Location
Lansing, MI

Students
18,551

Classification
Very large 2-year public

Faculty
1,764

“Before Concourse, there was a lot of variability in college course syllabi. My experiences working at multiple colleges over the last 15 years revealed the need for consistency in syllabi format. Additionally the need for inclusion of specific institution policies are essential elements to any syllabi. With Concourse, there is the ability to ensure that all syllabi contain all required information and creates a level of consistency across the college. This, in turn, provides students with the most meaningful instructional information in an extremely accessible way.” – Darrell DeMartino, Faculty Member

Highlights

  • An outdated syllabus system necessitated a search for a new and better solution
  • Integration and data migration capabilities were key requirements for a new system
  • Faculty adoption required content flexibility without sacrificing format
  • Linked templates allowed administrative control over uniformity of information
  • Instructors access and update their Concourse syllabi from Desire2Learn
  • Reporting and audit now drive syllabus collection and review

Motivation
Lansing Community College (LCC) was utilizing a syllabus system that would allow them to generate web-based course syllabi, but found that they were requiring more and more customization of the system in order to achieve the format and efficiency they were looking for. The lack of usability of the the current system, issues with syllabus access, and administrative inefficiency meant that the search was on for a new solution to create, archive, store, and share course syllabi.

Practices
LCC had been using CurricUNET, a web-based curriculum management tool, for the creation and management of course syllabi. The tool was used for the archival of past versions of syllabi as well as the creation of new syllabi. The tool included a workflow for the review and approval of syllabi as well, which LCC had also been utilizing. Since CurricUNET would only provide for management of course syllabus templates, each instructor had to create their own syllabus (which may or may not include all required syllabus information), provide hard copies of that syllabus to students, and email the syllabus to the department office to be saved in a file.

Vision
LCC’s vision included a syllabus system that would allow for easy creation of course and instructional syllabi, provide a workflow for the creation and maintenance of syllabi, present a way for departments to effortlessly capture instructional information, and archive versions once a syllabus was updated.

Implementation
In order to ensure that they’d be able to easily establish consistency among all syllabi, LCC administrators created an institutional template in Concourse, from which all course templates would be created. Since they had a significant amount of syllabus information in CurricUNET, they were able to create feeds to smoothly migrate information to Concourse. They also used feeds to easily populate syllabus items with information from Banner, their student information system. Instructional syllabi would be created with much of the necessary information already in place. Once they integrated with Desire2Learn, their learning management system, faculty and students could access their syllabi with just the click of a mouse.

Results
Department staff no longer have to endure clogged inboxes full of syllabus documents from faculty, or the hours necessary to save each syllabus document to a workspace with the correct file name and type. They can run Item and Audit reports within Concourse to keep track of syllabus edits and submissions. Another benefit was the ability to impart a newfound consistency among all syllabi. Instructors are given syllabi with required information already in place, which, coupled with the Import functionality, has dramatically decreased the faculty workload. The data migration and integration with the learning management system and student information system meant that students and faculty could access their syllabi from one location.


About Lansing Community College
Lansing Community College offers programs in career and workforce development, general education, developmental education, and personal enrichment, and is recognized as a leader in forging educational partnerships with business, industry, and government to better meet the needs of an ever changing, world wide market place. To learn more about LCC, visit their website at www.lcc.edu.