Joint Boards Articulation Commission


Meeting Summary Notes

December 18, 2002

Conference Call


Members Present

Mary Kay Tetreault, Portland State University, Chair
Jim Arnold, Oregon University System
Dave Phillips, Clatsop Community College
Michele Sandlin, Oregon State University
Karen Sprague, University of Oregon
Glenda Tepper, Clackamas Community College
Mark Wahlers, Concordia University
Elaine Yandle-Roth, Community Colleges and Workforce Development

Mary Kay Tetreault called the meeting to order at 9:07 a.m. and Jim Arnold called the roll.


1. Announcements and Suggestions for the Agenda

Michele Sandlin requested that the topic of “EdFund” be added to the agenda.

2. Minutes of the October 9, 2002, Meeting

The minutes of the October 2002 meeting were approved as submitted.

3. JBAC Annual Report, 2001-02

Arnold reported that the 2001-02 annual report was finalized, posted to the JBAC website (, and copies distributed to Board members at the December 4, 2002, meeting of the Joint Boards Working Group. Copies have also been distributed to the OUS Academic Council.

4. Report from the Student Transfer Committee, Including Related Meetings and Issues

Associate of Science Transfer Degree Proposals

Dave Phillips reported on the most recent meeting of the Student Transfer Committee, held on October 23, 2002. During that meeting, an update was provided on the progress toward an AS/OT in Business, as well as an extended discussion on a proposed “generic” AS/OT. This latter conversation included grappling with such questions as “how is this different than the AA/OT?” and “how does this satisfy student needs?”

One issue with the AA/OT is that the degree has not been implemented uniformly by the community colleges; there are several different versions. About half of the colleges have versions that more-or-less correspond directly to the statewide general guidelines, but another half make use of sequence requirements, or in some other way put their own “stamp” on the degree (by way of computer science, cultural, and/or health & fitness course requirements, for example). Students who attend more than one community college can find themselves in a trap with competing sets of requirements from college to college. The question was posed: what would it take for the 17 community colleges to all implement the same AA/OT degree? Some suggest that it would take “a mandate from above”: say, a Joint Boards of Education directive that the degree should be implemented uniformly as described in the statewide general guidelines.

There is, of course, significant resistance to eliminating sequence requirements from those AA/OT degrees at the colleges that choose to offer it that way. Some colleges and their faculty members fear loss of enrollment in some courses should sequences be dropped (and they are probably correct); the JBAC should take this issue seriously.

Tetreault inquired about the issue of faculty control of the curriculum. Tepper replied that that is a major consideration at Clackamas Community College where the faculty are quite intent on maintaining sequence requirements.

Phillips indicated that questions foremost in his mind are “what is the AA/OT?” “what is its purpose?” The AA/OT is a statewide degree, developed so students can go on to an OUS institution with lower-division general education requirements satisfied and have junior standing for registration purposes. This is quite different than any other degree. The initial implementation of the degree was uniform, but with the JBAC-recommended changes to the degree over the years, local modifications have evolved.

Is there anything that the JBAC can do? Can we take action to take on this? The conversation is taking a lot of energy on some campuses and it appears to be going nowhere in particular.

If there is reluctance to pursue statewide mandated conformity, how do we proceed? All of the degrees do meet statewide requirements, even if some of the requirements are not necessarily in students’ best interests. Some community colleges even tell students to go to another college to complete the degree, given the complexity of putting together a degree program on some campuses with courses from a variety of institutions.

Some individuals on campuses say directly that the degree is “not working.” Andy Duncan (OUS) gave a presentation at the recent Articulation & Transfer Conference that pointed out the complexities associated with the myriad general education requirements and how students who fail to complete the degree before transfer can be severely affected by the differences in their coursework when compared to the lower-division general education requirements of the OUS campus to which they transfer.

Is it possible for a mandate to be issued? This could only be done through the Joint Boards and this would be a very huge step for the JBAC to recommend and the Joint Boards to act upon.

Yandle-Roth indicated that the primary issue here is one of “sequences or not.” Maybe it is possible to develop some kind of “regional approach” to considering transfer (among community colleges as well as from community college to OUS).

Three possible “fixes” to the sequences issue which have been proposed during past meetings of the JBAC and the Student Transfer Committee (STC) (see, for example, the JBAC minutes of October 9, 2002, and the STC minutes of October 23, 2002), but not discussed at length at this meeting, are: (1) the development of a generic AS/OT (that must be implemented according to statewide guidelines); (2) a “mandate” from above (Joint Boards) that would enforce conformity of implementation of the AA/OT; and (3) a “petition” process whereby a student who starts an AA/OT at a non-sequence-requiring college and then transfers to a sequence-requiring college could petition for completion of the degree without sequences (which would necessarily lead to more bureaucracy in the implementation of the degree).

Perhaps an acceptable “fix” to the AA/OT problem is the development of an AS/OT that would be adopted only as the JBAC develops and recommends. That is, if a college chooses to offer the degree, it must conform exactly to the statewide guidelines.

Tetreault commented that this is a very complex issue and asked if anyone had a recommendation. The suggestion was made to develop a policy document that lays out the issues the JBAC has discussed and to make some recommendations. Arnold agreed to produce a draft document that the Student Transfer Committee could consider and discuss at its January 29th meeting and then bring back to JBAC.

With regard to the Student Transfer Committee’s discussion of the generic AS transfer degree, some confusion was expressed. Arnold, Tepper and Yandle-Roth all were of the opinion that the STC had expressed a desire for the proposal not to proceed any further and were surprised at November meetings (CIA, joint CAO/Academic Council) where the proposal was presented as “alive”.

The discussion then turned to the proposed AS/OT in Business. Tetreault indicated that she had talked with PSU Business School staff who explained to her the recent discussions of the Statewide Business Chairs and University Deans group. In addition to preparing a student for transfer to an OUS institution (with the intention of pursuing a business degree), it also would be a degree for community college students who want a credential that specifies “business” as their degree. This would be of some advantage in certain areas of employment. Yandle-Roth indicated that the AS/OT-Bus is significantly different from the AAS degree is Business. The transfer degree would make the student more marketable as the skills required in the transfer degree are much higher than the AAS degree. The focus is keeping the student’s options open for transfer to an OUS business school/program. Arnold indicated that the only “needs assessment” in this area has been informal, in terms of reports from the campuses that students are very interested in having such a degree available to them. Karen Sprague cautioned against using degrees to replace advising.

The Academic Council is set to discuss the AS/OT-Bus issue again at their next meeting tomorrow, and Arnold agreed to email JBAC members with the outcome of that discussion. (Note: The Academic Council subsequently agreed to accept the latest AS/OT-Bus proposal on December 19, 2002, the last step needed before taking it to the Boards of Education and Higher Education.)

With respect to the generic AS/OT, do we want to stop working on it? Does the JBAC want STC to move forward? The JBAC charged the STC with further work on the generic degree, with regard to specific discipline-specific examples. Sandlin agreed to forward such examples, drawn from the OUS experience with their generic AS transfer-degree agreements.

Proposed AA/OT Guiding Principles and SP111

The Student Transfer Committee also conducted an extended discussion of the language for the proposed AA/OT guiding-principles draft (as initiated by the JBAC last year). Lane Community College (LCC) faculty members have been especially active in examining the language for the proposed guidelines, and three LCC faculty members were in attendance as guests at the STC meeting. There was a discussion of the migration of speech requirements over time, as well as the role of studio arts courses in the transfer degree. The outcome of the discussion was that we need to go back to the genesis of the development of AA/OT requirements to see what the prevailing philosophy of the time was, and what concerns were raised. There was the opinion that there is the need to look at the educational outcomes desired rather than merely specific courses that make up the distribution requirements. Yandle-Roth and Jim Buch agreed to go back to archival documents to give the STC a better sense of the origins of the AA/OT requirements, hoping that will give us a better sense of where to go with these issues.

The next STC meeting is scheduled for late January.

5. Data Sharing with OICA Institutions

Yandle-Roth reported that she met with the registrars group of the Oregon Independent Colleges Association in November. The issued addressed was “what would it take to initiate a data exchange between community colleges and the independent institutions?” The outcome of the discussion was that the OICA campuses are unable at this time to get their data so organized to complete a data exchange similar to the one community colleges conduct with the Oregon University System. OICA issues an annual data report that furnishes some of the desired information, such as the number of admitted transfer students from community colleges to OICA campuses, but no information on student performance is available. In sum, the outcome of the discussion is that it is not possible to conduct a data exchange program similar to the CCWD/OUS program at this time.

6. Transfer Activity in Oregon Postsecondary Education

Arnold announced that the transfer activity report is now finished and dated with today’s date. Copies of the report have been distributed to the Joint Boards Working Group already, and a PDF version of the full report is available at the JBAC website ( Arnold would like to JBAC members to read the report and engage in another discussion of possible policy implications arising from the data at the February meeting.

7. Report from 2002 Articulation & Transfer Conference

Arnold reported that the 2002 event was, from all appearances and reports, a huge success. Almost the same number of individuals participated this year compared to last (about 250). The Chancellor’s keynote address was a particularly big hit and received many positive comments on the evaluation forms. Arnold thanked the numerous JBAC members who participated in this year’s event.

8. JBAC Workplan Review

After the last JBAC meeting, and that discussion of the JBAC workplan, Arnold and Yandle-Roth got together to draft a new version of the document, this time with a revised format. That document was included with the JBAC materials for this meeting. While most members were supportive of the new format, the suggestion was made to include an “outcomes” column that would indicate when an item had been addressed and/or completed. (For example, the “annual report” item would be shown to have been completed in November.) Also, there was a suggestion for a “to do” list for the year, and the person or group responsible. Arnold and Yandle-Roth agreed to continue working on the format and content of the workplan and present it at the next meeting.

9. Other Topics

OregonMentor. Sandlin inquired about EdFund and OregonMentor (a planned statewide web project for admissions, advising, and financial aid information for students). Was there a presentation done to solicit community college involvement? No one knew of any such efforts.

EDI. Sandlin asked to have “EDI Implementation” as an agenda item for the next meeting in January.

Common calendar. Where are we in the move toward a common academic calendar for the community colleges and OUS campuses? Some of the colleges have made a move to coincide their fall term calendar with OUS, but not all are there. A recent survey on this issue, issued over the CIA listserv, did not have all colleges reporting in with their status. No movement has been made on this issue on a statewide basis. Only individual colleges have taken action.

10. Meeting Schedule and Adjourn

The next meeting will be the conference call in January. The meeting was adjourned at 10:40 a.m.


The remaining meetings for the year are as follows:
January 15, 2003                 
9:00 - 11:00 Conference Call
February 19, 2003                10:00 - 2:00 at OSU
March 19, 2003                     9:00 - 11:00 Conference Call
April 16, 2003                        9:00 - 11:00 Conference Call
May 14, 2003                        9:00 - 11:00 Conference Call
June 11, 2003                       10:00 - 2:00 at OIT Metro



Prepared by Jim Arnold
OUS Academic Affairs
Revised: January 15, 2003