Updated October 2, 2013
Occasionally faculty members in two different departments may wish to link their courses, such that each one teaches a class but the same students enroll in both courses. The instructors may choose to cooperate in a variety of ways — by attending one another's classes, by coordinating syllabi, by devising shared outside experiences, for example. When carefully planned and coordinated, linked courses have the potential to create learning communities that enhance the educational experience, particularly for first-year students.
Because not all students interested in one course within a linked pair are also interested in the other course, linked courses typically result in below-optimal enrollments in both courses of the pair. Thus linked courses come at a cost, measured in faculty time and energy. Faculty members planning to link their courses must think carefully about the benefits of such links and must plan the interactions far ahead of time to ensure a truly synergistic connection. Plans for linked courses should be made with department chairs before the course schedules for the linked-course semester are submitted to the division directors. Division directors should be made aware of plans for linked courses, as well.
In addition, linked courses require special handling by the registrar. Instructors of linked pairs that have been approved by department chairs and division directors should contact the registrar's office so that they can be appropriately coded in Banner.