History Department College Based Fees Letter to Students 2015-16
HISTORY DEPARTMENT COLLEGE BASED FEE COMMITTEE
AY 2015-2016 Report
The History department’s College Based Fee (CBF) committee for 2015‐2016 consists of the following students in History programs:
- Jennifer Freilach
- Ben Goss
- Austin Weyman (M.A. student representative)
- Sean Leavey
- Professor James Tejani is the Faculty Advisor to the CBF committee.
The History department CBF committee met via email and reaffirmed its requests from prior academic years as follows:
- Total allocation of CBF funds will be used to support classes as stipulated by the College.
- This money will enable the History department to offer twelve courses that are in high demand among majors and M.A. students.
The committee did not discuss these in terms of specific courses but instead contemplated use of CBF funding in general curriculum areas as outlined in agenda item 1 below.
Item 1: Allocation of Current CBFs
The committee’s recommendations were the product of discussion focused on which course areas have greatest demand and effect on the ability of students to progress toward degree completion. The committee requested the CBF monies be used primarily to provide students with sufficient and reasonable breadth of choice in their selection of courses. The committee identified these courses areas (listed in priority order) as most in need of improved options:
- 500‐level graduate classes
Use of CBFs to reserve seats for history majors in high demand classes was recommended as a secondary priority in the following courses:
- Area F (HIST 354)
- 200‐level major required classes, Area D1 & USCP (HIST 201 & HIST 202)
In discussion, the committee continued to request that more classes be offered at both the 400 and 300 levels.
- Students in particular requested more diverse course offerings at the 400 level. This, they suggest, should include a range of world, US, and European history classes. Students also requested that this diversity be maintained quarter-toquarter to better allow them to select among courses in their final years of the program.
- The request also includes the major-required courses, HIST 303 and HIST 304, which are taught as topical themes selected by the instructor. Students emphasized the importance of greater choice among these courses to enable them to develop and pursue their academic and career interests.
For similar reasons, the committee also requested that CBF monies go toward the department offering more diverse courses for M.A. students at the upper levels, including both 400 and 500 level.
Item 2: Suggestions for Use of Future CBFs
In discussion of how CBFs might be used by the department and College of Liberal Arts to improve student outcomes in the future, committee members offered the following suggestions:
- Funding for teaching assistantships for MA students that could be applied at the 100 and 200 levels and in GE courses.
- Funding for student research, including travel for research and conferences.
- Supporting the creation of more practicum, laboratory equivalent, or opportunities that allow for Learn by Doing and career development. This might include funding discussion sections, hands-on work with historical sources and/or acquisition of sources (e.g., databases and other library resources), bringing in outside researchers or speakers for talks and presentations, and career speakers or events.
- Funding for equipment, student collaborative space, and library resources and space for History majors. Students in particular cited a lack of reliable equipment (e.g., computers and printers) for their History course projects and a lack of “quiet space to read,” as much of the library has been converted to non‐quiet uses.
The 2015‐16 MA student representative reiterated these four requests, showing their particular importance to the future success of the History department’s graduate students and its MA-degree program.