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Impact on Cost Savings

The University of New Mexico

Were costs reduced as planned?

During the pilot implementation, there was considerable, sustained student protest to the announcement that there would be only one lecture per week. Instructors also felt one lecture was one too few. In subsequent implementations, two 50-minute lectures (on Mondays and Wednesdays) and one 50-minute studio (on Fridays during scheduled class time and on other days and times throughout the week) were offered. Changing the number of lectures delivered each week by faculty and GTA instructors increased costs and decreased proposed savings. When the redesign was fully implemented during the second year, however, only four graduate TAs were assigned rather than the five proposed originally.

These two changes yielded a final total actual cost reduction from $161,184 to $82,340 rather than to the projected $85,012, a 49% reduction rather than the projected 47%.

The New Mexico team believes that it will be possible at some point to use only undergraduate assistants in the TA role with one graduate TA supervising them. When this change occurs, the cost-per-student will further decline.

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