who Battled College of Charleston Over Syllabus Is Suing

Robert T. Dillon, the biology professor at the College of Charleston who resisted administrators’ requests that he update his syllabus with learning outcomes, is suing the South Carolina college and says he will retire, The Post and Courier reports.

Mr. Dillon’s odd saga was described in a Chronicle article in March. In short: Mr. Dillon, who had been a thorn in the side of administrators for some time, responded to their requests by adding a quotation from Woodrow Wilson to his syllabus. That d…

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Seattle U.’s Humanities Dean Is Placed on Leave After Student Sit-In

Seattle University has placed the dean of its humanities college on administrative leave following a 22-day sit-in by students protesting the college’s curriculum, The Seattle Times reported on Thursday.

The dean of Matteo Ricci College, Jodi O. Kelly, was at the center of student protests that began last month.

Students called on her to resign and demanded that the college’s curriculum be diversified, saying it focused too much on Western ideas and, in short, too many “dead white dudes.”

During…

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U. of Illinois Students Will Be Required to Take Course on Minority Culture

In order to graduate, students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign will soon be required to take a class in an American minority culture, The News-Gazette reports.

The campus Senate approved the change, effective in the fall of 2018, in the university’s general-education requirements on Monday, as part of an effort to further educate all students about minority groups and to create a more inclusive campus.

The changes come at a time of some racial turmoil on the campus. In April, t…

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Rider U. Faculty Accepts Pay Freeze to Forestall Layoffs and Program Cuts

Rider University has dropped plans to lay off faculty members and shut down academic programs after its faculty union agreed to a two-year freeze in wages, The Philadelphia Inquirer reported. The planned cuts, announced in October, would have resulted in 14 layoffs and 14 program closures, and would have saved $2 million. An agreement that includes the pay freeze was approved on Friday by the New Jersey university’s board, the Inquirer reported.

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Community College Fires Instructor Over Math Quiz on Pimps and Prostitutes

Portland Community College, in Oregon, has fired an instructor who gave students a mathematics quiz with questions about such topics as pimps, prostitutes, and drug dealing, The Oregonian reported.

The quiz was based on a fake document that has floated around the Internet for years, under names such as the “City of Los Angeles High School Math Proficiency Exam.” Its questions include math problems involving drug dealing, drive-by shootings, and stealing cars.

Some students were offended by the q…