About the Task Force that Created the 2012 General Studies Program
Task Force Charge
The current General Studies Program was designed in the late 1980s and has not undergone significant review since the early 1990s. Several attempts to review and revise the General Studies program to meet the needs of the 21st century learner have occurred in the last ten years. Each of these efforts resulted in college-wide conversation but none produced an updated General Studies Program. Following its HLC accreditation visit in 2007, the College was required to submit a monitoring report on General Studies. The HLC was troubled by the lack of progress toward revising the general education program, especially given that concerns were expressed during the 1997 accreditation visit about the lack of clear learning outcomes associated with general studies. The HLC is still disturbed with the lack of progress and has notified Metro that “a focused visit on the revision and implementation of the general education program will be scheduled for fall 2010.” A copy of their staff analysis and notification that there will be a focused site visit in Fall 2010 is attached. This focused visit is the result of concerns expressed in both the 1997 and 2007 accreditation visits. For this visit, the HLC expects us to show substantial progress in addressing their concerns regarding a program that lacks clear, measurable learning outcomes which serve as the foundation for the program structure and provide coherence to the student experience.
Given this very short time frame in which to accomplish a substantial amount of work, a General Studies Task Force is being formed. The charge to the Task Force is the following:
- to act as a catalyst that assists the faculty in developing clear learning outcomes that will best serve our students while addressing the HLC concerns
- review and incorporate as appropriate, the work of the past General Studies Committee, successful general education models and successful general education revision processes at similar colleges in order to inform Task Force members’ thinking about possibilities for Metro’s program
- engage the college community – using the Faculty, Faculty Senate, Department Chairs, Council of Chairs and the Provost’s Office as Task Force liaisons, as well as a series of Faculty Town Hall meetings -- in consistent reciprocal communication throughout the process
- consider existing parameters in which a general studies program must be developed, including but not limited to GT Pathways, the number of transfer students entering the College, the number of credit hours mandated and limited by CCHE for an undergraduate degree, current Metro graduation requirements and meeting the needs and/or accreditation requirements of professional programs
- recognize where appropriate programs such as First Year Success and Learning Communities as pathways for implementation of General Studies
Program goals and avenues for fostering enhanced student performance with regard to General Studies objectives.
- align the proposed learning outcomes and curricular structure with the College mission,
- by April 2010, prepare a proposal which includes a set of program learning outcomes, the framework or structure of the general studies curriculum (presently Level I and Level II), an assessment plan to measure the degree to which students are achieving the learning outcomes, and an implementation plan for the revised program
- the proposal must be approved by a vote of the tenure-track and tenured faculty by the end of spring semester, 2010
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