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Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Syllabus Enthusiast: Syllabus Management 101 - A first step towards better syllabus management

eNews from the Syllabus Geeks :: Issue 7


Syllabus Enthusiast

Syllabus Management 101

A first step towards better syllabus management

Is your institution considering getting more rigorous with its management of syllabi but not sure where to begin? Or maybe you have a process in place though you know there’s room for improvement?

In fact, you've probably heard refrains like, "we developed a template for all instructors with boilerplate language but still see the same old policies showing up" or, "our checklist says every syllabus is supposed to have a description and outcomes but they aren't always present - much less consistent - especially among the adjuncts."

Well you're not alone. Over the last year we've seen a wave of interest for institutionally managing syllabi, so we’ve outlined three initial steps you can take - a 101 class, if you will - to get you started with better syllabus management today. 
It all begins with getting a baseline for where you are at today. Are syllabi being collected and coordinated? If so, who's doing it? And is this happening across the campus?

Then you need figure out where you want to (realistically) take the management of syllabi. Are you looking for a simple repository, a fully featured syllabus manager, or somewhere in-between?

Third is the selection of an appropriate tool that supports your vision. These range from commercial solutions to in-house systems, and even open source platforms.
Managing syllabi can be easy as long as you know where to start. Plus it's even possible to do even on a limited budget. Trust us, once you have a solution in place you will wonder what your institution ever did without it. >>

Campus Villain

Like a python you can feel it tightening around you. Today everyone feels the pinch of the budget constrictor. He swallows your best intentions, replacing them with the grim realities of your institution’s ever-stretched resources.
Fortunately some solutions, like Concourse Lite, are effective yet affordable. It's quick to deploy, integrates with existing systems, and helps your institution manage its syllabi more efficiently. And greater efficiency equals more time – for teaching, for student services, and for research.

Client Spotlight

The Power of Syllabi for Accreditation

When Middle States told Fulton-Montgomery CC that they needed a better assessment system to ensure objectives and outcomes were present and consistent on all syllabi, FMCC turned to Concourse Lite - and they couldn't be happier about it. Within a semester of its implementation, they'd exceeded the commission's recommendations.

In addition to saving them time and resources, Concourse Lite soon also took on a life of its own in supporting students and faculty.

Read more about FMCC and what their Dean had to say about its success on their campus. >>

In-house Tools

Leaders in Syllabus Management

What can your institution learn from schools that have already gone through the process of developing a syllabus management system? A lot!

Though unsurprisingly we stand behind Concourse as our system of choice, this time we nod to a handful of schools (NYIT, Clemson, and the University of Alabama) who have all recognized the same challenges with managing syllabi and built in-house solutions to solve them.
Each school has included varying degrees of sophistication to meet their individual needs, from basic repositories to a fully-searchable platform with templating built in. >>

Concourse Lite

Syllabus Management, Fast

Is your institution looking for a system that gets syllabi organized quickly, easily, and affordably? One that benefits students, faculty, and administrators without disrupting processes? Integrates with your LMS and has workflow?

Concourse Lite, our introductory syllabus management platform, is the perfect turnkey solution for schools who want to implement a powerful system centered around existing syllabi. It deploys in days, is well received by faculty, and is cost effective.

Take the first step towards better syllabus management and see how you can have syllabi going from 0 to 60 in seconds. >>
Syllabus Geek vs. arch nemeses Faculty Resistance and Budget Constrictor. The Epic Tour
The Syllabus Enthusiast is a publication for syllabus pioneers, techies, and superheroes by Intellidemia, the Syllabus Geeks. | 518.444.2060 | @syllabusgeeks
Intellidemia, The Syllabus Geeks


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