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					                                Pittsburg State University

        Unit Level Strategic Planning and Effectiveness Document

Department: Modern Languages and Literatures

The Department offers majors and minors in French and Spanish as well as elementary-
level coursework in Korean, Portuguese, and Russian. Such programs and courses enable
students to step outside their own culture and to broaden global awareness. While
students acquire specific linguistic skills in the fields of their choice, the larger
departmental emphases are to constantly promote respect for and curiosity about other
peoples and cultures, to foster tolerance, and to combat xenophobia. Modern Languages
and Literatures faculty serve the College, the University, the profession, and society, by
training PSU graduates to teach or be otherwise employed in Southeast Kansas and
elsewhere. International understanding and general education are enhanced by the
number of our students who choose foreign language as a major, minor or second major,
who participate in study abroad programs, or who serve as conversation partners for
students from around the world who are enrolled in Intensive English at PSU.

Vision Statement:
The Department expects to continue offering intellectually stimulating programs in
French and Spanish that prepare students to participate in the global community. Faculty
members are cognizant of the current demand in the United States for training in German
and in less commonly taught languages such as Korean, Portuguese and Russian. They
plan to remain abreast of such trends. The Department envisions continued overall
growth in terms of credit hour production. Double-digit growth in recent years is the
result of temporary funding for Spanish in the form of A & S lecturer monies and LCTLs
made possible by outside grants. Additional resources in terms of faculty members and
operating budgets will be necessary to maintain current levels of production. The
Department would like to provide introductory language courses targeted to majors in
such areas as Construction Management, Management and Marketing, and Nursing.
Each year, the Department requests additional funding for a faculty member and
operating budget for that purpose. Faculty members have incorporated technology into
their courses through mediated classrooms and aspire to a continuation of those efforts.
By the same token, faculty members have incorporated more interpersonal and cross-
cultural elements into their courses. They hope to augment those elements of the
curriculum by acquiring a comfortable, low-tech laboratory where students could go for
individualized conversation and writing practice as well as tutoring. Monetary resources
to staff such a learning center will also be required.

How the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures Supports the Academic
Mission of the University:

The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures provides general education
courses, service courses to other units, majors and minors in French and Spanish, and
courses leading to the BSEd in French and Spanish. In addition, the Department offers

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                                Pittsburg State University

classes in Less Commonly Taught Languages (LCTLs) such as Korean, Portuguese, and

The Department of Modern Languages and Literatures’ Efforts in the Area of

MLL recycles ink cartridges, plastics, and paper. Many have reduced paper by using
Elmo to project classroom activities instead of making hard copies. Some turn off
computers when they leave offices for a couple of hours. Many have eliminated paper
and copy charges by posting syllabi and other assignments on Angel. The latter shifts the
cost burden to students in cases where they desire/require hard copies.

Goal 1: To ensure quality of instruction

      University Goal and Objective: Goal 1 Enhance learner success.
a. Enhance teaching and learning.

Objective: 1.1 To utilize a writing assessment rubric to measure student achievement.

Budget Implications: None.

Strategies: 1.1 To conduct mini workshops among faculty to assure application of rubric
is the same regardless of the language.

Strategies: 1.2 To utilize the writing rubric when assessing senior essays.

Performance Measure: To chart the results of writing assessment.

Performance Measure: To identify and address the strengths and/or weaknesses indicated
by data.

Progress Summary: Essays written during the senior year of French and Spanish were
selected by the chair and processed for anonymity. Faculty met in language-specific
groups to practice applying the rubric to essays. Faculty applied the rubric to senior
essays. Results were charted and distributed to faculty.

Objective: 2.1 To utilize data gathered from senior assessment of students’ reading and
listening skills.

Budget Implications: None.

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                                 Pittsburg State University

Strategies: 2.1 To utilize the rubric to analyze the results of standardized senior exams.

Strategies: 2.2 To examine data to determine the efficacy of current methods to teach the
reading and listening skills.

Performance Measure: To chart the results of reading and listening assessment.

Performance Measure: To identify and address the strengths and/or weaknesses indicated
by data.

Progress Summary: Seniors in French and Spanish took standardized exams. The rubric
was applied and results were charted.

Objective: 3.1 To utilize ACTFL standards in assessing oral proficiency in French or

Budget Implications: MLL faculty require ongoing training from the American Council
on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL). The last workshop attended by all MLL
faculty cost approximately $5,000.

Strategies: 3.1 To chart the progress of all majors and minors as they complete the three
conversation courses and as they complete their final semester of language courses.

Strategies: 3.2 To identify and address the strengths and/or weaknesses indicated by the

Performance Measure: To vertically chart the results of individual oral interviews from
sophomore to senior year.

Performance Measure: To horizontally chart the results of all senior interviews.

Progress Summary: MLL continued to chart individual and collective progress with oral
proficiency. Faculty discussed results and decided to add an exit interview for those who
did not complete their program in the same semester in which they took Advanced
Conversation. Faculty also made plans to tweak conversation courses and provide
additional training to native-speaker conversation partners.

Goal 2: To enhance the usage of instructional technology to deliver classes in all the
languages offered within the department.

       University Goal and Objective: Goal 4 Embrace emerging technologies,
 c. Enhance the use of appropriate technologies to broaden and improve the learning

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                                Pittsburg State University

f. Continually review and analyze new technologies as they relate to the major
educational goals of the University.

Objective: 2.1 To explore the applications of Sympodium in a second language

Budget Implications: None.

Strategies: 2.1 To utilize Sympodium on a trial basis in a heavily trafficked classroom
where a variety of languages are taught.

Strategies: 2.2 To gather feedback from instructors who use that classroom to determine
the desirability of Sympodium in additional classrooms.

Performance Measure: 2.1.2. The number of faculty using Sympodium for their classes
will increase.

Progress Summary: Faculty continued training on applications. Software was purchased
and Mr. McFerron created a guide to implementation. He conducted workshops for
colleagues who teach in the classroom with Sympodium.

Goal 3: To promote study abroad opportunities for language students.

University Goal and Objective: Goal 1 Enhance learner success. J. Develop
internships, field experiences, and/or service learning opportunities for all degree

Objective: 3.1 To continue to support existing PSU programs of study abroad.

Budget Implications: None.

Strategies: 3.1 To disseminate information in classes and at such events as Study Abroad
Expo, Rumble in the Jungle, Senior Day, and Junior Rumble.

Budget Implications: None.

Objective: 3.2.To develop new PSU programs and/or identify appropriate programs
organized by other institutions of higher learning.

Budget Implications: MLL faculty who develop new PSU programs should receive
adequate remuneration.

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                                Pittsburg State University

Strategies: 3.2 To evaluate opportunities as they become available and determine their
appropriateness for PSU students.

Performance Measure: To track the number of students who make inquires and the
number who participate in study abroad

Progress Summary: Faculty participated in all the above listed events. They spoke with
students in their classes about the new International Knowledge and Experience (IKE)
certificate. Ninety-four students sought more information from faculty on study abroad
opportunities. Dr. Myriam Krepps continued to serve on the Study Abroad Committee
and began serving on the Internationalization Council. Dr. Berry-Bravo served on the
International Academic Affairs Committee and on the PSU in Paraguay Committee.
From Summer 2008-Spring 2009, Dr. Berry-Bravo advised students and wrote transfer
agreements for ten PSU students to study abroad/do internships in Korea and Spain.

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