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first element in the design process focuses on learning context and results in
a set of design criteria to guide and monitor the development of design
specifications and new designs in the elements to follow. As such, the
description of learning context is arguably the most important element of the
design process. It provides overall direction and ensures that the resulting
design is tailored to the needs of a particular situation. The design criteria
can be used as a "report card" to assess how the rest of the design process is
progressing and to indicate needed adjustments.
section is organized into the following parts: (1) the design assumptions for
NDTYI, (2) the changing context of higher education in the United States with
emphasis on the TYI, and (3) the design criteria for NDTYI. Before moving
forward with these parts, an explanation is provided of how the learning
context of TYIs was addressed for the purposes of NDTYI.
of Work in Addressing Learning Context
process of work used to develop what is reported in this section started with a
review of literature on the context of the TYI and discussions by the NDTYI
Work Group. Work on the design assumptions was begun in preparation for a
graduate course dealing with planning and evaluating TYIs, taught at the
University of Minnesota during the spring of 1995 by George Copa. At about the
same time, the NDTYI Work Group developed a preliminary set of characteristics
of the context faced by TYIs on entering the 21st century and a preliminary set
of design criteria that could be use to ensure that the NDTYI design
specification and new designs were responsive and effective in addressing the
context characteristics. A similar effort was undertaken as a class project in
the graduate course noted above. The 21 participants in the graduate course
were practicing administrators on TYI campuses or at the state system offices
in Minnesota and Wisconsin. As a strategy for use in identifying the context of
TYIs, each group was asked to first identify and prioritize the problems to be
faced, the opportunities to be explored, and the goals to be sought by
effective TYIs on entering the 21st century.
the first meeting of the National Design Group, members were asked to undergo
the same activity of identifying problems, opportunities, and goals in view of
the conclusions of major reports addressing the context of TYIs (provided by
the project staff), other reports with which they were familiar, and their own
experiences. The NDTYI Work Group then presented the preliminary design
criteria it had developed from its efforts at describing the learning context.
The strategy used in the project was aimed at getting the original thoughts of
the National Design Group, but also benefiting from more extensive work by the
NDTYI Work Group and the graduate class. Following the presentation to the
National Design Group by the NDTYI Work Group, the National Design Group was
asked to prioritize the problems, opportunities, and goals of TYIs that most
needed attention in new designs for these institutions. The results of these
efforts were used to revise the recommendations of the NDTYI Work Group
regarding design criteria, and the revisions are presented below as the NDTYI's
design criteria. This set of criteria was reviewed several times by the
National Design Group at subsequent meetings. As a result of the review by the
National Design Group, another section was added to the learning context
description presented in this report. The added section focuses on the key
dimensions of the changing context of TYIs--changes which must be faced and
serve as a basis for interest in and real concern about new designs for these
institutions. The design criteria serve as a response to the dimensions of
change, providing strategic clues about how to proceed in the NDTYI.
will be apparent later in this section, a key part of new designs for the TYI
on entering the 21st century will be dealing with a changing context on several
dimensions at the same time. With this in mind, we wanted to formulate a few
assumptions that would capture the essence of the strategy that we felt would
lead to an appropriate design stance or posture for effective TYIs in the future.
first assumption we selected is shown in Exhibit 1. The assumption brings
attention to the idea of viewing change as a friend rather than an enemy, and
letting change assist in finding a productive, satisfying way into the future
for higher education. In "dancing with change," the question arises, "Is the
higher education institution or some outside organization or force leading the
dance process?" Our answer is that perhaps the leadership changes from time to
time, and that the study of dance from a multicultural perspective suggested
that there are many forms of dance where there is no one leader. A whole
community may be involved in an integrated way in the whole dance process. The
same might be the case for TYIs--at times follower, at other times leader, and
at times both or neither. Another characteristic of dance is that there are
many unique in forms and manners, yet there are often clear patterns that
identify particular dances, one from another. The agile and effective TYIs of
the future will need to be astute in ascertaining patterns in complex and
turbulent change as guides to mission, vision, and effective responses.
Design Assumption for NDTYI
is required now is a purposeful consideration of the alternatives an
institution can imagine itself making, as well as a real discussion of the
consequences of not changing at all. To convene such a conversation is to dance
with change." Pew Higher Education Roundtable, 1994, p. 12A
Pew report (Pew Higher Education Roundtable, 1994), from which the first design
assumption is taken, goes on to note that convening the "conversation with
change" is "to enter into a relation with a future not yet fully imagined. To
demur, . . . is to let someone else choose your partner as well as call the
tune" (p. 12A). They advise that the conversations emanate from "a strong
collective sense of an institution's identity" (p. 12A). They must balance
faculty collegiality with recognition that postponing painful steps is not an
option, and draw on the best ideas of faculty for maintaining institutional
energy and responsiveness.
second design assumption is captured by Wheatley and Kellner-Rogers (1996) in a
and shown in Exhibit 2. Higher education must more clearly recognize and make
use of its interdependencies with many individuals, organizations,
associations, agencies, and communities. The challenge for TYIs that aspire to
be really effective is to continuously seek and find many (large and small)
synergies with other entities where resources can be leveraged and multiplied
with positive, catalytic, and symbiotic impacts for all those involved. In the
language of the Internet, institutions must be effective at "surfing for
synergies" to improve their quality and effectiveness in the context of the
problems, opportunities, and goals that they face with increasingly scarce
Design Assumption for NDTYI
participates in the creation and evolution of its neighbors. There are no
unaffected outsiders. No one system dictates conditions to another. All
participate together in creating the conditions of their interdependence."
Wheatley & Kellner-Rogers, 1996, p. 14
background for this section, several different reports will be reviewed that
present descriptions of the changing context of higher education and, more
particularly, TYIs. As noted above in the section on Process of Work in
describing the learning context, except for the most recent reports, these are
the materials that were presented to the NDTYI Work Group and National Design
Group for their consideration in identifying the problems, opportunities, and
goals to be addressed in NDTYI. The reports are presented in chronological
the Nature and Operation of Institutional Excellence in Vocational Education
this report published by the National Center for Research in Vocational
Education and authored by Wardlow, Swanson, and Migler (1992), the focus was on
the essential elements that characterize exemplary vocational education
institutions. This report is included here because vocational education
institutions (e.g., technical institutes and colleges, private proprietary
institutions) are an important form of the TYI, and vocational education
programs are a major component of comprehensive community colleges, another
form of the TYI. The fourteen institutions selected for study through a
nomination process included six secondary and eight postsecondary (four
technical colleges, one proprietary technical institute, and three community
colleges) institutions scattered across the United States. The themes
associated with effective institutions were categorized under the following
headings: (1) School Climate, (2) Administration, (3) Teacher Attributes, (4)
Student Attributes, (5) Vocational-Student Organization, (6) Curriculum, (7)
Support Services, and (8) Institutional Marketing. Within this framework the
following characteristics were described as being associated with institutional
(physical and material) Dimension: Effective institutions had attractive
buildings and facilities; well-organized and attractively arranged classrooms
and laboratories; adequate supplies, equipment, and resource materials;
up-to-date equipment; and adequate or good facilities.
(People) Dimension: Effective institutions had good morale by teachers and
students, a caring attitude toward students, camaraderie and respect within
programs, low turnover of teachers and administrators, faculty input in hiring
decisions, and faculty cooperation across departments.
System (School Organization) Dimension: Effective institutions had good
communication among all personnel; trust and respect among faculty, support
staff, and administrators; administrators knowledgeable about programs;
collaborative decisionmaking; considerable input by teaching staff in hiring
new teachers; and collegial teacher-to-teacher relationships.
(Norms, Beliefs, and Values) Dimension: Effective institutions had overt focus
on high standards, philosophy of importance of quality work, strong sense of
mission, and unique traits or emphases that differentiated them from other
Style: Effective institutions had administrations that were people-oriented and
tended to delegate responsibilities to other staff.
Expectations: Effective institutions had administrations with high-performance
expectations for themselves and their staff.
Taking: Effective institutions had administrations that were willing to take
risks and start new ventures, were able to foresee trends and consequential
events, and developed an atmosphere of creativity.
Effective institutions had administrations that supported new ideas and
proposals and were willing to circumvent bureaucracies to solve problems.
and Sense of Mission: Effective institutions had administrations that instilled
a sense of vision and mission in students, staff, and communities.
Attitude: Effective institutions had instructors who had genuine concern for
each student, were patient and willing to create opportunities for students,
and offered support beyond typically expected student-teacher relationships.
of Student Diversity: Effective institutions had teachers who recognized that
students differ in abilities, wants, and needs.
Climate and High Expectations: Effective institutions had teachers who created
an environment that was demanding and yet friendly and encouraging.
Competence and Professional Demeanor: Effective institutions had teachers who
were adept in teaching methods and knowledge of subject matter and provided a
positive professional work role model.
of Faculty and Staff: Effective institutions had low teacher turnover.
Attributes: Effective institutions had students with a strong sense of pride,
positive feelings about being involved in programs, and high-performance
expectations for themselves.
Student Organizations: Effective institutions had active vocational student
organizations, and students and faculty were actively involved in the
of Programs/Advisory Committees: Effective institutions had curricula in some
form of a competency-based framework, with content and staff training developed
through advisory committees.
Ownership: Effective institutions had strong faculty ownership for the
curriculum of the program through their major responsibility for developing,
implementing, and updating it; and faculty took pride in course materials.
Dual Curriculum: Effective institutions had curricula that addressed both
current technical skills, effective personal development, and general
problem-solving skills--a holistic education.
Services: Effective institutions had well-developed support services for
students, including general education programs, career counseling, and
placement for students and clerical support for instructors.
Marketing: Effective institutions had active marketing strategies focused on
related industries and their geographic areas, faculty and advisory committees
were involved in marketing, and the institutions were actively involved in
themes were found to be consistent across institutions that were studied, both
secondary and postsecondary. Wardlow et al. (1992) suggest that
is likelihood that the most effective way to develop these characteristics in
an institution is for that institution to participate in a mentoring process
with an exemplary institution, in which participants in the aspiring
institution gain a holistic view of the concept of institutional excellence.
of the Wingspread Group on Higher Education (1993)
set of discussions and report focused on the question, "What does society need
from higher education?" It was sponsored by four foundations--The William and
Flora Hewlett Foundation; The Johnson Foundation, Inc.; Lilly Endowment, Inc.;
and The Pew Charitable Trusts. The preface to the report of the prestigious
group, chaired by former U.S. Secretary of Labor William Brock, states,
increasingly open, global economy requires--absolutely requires--that all of us
be better educated, more skilled, more adaptable, and more capable of working
collaboratively. These economic considerations alone mean that we must change
the ways we teach and learn. But, an increasingly diverse society, battered
(and that is not too strong a term) by accelerating change, requires more than
workplace competence. It also requires that we do a better job of passing on to
the next generation a sense of the value of diversity and the critical
importance of honesty, decency, integrity, compassion, and personal
responsibility in a democratic society. Above all, we must get across the idea
that the individual flourishes best in a genuine community to which the
individual in turn has an obligation to contribute. (p. i)
report notes that there is no single "silver bullet cure" for higher education
in the United States; rather, improvements will come campus by campus with
discussion and action requiring, "honest introspection and some very hard and
even controversial new thinking about its roles and responsibilities,
principles, and priorities" (p. ii).
challenging higher education to raise its learning outcome standards, the
report states, "A disturbing and dangerous mismatch exists between what
American society needs of higher education and what it is receiving" (p. 1).
Citing changes in the economy, demography, culture, technology, and
globalization, the challenge for institutions of higher education is to prepare
individuals to "learn their way through life" (p. 2). The response to the
question of what does society need from higher education advocated in the
report, particularly as relates to TYIs, is as follows:
needs stronger, more vital forms of community.
needs an informed and involved citizenry.
needs graduates able to assume leadership roles in American life.
needs a competent and adaptable workforce.
needs an affordable, cost-effective educational enterprise offering lifelong
all, it needs a commitment to the American promise--the idea that all Americans
have the opportunity to develop their talents to the fullest. (p. 2)
report issues three major challenges to higher education institutions:
values more seriously.
institution should ask itself "what it proposes to do to assure that next
year's entering students will graduate as individuals of character more
sensitive to the needs of community, more competent in their ability to
contribute to society, and more civil in their habits of thought, speech, and
action" (p. 9). In responding, the Wingspread Group in Higher Education notes
that institutions should consider two key lessons: (1) the values institutions
act on and exemplify in their own behaviors are much more powerful in teaching
than is simply proclaiming values, and (2) there is no substitute for direct
experience on campuses and in the world beyond in teaching values. Campuses
must model and teach the skills of community in very active ways.
student learning first.
both college and university, "must for the foreseeable future focus
overwhelmingly on what their students learn and achieve" (p. 13). The emphasis
on clearer and higher learner outcomes is a central strategy advocated for all
institutions in the report's statement that putting student learning first
means (among other things) that institutions
exactly what their entering students need to succeed.
from where the students begin and help them achieve explicitly stated
institutional standards for high achievement.
their programs--curriculum, schedules, support services, office hours--to meet
the needs of students they admit, not the convenience of staff and faculty. (p.
the Wingspread Group's words, "Putting learning at the heart of the academic
enterprise will mean overhauling the conceptual, procedural, curricular, and
other architecture of postsecondary education on most campuses" (p. 14). And
the overall response may need to be different for different students depending
on their ability to handle independence, support, and challenging standards.
a nation of learners.
opening sentence discussing this challenge is, "We must redesign all of our
learning systems to align our entire education enterprise with the personal,
civic, and workplace needs of the 21st Century" (p. 19). That alignment will
"demand that American education transform itself into a seamless system that
can produce and support a nation of learners, providing access to educational
services for learners as they need them, when they need them, and wherever they
need them" (p. 19). They point out that the benchmarks for how to do this might
come from any level of education (i.e., preschool to postgraduate) and from any
economic sector (i.e., educational, private, government). The concluding
statement is, "America needs a more collaborative, cost-effective and
better-articulated way of responding to the lifelong learning needs of growing
numbers of its citizens" (p. 21).
respect to financing these changes, the report is straightforward and again
challenging in stating,
education's best financial hope rests on helping itself by helping expand the
nation's wealth, by providing the knowledgeable and highly skilled workforce
that can enhance our productivity, revitalize our communities, and rebuild our
sense of "we". . . . We also believe that institutions that defer change until
new resources are available will find themselves waiting for a very long time.
Financial salvation will begin on the campus, or it will probably not begin at
all. (p. 25)
a New Model for Thinking and Planning
contribution of this report, authored by Banach and Lorenzo (1993) and
published by Institute for Future Studies at Macomb Community College in
Warren, Michigan, is in describing succinctly the radical changes emerging in
America at the end of the 20th century as a backdrop for design and/or redesign
of TYIs. These changes in context, generating both challenges and
opportunities, are expected to dictate the need for bold new strategies in
design and operation of TYIs. The key dimensions of the emerging context
resulting from their environmental scanning are as follows:
Vital Human Statistics
mosaic society (growing multiculturalism)
shifts (geographic mobility to urban areas)
The Workplace, the Workforce, and the Exchange of Value
transitions (to producing and delivering customized quality and variety)
transformations (causing disparity between workplace needs and workforce
of wealth (the gap between the rich and poor is greater than at any time since
records were kept)
Climate: The Governing Context in which People and Organizations Pursue Their
reflections (increased attention to public opinion)
Values and Lifestyles
youth (more children are at-risk)
and households (increased diversity of family forms)
base (home is becoming more of a "command center" for life)
insulation (more self-centered, individuals isolating themselves)
pampered consumer (expect maximum convenience, high quality, good service, and
and Discoveries: Machines, Processes, and Techniques that Enhance or Replace
the Human Element
explosion (balancing technological development and practical applications)
Society's Efforts To Produce an Enlightened Citizenry
(stimulated by the forces of funding cutbacks, business seeking new ways to get
the training they need, news media's highlighting inadequacies in public
education, and advent of new educational technology)
Opinion: Commonly Held Perceptions and Understandings
opinion paradox (public attitudes [i.e., seeking simple solutions to complex
problems] are in direct contrast to what is needed)
Contexts: How People Organize To Relate, Share, Achieve, and Compete
(responding to individual needs and wants)
forces (increased participation of women in the workforce)
limits (more things are no longer possible or practical)
faddism (need to separate fads from foundations for progress)
for leaders (fewer leaders seem to be available and the rewards are diminishing)
Affairs: Interactions of Groups and Nations that Affect the Marketplace or
(resulting in new coalitions, economic entities, political alliances, and
standards) (pp. 2-3)
the context of these changes, Banach and Lorenzo (1993) recommend the following
changes in the planning (design) process:
planning model needs to emphasize process over product.
must develop a clear sense of purpose by understanding their relationship to
the larger society.
must devote greater effort to measuring their effectiveness and improving
attitude must be monitored systematically and objectively.
more accurately determine the external forces triggering the need for change,
organizations must strengthen their ability to scan the "local" and "global"
environmental scan must be designed to reflect the expectations of multiple and
strategic planning process must include a means to monitor and influence public
mature organizations, the planning process must provide a basis for continuous
improvement and continuous adaptability. (pp. 32-34)
Public Policy Issues for Higher Education in 1994
the time NDTYI was initiated, the Association of Governing Boards of
Universities and Colleges (1994) published a list of the ten most significant
public policy issues in higher education for 1994. The issues were developed by
a group of higher education policy experts who gathered together in October
1993. The "front burner" issues, which provide a sense of the challenges facing
governing boards, trustees, presidents, and chancellors responsible for higher
education systems and campuses, including TYIs, were the following (not listed
in priority order):
Competition for public funds will become more acute at the local, state, and
federal levels, further squeezing funding for higher education.
Public agency oversight of institutions will grow, as will demands for greater
institutional accountability regarding finances, administration, and academic
Productivity, and Cost Containment:
State and federal policymakers will intensify their pressure on institutions to
increase productivity and provide access at reasonable cost.
New student-aid legislation promises dramatic change. Direct loans, national
service, and income-contingent loan repayments are on the way.
Priorities for Research:
Growth in federal funds for university research will slow, and priorities may
continue to shift to research supporting economic development.
Institutions will be asked to do more to address societal problems, including
issues concerning race and diversity.
National Health-Care Debate:
Every college and university will be affected by the outcome of the national
debate on health-care reform.
Public scrutiny of intercollegiate athletics will continue amid ongoing
controversies about cost containment, gender equity, and the effects of reforms.
in Public School Reform:
Colleges and universities will be asked to do more to advance school reform.
Elimination of mandatory retirement in 1994 could affect the finances and
faculty demographics of many institutions. (p. 6)
Issues Facing America's Community Colleges
report, published by The Institute for Future Studies (1994) of Macomb
Community College, describes the most important issues facing community
colleges in 1994-1995, the time period at which NDTYI was just beginning.
Presumably, a new design for the TYI will have to effectively deal with these
issues if it is to be successful. The issues described in the report are as
Everything is changing, what we normally do might not work, and uncertainty of
roles--all of these suggest the need for fundamental change.
Colleges will become more dissimilar, mirroring more heterogeneous communities;
what leads to progress will vary by campus; turbulence of change will lead to
needed changes in direction; need for continuous experimentation and
innovation; no common guideposts among colleges; and variation in focus on near
and far geographic horizon.
Colleges will have greater limits and broader possibilities at the same time,
realization of difference between what society wants and can afford, need
models of entrepreneurship and flexibility, being willing to focus, improvement
by substitution, and comprehensiveness through collaboration among institutions.
Shortage of well-qualified professional staff, many faculty who should retire
but do not, and implementing two-tier systems of rewards and
responsibilities--full and part-time, old and new employees.
Demise of accessibility and affordability; little growth in state and federal
funds; lack of willingness to increase local taxes for college operations;
funding increases will be for very specific purposes; current funding models
incapable of sustaining the system as it is; and new funding strategies will
include workforce development initiatives funded by public and private sources,
community development initiatives funded by communities, special purpose local
revenue efforts, philanthropy and planned giving, grants, and entrepreneurship.
Expansion beyond capabilities; loss of public confidence; requests to be a
partner by everyone in everything; fuzz college agendas; dilemma of increasing
expectations and declining resources; need to mobilize various interest groups
into a coherent whole; and balancing mission, marketplace, and college core
Educational institutions are not sure what business wants, business is not sure
what it wants from educational institutions, debate over whether or not
educational institutions should emphasize general or specific skills, mismatch
of workforce needs and existing educational programming, need to emphasize
relationships between business and industry which match institutional
strengths, future partnerships likely to be narrower and shorter-term, more
synergistically and quickly developed curriculum projects, and need for
educational institutions to make informed market choices.
Documentation of results will move from option to requirement, more assessment
of perception of clients and public-at-large, benchmarks will be in the
direction of world-class standards, need for educational institutions to become
proactive advocates for evaluation of results as means to strengthen programs
and extend base of support, need to use new information technologies to assist
in assessment process, and assessment will be 3 x 4 matrix--measuring mission
and organizational effectiveness and student outcomes and use of the assessment
by academic decisionmakers, public policy officials, taxpayers, and students.
Faculty members are not enthusiastic about new technology; private companies
are positioning to use technology to revolutionize the educational process in
terms such as any time, any place, and any content; educational institutions
are mostly using technology to do the same things faster rather that change
what is being done; and resisting technology is holding back the inevitable.
Community college faculty are not producing or using research, real opportunity
for them to make contribution on the teaching and learning process for
postsecondary students, and way for faculty to renew themselves and advance the
Typically this includes partnerships in community economic development such as
short-term job training, contract education, and workforce development; often
has entrepreneurial flair and quick response; some see as harmful to
traditional mission of TYI and others see as best hope for future; should be
strategy to evaluate; and progressive institutions are moving this form of
operation to forefront of their educational efforts.
Community colleges traditionally have a geographic focus; challenge to
geographic boundary is coming from specialization, customization,
globalization, and technology; and the traditional gentleperson's agreement
between the community college and its local geographic community will need to
Public interest and trust of the community college is slipping; public support
usually results from a public perception of worthy purpose and quality
performance; public is now assessing community colleges on the basis of cost,
quality, and access; need for colleges to be clear about purposes, continuously
improve performance, and focus on issues of public concern that match the
Need for community colleges to reexamine their core mission to see if it needs
to be changed (e.g., what are implications of really serving a community,
really being student sensitive, really being accessible, really being
up-to-date), need forums to deal with previous untouchable topics, and need to
be honest about what colleges should not keep doing. (pp. 1-28)
Framework for Fundamental Change in the Community College
report was authored by Lorenzo and LeCroy (1994) and published by The Institute
for Future Studies at Macomb Community College. The subtitle to the report is
"Creating a Culture of Responsiveness." Lorenzo and LeCroy's operating
assumption was that community colleges need to change in fundamental ways,
meeting new needs more precisely and working from a more cohesive structure.
The key assumptions they set forth to undergird their framework for fundamental
change were as follows:
core need is for fundamental, rather than incremental, change.
of fundamental change are characterized by a lack of fit between the problems
pressing in on society and the solutions that its institutions have available
such societal disequilibrium, new skills, talents, and language are required to
establish better fit and a more coherent path.
overall goal for the community college is to create a culture of responsiveness
that more clearly relates its comprehensive mission to these new societal
circumstances. (p. 1)
elements make up the proposed framework for change:
With holistic thinking comes attention to connectedness, interdependence,
systems, patterns of change, symbiotic networks, horizontal decisionmaking
structures, seamless web of service, and turning competitors into
collaborators. They suggest that college priorities be set through "an
outside-in thinking process: (1) what's best for the community; (2) what's best
for the college; (3) what's best for the unit; (4) what's best for the staff"
The challenge here was to pick up the pace of decisionmaking to better fit the
needs of the Information Age. The mechanisms for increasing speed included
flattening organizations, using information technologies, and establishing
Roles and Redesign Work:
The suggested approaches to redefining roles and redesigning work include (1)
increased specialization (rather than expecting a person to do everything well)
along four lines--designing curriculum, presenting information, managing the
learning process, and assessing learning outcomes; (2) increased adaptability
in operating structures and professional roles over time; (3) increased
crossfunctionality across disciplines and functional areas; and (4) increased
use of part-time faculty to increased speed of change.
The suggestion is for colleges to move to an offense position because "doing
more with less" is not a viable long-term financial strategy. The new language
of funding includes rigorous fiscal discipline, working smarter and leaner,
outsourcing and privatization, entrepreneurial options, differential pricing,
market niches, grantspersonship, fund development campaigns, collaboration, and
Here attention is directed toward providing more choice in terms of content,
format, time, method, and setting. Practices likely to become more mainstream
include home study, open entry/open exit, satellite learning centers, credit
for experience, child care provisions, and customized offerings. The profile of
colleges may take different directions as markets respond to these choices in
Note was made that attention to relevancy may be the most painful change for
community colleges. Being relevant will involve honesty and introspection;
constant dialogue with customers and competitors; providing strong general and
technical skills; questioning the value of associate degrees, the academic
calendar, and faculty-search process; and real commitments to multicultural
goals and lifelong learning.
Technology is seen as a powerful "boundary breaker" for community colleges
allowing the college to feasibly increase choices and horizons. Major hurdles
include cost, training, and enhanced use for both administration and instruction.
The centerpiece in building new relationships will be moving from a focus on
"teaching" to one of "learning" and from "faculty-centered" to
"student-centered." The commitment to cultivating new patterns of
relationships, both internal and external, will be tested in the results of
moving from line decision making to team decision making; from adversary to
partner between management and labor; from faculty as information provider to
consultant and coach; from autonomy and independence in services to avoiding
duplication, waste, and gaps in services; from holding on to sharing power and
resources across institutional borders; and from reluctance to enthusiasm in
building relationships with K-12 public schools.
Attention must shift from measuring inputs to measuring learning outcomes for
all dimensions of the colleges' activities, traditional and new and emerging.
The suggestion is for the college to demonstrate a continuing capacity to
update and become stronger. The aim is to be a "learning organization" with
constant and significant attention to professional development for all college
staff. (pp. 10-21)
this report published by the Miami-Dade Community College Foundation, McCabe
(1995) addresses four major issues facing community colleges: "the demand for
more highly educated workers is increasing and will continue to increase; more
undereducated and underskilled workers are attempting to enter the workforce;
there is an ever expanding dependent underclass; and in most cases community
colleges are receiving less financial support" (p. 1). By not providing
adequate resources to community colleges, legislators are "starving the most
promising solution" to resolving the first three issues noted above. McCabe
goes on to document the positive effects of community colleges on worker
training, addressing the needs of the undereducated and underskilled, and
developing economic independence. He concludes that community colleges are
"undervalued, under-appreciated, and underfunded" (p. 10). Major symptoms of
the underfunding include "a rapid increase in sections taught by part-time
faculty, a decrease in support personnel, inadequate funds to stay current with
technical equipment and library materials, and non-competitive salaries" (p. 11).
Assessment of Vocational Education
National Assessment of Vocational Education was mandated by the U.S. Congress
as a part of the 1990 Perkins Act. The Office of Educational Research and
Improvement in the U.S. Department of Education was assigned the task of
conducting the assessment. Its purpose was to examine the outcomes of the 1990
Perkins Act and make recommendations concerning future reauthorization. A major
component of the assessment was the examination of postsecondary vocational
education, which largely occurs and is a significant purpose of TYIs.
examining participation in postsecondary vocational education, the assessment
resulted in the following conclusions (Boesel, Hudson, Deich, and Masten, 1994):
two-thirds of postsecondary enrollments in sub-baccalaureate institutions are
by students in vocational programs.
with rising costs and the decreasing size of the traditional college-age
student cohort, enrollments in postsecondary vocational education continue to
increase (at about the same rate as for postsecondary academic programs).
vocational programs serve a wider diversity of students in terms of ethnicity,
disability, and disadvantages than other postsecondary programs.
in postsecondary vocational programs are increasing in occupational areas of
job growth--thereby responding to the labor market.
is high demand for short-term programs reflected in proprietary institution
enrollments, suggesting a conflicting need for longer education and immediate
income (noted as one of the "greatest challenges of postsecondary vocational
education" (p. 55).
vocational students have low completion rates (similar to academic programs)
(26-65% over a period of 2.5 years for full-time students), even though there
are economic gains with program completion. From trend data, the conclusion is
that students in sub-baccalaureate programs are leaving school without
credentials at an increasing rate.
these conclusions in mind, the assessment makes the following recommendations
for reauthorization of the Perkins Act to improve postsecondary vocational
. . more closely target funds on institutions with large and growing
concentrations of special population students (as a way to better serve all
special populations of students).
. . funds should be targeted within institutions on programs in areas with
growing job demand (as a way to increase vocational education's responsiveness
and students' employment prospects).
. . emphasize the use of funds to substantially upgrade the development of
vocational students' conceptual skills, especially at the secondary level (as a
way to better prepare students for postsecondary education). (Boesel et al.,
1994, pp. 54-55)
themes in the assessment's summary report (Boesel & McFarland, 1994) as it
relates to postsecondary vocational education include (1) closer linkage of
secondary and postsecondary programs (Tech Prep); (2) better integration of
occupational and academic programs; (3) more accessible and responsive to a
wide range of learners, particularly those with special needs; and (4)
increased use of occupational and industrial standards as benchmarks for
program quality and ensuring being up-to-date.
the completion of NDTYI, the Society for College and University Planning
published the report entitled
Higher Education: A Vision for Learning in the 21st Century
(Dolence & Norris, 1995). The authors call for major transformation in
higher education as society changes paradigms from the industrial age to the
information age. In their vision, higher education must realign with the needs
of its stakeholders, clients, customers, and beneficiaries. The transformation
of higher education is addressed in four phases: (1) realign, (2) redesign, (3)
redefine, and (4) re-engineer. Key concepts in the transformation from
industrial age to information age include changing from . . .
franchise to learning franchise.
set time for learning to individualized learning.
infrastructure as support system to information infrastructure as the
fundamental instrument of transformation.
technologies to technology synergies.
out for education to just-in-time learning.
education to perpetual learning.
learning systems to fused learning systems.
courses, degrees, and academic calendars to unbundled learning experiences
based on learner needs.
and certification of mastery are combined, with learning and certification of
mastery as related, yet separable issues.
lump-sum payment based on length of academic process to point-of-access payment
for exchange of intellectual property based on value added.
of fragmented, narrow, and proprietary systems to seamless, integrated,
comprehensive, and open systems.
systems to self-forming, self-correcting systems.
predesigned processes to families of transactions customized to the needs of
learners, faculty, and staff.
push to learning vision pull. (p. 4)
making the transformation, higher education will need to realign with the
changing nature of information, knowledge, and scholarship; needs of individual
learners; and the changing nature of work and learning. Redesigning higher
education to integrate these new concepts will include changes such as creating
barrier-free, perpetual learning; offering high-quality, flexible enabling
services; reconceptualizing around essential outcomes; and pushing out
organizational boundaries using technology. Redefining roles in higher
education will include faculty playing a variety of roles: "researcher,
synthesizer, mentor, evaluator and certifier of mastery, architect, and
navigator" (p. 61). The transformation will involve re-engineering around
performance measures such as the following:
to global information networks
learning system available
capability available (p. 77)
authors of this report are clear in their admonition about the choice available
to higher education institutions: "Accept the risks of pursuing the
transformation of higher education to an Information Age model, or the
certainty of stagnation and decline as Industrial Age colleges and universities
fall further and further from favor" (p. 94).
Community College Story
well-known leader in the field of community colleges, George B. Vaughan (1995),
was commissioned by the American Community College Association to prepare this
concise description of the community college movement in the United States.
Since the community colleges represent the most numerous form of public, TYIs,
the report was included in developing design criteria for NDTYI. Vaughan
reports that there were 1,472 public community colleges, technical colleges,
two-year branch colleges, and independent junior colleges in the United States
in 1990, and they enrolled more than 5.7 million students in credit courses.
This number amounts to about 38% of all students enrolled in community colleges
and four-year institutions (p. 10).
summarizes the mission of community colleges as a series of precepts or basic
commitment to serving all segments of society through an open-access admissions
policy that offers equal and fair treatment to all students;
commitment to a comprehensive educational program;
commitment to serving its community as a community-based institution of higher
commitment to teaching; and
commitment to lifelong learning. (p. 3)
community college's mission is usually achieved through the following
traditional categories of programs, activities, and services:
Preparation for transfer to a four-year, baccalaureate institution.
Preparation to directly enter the world of work.
Preparation to enter college courses.
Continuing education for employment and personal reasons.
Services to ensure success in college (e.g., libraries, learning resource
centers, academic and employment advising, financial aid).
regard to the description of community college students, Vaughan contrasts
traditional four-year institutions with "student-as-citizen" to the community
college, where the norm is "citizen-as-student." The citizen-as-student is
described as, "concerned with paying taxes, working full-time, supporting a
family, paying a mortgage, and with other responsibilities associated with the
everyday role of a full-time citizen" (p. 17). The change in role has many
implications for student needs in terms of how, when, and by whom courses are
terms of funding, community colleges are primarily supported by local and state
taxes. According to Vaughan, "On average, nationally, community colleges
receive approximately 50 percent of their funds from state taxes, 21 percent
from local government, 20 percent from tuition and fees, 4 percent from the
federal government and 5 percent from other sources" (p. 22).
view of the positions, findings, and recommendations of the reports described
above and intensive deliberations in the NDTYI Work Group and National Design
Group, a set of key changes in the context of higher education was selected for
attention in NDTYI:
Industrial Age to Knowledge Age:
The technological focus has moved from the Industrial Age to the Information
Age, and now to the Knowledge Age.
National Society to Global Society:
The social and economic horizon has extended from a local and state perspective
to a national perspective, and now to an international perspective.
Minority/Majority to Diversity:
The cultural lens has shifted from a majority dominance, to minority/majority
considerations, and now to the recognition and valuing of cultural diversity.
Waves of Change to Turbulent Change:
The approach to dealing with change has altered from linear thinking to
catching and riding waves of change, and now to coping with the "white water"
of turbulent change.
Resource Growth to Resource Reduction:
The resource assumptions have converted from growth with added resources, to
renewal through resource reallocation, and now to redesigning with resource
Some Wanting Postsecondary Education to All Wanting Postsecondary Education:
The demand curve has veered from a few wanting postsecondary education to some
wanting postsecondary education, and now to all wanting postsecondary education
as a means to a good life and a good society.
are the changes that challenge new designs for the TYI. They form the basis for
the design criteria that were used to guide the development of NDTYI.
the design assumptions and the changing context of the TYI in the United
States, the work of the NDTYI Work Group and the National Design Group, in
combination and interaction, resulted in a set of design criteria to guide and
monitor the next elements in the design process. This section of the report
will give an overview of the design criteria followed by a more detailed
treatment of each criterion in terms of the questions it suggests for each
element in the design process.
of Design Criteria
way of overview, the criteria for the exemplary design of a 21st century TYI
were formulated as follows:
(responding to a context in which the old ways of operating are no longer
Being imaginative means breaking traditional boundaries, moving in different
directions for different institutions (e.g., designing to be different
depending on the situation), practicing entrepreneurship (e.g., searching,
exploring, risking, investing, and incorporating), and growing/improving by
substitutions (e.g., shifting resources, new for old). Imagination involves
exploration of the possible.
(responding to a context where many institutions lack a relevant strategic
The process of mission development as it relates to learners and community,
social and economic agenda, becoming part of our social fabric.
(responding to a context of changing customer needs and expectations):
Being attentive to the diversity of learners (e.g., culture, gender, age),
access (e.g., in terms of cost, distance, time, learning readiness), lifelong
learning, technological change (e.g., technology as subject matter, learning
delivery, and change agent), market competitions, change agent role (e.g.,
proactive, setting the pace), flexibility (e.g., continuous quality improvement
approach, a learning community), pace of response, and customer service.
(responding to a context of no longer being able to get the job done alone):
Being cooperative in terms of curricular integration (e.g., academic/general
and vocational/technical/occupational/professional), institutional articulation
(e.g., secondary/postsecondary, two-year/four-year), partnerships (e.g., with
families, employers, community agencies, other schools/colleges/universities),
brokering of services (e.g., linking of needs and services provided by others,
taking shared responsibility), and supporting a seamless learning system.
(responding to a context where the value of the institution is being questioned):
Being responsible for learning outcomes, quality assurance to stakeholders,
continuous quality improvement, and productivity.
(responding to a context of lack of funds):
Ensuring that there are adequate financial resources to provide the desired
characteristic for each element of the design. Being active in increasing
resources (e.g., short and long term), cost containment, increasing efficiency,
recognizing what is done as a matter of choice (e.g., higher education is
discretionary), equity, and fairness in who pays and receives benefits.
Being Attentive to the Design Criteria
following section of the report focuses more in-depth on each of the design
criteria in terms of what the design criteria mean in action (e.g., on being
imaginative, on being directional). For each of the design criteria, attention
is given to a brief description of the concept underlying the criterion and
then raising questions relating the criterion to each of the elements in the
design process (e.g., signature, outcomes, process, organization).
involves exploration of the possible. It questions the beliefs and myths that
underlie current activities and organizations. Imagination creates metaphors
that help people visualize productive futures. And, it facilitates the design
of models of systems and behaviors that give creative shape to the future.
Being imaginative raises the following questions for each design element:
the signature express ideas or beliefs that are likely to capture the interest
outcomes integrated across the entire range of the institutional mission (e.g.,
academic, personal, and social)?
there a dynamic teaching-learning model that provides alternative experiences
the design provide the systems and structures necessary for a learning
the design make use of community resources in such a way as to ensure the
future vitality of the organization?
and Staff Development
the model and its supporting systems provide opportunities for meaningful roles
and the creative input of staff?
the design provide for continued use of new technology--both in support of the
learning and as an object of instruction?
there explicit links between the design and the surrounding environment so as
to foster mutual adaptation?
the design include plans for continued resource inputs commensurate with
there a provision for symbolism and celebration in the design?
is being imaginative continuously celebrated?
metaphor for direction of the TYI is a camera with the ability to change the
lenses of its organizational procedures to focus the resources of the
institution and diffuse information to make impressions--wide angle to get a
broader view of the context and environment, telescope for the future or to
view other organizations, snapshot to take stock, and video to function in an
ongoing environment. Each member of the learning community should have the same
camera capacity. Being directive raises the following questions for each of the
the signature direct attention and energies of the stakeholders in support of
the outcomes clearly suggest how they are to be attained and how they lead to
the learning process provide multiple options directed by the student?
the organizational structure flexible and responsive?
the way of organizing serve to link and connect the student to the institution
and to the community?
the direction come from shared decisionmaking with faculty, students, and other
members of the community?
the partnerships serve to move the institution in a consistent direction?
and Staff Development
the direction seen in staff actions as facilitators, conveners, instructors,
tutors, and advisors?
is the role of the institution's staff in setting institutional direction?
technology facilitate the connections, linkages, and direction of the
the direction evident in the learning places?
the design an investment returned through employability?
the learning experience lead to economic viability-employment?
celebration a means to gather, to recognize, and to provide the dynamic for
the direction of an institution create an environment of hospitality and being
amount of information is doubling currently at about a rate of every 18-24
months. By the year 2010, that rate may be every three to five days (Noam,
1995). With extraordinary growth in information, institutions of higher
education need to be able to respond quickly. How does an institution of higher
education position itself to be responsive in the 21st century, moving from the
Information Age into the Knowledge Age? Being responsive raises the following
questions for each element in the design process:
the learning signature and mission "timeless"?
the institution responsive to the changing and diverse student body?
the face of employment change in the 21st century, and how will it affect the
types of outcomes for which employers and students are looking?
the institution responsive to curiosity?
will technology be used in the learning process?
do institutions of higher education respond to the increasing diversity of
students and learning styles?
the organization going to be proactive or reactive in its response to changes?
Does a loosely coupled system allow for more responsiveness?
is the role of accreditation agencies in ensuring responsiveness?
the institution be open to new partnerships in the 21st century?
the institution responsive to the public?
and Staff Development
the staff creative, flexible, and excited about change?
is the structure to support the staff?
do institutions of higher education keep up with quickly changing and advancing
the institution modeling openness, creativeness, and characteristics of
do institutions of higher education contain costs, yet remain responsive to
future projections and technologies?
celebrations reflective of change in the 21st century?
the celebrations inclusive of all students?
there celebrations for student retention as well as completion?
are the incentives for staff to be highly responsive?
is a dynamic, mutually beneficial, and well-defined relationship entered into
by two or more individuals or organizations to achieve common goals. The
relationship includes a commitment to a definition of mutual relationships and
goals, a jointly developed structure and shared responsibility, mutual
authority and accountability for success, and sharing of resources and rewards.
Collaboration results in easier, faster, and more coherent access to services
and benefits and in greater effects on systems. Working together is not a
substitute for adequate resources, although the synergistic efforts of the
collaborating partners often result in creative ways to overcome obstacles.
Being collaborative raises the following questions about each element of the
the signature grow out of shared and understood goals?
the signature convey a spirit of collaboration?
the outcomes reflect the ideas, knowledge, and judgment of collaborating
the outcomes clearly understood and supported by the collaborators?
the process supportive of collaborative goals and outcomes?
the process model and foster ongoing collaborative work?
the organization support collaborative efforts?
existing partnerships encourage the formation of new collaborative partners?
and Staff Development
staff provided with training in working collaboratively?
the staff utilize and model good, collaborative practice?
the technology support and enhance collaborative efforts?
the environment conducive to collaboration?
the time and money costs of collaboration understood and accounted for?
celebrations reflect shared as well as differing interests?
celebrations recognize and reward collaboration?
involves meeting responsibilities and includes nuances that range from the
explicit, but usually quite narrow, demands for specific accomplishments of
goals or objectives as might be expressed in a planning document or contract to
the implicit, diffuse, and usually unarticulated expectations that have their
foundations in cultural traditions and mores that truly determine parameters
for institutions and individuals. A metaphor that reflects the range of
meanings for accountability may then be that of the iceberg with a tip visible
on the surface that ostensibly can be approached in a straightforward manner,
and a great hulk of the hidden, treacherous mass underlying the seemingly
benign portion. Many a ship has been wrecked because it has not paid attention
to or has misjudged the degree of danger lurking beneath the waves. Likewise,
being accountable demands attention not only to explicit, but also to implicit
expectations. Being accountable raises the following questions for each element
of the design process:
do images or symbols used to portray the nature and purpose of the organization
communicate the implicit, as well as the explicit, commitments?
can be done to assure that these symbols embody the values that are espoused?
outcomes are recognized, valued, and celebrated?
all stakeholders considered equally important when allocating resources toward
achievement of outcomes?
the learning process incorporate means by which the full range of
accountabilities can be addressed?
the processes that are in place for all participants, regardless of their
learner roles, congruent with the aims and values of the institution--taking
into account its status as a public or private entity?
are the parameters for the institution?
the parameters encompass the notion of "community"?
the parameters permeable?
do partnerships evolve?
all the criteria used in selecting partners made explicit?
commitments are made to partners (e.g., what determines the duration and scope
of a partnership)?
decides when a partnership should be initiated or dissolved?
is the balance of power within the arrangement?
and Staff Development
messages do staff receive about accountability?
the institution provide opportunities for staff to contribute their ideas and
pursue their own interpretations of accountability?
all staff "accountable" to each other as well as to the mission of the
processes in place that cause power and authority to be shared throughout the
staff selected in a manner that reflects accountability in the broad sense?
technology used appropriately as a means, rather than as an end?
decisions concerning technology made in a manner that takes into consideration
the ends and purposes of the institution?
plans for the use of technology made for a relatively long-term basis, and are
support mechanisms available?
persons learning to use technology provided with the necessary time and training?
the limitations of technology discussed?
alternative technologies made available that accommodate the various learning
and thinking styles of the users?
the environment structured appropriately for maximum accommodation of learners
and for learners who are in the roles of facilitating the learning of others?
concomitant messages pervade the environment?
the environment meet the standards of the most user-friendly setting in the
the institution use its resources wisely and in the most cost-effective manner?
all persons involved accountable for resources in the same way and to the same
are resources allocated?
events, achievements, or conditions warrant a celebration?
contributions of all participants celebrated?
messages are conveyed by the celebrations?
resourced means ensuring that there are adequate financial resources to provide
the desired characteristic for each element of the design of a TYI. It means
that lack of funding is never the reason for not doing what is in the best
interest of providing a quality learning experience. Financial resources are
soon converted into the people, learning materials, equipment, and settings
needed to create the desired learning experience. Resourcing has short- and
long-term considerations and a revenue and cost side to the ledger. Being
responsive demands a balance of prudence and risk taking, making the best of
what is in place and having an entrepreneurial spirit to develop new ventures,
making wise use and the best case for existing financial sources, continually
seeking new sources, honing the efficiency of present systems and ways of doing
business, and asking tough questions regarding entirely new approaches. Being
resourced raises the following questions about each element of the design
level of resources is needed to deliver on the promise of the institutional
can the outcomes be translated into added economic value?
can the learning process be kept both most effective and efficient?
can the institution be organized to make the best use of resources on the
campus and in the community?
partnerships will ensure an adequate flow of resources?
and Staff Development
might staffing be approached to make best use of resources and create
additional resources for the future?
new innovations and creative solutions to the learning environment would result
in releasing resources for other uses or making multiple use of existing
level of resources would be needed to create conditions where the expected
response to a resource request to improve the learning experience was "yes"?
does an institution celebrate efficiency without making it the overriding
of an appropriate set of design criteria for NDTYI was a significant element in
the design process. These criteria guided the response to design specifications
and the selection or development of exemplary new designs for the remaining
elements of the design process. The resulting design criteria are grounded in a
close examination of the context of TYIs in the United States--their problems,
assets, opportunities, and aspirations. The selected criteria are that new
designs be imaginative, directional, responsive, collaborative, accountable,
and resourced. In the view of the NDTYI staff, if new institutional designs are
responsive to these criteria in all of the criteria's dimensionality, the
resulting institutions will have good assurance of being successful (perceived
as doing a good job), valued (perceived as doing a job very worth doing), and
used (perceived as a good investment by individuals and community).
This section was written by George Copa.
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