Dear Colleagues,

       Phase I of the re-design of SIUE’s general education is drawing to a close. As of this afternoon, the BRIDGE Committee was receiving design proposals from the eleven design teams that have been hard at work considering reforms for our general education program. The BRIDGE Committee wants to thank all the people who have worked on phase one design teams over the last months for their dreams, visions, ideas and effort. We look forward to reading and examining your work!

       There is considerable interest in how the reform process will now unfold. The BRIDGE Committee, through careful discussion, reflection and consultation with national experts in general education, has reached a consensus concerning the procedures and timeline for moving forward. Those procedures and the timeline are outlined below.


15 March 2006: Receive phase-one design proposals.

by 24 March 2006: ‘BRIDGE’ audit of phase-one proposals (to determine funding of Phase I design teams).

3-21 April 2006: ‘Community meetings’ (3 meetings of 1.5 hours; 4 design teams making 15 minute presentations, each followed by 10 minute question and answer sessions). The purpose of these meetings will be to provide creative and constructive feedback to the design teams and the BRIDGE Committee that can be carried forward into Phase II. We will
begin to schedule these sessions over the next few days and we will soon announce the exact times and places of these meetings.

17-30 April: Clustering period:

a.) Phase I design teams, in close consultation with the BRIDGE Committee, will work to cluster to form phase-two design teams. Clusters will form around shared visions/aspirations for general education at SIUE. Each current design team can send *at least one and at most two current design team members* forward to represent the current design teams. The size of the phase-two design teams will be determined by the number of phase-one teams that cluster and will vary. *Design teams are free not to cluster, but funding over the summer is contingent on clustering*. The BRIDGE Committee is working closely with the Office of the Provost to secure funding for Phase II design teams; *funding will be in the range of a $2500 stipend distributed during the summer*.

b.) To facilitate clustering, the BRIDGE Committee will meet with at least one member of all current design teams. At this meeting, the design team members will make a brief presentation of the core ideas of their design teams’ ideas to each other with an eye (and ear) to clustering.

week of 1 May 2006: Announcement of phase-two design teams.

Summer 2006: Phase-two design teams develop fleshed-out proposals in collaboration with BRIDGE Committee.

First week of Fall 2006: Phase-two design teams present the SIUE community with their proposals.

Fall 2006: Focused discussions of the phase-two proposals; vetting by university and community constituencies.

Late Fall 2006-Early Spring 2007: *All-faculty meeting to select one of the phase-two proposals to be the guiding spirit of general education reform*. The BRIDGE Committee is working in close consultation with the Faculty Senate and the Office of the Chancellor to set the timing of this meeting.

Late Fall 2006-Early Spring 2007: BRIDGE Committee prepares formal recommendation to Faculty Senate on general education guided by the decision of the all-faculty meeting.

February 2007 (?): Submission of proposal to Faculty Senate.

by May 2007 (?): Faculty Senate action.

Fall 2008 (?): Begin implementation.

       The timeline remains flexible at the end; it will be refined as we move forward.


                                                                                                                              Eric Ruckh
                                                                                                                              Associate Professor of Historical Studies
                                                                                                                              Chair, BRIDGE Committee


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