Leave your Ego at the Door: Meeting the Challenge of Multi-Sectioned Courses

Paula Wilson, Jennifer Connolly, Stephen Watson, Gordana Colby

Large programs and courses in high demand often result in large multi-sectioned courses in first and second year, which in turn create a challenge for maintaining consistency in content, outcomes, and pedagogical approach for all students. This challenge poses interesting questions about instructor autonomy – beyond the calendar course description, what other aspects of course delivery should be decided by the instructor? Should each instructor work to his/her own preference and philosophy? Should sections share a common syllabus? Does the department have the authority to impose consistency? How much authority should the course director have over instructors? When do consistency and student experience trump instructor autonomy and academic freedom? Our panel will consider different models currently operating at York. With input from participants, panel members will explore some of the questions posed above.