LS&A faculty members are expected to approve today a quantitative reasoning requirement for all LS&A students, beginning with those who enter in fall 1994.
The LS&A faculty meeting begins at 4:10 p.m. in Auditorium B, Angell Hall.
Last April, LS&A faculty passed in principle a proposal from the Task Force on Quantitative Reasoning requiring each student seeking a B.S., A.B. or B.G.S. degree to complete successfully one course of three credits or more in quantitative reasoning (QR). The faculty asked the task force to develop a list of courses that would meet the QR requirement and present the list for a final vote this month.
Task force chair Peter Hinman says he has high hopes that the faculty will approve the requirement. Noting that passage of the preliminary proposal was unanimous in April, Hinman said the Curriculum Committee supports the task forces final recommendation.
Michael M. Martin, associate dean for undergraduate education, agrees that faculty support the idea of a quantitative reasoning requirement.
In a written report to the faculty, the task force identifies two categories of potential courses that could be used to fulfill the requirement: QR/1 (full QR credit) or QR/2 (half QR credit).
To accommodate this two-tier structure, the task force is recommending a revised description of the QR requirement:
All students admitted to the College for the Fall Term of 1994 and thereafter must meet the Quantitative Reasoning requirement. Students may fulfill this requirement either by:
(1) Successfully completing one course (of 3 credits or more) designated QR/1 (for full QR credit); or
(2) Successfully completing two courses (at least one of which must be 3 credits or more) designated QR/2 (for half QR credit).
Certification criteria for courses are to be based on the following broad principles:
Satisfying the quantitative reasoning requirement
Courses that satisfy the criteria must provide students with quantitative tools and require them to make significant use of these tools in the context of the other course material. Some typical student activities might be:
Some mathematical modeling might not count
Some courses that might involve mathematical modeling, the task force notes, wouldnt qualify for QR certification. They include those in which students are given models or systems of formulas and asked to produce numerical or qualitative answers by processing data with little analysis required.
Other course characteristics that generally would not count as quantitative reasoning include:
QR course certification currently is being determined by the task force. A subcommittee of the LS&A Curriculum Committee will take over this role in fall 1994.