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Program in Course Redesign

University of Idaho

Pre-Calculus—Course Planning Tool

The Course Planning Tool is a formatted spreadsheet that facilitates a three-step process for institutions to establish and compare the instructional costs before redesign (the traditional course) and the instructional costs after the redesign (the redesigned course).

Step #1 shows the calculation of all personnel costs associated with preparing and delivering the course expressed as an hourly rate. Annual salary for faculty listed is the average of all faculty teaching the course and includes a 28.5% benefits rate. Step #2 uses this initial calculation to determine the cost of preparing and delivering the traditional course. Step #3 calculates these costs for the redesigned course. More specific Course Planning Tool instructions are available.

Below are a summary of the cost savings anticipated at the University of Idaho and the completed course planning tool.

Cost Savings

The University of Idaho will redesign three pre-calculus courses enrolling a total of 2,428 students by moving them to a learning center modeled after the Virginia Tech Math Emporium. Idaho's course-planning tool depicts the cost of each of the three courses as well as the cost of serving students in the Mathematics Assistance Center for each of the courses based on the cost of staffing and the number of student visits per course. In the redesign, faculty preparation hours will be reduced significantly from 4,609 to 3,347, a decrease of 27%. Interaction time has more than doubled, increasing from 2,846 hours in the traditional format for all sections to 6,178 hours in the redesigned format. Training time for the redesigned course is higher since the course involves a greater diversity of personnel.

The new active-learning model reduces the total cost of offering all three courses from approximately $338,000 to $235,000, a reduction of 31%. The cost-per-student for the three separate courses ranges from $110 to $176 per student, whereas the cost-per-student served in Polya is projected to be about $97 for all three courses. The university also anticipates additional savings by reducing failure rates in the three courses. Savings generated from this redesign will remain with the department and be reinvested to redesign additional math courses to be taught in the Polya Center.

[For more detailed information regarding their initial academic redesign, consult the project plan description.]

Step #1: Determine Instructional Costs per Hour

Instructional Costs per Hour—Pre-Calculus


Intermed. Algebra Algebra Pre-Calculus
Faculty Lecturer GTA GTA
       
Annual salary and benefits $33,800    
% devoted to instruction 100    
% devoted to this section 12.5    
$ devoted to this section $4,255    
       
Contact hours for section 148    
Out of class hours 27    
Total hours 175    
Cost per hour $24    
       
Graduate TAs/GAs      
       
Salary   $11,917 $11,917
% devoted to instruction   100 100
% devoted to this course   50 50
$ devoted to this course   $5,959 $5,959
       
Contact hours for course   202 202
Out of class hours   128 128
Total hours   330 330
Cost per hour   $18 $18
       
Undergraduate TAs      
Cost per hour $7    
       
Professional/Staff      
Positions      
MSAC Support Staff      
  Cost/Student Visit Cost/Student Visit Cost/Student Visit
Director $7 $10 $8
Manager $5 $7 $5
UG Assistants $4 $5 $4
Total $15 $22 $17
       
Math Center Manager $13    

Step #2: Determine Instructional Costs of Traditional Course

Instructional Costs of Traditional Course—Intermediate Algebra

  Faculty   MSAC Services  
  # of Hours Total Cost Cost for one section $1,078
  Hourly rate = $24    
I. Course Preparation      
 
       

 
A. Curriculum Development 4 $97  

 
B. Materials Acquisition 3 $73    
C. Materials Development        
1. Lectures/presentations 4 $97    
2. Learning materials/software 3 $73    
3. Diagnostic assessments 2 $49    
4. Assignments 4 $97    
5. Tests/evaluations 4 $97    
Sub-Total 24 $584    
         
D. Faculty/TA Devmt/Training        
1. Orientation 1 $24    
2. Staff meetings 2 $49    
3. Attend lectures        
Sub-Total 3 $73    
Total Preparation 27 $656    
         
II. Course Delivery        
         
A. Instruction        
1. Diagnose skill/knowledge        
2. Presentation 42 $1,021    
3. Interaction 42 $1,021    
4. Progress monitoring 16 $389    
Sub-Total 100 $2,431    
         
B. Evaluation        
1. Test proctoring 8 $195    
2. Tests/evaluation 40 $973    
Sub-Total 48 $1,167    
Total Delivery 148 $3,599    
         
TOTAL 175 $4,255   $1,078
         
Total per section   $5,333    
         
GRAND TOTAL for 19 Sections $101,335    
Total # of students   920    
Cost per student   $110    

Instructional Costs of Traditional Course—Algebra

  GTA   MSAC Services  
  # of Hours Total Cost Cost for one section = $2,236
  Hourly rate = $18    
I. Course Preparation      
 
       
 
A. Curriculum Development 8 $144  

 
B. Materials Acquisition 5 $90    
C. Materials Development        
1. Lectures/presentations 35 $630    
2. Learning materials/software 9 $162    
3. Diagnostic assessments 8 $144    
4. Assignments 16 $288    
5. Tests/evaluations 15 $270    
Sub-Total 96 $1,728      
         
D. Faculty/TA Devmt/Training        
1. Orientation 8 $144    
2. Staff meetings 8 $144    
3. Attend lectures 16 $288    
Sub-Total 32 $576      
Total Preparation 128 $2,304    
         
II. Course Delivery        
         
A. Instruction        
1. Diagnose skill/knowledge        
2. Presentation 42 $756    
3. Interaction 64 $1,152    
4. Progress monitoring 30 $540    
Sub-Total 136 $2,448      
         
B. Evaluation        
1. Test proctoring 12 $216    
2. Tests/evaluation 54 $972    
Sub-Total 66 $1,188      
Total Delivery 202 $3,636    
         
TOTAL 330 $5,940   $2,236
         
Total Per Section    $8,176    
         
GRAND TOTAL for 5 sections $40,880    
Total # of students   233    
Cost per student   $175    

Instructional Costs of Traditional Course—Pre-Calculus

  GTA   MSAC Services  
  # of Hours Total Cost Cost for one section = $1,335
  Hourly rate = $18    
I. Course Preparation    

     

A. Curriculum Development 8 $144

B. Materials Acquisition 5 $90    
C. Materials Development        
1. Lectures/presentations 35 $630    
2. Learning materials/software 9 $162    
3. Diagnostic assessments 8 $144    
4. Assignments 16 $288    
5. Tests/evaluations 15 $270    
Sub-Total 96 $1,728    
         
D. Faculty/TA Devmt/Training        
1. Orientation 8 $144    
2. Staff meetings 8 $144    
3. Attend lectures 16 $288    
Sub-Total 32 $576    
Total Preparation 128 $2,304    
         
II. Course Delivery        
         
A. Instruction        
1. Diagnose skill/knowledge        
2. Presentation 42 $756    
3. Interaction 64 $1,152    
4. Progress monitoring 30 $540    
Sub-Total 136 $2,448    
         
B. Evaluation        
1. Test proctoring 12 $216    
2. Tests/evaluation 54 $972    
Sub-Total 66 $1,188    
Total Delivery 202 $3,636    
         
TOTAL 330 $5,940   $1,335
         
Total per section $7,275    
         
GRAND TOTAL For 27 Sections $196,423    
Total # of students   1275    
Cost per student   $154    

Step #3: Determine Instructional Costs of Redesigned Course

Instructional Costs of Redesigned Courses

  Senior Faculty Instructor GTAs UGTAs   Center Manager
  # of Hrs Total Cost # of Hrs Total Cost # of Hrs Total Cost # of Hrs Total Cost # of Hrs Total Cost
  Hourly rate = $24 Hourly rate = $24 Hourly rate = $18 Hourly rate = $7 Hourly rate = $13
I. Course Preparation                

                     
A. Curriculum Development 14 $330 28 $681            
B. Materials Acquisition 3 $71 6 $146            
C. Materials Development                    
1.Lectures/presentations 50 $1,180 100 $2,431            
2. Learning materials/software 150 $3,541 352 $8,559            
3. Diagnostic assessments 69 $1,629 100 $2,431            
4. Assignments     26 $632            
5. Tests/evaluations 25 $590 42 $1,021            
Sub-Total 311 $7,341 654 $15,902            
                     
D. Faculty/TA Devmt/Training        
 
  2000 $25,619
1. Orientation 40 $944 80 $1,945 40 $720 90 $636    
2. Staff meetings 20 $472 40 $973 40 $720 32 $226    
3. Attend lectures                    
Sub-Total 60 $1,416 120 $2,918 80 $1,440 122 $863    
Total Preparation 371 $8,757 774 $18,819 80 $1,440 122 $863 2000 $25,619
                     
II. Course Delivery                    
                     
A. Instruction                    
1. Diagnose skill/knowledge         120 $2,160        
2. Presentation 69 $1,629 138 $3,355 160 $2,880        
3. Interaction 400 $9,442 508 $12,352 3220 $57,960 2050 $14,494    
4. Progress monitoring 420 $9,914 1242 $30,198 1500 $27,000        
Sub-Total 889 $20,984 1888 $45,905 5000 $90,000 2050 $14,494    
                     
B. Evaluation                    
1. Test proctoring         100 $1,800        
2. Tests/evaluation 60 $1,416 138 $3,355 100 $1,800        
Sub-Total 60 $1,416 138 $3,355 200 $3,600        
Total Delivery 949 $22,401 2026 $49,261 5200 $93,600 2050 $14,494

                     
TOTAL 1320 $31,158 2800 $68,080 5280 $95,040 2172 $15,356 2000 $25,619
                     
                     
                     
GRAND TOTAL   $235,253      

     
# of Students   2428  
           
Cost per Student   $97  
           

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