Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Dean Stone's 2011 State of Academic Affairs Address released

The text of the State of Academic Affairs Address, delivered by Dean Barbara Stone at the Assembly of November 12th, has been placed online.

This year’s report comes at a very interesting time: We’ve now been in Chicago for five years and in May we will be graduating the first large entering class of students who were “recruited” in Chicago and have never known Shimer in any other home, though they may have of course made the trek to Mt. Carroll or Waukegan at some point in their time here. Waukegan now has really become a part of Shimer lore. Some faculty have retired, some are thinking about it, we have now hired 4 new members to the faculty in the last 3 years – which is a sizeable percentage of the current faculty - and the student body has been growing by about 15% in each of the last few years. This year also marks the 10 year period when the Shimer faculty completed a review of the entire curriculum, which will be a major focus of this talk and of a community-wide discussion this Tuesday. I should actually clarify the previous sentence. The curriculum review will be the major focus of Tuesday’s discussion; today I will focus more on a couple of other changes that the faculty made in conjunction with the review. Some of these changes will be implemented immediately, others within the next couple of years. There are a large number of other academic matters that are discussed in the curricular report, as well as the larger Self-Study, that I don’t have time to address here. So take a look at both of these documents. They have been emailed to everyone, there are some copies on the floor, and the curricular review is also the Appendix to the Self-Study Report. I want to publicly thank David Shiner for his work in leading the faculty through this curriculum review as well as through the other ones of recent decades

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