The Atlanta Experience: Seminar II-Teams
from the 12 Vanguard Learning colleges (VLCs) convened
in Atlanta on February 26-28 for Seminar II held in
tandem with the League's Innovations 2001 conference.
The program reflected the priorities identified by
the Project Liaisons: sessions on Obstacles and Challenges
to Becoming More Learning Centered and Best Practices
in Becoming More Learning Centered; meetings of teams,
meetings around the five project objectives, and meetings
by role and function. Special features included perspectives
from site visits by project staff presented by Kay
McClenney and an invitation by the staff of the LeCroy
Center for Telecommunications to participate in the
development of learning-centered distance education
The Innovations 2001 Conference-The
12 VLCs made their international debut during the
Innovations 2001 conference that immediately followed
Seminar II. All 12 colleges participated in a poster
session that was one of the features of the conference.
The stacks of materials the VLCs brought to share
with conference participants disappeared quickly.
In addition, VLC staff members taught five Learning
Center courses organized around the five project objectives
to staff members from the Learning College Champion
institutions and the VLCs. Approximately 160 staff
members attended these special courses which the League
made available free. A number of staff members from
the VLCs also participated in the Innovations 2001
conference through forums, roundtables, courses, and
the near future a series of listservs will be added
to the project to provide opportunities for continuing
dialogue among project participants. Listservs will
be set up for the five project objectives and for
other topics and issues as needed.
The Learning College Project Website-The
League released a brochure during Seminar II and the
Innovations 2001 conference announcing The Learning
College website. The website features direct links
to the 12 VLCs, lists of Learning College Champions,
a Primer on The Learning College, and an emerging
list of key resources. Twenty-five thousand brochures
have been printed and will be distributed to all community
colleges in the US and Canada and at all major community
college conferences. The website still needs a lot
of work before we can live up to the claim on the
cover of the brochure, and this work is in progress.
The Learning College Inventory-The
Inventory has been carefully reviewed by project staff,
VLC liaisons, and VLC evaluation staff for use in
The Learning College Project. The Inventory has undergone
significant piloting and validation, but as expected
in the development of any new instrument for a new
content area, we are continuing to find ways to strengthen
it. Some colleges found it useful and others did not.
After a thorough review, the project staff and participants
determined that the Learning College Inventory will
no longer be required as an evaluation tool for the
overall project, although a number of colleges have
elected to use it to assess their own progress. Colleges
electing not to use the Inventory to assess their
own progress will develop alternative methods to do
so. The Learning College Inventory will be redesigned
as a qualitative instrument to be used as an educational
tool, a planning tool, and a tracking tool.
Site Visits to Vanguard Learning Colleges-By
the end of March all 12 VLCs will have been visited
by Project Evaluator Kay McClenney accompanied by
various project staff members.
Colleges are at various stages in their journeys
to become more learning centered, but they are deeply
engaged in the challenges and issues to place learning
first. Kay shared observations during Seminar II based
on the site visits, and her review, Learning from the Learning Colleges, will be placed on the Learning
College website. It has also been distributed to the
National Advisory Committee and to VLC presidents
began in earnest when the 12 VLCs shared their progress
in the poster session at Innovations 2001 and when
the League announced the Learning College Project
website. An early monograph on best practices in the
12 VLCs is planned for release before the end of the
year. Near the end of the project there will be a
book of case studies on the 12 VLCs and five monographs
featuring college practices in each of the project
objectives. Individual colleges are strongly encouraged
to disseminate information about their projects through
their websites; through journal articles, Learning
Leadership Abstracts, books, newsletters, monographs,
and CDs; and in presentations at state/province and
Planning for Seminar III-Seminar
III is scheduled for Scottsdale June 23-26 at the
same hotel used last summer. Most of the VLCs met
with project staff after Seminar II to plan Seminar
III, which will be organized around in-depth sessions
focusing on problem solving and implementation strategies.
project staff and project evaluator Kay McClenney
will conduct site visits at the 12 Vanguard Learning
Colleges between October 2000 and February 2001.
The Learning College Inventory-Cindy Miles has
worked with research consultants to strengthen the
psychometric integrity of the instrument, and it will
be administered at all 12 colleges by January, 2001.
At an appropriate point, the League plans to make
the Inventory available to all colleges.
The Learning College Web Presence-We plan for the
project's Web presence to become the central station
for anyone interested in the Learning College and
the Learning Revolution. Colleges will have their
project Web pages ready by mid-October; the League's
project Web page
includes links to each of the Vanguard Learning Colleges.
The Learning College Champions-Sixty-one applicants
for the Learning College Project have accepted the
League's invitation to join the project as Learning
College Champions. Champions have been invited to
attend an exclusive Learning Center Course at the
League's Conference on Information Technology, November
15-18 in Anaheim, CA. The League is also making plans
to provide Learning Center Courses to Champions at
Innovations 2001 and to include Learning College
Champion institutions in Web activities through the
Activities at League International Conferences-In addition to
the special Learning Center Courses for Learning College
Champions, the League is planning a variety of special
activities at its annual conferences. Forums and roundtables
presented by representatives from the Vanguard Learning
Colleges will be highlighted at Innovations 2001
(February 28-March 3 in Atlanta), and a poster session
showcasing the Vanguard Learning College journeys
toward becoming more learning centered is being planned.
Expanding Resources-On September 6-8
representatives from 11 of the Vanguard Colleges and
project staff members met with the presidents of Eduprise
and the Center for Academic Transformation (Bill Graves
and Carol Twigg, respectively) in Chicago for a special
seminar on learning-centric e-learning.
the Project-On November 3 project staff will meet in Toronto with representatives
from all Ontario two-year colleges and the University
of Toronto to explore possibilities of creating an Ontario
province version of the Learning College Project.
League Selects Vanguard Learning
staff were delighted with the response to their latest
project. Expecting approximately 40 applications from
community colleges wanting to be one of the ten Vanguard
Learning Colleges, the League received 94 applications
and had to add more evaluators to handle the load.
The high response rate was not expected because the
Learning College concept is relatively new, the application
process required applicants to meet a tough set of
criteria, and funds for the participating colleges
very pleased with this response" said League Board
Chair Bill Wenrich, Chancellor of the Dallas County
Community College District. "It is a clear indication
to us of the timeliness and value of the Learning
College concept. This project will provide us with
an exceptional laboratory for testing out ideas and
innovations to help community colleges across Canada
and the U.S. to become more learning-centered institutions."
for the Learning College Project called for 10 Vanguard
Learning Colleges to be selected, but the applications
were so excellent the League Board agreed that the
League would fund two additional colleges for a total
of 12 Vanguard Learning Colleges.
The other 82 applicants will be invited to
participate in the project as Learning College Champions.
The twelve Vanguard Learning Colleges will become
incubators and catalysts for other educational institutions
around the world as they share models and practices
to transform community colleges into more learning-centered
Learning Colleges include Cascadia Community College
(WA), Community College of Baltimore County (MD),
Community College of Denver (CO), Humber College of
Applied Arts and Technology (ON), Kirkwood Community
College (IA), Lane Community College (OR), Madison
Area Technical College (WI), Moraine Valley Community
College (IL), Palomar College (CA), Richland College
(TX), Sinclair Community College (OH), and Valencia
Community College (FL).
from the 12 Vanguard Learning Colleges met for an
Initial Seminar June 17-21 in Scottsdale, Arizona.
At the seminar, teams met with each other and with
a number of consultants, including Alfredo G. de los
Santos Jr., Michael Dolence, Steve Gilbert, Roy Giroux,
Robert McCabe, Kay McClenney (Project Evaluator),
Cindy Miles, Mark Milliron, John Roueche, Michael
Skolnik, and Jerry Sue Thornton.
Wilson and Project Senior Consultant Terry
O'Banion can be contacted at the League.