January/February 2011
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Meetings and Institutes

Spring Meetings to Focus on General Education and Assessment and Engaged STEM Learning

Register now for AAC&U’s Spring 2011 Network for Academic Renewal conference. General Education and Assessment 3.0: Next-Level Practices Now will be held March 3-5 in Chicago, Illinois. The meeting will focus on how campus leaders can help students learn to develop the kind of innovative, “big-picture” thinking and creative problem-solving skills that excellent general education programs foster. Register by February 9 for the best rates.

Engaged STEM Learning: From Promising to Pervasive Practices, will be held March 24-26 in Miami, Florida. This meeting—an interactive, hands-on conference—will help campuses adapt, scale up, and sustain effective practices in STEM teaching and learning. Register by March 2 for the best rates.

Information about all of AAC&U’s upcoming and past meetings can be found on the meetings Web page.


AAC&U Summer Institutes on General Education, High-Impact Practices, and Engaging Departments Accepting Applications

Application deadlines are quickly approaching for AAC&U’s three distinctive summer institutes. The institutes offer campus teams a time and place for sustained collaborative work on a project of importance to their campus. The 2011 institutes include the Institute on General Education and Assessment, June 4-8, 2011, at San Jose State University; the Institute on High-Impact Practices and Student Success, June 14-18, 2011, at the University of Vermont; and the Engaging Departments Institute, July 13-17, 2011, at the Hotel at Turf Valley, in Ellicott City, Maryland. Details on all three institutes are available online. Applications are due February 18 for General Education, March 1 for High-Impact Practices, and March 18 for Engaging Departments.


Submit Proposals for Fall 2011 Conferences on Educating for Personal and Social Responsibility; Arts and Humanities

Applications for presentations at AAC&U’s fall 2011 Network for Academic Renewal conferences are being accepted through February 23 for Educating for Personal and Social Responsibility: A Twenty-First-Century Imperative, and through March 30 for Arts & Humanities: Toward a Flourishing State? The personal and social responsibility conference will be held October 13-15, 2011, in Long Beach, California, and the arts and humanities conference will be held November 3-5, 2011, in Providence, Rhode Island.


More than 2,000 Participants Attend AAC&U Annual Meeting in San Francisco

More than 2,000 faculty members, presidents, deans, academic administrators, and students gathered last week in San Francisco for Global Positioning: Essential Learning, Student Success, and the Currency of U.S. Degrees, AAC&U’s 2011 Annual Meeting. Highlights included addresses by Kavita Ramdas of the Freeman Spogli Institute; Eduardo M. Ochoa, US assistant secretary for postsecondary education; Mark Taylor, author of Crisis on Campus: A Bold Plan for Reforming Our Colleges and Universities; and Leo Chávez, professor of anthropology and author of The Latino Threat: Constructing Immigrants, Citizens, and the Nation. The meeting also featured presentations by Richard Arum and Josipa Roksa, authors of Academically Adrift, and presentations and discussions about the Lumina Foundation for Education’s new Degree Profile. If you weren’t able to attend the meeting—or just want to see what your colleagues were up to—check out the Annual Meeting blog archive online. Guest writers posted information and impressions throughout the meeting. All of AAC&U’s tweets about and from the Annual Meeting are also online. Also see the media coverage from the Annual Meeting.


AAC&U and Portland State to Cosponsor Institute on Community-Campus Partnerships

Portland State University's Second International Institute on Partnerships, From Reciprocity to Collective Transformation: Achieving the Potential of Community-Campus Partnerships, will be held May 23-25, 2011, in Portland, Oregon. The institute, cosponsored by AAC&U, will convene an international group of faculty, students, community partners, and administrators who are advancing the role of community-higher education partnerships in society. The institute will focus on the bedrock work of partnerships themselves—local, national, and international. Registration details, a conference program, and lodging options are all available online.




LEAP Publishes New Brochure to Help Students Understand Value of Liberal Education

What Is a Liberal Education? And Why Is It Important to My Future? is a brochure for prospective and current college students.  It serves as an introduction to what a liberal education is—and why it is important to all college students. It is based on research findings from the LEAP initiative and was developed with input from leading employers, recent graduates, economists, and students. This brochure provides a contemporary definition of the term “liberal education,” the most important outcomes of college, and perspectives from recent graduates and employers. It also provides a set of questions designed to help students construct a purpose­ful pathway through college. This brochure is available for bulk purchase only, in increments of 500 copies. To place an order, click here.

LEAP Cosponsors E-Portfolio Conference

AAC&U is cosponsoring a conference on e-portfolios at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 28-March 1, 2011, as part of its LEAP States Initiative. Also cosponsored by Westminster and the Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL), this conference, titled A Life of Learning:  E-Portfolios for Education and Beyond, will feature a keynote address by AAC&U Vice President Terrel Rhodes and sessions on the practical uses of e-portfolios for lifelong learning and employment. See the conference program and registration information. Registration will be open through February 18, 2011.

PKAL News and Meetings


Submit Applications for PKAL Summer Leadership Institute

The 2011 PKAL Summer Leadership Institutes for STEM Faculty will be held July 12–17 and July 19–24, 2011, at the Baca Campus of Colorado College in Crestone, Colorado. Applications to attend are due March 11.  The institutes are designed for early- and mid-career STEM faculty engaged in leading projects aimed at transforming undergraduate STEM education in their classrooms and departments. These five-day intensive institutes provide faculty participants with the theory and practice required to act as agents of change in their home institutions or professional societies. More information and application forms are available online.

PKAL Celebrates Twentieth Anniversary with Essays from Partners

January 2011 marks the twentieth anniversary of Project Kaleidoscope and the first anniversary of PKAL’s partnership with AAC&U. To inaugurate a celebration of twenty years of work on science and interdisciplinary learning, PKAL has published online a collection of essays from the community of disciplinary and professional societies who are key partners in our work. More essays will be posted throughout the spring. To read the essays and to learn more about PKAL’s history, visit the PKAL twentieth anniversary Web page.

PKAL Executive Director Appointed to NGA Committee

The National Governors Association (NGA) recently announced the formation of a Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Advisory Committee to inform its work in this area and help the twenty-nine new governors, as well as incumbents, develop comprehensive STEM agendas in their states. Project Kaleidoscope Executive Director Susan Elrod was appointed along with eighteen other national leaders with expertise across education, policy, business, and STEM content areas. Learn more about the NGA initiative online.  To learn more about PKAL, click here


Project Highlights

Undergraduate Public Health Case Studies Requested for New Project

In partnership with the Association for Prevention Teaching and Research and the APTR Healthy People Curriculum Task Force, AAC&U will create and disseminate institutional case studies that describe the development of successful public health programs in two-year and four-year undergraduate institutions. These case studies will describe the development, implementation, and maintenance of programs, and will illustrate how campus efforts support the Healthy People Curriculum Taskforce’s Education for Health framework and Healthy People 2020 educational objectives. The case studies will be housed online and linked to the Healthy People 2020 website as a means to share innovative programs with those seeking to advance the teaching of prevention, population health, and public health on campus. The call for participation is available online. This project is part of AAC&U’s Educated Citizen and Public Health initiative. For additional information, contact Kevin Hovland at Hovland@aacu.org.


AAC&U Staff Members Appointed to E-Portfolio Journal Editorial Board

Three AAC&U staff members have been appointed to the editorial board of the International Journal of ePortfolio, a new peer-reviewed, open-access journal that will be freely available online. The AAC&U board representatives are Shelley Johnson Carey, AAC&U director of publications and editorial services; Ashley Finley, AAC&U director of research and assessment, and Terrel L. Rhodes, AAC&U vice president for quality, curriculum, and assessment. The journal’s focus reflects AAC&U’s commitment to encouraging a national dialogue about assessment of college student learning. The first issue of IJeP is scheduled to be published in summer 2011; papers are currently being accepted for review.  Visit the journal’s website and see the call for papers. For more information about AAC&U’s work on assessment, visit the VALUE project Web page.


AAC&U Cosponsors ¡Excelencia! In Education Awards; Nominations Sought

Excelencia In Education is now accepting nominations for the 2011 Examples of ¡Excelencia! Awards.  Begun in 2005, the Examples of ¡Excelencia! initiative is designed to identify and honor programs and departments at the forefront of increasing academic opportunities and improving achievement for Latino students at the associate, baccalaureate, and graduate levels. AAC&U is a sponsoring partner of the award. Nominations may be submitted online through April 15, 2011. Full details about the award and the nomination process are available online.


Other AAC&U News

Eight Graduate Students Honored with K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award

The K. Patricia Cross Future Leaders Award is given annually by AAC&U to graduate students who are committed to developing academic and civic responsibility in themselves and others, and who show exemplary promise as future leaders of higher education. The 2011 winners are:

  • Adam Bush, American Studies and Ethnicity, University of Southern California
  • Edmond Chang, English, University of Washington
  • Keary Engle, Chemistry, Scripps Research Institute
  • Michelle Gaffey, Literature, Duquesne University
  • Sam Potolicchio, American Government, Georgetown University
  • Chera Reid, Higher Education, New York University
  • Cara Robinson, Urban Affairs and Public Policy, University of Delaware
  • Jennifer Veilleux, Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago

For more information about the award, including biographies of the winners, see the press release.


Resources Now Available from 2010 Meetings on Diversity, Learning and Inclusive Excellence; Undergraduate Research

Materials—including PowerPoint slides, podcasts, and session summaries—are now available for AAC&U’s fall 2010 Network for Academic Renewal conferences, Facing the Divides: Diversity, Learning, and Pathways to Inclusive Excellence and Creativity, Inquiry, and Discovery: Undergraduate Research In and Across the Disciplines. For help getting started with podcasts, visit AAC&U’s Podcasting Help page.


AAC&U Invites Nominations for Board of Directors

Nominations for the AAC&U Board of Directors for terms beginning in 2012 are now being accepted. Any individual from an AAC&U member campus is eligible to serve on the AAC&U Board of Directors. The current board members are listed online. To nominate an individual, please send a letter to Bethany Zecher Sutton, secretary to the board, 1818 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20009, or send an e-mail to sutton@aacu.org.


LEAP Student Brochure  
What Is a Liberal Education? And Why Is It Important to My Future?

Liberal Education Fall 2010 Cover  
Liberal Education
Integrative Learning
at Home and Abroad
Peer Review Fall 2010  
Peer Review
Internships and Experiential Learning

Network for Academic Renewal Conferences:

General Education and Assessment 3.0: Next-Level Practices Now
March 3-5, 2011
Chicago, Illinois

Engaged STEM Learning: From Promising to Pervasive Practices
March 24-26, 2011
Miami, Florida

2011 Summer Institutes

Institute on General Education and Assessment
June 4-8, 2011
San Jose State University, California

Institute on High-Impact Practices and Student Success
June 14-18, 2011
The University of Vermont

Engaging Departments Institute
July 13-17, 2011
The Hotel at Turf Valley,
Ellicott City, Maryland

For more information on meetings, visit www.aacu.org/meetings/index.cfm