Tuesday Teaching Question (Anniversary Edition)

Congrats on 1 year Philodave!  Here’s the question.  What do you think about this?  By ‘this’ I mean the requirement (which is still relatively new) and the exam to demonstrate proficiency (and the e-mail below obviously).  Cheers to another year!

CCC Now Offers all Students Seeking an Associate of Arts Degree
the Opportunity to Demonstrate Proficiency in a Foreign Language By Taking an Exam

New Exams Allow Students to Test Out of the Foreign Language Requirement;
Use Their Time and Resources More Efficiently

Chicago – Effective February 1, all City Colleges of Chicago [CCC] students working toward their associate of arts degree have the opportunity to fulfill their foreign language requirement by taking an exam.

In an effort to use their time and resources more efficiently, students may now take an exam to demonstrate their proficiency and test out of the following languages: Arabic, Mandarin, Japanese, Spanish, French, Italian and Polish.

All CCC campus testing centers now offer ACTFL [American Council on Teaching of Foreign Languages] testing.  Later this semester, CLEP [College Level Examination Program] testing will also become available to students at the test centers.

Currently, all CCC students pursuing an associate of arts degree must successfully complete eight semester hours of credit in a foreign language.

6 thoughts on “Tuesday Teaching Question (Anniversary Edition)

  1. This may open a can of worms but here goes…
    IF this exam is similar to the English placing exam, them I am NOT in favor of having the students put through this experience.

    Is it necessary for students to be bilingual? That’s really the heart of the matter.
    I say yes, BUT ONLY IF (a) the other language will improve a student’s critical thinking skills and (b) provide them with opportunities to be successful in future endeavors, not just ‘cuase it’s “the right thing to do”; (don’t aks me to define right, that opens yet another can o’ wormys).
    I am amazed and surprised to see so many students (labeled “foreign” ’cause they ain’t from the U.S.) who have a better grasp of English than “non-foreign” students; AND English happens to be their second language. Why do they learn it “back home”? ‘Cause they’ve been told the English language will open doors for them. That point is proven.

    What I’m sayin’: District needs to let our students know WHY they should learn a second language AND what ‘puertas’ it will allow them to open.

    Just wonderin’; How many folks who are in favor of this requirement ARE bilingual?

  2. Yeah, funny like all reductionist portrayals of complex issues. And posted anonymously too. Knee-slappin’.

  3. Not funny, not witty, not intelligently or effectively done, not helpful, not truthful (even in a broadly and generously construed, figurative, artistic way), and not good.

    Just viciously mean spirited.

    Oh, also ignorant. Certainly not worthy of the the time I regretfully spent watching it, and not something that contributes to the goal of Faculty Council (see the top left corner of this site) or the spirit and purpose of this space. It is stoopid (with two ‘o’s), and deeply offensive to me as a person, a thinker, and a member of HWC’s faculty and community.

    I won’t take it down because I don’t believe in censorship, but I do encourage YOU, X, to take it down; it’s awful and doesn’t belong here. You should know, though, that if it gets a net-10 negative rating, I will hide it from view on the grounds of communal consensus of its impropriety here.

    • And that was 10 dislikes, so the video that was posted here (and responded to by Matt U, myself and Mathissexy) has been consequently hidden.

      It’s not a move that I’m entirely comfortable with (see above re: censorship)–mostly I like to put a spotlight on offensive stupidity and challenge it as such rather than hide it away, but the vast majority of blogs have some sort of comment moderation/hide rating practice and policy, so I think it is sensible that we would too. I’m willing to entertain arguments, though.

      I guess the main thing is that we collectively recognize that controversial, critical opinion is one thing; petty, vindictive, personal calumny and defamation is another.

      Back to the foreign language requirement…

  4. Where does it get “us” to stoop to this level? If “we’re” looking for a way to ensure that the reinvention is productive, do “we” really need to show/create videos that contain personal attacks and are speculative? I’m all for holding people/institutions accountable through questioning and spirited debate. If something that “we” are opposed to comes our way, we have every right to question it and defend what we believe in. But when “our” defense becomes offensive (literally), this is where I draw the line. It takes significantly more skill to formulate an argument that not only proves “our” point, but does so in a collegial, sophisticated way.

    BTW, my quotation marks around the various pronouns is meant to emphasize that I do not include myself in a “we” that feels as though this video is a productive strategy to discuss the reinvention. At HW, we’ve had productive conversations with members of the Task Forces (mostly our faculty). We’ll continue to do so. Videos like this will only breed unneeded animosity. If there’s going to be animosity, let it be for the right reasons, that we’re standing up for our rights at teachers/staff/students.

    While the other videos were mostly attacks on policy and procedure, this one is unnecessarily personal and, frankly, crude.

    • Also, it’s a really unfortunate distraction from the post (good question, by the way, Mathissexy), which I was looking forward to discussing (and seeing discussed).

      Grrrrr.

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