I. Introduction to Department or Program



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The need to produce a globally literate citizenry is critical to the nation’s continued success in the global economy. The federal government has recently embarked on an initiative to dramatically increase the number of Americans learning critically needed foreign languages from K-16 and into the workforce. Higher education, too, must put greater emphasis on international education, including foreign language instruction and study abroad, in order to ensure that graduates have the skills necessary to function effectively in the global workforce. (A Test of Leadership: Charting the Future of U.S. Higher Education. A Report of the Commission Appointed by Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings. Pre-Publication Copy, September 2006.)




I. Introduction to Department or Program


  1. Department/unit mission statement

The Mission of the Department of Foreign Languages at Central Washington University is not only to teach language but also to instill in our students an appreciation of how language serves a variety of practical, social, economic and political needs.


The Department provides major and minor programs in Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, and Spanish, as well as basic instruction in American Sign Language and Latin. Graduates acquire necessary professional skills and cultural experiences for:


  • Productive employment in foreign language related areas.

  • Preparation for graduate studies.

  • More effective participation in other academic endeavors, such as the University’s Asia-Pacific Studies program and Latino and Latin American Studies program.

The Department promotes a variety of study abroad programs that offer students authentic language immersion and cultural experience crucial for the pursuit of foreign language related careers. Departmental faculty mentor students to ensure their success in academic pursuits and in their lives after they leave the university. Through their teaching and research departmental faculty seek to develop critical thinkers who possess an awareness of and sensitivity to cultural diversity in the global community of the twenty-first century.


B. Brief description of department or program contexts
The Department of Foreign Languages is located in the College of Arts and Humanities and provides course offerings in the liberal arts core curriculum of the university. The department has a broad array of programmatic offerings consisting of four majors with specializations in five different languages (Chinese, French German, Japanese, Russian) and five separate minors. Since the last review Spanish has established a separate program of four majors and one minor specific to Spanish that parallels the structure of the other programs. Of those languages which offer majors, only in Spanish is it possible to complete a major without leaving the Ellensburg campus. The rest of the languages require that students go abroad and study for at least one academic year in order to complete a major.
While only two years of instruction in American Sign Language are offered through the department, due to enrollment demand and calls from outside the university, we continue to discuss strategies and methods whereby this program could be expanded first into a minor and then a major program. There is an untapped potential here that for various reasons – some of which will be discussed below – continue to elude us.
Since the last program review, we have also added Latin to our course offerings. Through the agency of one dedicated individual, one year of basic Latin classes are now listed in our catalog and, with the help of the Office of International Studies and Programs, a highly successful quarter-long study abroad program to Vienna was mounted, the purpose of which was to study the influence of the Roman Empire on western Europe. (Another is planned for Germany in the Fall of 2008.)
Various populations are served by academic offerings of this department. In addition to the language majors and minors, we support interdisciplinary and graduate programs across the entire academic division. Bilingual Education, Asia Pacific Studies, Latin American Studies, and Teacher Education are programs whose academic requirements are provided in significant measure by this department. The World Wine Program, which is gearing up to go online by Fall 2008, has talked about requiring a year of a foreign language as part of their program. We are also involved with the Film & Video Studies program as we offer Hispanic Cinema, French Cinema, Japanese Cinema, and Chinese Cinema, which are all electives for their program.
Students who enter the university without completing the two-year foreign language requirement at the high school level make up that deficiency here. Also a significant number of our students take our courses in order to fulfill the humanities breadth requirement of the General Education Program.
The Office of International Studies and Programs continues its role of support provider to our programs and students through the creation of new study abroad opportunities and the maintenance of ties between CWU and sister universities in countries where the languages of our programs are spoken. As ever, there exists a high level of interconnectedness and interdependency between our offices. For every language degree program there are study abroad opportunities which complement – in some cases they are absolutely necessary to – the program offerings which are taught here at CWU.
One of the most important functions provided by the department is the role it plays in providing opportunities to develop understanding of and sensitivity to the polyglot and interrelated world in which all people now live. All of the course offerings in the department carry a strong cultural component which informs not only the way students speak their chosen language but, also, how the students understand the activities of the societies in which the language is used. Also, and perhaps as important as any of the academic objectives associated with language study, the students have their understanding of their native tongue and culture informed by the study of another language.
More broadly, this department serves the state of Washington by providing instruction in languages and cultures that are figuring more importantly into the interconnected economy and social structure of today’s world. Because we are located in a region of the United States with such a large Hispanic population, our Spanish program is especially important and relevant to heritage speakers and non-heritage speakers alike.
C. List department or program goals
Ever since the events of September 11, 2001, there have been frequent calls to establish an Arabic language program in this department. As in the early days of the Second World War, the United States has experienced an attack from a quarter of the world about which few American citizens know much and about which it is imperative to develop a deep and detailed understanding. The major portion of the pressure to establish Arabic comes from outside the university, mainly from prospective students who call or visit, asking whether that option is open to them here. At first, we felt that not only the logistics of that endeavor would be difficult, but also the very idea of mounting such a language program in Ellensburg was farfetched in the extreme. Since the events of that day, however, other serendipitous factors have fallen into place that make such an initiative much more probable. We now have a solid contingent of approximately 20 Saudi nationals studying in our University English as a Second Language program. (Their government is looking for smaller and safer environments in which to send their citizen students, deeming the large urban American social environments too hostile and even dangerous.) We are hoping that there would be a way for the government of Saudi Arabia to collaborate with the administration of this university to initiate an exchange of not only students, but of instructors also. So far, only tentative inquiries have been made. Significant potential still exists for development.
The Department of Music has shown interest in an Italian language program for their vocal majors and we are currently looking into hiring a non-tenure track person to teach Italian this summer and possibly during the academic year, if enough interest is shown.
Our department has a high number of double majors since a language major is complementary to any other discipline (See table below). We would like to market this and encourage more students to do so. This could aid in increasing our enrollments and visibility on campus.
Foreign Languages Degrees Conferred with Double Majors (AY 2003-2007)


 

2002-2003

2003-2004

2004-2005

2005-2006

2006-2007

Anthropology Major

Foreign Language

2

0

0

2

0

Foreign Language Broad Area

0

1

0

0

0

Total

2

1

0

2

0

Asia/Pacific Studies Major

Foreign Language

0

2

0

1

0

Foreign Language Broad Area

1

0

0

1

0

Total

1

2

0

2

0

Biology Major

Foreign Language

1

0

0

1

0

Chemistry Major

Foreign Language

0

0

0

1

0

Communication Studies Major

Foreign Language

0

0

1

0

0

Family and Consumer Studies Major

Foreign Language

0

0

0

2

1

Geography Major

Foreign Language Broad Area

0

1

0

1

0

Teaching

0

1

0

0

0

Total

0

2

0

1

0

History Teaching Broad Area Major

Teaching

1

0

0

0




Individual Studies Major

Foreign Language

0

0

1

0




Journalism Major

Foreign Language

0

0

1

0




Law and Justice Major

Foreign Language

2

4

2

1




Foreign Language Broad Area

0

1

0

0




Total

2

5

2

1




Music Major

Foreign Language

0

0

0

1




Teaching

0

0

1

0




Total

0

0

1

1




Philosophy Major

Foreign Language

1

0

0

1




Political Science Major

Foreign Language

0

1

0

0




Psychology Major

Foreign Language

1

0

3

1

0

Teaching

0

0

0

1

0

Total

1

0

3

2

0

Public Relations Major

Foreign Language

0

1

0

0

0

Sociology Major

Foreign Language

0

2

1

1

1

Visual Art Teaching Major

Foreign Language

0

0

0

0

1

Grand Total

Total

9

14

10

15

3

ASL has experienced a significant retrenchment since the last review. Two faculty hired to develop ASL into a degree granting program left after a year and returned to the institution from which they had been hired. I have spoken with one of the members of that team twice and corresponded via email numerous times. She has told me that there is potential here, but the environment is not conducive to the support of members of the deaf community. This results in 1) not having many deaf members of the community either in the college or the surrounding town, and 2) discouraging some very qualified and experienced members of the profession of ASL instruction and Deaf Studies from coming to Ellensburg to work and live. Even with these very real impediments to development of a fully fledged ASL program, again, the demand from the students and other groups in the surrounding communities (schools, social services, courts, law enforcement) indicates that there is still significant potential waiting to be realized. Our goal is still to create an ASL minor, provided that we can create and maintain a tenure track faculty position.



1. Identify and describe major activities that will enable goals to be reached.

Ultimately, budget influences and determines all programmatic decisions. We know that in order for these goals to be achieved, even for the foundations of success to be laid, we must identify and secure sufficient sources of funding. Grant writing, contacting foreign governmental representatives in order to establish lines of communication and the means of acquiring significant financial resources, and cultivating connections with donors in the public sphere would all have to be considered and implemented in order to compile the logistical and financial support necessary to realize the above goals. The experience of many of us here has been that nothing succeeds like success, and if we were able to create some substantive success in the raising of funds, we would most likely see goals achieved, or if not achieved outright, see significant progress towards the completion of our objectives.



2. Identify what data will be used to measure (assess) whether goals are achieved.

If we are able to hire and retain qualified individuals in these programs, we will have a very strong argument for successful goal achievement. We would like to hire someone for a tenure track position in ASL and at least a non-tenure track position for Arabic, if not a tenure track position as interest and enrollments increase.


D. Describe departmental governance system and provide organizational chart for department.
The department elects a chair from among its ranks every four years. The chair represents the department to outside university, community, and state constituencies via attendance at various meetings and being available for conferencing in the departmental offices. Assisting the chair in the various administrative tasks required of the department are committees of Foreign Languages Department faculty. Examples of these include, the Personnel Committee, the Scholarship Committee, the Spanish Program Committee, and other ad hoc committees that form and dissolve on an as needed basis (search committees are one example of these).

Department Chair

Josh Nelson





TT Faculty

9 Full-time

1 Phased Retiree


Secretary Senior

Lindsay Groce



NTT Faculty

3-5 Full-time





Student Assistants/Tutors




E. Describe how each of the relevant strategic goals for the university and college are being promoted within the department.

Strategic University Goals/Strategic College Goals



Goal I: Maintain and strengthen an outstanding academic and student life on the Ellensburg campus./ Goal I: Create and maintain high quality academic programs

The curricula of our classes challenge our students with a set of rigorous requirements that are at the core of not only fundamental language study, but all intellectual reasoning. Substantive intellectual challenge exists at every level of cognitive spectrum from the simplest rote memorization of vocabulary to the most complex processes of evaluation of metaphysical concepts. Through the study of language, our students are being exposed to the epistemological “source code” of human thought. The spillover effects of this discipline are apparent to all who seriously engage in it. Those who understand that discourse is constructed not only of ideas, but of the symbols and grammatical rules of the languages in which they are reified have a much keener insight into all forms of inquiry.

In order to accomplish our classroom objectives the professors of this department must be available to their students to counsel and mentor them through various processes: from language assimilation through the necessary steps required of academic progression to a degree. We pride ourselves on the access our students have to their professors and the quality of the advising we offer. Our professors routinely counsel their students even after graduation while they are searching for employment or placement in graduate programs.


As noted above, our department is a significant provider of components of academic programming throughout the colleges. Regional studies programs exist in the Asia/Pacific and Latino and Latin American areas of the academy. These programs require two full years of language study. Also, mutually beneficial connections exist between the Department of History’s area specific history programs and the language instruction that is offered here.
While our students are here, we provide ample opportunities to participate in extracurricular activities which not only enhance, but also buttress the central aspects of their college experience, both academic and social. Examples of the kind of activities that are planned and led by our faculty are: Language clubs; culture specific cooking activities; field trips to museums, musical events, and other cultural activities both local and international; the production of plays and international film festivals, and an animated film appreciation club. Many times there are students who are not associated with our department in any other way who receive an introduction to our programs through their participation in these activities.
Goal II: Provide for an outstanding academic and student life at the university centers.
(The Foreign Languages Department is not significantly involved with academic or student life at the university centers.)
Goal III: Strengthen and further diversify our funding base and strengthen infrastructure to support academic and student programs./ Goal VII: Develop a climate of fundraising

Our department provides three departmental scholarships to deserving majors in our department. The three scholarships are the Tolman scholarship, the Schleisman scholarship, and the Foreign Languages Faculty scholarship. They are available to majors in any language in which we offer programming and are given to academically talented students, with a preference given to those students who are planning on or have already studied abroad.


We have been able to enhance the visibility of the university and its programs. Central is now a regional center associated with the East West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. Members of three other departments have played a significant role in developing this connection, however, Foreign Languages has played a central role in obtaining Area Regional Center status. As a Regional Center, Central has hosted National Endowment for the Humanities grant-sponsored workshops and presentations. Also, year by year, Central faculty from across the colleges attend summer workshops at the East West Center in Honolulu. To date, there have been at least 20 faculty and administrators who have attended these workshops.
The Casten Family Foundation Grant provided for an FTE in Chinese. As of the last writing of this review, our Chinese program was on the verge of acquiring a grant from the Casten Family Foundation for the establishment of a full-time tenure track position in Chinese. The grant was eventually funded by the Casten family and we have been able to attract and hire highly qualified instructors of Chinese and our program has been more solidly established through the efforts of these individuals and our Chinese language students. That initially grant-funded position has recently been turned into a permanent tenure track faculty line.
Goal IV: Build mutually beneficial partnerships with the public sector, industry, professional groups, institutions, and the communities surrounding our campuses./ Goal III: Improve visibility of the college
In this area, also, our department has established and continued to maintain close connections throughout the Central Washington area as a willing partner and collaborator with a broad spectrum of agencies and organizations. Our faculty volunteer their time and professional expertise in the following activities:


  • Interpreters working with the schools, law enforcement, courts, Department of Social and Health Services, the Child Protective Service, and the hospital emergency room.




  • Through the Cornerstone program we have been able to collaborate with high school educators in Ellensburg and Yakima in providing college level language instruction in both Spanish and German. Students are able to earn college credit while studying at their respective high schools.




  • Volunteers with APOYO, a local food bank for Hispanic families in the area.


Goal V: Achieve regional and national prominence for the university./ Goal II: Enhance support for faculty research and creative activity
The research presented at national and international conferences of our faculty draws attention to the university. Departmental study abroad programs also show the world our face as well as showing the world to our students.

Goal VI: Build inclusive and diverse campus communities that promote intellectual inquiry and encourage civility, mutual respect, and cooperation./ Goal V: Build a more diverse college community
Again, as our fundamental mission is, in effect, to assist our students in developing an awareness of and sensitivity to the linguistic and cultural norms of cultures other than the dominant English speaking culture of the United States, and as the study of language and culture outside of the dominant native culture is one of the surest ways of developing an awareness of self, we feel that our contributions to the university community increases sensitivity to, and understanding of, human society in general, and to the campus community in specific.
II. Description of degree programs and curricula

A. Provide a table that lists each of your programs by location, regardless of state or self-support. (See Table 1)

1. Undergraduate Programs (majors and minors)
Table 1


Program Title

Delivery Location(s)

Foreign Language Major

Main CWU Campus

Foreign Language Broad Area Major

Main CWU Campus

Foreign Language Teaching Major

Main CWU Campus

Foreign Language Broad Area Teaching Major

Main CWU Campus

Spanish Language Major

Main CWU Campus

Spanish Language Broad Area Major

Main CWU Campus

Spanish Language Teaching Major

Main CWU Campus

Spanish Language Broad Area Teaching Major

Main CWU Campus

Foreign Language Minor

Main CWU Campus

Spanish Language Minor

Main CWU Campus




  1. Provide a table that lists courses, location, and learner outcomes of the following: (See Table 2)


Table 2


Contributing area

Delivery Location

Learner Outcomes

General Education Courses

Location(s)




All Languages 151-3

CWU Main Campus

High beginner/low intermediate language skills in accordance with ACTFL standards

All Languages 251-3

CWU Main Campus

High intermediate/low advanced language skills in accordance with ACTFL standards



C. Describe currency of curricula in discipline. How does the curriculum compare to recognized standards promulgated by professionals in the discipline?
All courses are continually evaluated by their faculty for currency in their respective disciplines. We are consulting with textbook company representatives on a yearly basis, and maintain close contact with colleagues in other schools and departments, often conferring with them over course content, materials and methods.

  • Spanish has just completed an overhaul of the entire curriculum structure having made changes in the number of credits of all courses past second year (now all are four credits apiece), and adopting a new textbook for first year classes. Online delivery of course material via Quia, a web-based educational technology, is in use in both the first and second year programs.

  • Japanese has adopted new textbooks for the 300 level courses, and has added a literature in translation course and a cinema class to its course offerings.


D. Effectiveness of instruction - Describe how the department addresses the scholarship of teaching with specific supporting documentation including each of the following:

1. Effectiveness of instructional methods to produce student learning based upon programmatic goals including innovative and traditional methods – examples include:

a. Collaborative research between student and faculty

Dr. Lefkowitz has mentored and collaborated with her students in her language acquisition course and made presentations at the undergraduate research conference held yearly on campus. Some of these projects have been presented at the national AAAL conference. Our departmental goal is to have more of our faculty involved in mentored research in this way.

b. Classic lectures

Dr. Mayer gave a lecture this Fall about his current research as part of the CAH Speaker Series. His presentation was entitled “Lazarillo de Tormes, the Life of Homer, and the Origins of the Picaresque.”

c. Service learning or civic engagement

Spanish students have collaborated with volunteers both from the university and the community to work with the food bank APOYO as interpreters and in the public schools as tutors and readers for members of the Hispanic community.

2. Innovative instructional methods

The Japanese program has inaugurated a new requirement that all second year students buy a Nintendo DS, which is a small hand held video computer gaming system. In Japan it has been used by students to learn the Japanese orthographic system with great success and that is the use we are attempting to put it to here as well. Use of the DS frees up more classroom time which otherwise would be used for instruction and orthographic drill. The drill and writing practice can be accomplished by the student on their own time with the use of the DS which in many instances – owing to the sophistication of the software - is a much more strict and exacting instructor than the professors teaching the same material in the classroom.

Our faculty routinely use the faculty lounge and the laboratory kitchens in the Health, Human Performance and Nutrition Department to cook foods specific to the cultures of the languages they teach. Cooking is not only fun and results in something good – mostly - to eat, the students have a chance to see the language of classroom study put to use in a very practical and direct way. Sometimes we are lucky to have the collaboration and help of exchange students and faculty from the countries whose foods we are preparing. This is particularly effective in creating opportunities for genuine, unscripted and situated language production and assimilation to occur.

The Japanese program takes routine trips to Seattle to attend the Cherry Blossom Festival and tour the Asian Art Museum in Volunteer Park. Participation in these excursions has an unequivocal salutary effect on the Japanese program. Seeing the artifacts that have been discussed in class, hearing the music and drums, and seeing the dances provide the students with authentic cultural experiences.

Last year, the Russian program was able to assemble a small orchestra and performed for the World Languages Day. They played two pieces of traditional music, one of which accompanied a chorus singing in Russian.

3. What evidence other than Student Evaluation of Instruction (SEOI) is gathered and used in the department to evaluate the effectiveness of instruction?

Classroom Observations. Faculty – particularly those who are in their probationary years and those who are working for promotion - often request of the department chair and their colleagues to have their teaching observed and evaluated. This is a yearly activity for adjunct faculty, but tenure track and tenured faculty avail themselves of it as well.



4. Departmental teaching effectiveness – report a five-year history of the “teaching effectiveness” department means as reported on SEOIs, indexed to the university mean on a quarter-by-quarter basis.


 

 

Fall

Winter

Spring

2002-03

Foreign Language

4.5

4.8

4.6

 

CAH

4.3

4.4

4.3

 

CWU

4.3

4.3

4.3

2003-04

Foreign Language

4.5

4.5

4.6

 

CAH

4.3

4.3

4.4

 

CWU

4.4

4.3

4.4

2004-05

Foreign Language

4.6

4.6

4.7

 

CAH

4.4

4.5

4.5

 

CWU

4.3

4.3

4.4

2005-06

Foreign Language

4.6

4.5

4.7

 

CAH

4.4

4.3

4.3

 

CWU

4.3

4.3

4.4

2006-07

Foreign Language

4.4

4.5

4.6

 

CAH

4.3

4.3

4.3

 

CWU

4.3

4.3

4.3



E. Degree to which distance education technology is used for instruction.

There has been no use of synchronous distance education technology in the provision of our programs.



F. Required measures of quantity for academic programs for the last five years.

1. Number of Full Time Equivalent Students (FTES) served in general education, professional education, and service courses.

 

2002-2003

2003-2004

2004-2005

2005-2006

2006-2007

American Sign Language

151, 152, 153 Courses

25.3

22.1

40.6

33.2

17.4

251, 252, 253 Courses

5.9

4.0

2.9

6.1

4.8

All

31.2

26.1

43.4

39.3

22.2

Chinese

151, 152, 153 Courses

6.7

7.0

5.6

6.1

6.1

251, 252, 253 Courses

1.4

1.8

2.8

1.7

1.8

All

8.1

8.8

8.3

7.8

7.9

French

151, 152, 153 Courses

6.2

8.7

9.2

9.3

9.7

251, 252, 253 Courses

4.1

3.4

4.6

5.2

5.7

All

10.3

12.1

13.8

14.6

15.3

German

151, 152, 153 Courses

7.7

7.8

6.2

7.2

9.4

251, 252, 253 Courses

3.3

5.9

3.3

2.4

4.0

All

11.0

13.7

9.6

9.7

13.4

Japanese

151, 152, 153 Courses

13.7

11.1

15.8

16.0

17.9

251, 252, 253 Courses

5.6

6.4

5.9

7.4

6.3

All

19.2

17.6

21.7

23.4

24.2

Russian

151, 152, 153 Courses

4.7

4.6

6.0

4.4

6.7

251, 252, 253 Courses

3.6

4.8

3.0

2.8

3.2

All

8.2

9.3

9.0

7.2

9.9

Spanish

151, 152, 153 Courses

30.1

38.2

39.3

38.6

41.3

251, 252, 253 Courses

24.8

24.6

18.3

22.1

20.8

All

54.9

62.8

57.7

60.7

62.1

Department Totals

151, 152, 153 Courses

94.3

99.4

122.7

114.9

108.6

251, 252, 253 Courses

48.7

50.9

40.8

47.8

46.6

All

143.0

150.3

163.4

162.7

155.1




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