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CUE Debates Putting Guide On-Line

By Peggy S. Chen, CRIMSON STAFF WRITER

Faculty members and students discussed expanding online access to the CUE Guide and to old final exams at the first meeting of the Committee on Undergraduate Education (CUE) yesterday.

This year is the first time the CUE Guide has been available on the Internet. Jessica A. Wolf '99, editor-in-chief of this year's CUE Guide, praised the site as "our newest, biggest addition."

Currently, the online guide can only be searched by course title. The committee discussed expanding the guide's search engine so that students will be able to find courses by professor and by other features.

William M. Todd III, dean of undergraduate education and chair of the committee, feared that an expanded search engine would be misused for non-academic purposes.

William Paul, dean of the division of applied sciences, said that a search might present a skewed picture of a course's statistics.

Wolf also brought up concerns about the confidentiality of the guide.

Professors currently receive copies of students' questionnaires at the end of the term.

Wolf said she feared this practice might compromise students' anonymity in small classes in which the biographical information could reveal students' identities.

"It's simply eliciting the most honest response from students," Wolf said.

The committee also discussed constructing a Web site for students to access old final exams.

Old final exams from professors are currently available in book form at several undergraduate libraries.

Many Faculty members said they were concerned about the security of distributing the exams over the Internet.

The student members of the committee expressed support for a final exam Web site.

The proposed Web site would end students' worries about library hours and missing pages from the bound exams, said James T.L. Grimmelmann '99-'98.

Committee members also discussed issues for future meetings, such as training for teaching fellows, a review of overall undergraduate requirements and a review of the language requirement.

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