Western Carolina University established itself as a leader in technology use for student learning when it implemented its student computer requirement in 1998. As with any initiative, processes for evaluation and refinement are a critical part of best practice. To that end, the Student Computer Requirement Committee was created to provide necessary oversight and guidance ensuring the student computer requirement’s purpose is enhanced student learning, that the requirement obtains stated goals and objectives, and that assessment results and research in the field are used to refine the requirement and help students excel.
Upon recommendation from the Faculty Senate (December 5, 2005), approval of the Academic Technology Advisory Committee, the Chief Information Officer, the Information Technology Policy Council, and the Provost, the Student Computer Requirement Advisory Committee has become a standing committee of the Academic Technology Advisory Committee.
This committee shall be composed of faculty members, IT staff, representatives from those departments that are most engaged with the program and others as needed. Membership will include curriculum representatives and campus organizations that have ownership in this requirement. The committee will be responsible for establishing student computer requirement and competency standards, as well as monitoring implementation, assessment, and auxiliary instruction. The committee also is charged with setting hardware and software specifications. The Faculty Senate will choose the chair of the committee. The committee will report to the Academic Technology Advisory Committee. In addition, all reports of the committee will be shared with the Faculty Senate and the Chief Information Officer. The Faculty Senate and the Chief Information Officer also will advise the Provost on issues of oversight and implementation of the Student Computer Requirement in addition to the Academic Technology Advisory Committee.
The Student Computer Requirement Committee is asked to review purposes for the student computer requirement—and computer competency requirement—and monitor best practices in this educational domain in order to ensure the currency and appropriateness of the requirements. The committee shall evaluate and produce an annual assessment report with analysis of the state of the requirements indicating successes and calling attention to those areas that are falling short of expectations. Finally, the Committee is asked to chart strategic directions for the student computer requirements that ensure successful integration of technology into student learning along with providing directions for the institution to better support and integrate this student technology.
To these ends the Student Computer Requirement Committee will provide meeting minutes to Faculty Senate, the Coulter Faculty Center, IT Client Services Technology Management team, the office of the director of Institutional Research and Planning, and the office of the director of University Assessment—and seek feedback from those units, as may be appropriate to the committee’s charge and the university strategic plan.