02-THE ATLANTIS PROJECT “ SYNOPSIS OF PROPOSALS" Aims: To reach a "benchmark level of
operation" (surpassing the best of the collegiate competition).
This would mean:
- graduation success for 96% of undergraduates in the program
- reaching ABD level after four years in the program, (equivalent to a norm of seven years of regular instruction)
- enhancing time and energy available for research, at all levels of the university
- reducing current operating costs, for teaching, research, and administration.
How would this be done?
First, by giving students the same level of academic responsibility, and privileges, as faculty.
This would mean, in practice:
- Students would have a forty-eight week study year, with twenty four weeks of tutorial instruction, twenty four weeks of preparatory reading for the tutorials.
- No student would enter a tutorial before completing the preliminary work
- Students would work together in groups of four in order to prepare one ninety minute tutorial each week, in which he/she would either read a paper or function as researcher, editor and co-sponsor of a paper.
- The student papers would be incorporated into a portfolio of work, which would be revised and developed during the total course of study, in preparation for the final assessments.
- Secondly: faculty would have increased opportunities for research and publication, in that:
- Teaching loads would be limited to seven hours a week of tutorial instruction, and to a maximum of 24 students, to enhance research time and energy,
- The tutorial students would be able to assist and collaborate with their tutors in their research, teaching, and administrative responsibilities. _ Thus the tutors would no longer have to cope with the enervating division of energies between research, teaching, and administrative duties,
Why Should We Think This Could Work?
- The Oxford tutorial system provides us with the example of a successful five-century old pilot project in tutorial instruction.
- The Atlantis adaptation of the OxBridge tutorial system has been developed in experimental courses at Berkeley in the sixties and at McGill during the nineties.
- At the same time, the Atlantis proposals follow the best current theories of institutional structure, as developed by Deming, Senge, Covey, Hammer and Champy, and others.