General Education Curriculum/2004 Vision

Action Project Worksheet

Describe one proposed or possible “vital few” Action Project

Institution: Augsburg College

A. Give a short identifying title (under 10 words) to this Action Project.

Distinctive General Education Curriculum Based on Augsburg 2004 Vision

B. Describe the goal(s) of this Action Project (in 100 words or fewer).

To refine the general education curriculum in keeping with Augsburg’s vision and our student needs while also establishing mechanisms for ongoing assessment of student learning and achievement.  Specific goals include:

  • streamline general education by reducing the number of courses
  • promote collaboration among faculty in course development and implementation
  • achieve Augsburg’s strategy for a transformative education by building on best practices in teaching and learning (e.g. use of learning communities) and focusing on the development of student vocation

C. Please identify the single AQIP Criterion which this Action Project will primarily affect (check one box in the Primary column), and no more than four other Criteria to which it is strongly related (check boxes in the Related column):

AQIP Quality Criteria Primary Related
1 – Helping Students Learn

 

X
2 – Accomplishing Other Distinctive Objectives

 

X
3 – Understanding Students’ and Other Stakeholders’ Needs

 

X
4 – Valuing People

 

5 – Leading and Communicating

 

6 – Supporting Institutional Operations

 

 
7 – Measuring Effectiveness

 

X
8 – Planning Continuous Improvement

 

X
9 – Building Collaborative Relationships

 

D. Please describe your institution’s rationale for addressing this Primary criterion at this time. Why is this project and its goal(s) one of your “vital few”?

This project is vital for incorporating the vision of a transformative education and the rigor of continuous quality improvement into our general educational process.  The current General Education curriculum has been in place over a decade; thus it not only predates the college’s vision statement, but is also due for a thorough review.  The call to streamline General Education for consistency with Augsburg 2004 has been made more urgent by the faculty approval of a change to the academic calendar which eliminates the January term and reduces the total number of courses required for graduation to 32.  In addition to addressing the content of the General Education curriculum and the best ways of delivery, revision will aim at improving institutional and curricular processes, such as the course approval process, student advising, and accommodating transfer and adult students.

E. List the organizational areas (or institutional departments and divisions) most affected.

  • The student body
  • The entire Academic and Learning Services division, particularly the academic departments and academic support offices
  • The Enrollment Services offices
  • The entities involved in the curriculum development and approval process (Academic Affairs Committee and Faculty Senate)

F. List and briefly describe the critical processes most affected.

  • Curriculum approval processes
  • Course and program revision, development, and assessment
  • Faculty development
  • General Education governance
  • Student advising

G. List some process measures that you might track as you work on this Action Project.

  • Faculty and staff participation in open hearings, focus groups, and retreats discussing General Education
  • Approval and support of the General Education proposal by:  Faculty Senate, AAC (Academic Affairs Committee), and college faculty (each a separate approval step).
  • Meeting timelines for curricular planning, enrollment, and catalog publication.

H. List some outcomes measures you might track to see if you achieve your goal(s) in this Project.

  • Number of required courses
  • benchmarks of student learning built in to the curriculum for assessment
  • linkage of General Education to student outcomes
  • courses developed and revised under curriculum guidelines
  • faculty approval and support of General Education proposal

I. If you were to establish measurable “stretch” targets for this Project, what might they look like?

Year Possible Stretch Target(s) for this project
One

 

General Education curriculum proposal is presented and acted upon through faculty governance process. Responsibility and authority for course development and revision under the proposal is assigned to appropriate faculty groups.  Assessment measures and mechanisms are developed for monitoring student learning and achievement.
Two

 

The revised general education curriculum is implemented.  Assessment measures of first year implementation are collected and analyzed for achievement of objectives.
Three

 

Revisions to general education curriculum as identified in the initial assessment are designed and implemented into the curriculum.  Process for ongoing assessment and revision of general education curriculum is developed and implemented.

J. Briefly describe some approaches you might use to keep your institution’s attention and energies focused on this Project and its goal(s).

  • Reconstitution of the curriculum development team to include new voices as well as continued representation.  An oversight committee will provide guidance and monitor the team’s progress.
  • Use of the annual faculty/staff development retreat to envision student outcomes of General Education and to provide a forum for broader input and support of curriculum changes.
  • Gather faculty input on General Education components through a survey assessing current requirements and future needs.
  • Use of the continuous improvement process model to tie student outcomes of General Education to curriculum process, and identify potential measurements of achievement.
  • Review general education programs at similar colleges (ELCA and urban church-related colleges)

K. What do you see as the pros and cons of giving publicity (and therefore high visibility, inside and outside your institution) to this Project and its goal(s)?

Pros (reasons why high visibility could be positive) Cons (reasons why high visibility could be negative)
Signals intent to continue to enhance the quality, currency, and relevance of our academic programming

Increased input and support across academic divisions will generate creativity and result in a better curriculum

Generate excitement and interest in Augsburg’s distinctive education, internally and externally 

Could arouse expectations that cannot be fulfilled

Can create uncertainty and fear in individuals and areas involved in the current General Education curriculum