Opposing the Western Governors University Model for
Online Education

AS-3069-12/AA (Rev)

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate of the California State University (ASCSU) vigorously
affirm its support for the general primacy of course-based learning in traditional, online, or hybrid modes in preference to the independent-assessment model utilized by Western Governors University (WGU) among others; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the ASCSU strongly oppose using WGU as a positive model in our development
of Cal State Online for significant reasons related to effective teaching and learning, e.g.;

  • WGU emphasizes independent study and learning to the test rather than intellectual exchange with peers and faculty.
  • WGU does not offer a curriculum of complete and consistent courses but instead utilizes study areas, competency roadmaps, and assessment examinations alone.
  • WGU subject-expert faculty design courses and may advise course-mentor coaches but do not necessarily or directly teach students

; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the ASCSU distribute this resolution to the Board of Trustees, the Chancellor,
the Executive Vice Chancellors, the Cal State Online Board, the State University Dean of Extended Education, campus Presidents, campus Provosts/Academic Vice Presidents of Academic Affairs, campus Extended Education Deans, campus Senate Chairs, and the California State Student Association.

RATIONALE: While independent online education can benefit some students in some programs, and while such programs can prove selectively worthwhile for highly-motivated students facing geographic isolation and other unusual time-space constraints, we should not condone those online programs with little or no student and faculty interaction as wide-scale solutions to the challenges of assisting ever increasing
numbers of students and producing ever-increasing numbers of graduates.

Approved Unanimously – May 3-4, 2012


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