Integrated Social Sciences Online Degree Completion Program
Information for faculty
This page is designed to offer interested faculty answers to frequently asked questions about teaching in UW’s new online degree completion program. It also provides a link (click here) to a catalyst survey with which to propose a course contribution to the program.
At the outset it is important to highlight some of the distinctive features of this new degree. It will be offered online with all the advantages this affords for pedagogical innovation with web-based teaching resources. It does not adopt an ‘outsourcing’ model in which courses are ‘piped-in’ from other universities and online consortia. Instead, it will widen access to our own expert faculty, and thereby significantly expand UW’s teaching mission to students who have not previously had access to the Seattle, Bothell and Tacoma campuses. It will be aimed at enabling degree completion by students who will typically come into the program with about 2 years of community college credits. And to do this it will place an emphasis on integration – hence the title of the program - in two key ways.
First, the degree will be integrated in the sense of doing everything possible to enable students to link-up their learning within and between the online courses. We will use a set of integrative mechanisms, including learning portfolios, online mentoring, and other tools, to help students both reflect on their learning and stay with the program through to completion. Second, the degree will direct the benefits of interdisciplinary integration across the broad sweep of the social sciences to address the wide diversity of student learning and life goals, building also on the wide diversity of foundation courses students will have already taken in other colleges and programs.
By emphasizing both pedagogical and interdisciplinary integration, we also aim at re-articulating the ‘social’ and ‘science’ in social sciences. We want our students to learn about the complexity of social relations, social knowledge and social justice in ways that are faithful to the enduring love of knowledge, theory, debate and critical thinking that animates all social science. For these reasons, the learning goals for the program (developed this year in collaboration with diverse faculty and the chairs of the social science departments) are broad and inclusive*. By their completion of the degree we will expect all students to be able to:
- Explain social scientific research in terms of questions, theories, methods and findings
- Construct, debate, and communicate arguments about social phenomena
- Evaluate, integrate and critique information
- Collaborate with diverse communities
* a comprehensive version of the learning objectives and themes of inquiry can be found here.
If you are interested in teaching an online course that will contribute to these learning goals, please go to our catalyst portal for new course contribution applications (click here). If you would like further information, please also read our responses here below to the most common questions faculty and departments have been asking. We want to clarify the opportunities presented by this program as fully as possible, so if anything remains unclear, please do not hesitate to follow-up further by email to us at any time.
Judy Howard, Dean of Social Science firstname.lastname@example.org
Matt Sparke, Director of Integrated Social Sciences email@example.com
Call for Courses
The College of Arts & Sciences seeks applications from Social Science faculty to develop and teach courses in the new Integrated Social Sciences online degree completion program. We seek upper division courses that are broad in focus and not restrictive in terms of course pre-requisites or requirements for specialized technical pre-training. Proposed courses should align well with the degree learning goals described above.
Please note that as of October 2013 we have invested in the maximum number of ISS course development contracts that our budget can fund for the first year of the program. We will certainly need more courses in future years, so we encourage you to submit a proposal for consideration for years two and beyond. You can use our catalyst survey to submit an application: https://catalyst.uw.edu/webq/survey/sparke/203745
What are the benefits of participation?
- Joining a community of UW faculty that will become national leaders in innovative online instructional pedagogies, with cross-over benefits also for on campus instruction
- Participating in a collaborative, interdisciplinary network of faculty interested in linking their research with teaching innovations
- Reaching new student audiences who do not typically have access to face-to-face programs
- Creating some new flexibility that may allow you to conduct research or service-related travel away from UW while continuing to teach
What is the compensation?
a) for development?
- 2 months salary for course development work contracted before September 16, 2014
- After the program launches, new compensation contracts for development will be limited to one month salary following the model for group start online pilot courses
b) for instruction?
- Faculty will receive excess compensation for teaching one course in this fee-based degree if such instruction is over and above the regular teaching load.
- Please be aware that UW AHR rules dictate that extra compensation can only be received for instruction in fee-based programs for the first three years of the existence of such programs. After that point, courses taught in fee-based programs must be part of the regular instructional load of those offering the instruction.
What is the benefit for my department?
- If you teach a course in the degree program as part of your regular teaching load, your department will receive instructional replacement compensation of 25% of your nine-month salary if you are a tenure-line faculty or 17% if you are lecturer.
- If your department commits to regularly contributing a total 4 courses to the program (that is, 4 courses that are not taught for extra compensation), then your unit will be authorized to hire either a new tenure line faculty member or a new lecturer (details to be worked out in each such request).
- In addition, your department will benefit from the teaching innovations made possible by your participation in the course development process, and by the new interdisciplinary networks of faculty collaboration and community building it will enable.
What is the support?
- Instructional designers to aid in course development, including video and course management systems support
- Collaborative workshops in 2013-14 on instructional innovation and hybrid pedagogy
- Potential partnerships with UW libraries and CTL programs
- Strong commitment to personal facilitation from the college
When will instruction in the program begin?
- Pending full approval from the Faculty Council on Academic Standards, the ISS program is due to launch Autumn quarter 2014.
Can on-campus students take my online course?
- Currently, an on-campus student cannot register for courses offered in this online degree, since it is a separate, fee-based program and therefore has a different budget structure. The time schedule will not list fee-based online courses in the same area.
- However, it is up to departments as to whether or not faculty can teach a course in the online degree and the same course in the on-campus program.