FAQs for faculty

Frequently Asked Questions for Faculty and Advisors
on General Education Concentrations

1. How can I find out what is expected of students with regard to General Education concentrations so as to communicate that to them if need be?

By reading and reviewing with them the FAQs for Students on General Education Concentrations.

2. What is the process for students to declare their concentrations?

By March 1 of their sophomore year, students go online and pick the concentrations they intend to declare.  The students are instructed to go and see their academic advisor (either underclass or major) to discuss their plans.   The advisor must then approve, on line, their students’ plans, and the students must, in turn, submit the declaration of their concentrations on line to the registrar. This replicates electronically the present paper trail process for such declarations.

Once a student’s concentration declaration has been submitted to the registrar, the student and the advisor will receive an e-mail confirmation, and an e-mail will also be sent out to the concentration coordinator.

3. Do students have to declare a major before they declare their concentrations?

No. They may declare them in any order (prior to March 1 of their sophomore year).  They may thus get the help, in this, of either their underclass or major advisor–whoever is their current academic advisor. In either case, they should be made aware of the stipulations in Student FAQ # 7 regarding the relationship of concentrations to the major.

4. How is the completion of a student’s concentration(s) communicated?

Students and advisors are notified that a concentration has been completed by the degree audit (CAPP) program, which can be checked on line at any point in a student’s academic career. As with any exceptions, waivers for individual students must be approved by the Academic Standing Committee, which may ask for advice from the concentration coordinator.

5. Can students propose their own concentrations?

No. Only Bates faculty can propose concentrations.

6. Can students petition to have a course/unit added to a concentration?

Only indirectly. They can ask the faculty person teaching the course/unit to ask the concentration coordinator to add the course/unit.  Courses/units so added become ongoing parts of the concentration. They cannot be added just for the sake of an individual student.

7. Can students petition to have a co-curricular component added to a concentration?

Only indirectly. They can ask a supervisory body such as the Harward Center or an academic department to ask the concentration coordinator to accept the co-curricular component as part of the concentration. This should be done prior to undertaking the co-curricular component.

8. How often can the list of courses/units (or requirements) in an existing concentration be changed?

Once a year, at the same time the catalog copy is reviewed.

9. Will courses/units added at catalog review time be countable ex post facto by students toward their concentration?

Yes, but it may be somewhat of a gamble for them if the adding of the course/unit for some reason fails to go through.

10. If a student is unable to complete the requirements for a particular concentration, what should he/she do?

a) Explore the possibility of declaring a different concentration and fulfilling its requirements.

b) Appeal to the Academic Standing Committee.

11. If a student is unable to complete the requirements for a second major or for a minor taken in lieu of a concentration, what should he/she do?

a) Explore the possibility that the courses taken so far toward that second major or that minor might fulfill the requirements of an existing concentration. (For example, a student who declared a second major or a minor in philosophy, but was unable to complete all the requirements for either of them, could count four of those courses as meeting the requirements for a concentration in philosophy, which asks for “any four courses” in the discipline). Such a student would simply have to drop their second major or minor and declare a concentration instead.

b) If the second major discipline in question does not have a concentration, but has a minor (e.g., economics), explore the possibility that the courses taken so far could be counted toward the minor, which could stand in lieu of a concentration.

c) In the absence of any such possibilities appeal to the Academic Standing Committee.

12. What if I or a group of faculty wish to propose a new General Education concentration?

New concentrations must be proposed to the CCC using the online proposal system by November 15 of the fall semester. This can insure they will be included in the new list of concentrations by the next catalog review time.

13. What if I wish to add to (or delete from) an existing concentration an existing course/unit, or a new course/unit just approved by the CCC?

See the concentration coordinator.