Liberal Education Publications

Rising to the LEAP Challenge: Case Studies of Integrative Pathways to Student Signature Work
2017

Rising to the LEAP Challenge provides a series of case studies that reflect the "real-world" application of students' cumulative learning through signature work projects, as put forth in AAC&U's LEAP Challenge. Such projects focus on complex questions that are meaningful to individual students and to society; require students to integrate, apply, demonstrate, reflect on, and communicate their cumulative learning; and require input from multiple disciplines and perspectives. Colleges and universities can best prepare students to accomplish signature work through guided-pathway curricula and cocurricular experiences in which students can develop and connect their knowledge and skills across broad and specialized study, over time. The thirteen case studies included in Rising to the LEAP Challenge demonstrate the variety of forms signature work can take, as well as the variety of institutional contexts and curricular pathways that can effectively support it. The...

Open and Integrative: Designing Liberal Education for the New Digital Ecosystem

The ongoing digital revolution has created a complex and interconnected ecosystem that is fundamentally reshaping how we learn and communicate. Yet, despite its transformative potential, this digital ecosystem has so far had less of an impact on formal education than on other sectors of our society. Authors Randy Bass and Bret Eynon explore the implications of emerging digital capacities and culture for higher education, arguing that any discussion to reinvent higher education that begins with technology is doomed to a diminished vision of learning. Bass and Eynon begin instead by reimagining the core purposes of liberal education in this new context and ask: What is the role of the digital ecosystem in making a quality liberal education available to all, equitably?

Going beyond “unbundling,” the authors propose that we use networked and adaptive systems to “re-bundle” higher education by connecting learning experiences that have typically been disconnected, opening the...

Becoming a Student-Ready College
2016

The national conversation asking "Are students college-ready?" concentrates on numerous factors that are beyond higher education's control. Becoming a Student-Ready College flips the college readiness conversation to provide a new perspective on creating institutional value and facilitating student success. Instead of focusing on student preparedness for college (or lack thereof), this book asks the more pragmatic question of what are colleges and universities doing to prepare for the students who are entering their institutions? What must change in an institution's policies, practices, and culture in order to be student-ready?

Clear and concise, this book is packed with insightful discussion and practical strategies for achieving your ambitious student success goals. These ideas for redesigning practices and policies provide more than food for thought—they offer a real-world framework for real institutional change.

Diversity and Democracy, Winter, 2016
Diversity & Democracy, Winter 2016

This issue of Diversity & Democracy calls readers to invest in high-quality learning for all students by ensuring equitable access to both effective educational practices and welcoming campus climates. Contributing authors share evaluation and implementation strategies that support college success, particularly for students who have been underserved within higher education.

Read more
Recent Trends in General Education Design, Learning Outcomes, and Teaching Approaches
2016

This report summarizes key findings from a national survey among chief academic officers at AAC&U member institutions and explores how institutions are defining common learning outcomes, trends related to general education design and the use of emerging, evidence-based teach­ing and learning practices. This is the second report in a series featuring findings from the survey conducted by Hart Research Associates for AAC&U. (full reports and slides with findings are available free online at www.aacu.org/about/2015-membersurvey.)

This new report, "Recent Trends in General Education Design, Learning Outcomes, and Teaching Approaches," includes respondents from across the full spectrum of public, private, two-year, and four-year institutions.

The Quality of a College Degree
2015

This report examines the larger policy environment and how it is and isn’t aligned with current efforts to focus on assessment of key student learning outcomes, especially in the context of transfer. It builds on lessons learned in AAC&U's DQP Quality Collaboratives project.  Authors provide recommendations for framing policy debates about more efficient and effective transfer from two-year to four-year institutions that account for students’ achievement of key learning outcomes articulated in the Degree Qualifications Profile. The publication also provides a framework for better aligning state and campus policies with a twenty-first-century vision of quality learning and with current patterns of student attendance.  Ideal for campus discussions about improving transfer student success and collecting better data on student achievement, the publication also includes case studies from two-year/four-year Quality Collaboratives campus partners...

Liberal Education, Winter-Spring, 2015
Liberal Education, Winter/Spring 2015

This special double issue focuses on the LEAP Challenge, the next phase of AAC&U’s Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) initiative. Articles present the LEAP Challenge and, through exploration of a variety of campus exemplars, its central concept of Signature Work. Along with selected presentations from AAC&U’s 2015 annual meeting, the winter/spring issue also features a look at key moments in the association’s history—the first in a yearlong series of commissioned articles marking the AAC&U Centennial.

 

Read more
Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence: A Campus Guide for Self-Study and Planning
2015

Download free PDF

Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence: A Campus Guide for Self-Study and Planning provides a framework for needed dialogue, assessment, and action to address inequities in higher education institutions. Focusing on issues of access and success, it can be used as a tool for bringing together campus leaders and practitioners—across divisions and departments—to engage in internal assessment and chart a path forward to improve all students’ success and achievement of key learning outcomes. The Guide is designed with a particular focus on the success of students who come from groups traditionally underserved in higher education.

Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence: A Campus Guide for Self-Study and Planning is recommended for use in combination with AAC&U’s...

Step Up & Lead for Equity: What Higher Education Can Do to Reverse Our Deepening Divides
2015

 

Step Up & Lead for Equity: What Higher Education Can Do to Reverse Our Deepening Divides makes the case that America’s persistent gaps in education, income, and wealth are widening, with the fastest growing segments of our population the least likely to have the opportunities they need to succeed.It argues that, to effectively educate today’s students, higher education must focus more urgently on equity—and on bringing together what we know about closing achievement gaps and advancing high-quality learning outcomes for all students. This brochure builds the case for leadership to challenge the status quo and make the most empowering forms of college learning available to all students. Step Up & Lead for Equity is a Call to Action, supported by clear and convincing data, for college leaders to accept this challenge and begin this work by examining their own institutions’ history and data to develop an action plan. It is ideal for advancing...

The LEAP Challenge: Educating for a World of Unscripted Problems
2015

The LEAP Challenge builds on a decade of LEAP reform efforts on campus to advance Essential Learning Outcomes and high-impact educational practices for all students. The LEAP Challenge calls on colleges and universities to engage students in signature work that will prepare them to integrate and apply their learning to a significant project.

Liberal Education: Fall, 2014
Liberal Education, Fall 2014

This special anniversary issue features a look back at AAC&U's first one hundred years.

Read more
Diversity & Democracy, Summer 2014
Diversity & Democracy, Summer 2014

This issue of Diversity & Democracy features approaches to general education that help students develop the skills they need for participation in a diverse and globally connected democracy. Contributing authors also raise pertinent questions about opportunities for and barriers to faculty and students' democratic engagement in higher education itself.

Read more

Pages