Update from the Provost on EO1100

Here is an email from Provost Li which clearly and accurately sets out the situation EO1100 has put us in.

Dear Faculty and Extended Cabinet,

On August 23, the Chancellor’s Office issued Executive Order 1100 relating to the CSU General Education Breadth requirements.  This policy supersedes the E.O. issued in 2015 with the goal of clarifying requirements; ensuring equitable opportunity for student success; and to streamline graduation requirements.   In the most simple terms, this E.O. regulates the content (units and subject areas) across the system to ensure transferability of GE courses from one campus to another.  To accomplish this, the E.O. is quite prescriptive about what sections GE may include and how many units each section will contain.

These changes, however, put CSUN into a uniquely challenging position.  We’ve always had an additional section of G.E., Comparative Cross-Cultural Studies (or section “F”) that supports the campus commitment to inclusive and interdisciplinary approaches to knowledge.  Our ethnic studies, gender and women’s studies, and cultural studies departments and programs feature prominently in our offerings in this section.

Under the E.O. we cannot maintain a separate section “F” and be in compliance with this E.O. or Title 5 of the California Code of Regulations.  We need to create a new plan to maintain CSUN’s commitment to ethnic, gender, and cultural studies while also coming into alignment with the system requirements.  This will take all of us to accomplish.  One possibility is an “overlay” structure where current “F” courses are moved into the appropriate extant G.E. section (some might go in “D” social sciences; some might go in “C” arts and humanities).  CSUN could require students to take 6 units in courses certified as meeting a diversity requirement within the other sections of G.E.

We are working with our faculty senate and the chancellor’s office on potential solutions that will meet the E.O. and maintain CSUN’s commitment to serve our students and region with courses that develop the knowledge and competencies need by well-educated CSUN graduates who will live in and serve our communities.  We are working very hard to maintain our commitment to cultural competency in our curriculum and comply with the intent and the requirements of the E.O.

The new E.O. is not what anyone at CSUN wanted.  When President Harrison received a draft version of the E.O., she provided swift and immediate feedback indicating the challenge at CSUN.  I did the same thing when I received the draft.  President Harrison additionally advocated for CSUN’s model and values in person, and asked for more time to make the changes, should they become necessary.

Again, let me restate our unwavering commitment to educating our students in all the ways that are necessary for them to understand the current world.  We need to work together to do what’s required of us and best for our students in moving forward.  I ask for your help.

Yi Li

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

My days have been consumed by EO1100. Thus I can attest to the unwavering commitment and passion with which President Harrison and Provost Li have been fighting to protect CSUN’s programs.