Conditional Support for AB 386 (Levine): Public Postsecondary Education:
Cross-Enrollment: Online education at the California State University

AS-3118-13/FGA (Rev)

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate of the California State University (ASCSU) support, in concept, AB 386 (Levine), Cross-Enrollment in California State University Online Courses, which is consistent with the ASCSU position that students have timely access to courses needed to achieve their academic goals; and be it further

RESOLVED:  That the ASCSU commend and thank the author of AB 386 for his willingness to work collaboratively with the CSU, and particularly the ASCSU, to perfect the bill to achieve its intended goals in a manner that both takes advantage of initiatives already underway within California higher education and respects the traditional authority of the faculty over academic programs; and be it further

RESOLVED:  That while the ASCSU continues to have concerns about AB 386, identified in the rationale, that it urge the author to address; and be it further

RESOLVED:  That the ASCSU distribute this resolution to the CSU Board of Trustees; CSU Chancellor; Assemblymember Marc Levine; Assembly Committee on Higher Education; Senate Committee on Education and Chairs of Senate and Assembly Appropriations committees.

RATIONALE: Proposed legislation AB 386 (Levine), as currently written, would require that students enrolled at a California State University (CSU) campus be allowed to take online courses offered at other CSU campuses without requiring additional fees or formal admission to the campus offering the course.  This is consistent with the existing CSU policy on concurrent enrollment.  This goal is consistent with the ASCSU position to support initiatives that assure students have timely access to the courses needed to achieve their academic goals.  The bill has, since its introduction, been amended to take advantage of existing mechanisms already in place that aid in course articulation, including C-ID and ASSIST.ORG, which eliminates the need to establish a common course numbering system to meet the goals of AB 386.

The ASCSU is concerned about several aspects of the legislation that either supercede faculty authority or need clarification.  Program and campus faculty have the authority to set program and campus policy regarding eligibility criteria to take a course, such as grade point average and equivalency to meet degree requirements.  In addition, clarification is needed about the number of units students can enroll in, under the legislation.  As the legislative summary points out, currently policy limits cross-enrollment to one course, and it is not clear in the legislation that the limit is maintained.   Finally, while the creation of an online database of CSU courses and an intra-system, cross-enrollment process are worthy goals, the timeline for doing so, is short given legislative timelines and the complexity of the task.

Approved – May 16-17, 2013


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