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ERIC Number: ED510572
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 32
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Equivalence to the Minimum Qualifications
Academic Senate for California Community Colleges
In 1988 the Community College Reform Act (AB 1725) began a phase out of credentials in favor of a process for establishing minimum qualifications and the determination of equivalencies that are at least equal to the state-adopted minimum qualifications for a particular discipline. According to Education Code sections 87359 and 87360, someone who does not possess the minimum qualifications for service may be hired as a faculty member if he or she is judged to possess "qualifications that are at least equivalent to the minimum qualifications". The Disciplines List, a list of Board of Governors adopted minimum qualifications for hiring faculty was established. District equivalency policies recognize three ways of demonstrating equivalency: (1) course work; (2) work experience; and (3) eminence in the field (a sub-set of experience). Whatever the means are for making determinations, equivalency should never mean less than the qualifications specified on the Disciplines List. Establishing equivalency through coursework is often relatively simple, as transcripts are concrete documents that can be compared to concrete criteria. A somewhat more difficult case would occur when the name of a degree is close to that specified on the Disciplines List but the course work is slightly different. Other more difficult cases occur when work experience is proposed as the equivalent of academic work. Knowledge acquired in a course could also be gained in other ways. The problem lies in obtaining convincing evidence to establish that an applicant has enough necessary educational preparation through an alternative means to be judged as knowledgeable as someone with the appropriate degree. This paper concludes with recommendations for the determination of equivalencies, including who determines equivalency, that equivalency is granted for a discipline (not for courses or subject areas with disciplines), that polices and procedures must be consistent, objective, evidence based, mindful of general education and specialization, and that local governing boards include action on the equivalency as part of their subsequent hiring action. Following the recommendations, this paper provides a proposed equivalency model as well as the results of an equivalency survey and a legal opinion stating that local districts are not authorized to establish a single course equivalency. Appended are: (1) Equivalency Policy: A Proposed Model; and (2) Legal Opinion on Single Course Equivalency. (Contains 1 footnote
Academic Senate for California Community Colleges. 555 Capitol Mall Suite 525, Sacramento, CA 95814. Tel: 916-445-4753; Fax: 916-323-9867; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: Policymakers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Academic Senate for California Community Colleges
Identifiers - Location: California
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: California Education Code