EAC - Ad Hoc 4-Credit Conversion Committee

4-Credit Conversion Committee Minutes
April 1, 2004
by Porter Raper

Members Present: Porter, Linda, Frost, Susan, Karen, Guy, Jan 

Guest:  Rob Vergun, a research analyst with Institutional Research


Porter introduced Rob from Instructional Research.  We have asked him to prepare models of how the schedule may look, work load issues, etc., to assist in researching the impact of the potential move to 4-credit classes. 

Fact Sheet

We decided to develop a fact sheet for the SAC meetings and faculty forums.  Porter will complete it.  Topics should include

  • Is there a choice to convert to 4-credit?
  • How will a recommendation to the president look?
  • Which 2- and 4-year colleges/universities are converting?
  • Sociology is doing a trial to see how it may affect one discipline: include details on the fact sheet
  • An average of 1,000 students each term attend both PCC and PSU during the same term (student access and transferability).
  • Management has NOT mandated this move.  The EAC has first asked for a discussion; management will review if EAC recommends a change.
  • Student work will include 25% additional requirements (30 hours more activity) for each current 3-credit course moving to 4-credits
  • Additional learning can be in depth (deeper learning) or breadth (additional topics) to better reach course outcomes
  • Outcomes of each course may or may not change, depending on how the 30 hours of learning are required (depth=no new outcomes; breadth=additional outcomes)
  • Questions from EAC: Report from Porter about his presentation to the EAC, including questions/concerns that EAC members had. For details, see the minutes of the March 17th EAC meeting (on the EAC website).


The committee agreed to make the following assumptions for discussing the conversion: 

  • Full time faculty will move from teaching 5 (3-credit) courses to 4 (4-credit) courses each term.  This is a 20% reduction in student load and preparations.  Would fewer students per instructor result in better retention?
  • Only 3-credit gen ed transfer courses would be affected.
  • If we change, the recommendation should be (for our students transferability ease and to avoid chaos)) that all general education courses make the conversion. We recognize that there needs to be some mechanism whereby disciplines can make the case that specific courses should not convert due to particular compelling reasons).
  • The general education requirements for the AAS will change to 20 (or 16) credits.  (from 6 to 4 or 5 classes)  Specific requirements will be reviewed during the next academic year.
  • Part time faculty will move from teaching 4 to 3 courses each term
  • Only 3-credit general education courses will move to 4-credits classes.  Any exception will require approval of the curriculum committee.
  • A sequence will be 8 hours (2 courses) instead of 9 hours (3 courses)
  • Degrees will remain at 90 credits (23 courses; current degrees require 28 courses)

Next meeting--we decided to meet as early as possible to finalize our preparation for the SAC meetings and the forums.  Heres what we came up with: 

Monday, April 12th at 8:30 at Central in Room 304.


Committee Chair 2005-2006: Porter Raper, updated on October 14, 2004


Historical Information