In light of the recent COVID-19 outbreak on campus, some students have been experiencing breakout-room déjà vu as a handful of professors have been faced with the decision to either navigate hybrid learning or temporarily make the switch to remote learning for their classes.
The majority of courses will continue to be taught remotely for the spring semester, but students in residence will have limited opportunities for in-person learning, according to an email sent to students from the Registrar Martina Duncan on Monday.
According to a survey conducted by the Bowdoin Student Government (BSG) sent out on October 28, 83 percent of upper-class students report that they have either more work than usual or substantially more work than usual during this online semester than in a typical, in-person semester.
In lieu of speaking about Joshua Chamberlain at the annual convening dinner, Senator Angus King (I-ME) took part in a Zoom conversation with the Bowdoin and Brunswick communities on Thursday night, addressing a variety of pertinent political issues, such as the upcoming election, the nomination of a new Supreme Court Justice, the growing partisanship in Congress and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Registration for next semester’s classes may be delayed until early July as the College considers its decision about fall semester learning. Dean for Academic Affairs Elizabeth McCormack informed faculty of the tentative timeline for course registration in an email on Monday.
Despite some opposition from students and faculty, the College adopted a mandatory credit/no-credit grading system this week for all spring classes, sparking a debate among students and faculty about the merits and mechanics of online learning.
Although Bowdoin has navigated a changing higher education landscape well, it has room to improve upon issues such as course flexibility and the teaching of quantitative literacy, according to a report released by President Clayton Rose in a campus-wide email on September 6.
During Round 1 of course selection for the fall 2018 semester, there were 62 requests for 35 spots in Abnormal Psychology, reflecting a strong student interest in clinical psychology and an under-resourced department, according to Samuel Putnam, professor of psychology and chair of the department.
A group of professors has submitted a proposal for a new urban studies minor as result of growing interest in the topic amongst students and faculty. Though this is not the first time an urban studies minor or major has been proposed, faculty believe that there are now enough courses, drawing from various departments and areas of study, to sustain a minor.
After an uptick in cases of academic dishonesty brought before the Judicial Board (J-Board) in recent years, a working group consisting of both faculty and students has been formed to address discrepancies in the application of the College’s honor code.
The Roux Center for the Environment is on track for its scheduled opening next fall, according to Matt Orlando, senior vice president for finance and administration and treasurer of the College. With a $16.5 million budget—$10 million of which was a gift by David and Barbara Roux P’14—the 29,000 square-foot, three-storied building will have four labs dedicated to student coursework, two classrooms and a large flexible classroom space, as well as a variety of common areas.
This spring, the Office of Academic Affairs will pilot alterations to the Bowdoin Course Questionnaires (BCQs) with a goal of reducing the role of unconscious student biases in course evaluations. The change was announced at last week’s faculty meeting.
After years of requests from both students and faculty, the College is hiring two new Arabic language instructors for the upcoming academic year. However, a potential Arabic or Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) studies major or minor seems unlikely in the near future.
In an email to the Bowdoin community on Wednesday, Dean for Academic Affairs Elizabeth McCormack and Registrar Martina Duncan ’97 officially shared changes to the daily time block schedule and final exam period that will take effect in the fall 2018 semester.
At Monday’s faculty meeting, faculty and staff discussed a plan to alter the schedule of both the academic and extracurricular day by adding 10 minutes between classes. While the detailed schedule has yet to be finalized, this specific change will be implemented for the fall 2018 semester.
Starting this semester, students can now declare majors in Italian studies and performance arts and declare a minor in music performance. The faculty voted on the changes at a meeting last spring due to strong interest from students across the departments.
At their meeting on Monday, faculty will vote on a measure that would increase the number of faculty members on the Judicial Board (J-Board) from four to five for the next two years. This measure was brought up in response to the increase in cases sent to the J-Board over the last two years.
Students and professors are concerned about an uptick in academic dishonesty cases brought before the Judicial Board (J-Board) that have originated in the computer science department. Students, who have received punishments ranging from a warning to a four semester suspension from the College, have said they feel the department’s plagiarism policies are unclear.
Every year Bowdoin professors and students receive hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal research funding. However, with a new administration in Washington, the College could soon see some of that funding disappear. President Donald Trump’s budget proposal combines increased spending on defense with cuts to discretionary spending.
Interim Dean for Academic Affairs Jennifer Scanlon will return to the role of full-time Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies (GSWS) next semester. Scanlon has served as interim dean for academic affairs for the past two years and was associate dean for two years before that, while also teaching part-time.