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California Community Colleges Education Planning InitiativeWith the school year in full swing, curriculum is on everyone’s mind. As the foundational tool for instruction in the California Community Colleges (CCC), it is important that courses and programs are consistent and high-quality.

The CCC Education Planning Initiative (EPI) supports this goal through the Chancellor's Office Curriculum Inventory (COCI). The COCI serves as the central database for all CCC course information. Colleges use COCI to submit new or notably changed courses and programs for approval. The application uses unique Course Control Numbers to identify and track course information.

Technology-Backed Educational Pathways

With structured pathways provided through a student services portal and education planning system, governance provided by inclusive and multi-tiered committees from across the system, and integrated professional development for student services professionals, the EPI will fulfill the needs identified below:

  • Help students make informed choices, clarify goals and plan for success
  • Assist under-resourced counseling services
  • Succeed despite funding challenges
  • Coordination within and between colleges
  • Alignment with legislation
  • Design effective management solutions

Since 2010, the state of California has taken broad steps to ensure legislative support for student success programs that support California’s college students. Laws that specifically call on the CCC and its Board of Governors to institute electronic planning and electronic transcripts include Senate Bill 1143 (2010), Assembly Bill 1056 (2011) and Senate Bill 1456 (2012).

As indicated by this body of legislation, California’s government has clearly outlined the need for centralized education planning, matriculation and transcript tools that leverage technology on behalf of more than 2.1 million students at 114 colleges throughout the state. Included is the recognition of the importance of effective professional development for faculty and staff focused on training appropriate, existing personnel in the use of these new tools.

How Does EPI Use COCI?

Technology cannot solve the fundamental issues behind the CCC’s counseling shortage. But it can be a fulcrum to gain leverage to address the symptoms of the low counselor-to-student ratio and give counselors the ability to reach more students effectively.

COCI provides transparent, role-based workflows to assist in regulatory and policy planning. The system also supports efforts like the EPI by providing a full list of CCC-approved courses and programs (current and past). The Chancellor's Office Curriculum Inventory supports the Education Planning Initiative by assisting with:

  • Education planning
  • Career and program guidance
  • Support of CCC MyPath applications

In many colleges, there is little interface between faculty, counseling and student services in working with students. To ensure success for the student, colleges need to have technology-based systems that promote a holistic approach where counseling, faculty and student services can work together for the benefit of the student.

To meet this need, projects under the EPI have diverse steering committees in place representing stakeholders across the system with bi-monthly meetings, at a minimum. For more information about COCI, visit the EPI website at The website contains vital background information regarding the initiative as well as status updates. Visit EPI’s website to stay informed and please join the EPI-INTEREST listserv today.

David Quintanilla is a project team member of
the California Community Colleges Technology Center