Department of Computer Science, Information Systems and Mathematics


ICS Policies

Computer teachers throughout the Park system are expected to abide by the following policies:


Course Guidelines

Each course has guidelines regarding learning outcomes, teaching directives, and approved textbooks. Computer instructors must include the course description, learning outcomes, and teaching directives in their syllabus. However, under certain circumstances it may be appropriate for instructors to modify the learning outcomes and teaching directives somewhat to fit their particular situations. For example, some course guidelines specify some leeway in terms of options for different course content. In those cases, instructors are allowed to modify learning outcomes in their syllabi in order to fit the chosen course content.

All Park University courses include a core assessment tool that measures the degree to which students learn the course's learning outcomes. Different courses have different types of core assessment tools. For example, core assessment tools may consist of projects, papers, final exams, etc. To learn about a course's core assessment tool, teachers are required to visit the password-protected ICS MyPark faculty area, find their course in the Core Assessment Materials section, and follow the instructions therein.

Faculty Approval

Minimum requirements for adjunct approval for teaching a particular course in the Information and Computer Science program:
  • Masters or Ph.D. level degree in the discipline (CS or IS) or in a related discipline (MBA, etc.) from an accredited school
    AND
  • Received graduate credit with a grade of B or better in the course applied to teach, OR one year work experience in subject material of course applied to teach.

Note: Teaching experience in the course topic applied for is helpful, but it is not a substitute for graduate course study or work experience in the course applied to teach.

If the administrator receiving the information feels that the above criteria are not met, then he/she should reject the candidate without forwarding the information to the Program Coordinator. The only exception to this rule is if a group of students is being deployed. If no Master's degree teacher can be found for the deployed students, then a Bachelor's degree teacher may apply for a one-time approval. See the SEL Operations Manual for details. The campus administrator must follow this one-time approval procedure every time the non-Master's adjunct hopes to teach a course (even if it's a repeat of a course already taught by the adjunct).

To apply for a teaching position at a campus center location, the applicant must submit information to his/her campus center administrator. To apply for an online teaching position, the applicant must submit the online teaching application form.

As part of the application process, the applicant (1) must provide evidence that he/she has completed a Master's or Ph.D. degree and (2) must submit evidence that he/she understands the course's content.

For each requested course, the applicant must submit evidence that he/she understands the course's content by writing a paragraph(s) that mentions one or more of the following:
  • relevant work experience
  • relevant personal experience
  • relevant teaching experience
  • relevant course work (that the applicant has taken)

Applicants must provide separate evidentiary paragraphs for each requested course. The only exceptions to this rule are for IS 216/217 (COBOL courses), IS 315/316 (Systems Analysis and Design courses), and CS 151/219 (Java programming courses). For each of those pairs of courses, the applicant may submit one detailed justification that covers the content of both courses. But if the applicant only knows the material for the first course in a pair of courses, the applicant should, of course, only submit a justification for the first course.

The courses' contents are based on the Course Guidelines web pages. When an applicant asks about teaching a course, the campus administrator should tell the applicant to review the course's Course Guidelines web page. Note: old syllabi and old catalog descriptions should not be used as a basis for courses' contents.

If an administrator chooses to appeal an applicant's rejection by the Program Coordinator, the administrator may call the Program Coordinator to discuss the appeal. If the Program Coordinator verbally agrees to overturn the applicant's rejection, the administrator must resubmit the applicant's evaluation form with the (Program Coordinator's recommended) additional evidence to support the applicant's approval. The administrator must attach a reminder note to the evaluation form that contains a summary of the appeal conversation between the administrator and the Program Coordinator.

Faculty Approval for CCNA Courses

Applicants who would like to teach one or more of Park's CCNA courses (CS365, CS366, CS371, CS372, and CS385) will need to follow the Faculty Approval guidelines shown above. In addition, they will need to provide either (1) an electronic copy of their Cisco Certified Academy Instructor (CCAI) certification, or (2) their Cisco Academy ID (ACID)

The CCAI certification provides the necessary Cisco qualification to teach all of Park's CCNA courses. The CCAI certification does not expire, but approved teachers are expected to keep current with the CCNA curriculum (actually, all Park teachers are expected to keep current with all of their approved courses).

If the applicant does not have a CCAI certification, the applicant can be approved to teach individual CCNA courses by providing his/her ACID. The teacher approver will forward the ACID to Cisco's Network Academy Support Desk, and the Support Desk will determine which CCNA courses the applicant is approved to teach.

Adjunct Evaluations

It is difficult for the Program Coordinator to accurately assess an instructor's teaching ability by simply looking at a performance review. Student evaluations can be subjective and the availability of course materials can significantly impact the quality of a course. Therefore, unless there is a glaring problem, the Program Coordinator will usually "approve continuance" for an instructor. The campus administrator should use the student evaluations in conjunction with his/her own (hopefully objective) opinions of the instructor and decide whether or not it would be appropriate to rehire the instructor. If the campus administrator feels that the instructor should not be rehired or if the campus administrator feels that the instructor needs to change, then the campus administrator should attach a note to the performance review so that the Program Coordinator is made aware of the campus administrator's feelings. When such a note is attached to the performance review, the Program Coordinator will almost always check "disapprove continuance" or "conditional approval," as specified by the campus administrator's note. The Program Coordinator also will add the instructor's name to his personal list of disapproved adjunct candidates so that the candidate will not be approved for other courses (at other sites, possibly) except under special circumstances.

The Department Chair or Program Coordinator may at any time evaluate the performance of an instructor by visiting the class (face to face or online) or by review of student evaluations, grade distribution reports, syllabus reports, instructor attendance records, student projects, or assessment materials. If the instructor has failed to conduct the course in a professional manner, or in accordance with university or department policies, they may be disapproved to teach the course again, or may be disapproved to teach any department courses. Examples of improper performance include (but are not limited to) disregard of university or department policies, disregard of course learning objectives or assessment measures, failure to use syllabus template or required course software, use of an unapproved text, lack of class attendance, grade inflation, dishonesty in statements or published credentials, inattention to directives by university personnel, non-responsiveness or rudeness to students or university personnel, inappropriate or vulgar language, unauthorized use of capabilities or material from other institutions, recruitment of students for other institutions, advertisement of other institutions or personal business activities, and demeaning remarks regarding the university, university personnel, course content or course material.

Selected Topics and Special Topics Approvals

CS 215 (Selected Topics in Computers) and CS 415 (Special Topics in Computers) are intended for course content that is not covered in other Park computer courses, and the content is not deemed appropriate for inclusion within a permanent course. CS 215 is a lower-level course, and, as such, should cover lower-level concepts. CS 415 is an upper-level course, and, as such, should cover upper-level concepts. Since CS 215 and CS 415 can theoretically cover any computer-related topic, the prospective instructor must fill out a faculty approval form plus additional items each time he/she wants to teach a particular selected or special topics course for the first time. Specifically, the instructor must submit the following items to the campus center administrator:
  • faculty approval form (see the Faculty Approval section above for details)
  • course justification (why the course is needed and why an adequate number of enrollments is anticipated)
  • detailed course description
  • learning outcomes
  • textbook information (including a web site address where the book's table of contents can be viewed)
  • tentative schedule that shows when particular concepts will be covered, when homework and/or projects will be due, and when exams will be administered

In processing a special topics request, the campus administrator must forward the above items to the SEL main office. The SEL main office then forwards the items to the Program Coordinator for approval.

Textbooks

Whenever a computer faculty member teaches a computer course, he/she is required to check the ICS Approved Textbook List and select the textbook(s) from that list.

Due to the dynamic nature of the computer field, the ICS program updates the approved textbook list fairly often. Therefore, veteran computer faculty are required to re-visit their courses' approved textbook list each time they teach a course and change their textbook selection to a newer textbook if their previously selected textbook is no longer on the list.

If a faculty member would like to use a textbook(s) that's not on the approved list or if a faculty member notices that a newer edition for an approved book is not listed, then the faculty member can request a change to the approved textbook list. The request should include the proposed textbook's title, ISBN number, copyright date, and table of contents (chapter titles at a minimum). The request should be emailed to the ICS Program Coordinator, who will initiate a textbook discussion in the textbook discussion area, if appropriate.

VLE (Validated Learning Equivalency) Procedures

To learn about the VLE process and find the application form, view the Registrar section of the site. In preparing a VLE credit rationale for a computer course, students should rely on the course's current course description and learning objectives, which can be found by searching for the course using the Park Course and Class Schedule page. Old syllabi and old catalog descriptions should not be used as the basis for computer course VLE petition rationales.

VLE petitions must be filed prior to taking the final 15 semester hours preceding intended graduation at Park University. Petitions may be submitted no more than once per course. A maximum of 24 hours may be petitioned for and awarded.

Courses that cannot be VLE'd:
  • CS 140 - Introduction to Computers
  • CS 215 - Selected Topics in Computers
  • CS 415 - Special Topics in Computers
  • CS 451 - Computer Science Internship
  • CS 490 - Senior Project in Computers

VLE and Transfer Credit for CCNA courses

(a) A student can earn VLE credit for three Cisco-related Park courses (CS365, CS366, CS371) as a group by providing proof of having a CCENT (ICND1) certification with an expiration date that is no earlier than the current date.

(b) A student can earn VLE credit for all five Cisco-related Park courses (CS365, CS366, CS371, CS372, CS385) as a group by providing proof of having a CCNA Routing and Switching (ICND2) certification with an expiration date that is no earlier than the current date.

(c) A student can earn VLE credit or transfer credit for individual Cisco-related Park courses as follows:
  • CS365 - Student must provide proof of passing the course on CCNA Routing and Switching: Introductions to Networks.
  • CS366 - Student must provide proof of passing the course on CCNA Routing and Switching: Introductions to Networks.
  • CS371 - Student must provide proof of passing the course on CCNA Routing and Switching: Routing and Switching Essentials.
  • CS372 - Student must provide proof of passing the course on CCNA Routing and Switching: Scaling Networks.
  • CS385 - Student must provide proof of passing the course on CCNA Routing and Switching: Connecting Networks.

The individual course VLE credit "proof" must be in the form of a Cisco certificate of course completion, where the relevant CCNA course title appears on the course certificate and the course completion date is no more than 2 years prior to the date of the VLE application.

The individual course transfer credit "proof" must be in the form of a student's high school or college transcript where the relevant CCNA course title appears on the transcript and the course completion date is no more than 2 years prior to the date of the transfer credit request.

To earn VLE credit or transfer credit for individual Cisco-related Park courses, in addition to providing proof as described above, the student must provide his/her "Cisco Academy Connection ID" to the Registrar. Teachers will need that ID to enroll the student in the next CCNA course.

End-of-Course Examination

This option is available only to Parkville daytime campus center students.

Upon processing an application through the Student Assistance Center, and for a fee of $100, a student may, with permission of the student's faculty advisor, earn credit for any course by satisfactorily completing an end-of-course examination.

IS205 Test-Out Procedure

This option is available to all campus centers (including the Parkville daytime campus center).

A student may earn credit for IS205 by contacting the Park Testing Center, paying the $85 fee, and passing the DSST Managing Information Systems test.

CS140 Test-Out Procedure

This option is available to all campus centers (including the Parkville daytime campus center).

A test-out option is available for CS 140 Introduction to Computers. To complete the test-out option and receive credit for CS140, a student needs to first pass a CLEP exam covering computer-related concepts, and then pass a Microsoft certification exam covering Microsoft Word concepts.

CLEP Exam Details

Students are required to pass CLEP exam Information Systems & Computer Applications. For information about the exam (registration, fee, content, where to take the exam, etc.), see Park's Testing Center, and see http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/clep/ex_isca.html, from CLEP. Standard CLEP procedures: If a student fails the CS140 CLEP exam and wants to retake it, he/she must wait a minimum of 6 months before doing so.

When a student takes the CLEP exam, the testing administrator will contact the CLEP organization. If the student passes, the CLEP organization will send a record of the student's pass to the Registrar's office. The Registrar will then add CS199 Computer Science Elective - Information Systems & Computer Applications to the student's degree audit.

Microsoft Certification Exam Details

After passing the CLEP exam and waiting for CS199 Computer Science Elective - Information Systems & Computer Applications to appear on his/her degree audit (the wait might take several weeks), the student may then proceed to the next step. The student must pass Exam 77-881 MOS: Microsoft Office Word 2010. For information about the exam (registration, fee, content, where to take the exam, etc.), see the Microsoft Business Certification Requirements web page at http://www.microsoft.com/learning/mcp/msbc/requirements. Standard Microsoft certification test procedures: If a student fails the Microsoft certification exam and wants to retake it, he/she must pay the exam fee for each exam retake. For the first exam retake, there is no minimum wait time. For each subsequent retake, the student must wait a minimum of 7 days.

After Passing the Microsoft Certification Exam

After passing the Microsoft certification exam, the student should send an official transcript of the passed exam to the Registrar's office. To do so, the student should follow these instructions:
  • Go to http://www.certiport.com.
  • Log in, using the user id and password assigned as part of the test-taking procedure.
  • In the MyTranscript area under the MyCertiport tab, the student's transcript should appear, showing the passed exam.
  • In the View Mode pull-down menu, select Authorized View.
  • Click the Authorize a Viewer button.
  • In the resulting form, enter jody.manchion@park.edu in the email box and enter Test-Out Credit for CS140, <student's name>, <student's Park id>, <student's email address> in the message box, where <student's name>, <student's Park id>, and <student's email address> are to be replaced accordingly.
  • Click the Authorize button.

Upon receiving the Microsoft certification exam transcript, the Registrar will verify that CS199 Computer Science Elective - Information Systems & Computer Applications already appears on the student's degree audit. If it is not there, the Registrar will email the student and inform him/her of the problem. If it is there, the Registrar will edit the student's degree audit by removing CS199 Computer Science Elective - Information Systems & Computer Applications and adding Tested Out next to CS140.