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Meeting Notes

October 9, 2009

General Studies Taskforce
October 9, 2009
10:30-12:15 AD560A

1.  Notes from last meeting were reviewed, no changes or corrections

2.  Joan reviewed points from last week’s meeting, reiterating that general education has common elements for all disciplines.  A handout was distributed with conclusions based on last week’s meeting. The general conclusion was developed that the learning outcomes will drive the structure of the general studies program and that the taskforce is interested in a common knowledge approach.

A question was raised if the outcomes needed to be measurable to start with.  Sheila stated that it would be easier if it’s started that way.  It was discussed if we should use common goals and phrases used with new measurable outcomes, blending the familiar with the new.  “Use the survey and old system and update to the 21st century.”

What model would be easier to work with?  The Appalachian model uses rubric elements.  It helps students understand what is expected.  The format is easier to follow.  The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is short, one page which is an advantage.  The questions was raised is there any value in keeping our old model; adaptation vs. creating?

Keep the goal similar but not exactly the same, so it is familiar.  The first round of information should show how the old language was rolled into the new.  Then show the move into the new language, eventually dropping the old language.

Which presentation was liked best?  The Appalachian model used the map format with two subsets of skills, while the Nebraska model did better at integration. 

Start with the foundational skills to get the college involved in discussion.  Move into the broader aspects of common knowledge.  It needs to be extremely clear that this is just the beginning of the discussions.

Goal I:       Communicate effectively
                    - write with clarity
                    - read and listen critically
                    - organize ideas
                    - speak with clarity

Goal II:      Engage in inquiry and analyses
                    - recognize faulty reasoning
                    - draw conclusions from quantitative data
                      [technology information]

Goal III:    Acquire knowledge of principal human achievements, and of the physical and natural world.

 Goal IV:   Understanding the interdependence of diverse individuals and communities/societies.           

Proposed goal

Link to current g.s. goal

Link to faculty survey

Intellectual practices and skills



Acquire knowledge






Integrate knowledge and skills



Sheila will complete the matrix and distribute to the taskforce for comments. 

Joan distributed the timeline she had developed for the taskforce.  There was a general consensus that there should be an earlier vote on just the foundational skills.  Sheila stated that we should be ready for that vote by December or early January.

The input will be available from:
                    Faculty Senate General Studies committee who will hold office hours.
                    Website, which will have a feedback form
                    Distributed via the department Chairs for discussion with their departments
                    Town Hall meetings, open forum.
                    Schedule first Town Hall for during the week of November 13th.

Joan will send out to the taskforce the notes she has compiled regarding the various models.



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