AAC&U News, November 2018
News & Events

Meetings, Projects, and Publications

Meetings and Institutes

AAC&U Annual Meeting Preliminary Program Now Online

"Raising Our Voices: Reclaiming the Narrative on the Value of Higher Education
January 23–26, Atlanta, Georgia
Register by November 16 for best rates

The preliminary program and a listing of all sessions at AAC&U’s 2019 Annual Meeting are now available online. The meeting will open Wednesday evening with a presentation by Kwame Anthony Appiah, professor of philosophy and law at New York University and writer of “The Ethicist” column for the New York Times, on “The Honor Code in America Today.” The opening plenary, “Code Switching: Making the Case for Liberal Education Amidst Critics, Skeptics, and Trolls,” will be moderated by AAC&U president Lynn Pasquerella with speakers Brandon Busteed, president of Kaplan University Partners; Mary Schmidt Campbell, president of Spelman College; Kirk Carapezza, education reporter for WGBH Boston; Gail O. Mellow, president of LaGuardia Community College–CUNY; and Eboo Patel, founder and president of Interfaith Youth Core. The final plenary, “The Role of Journalism in Undermining, Preserving, and Reclaiming the Narrative of American Society,” will be delivered by Linda Greenhouse, the Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in Law and Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence at Yale Law School. The meeting will also feature a special “Music of the Movement” performance inspired by the music of the civil rights movement, the 2019 Pre-meeting Symposium (see below), and the Tenth Annual Forum on Digital Learning and ePortfolios. Hotel and registration information is available online.

Pre-Meeting Symposium: “Is There a Rubric for That?”

January 23, Atlanta, Georgia

Prior to the Annual Meeting, AAC&U invites you to join the all-day symposium, “Is There a Rubric for That? A Decade of VALUE and the Future of Higher Education.” First introduced in 2009 as an alternative to standardized tests, the VALUE rubrics have moved from the periphery of student outcomes assessment to the center of conversations about the quality of student learning. The VALUE Symposium will celebrate “VALUE at 10” by revisiting its roots, examining the current trajectory of assessing for learning and quality in higher education, and engaging participants in shaping its future. Each session—from panels and plenaries to the Ignite Sessions designed to push the envelope pedagogically and methodologically—will foster and facilitate participant engagement. The opening plenary will be an open discussion moderated by Dan Berrett of the Chronicle of Higher Education with Trudy W. Banta of Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis, Johnnella Butler of Spelman College, George D. Kuh of the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA), Carol Geary Schneider of Lumina Foundation, and Jamienne S. Studley of WASC Senior College and University Commission. Luncheon and final plenary speakers include Gianina Baker of NILOA and Lynn Pasquerella, Kate McConnell, Terrel Rhodes, Daniel F. Sullivan, and C. Edward Watson—all of AAC&U.

Send a Team to AAC&U’s 2019 Summer Institutes

AAC&U’s team-based summer institutes offer campus teams a time and place for sustained collaborative work in support of advancing campus change initiatives, along with a curriculum focused on important trends, research, and best practices delivered by a resident faculty of educational experts and consultants. The Institute on General Education and Assessment, taking place June 4–7 in Burlington, Vermont, provides campus teams with opportunities to refine and advance general education programs and their assessment. The institute conveys a deep and abiding commitment to ensuring that access to excellence in higher education is available to all students, striving toward a vision of education that is energized by students’ multiple and intersecting identities. The Institute on High-Impact Practices and Student Success, taking place June 18–21 in Villanova, Pennsylvania, is designed to help campuses and state systems advance student success by developing and strengthening efforts to support student engagement in high-impact practices, advance curricular coherence, and generate equitable outcomes to make quality and equity the foundations for excellence in undergraduate education. The Institute on Integrative Learning and Signature Work, taking place July 16–19 in Atlanta, is intended for faculty and administrative teams leading change to deepen students’ integrative learning over time—connecting general education with learning in the major, and curricular with cocurricular learning, leading to signature work. This institute will be held in conjunction with the Interfaith Youth Core’s Institute on Teaching and Learning for Campus-wide Interfaith Excellence, with the programming and activities of each institute open to all participants. Through the generous support of the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations, all costs will be covered for campus teams accepted to the interfaith excellence institute. Application forms for the Institute on Integrative Learning and Signature Work and Institute on Teaching and Learning for Campus-wide Interfaith Excellence will be available the week of November 12. Information about institutes, including application materials, is now online.

Announcing the 2019 Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation Campus Centers Institute

AAC&U is offering the second annual institute on Truth, Racial Healing & Transformation (TRHT) Campus Centers for campuses seeking to break down racial hierarchies and create a positive narrative about race in their communities. At the institute, new and returning TRHT Campus Center teams will identify evidence-based strategies that support their vision for what their communities will look and feel like when the belief in the hierarchy of human value no longer exists. Teams will participate in racial healing circles, take part in workshops, and collaborate with experienced TRHT Campus Center mentors, workshop facilitators, communication experts, and evaluation consultants to develop or refine their transformative campus action plans. The TRHT Institute will be held June 25–28 in Villanova, Pennsylvania. In conjunction with the TRHT institute, there will be a post-institute preparation process for participants interested in learning how to facilitate racial healing circles.

AAC&U Webinar: “Free Speech at Colleges and Universities”

November 13, 2:00 p.m. (EST)
Free for AAC&U Members; $200 for Nonmembers

AAC&U’s upcoming webinar, “Free Speech at Colleges and Universities: Perspectives and Recommendations,” will explore how to enable a climate of mutual respect and civility while fostering the freedom to debate and discuss the merits of competing ideas. This will include practical and legal considerations regarding the scope of free speech, safety concerns, and the expectations of all involved in higher education. Additional areas of exploration will include recent events within the higher education domain, the University of Chicago’s Model Freedom of Expression statement, and first-hand accounts of how and why the panelists reached decisions and implemented strategies on their campuses. The webinar will be moderated by Grant Cornwell, president of Rollins College, and will feature presentations, interviews, and open discussion with panelists Cerri Banks, dean of Skidmore College; Frederick M. Lawrence, secretary and CEO of Phi Beta Kappa Society and president emeritus of Brandeis University; and Sanford J. Ungar, director of the Free Speech Project at Georgetown University and visiting lecturer of Harvard College. There will be time for Q&A during the webinar, and we encourage participants to send questions in advance to webinars@aacu.org.

Save the Dates for Spring 2019 Network Conferences

Save the dates for AAC&U’s two spring Network for Academic Renewal conferences. “Creating a 21st-Century General Education: Responding to Seismic Shifts,” to be held February 14–16 in San Francisco, invites colleagues from all areas of the higher education landscape to share efforts to create intentional and integrated programs, to assess our current practices, and to generate evidence of high-quality learning within our educational experiences. “Diversity, Equity, and Student Success: Engaged Inclusivity: Perceptions, Realities, and Aspirations,” to be held March 28–30 in Pittsburgh, will provide a forum for educators, students, and community stakeholders to raise critical questions about institutional and external practices, policies, and structures that hinder full inclusion and to identify strategies for improving the educational environment for all students.

Project News

VALUE Institute Registration Now Open

AAC&U and Indiana University’s Center for Postsecondary Research (IUCPR) announced the opening of registration for the 2018–19 VALUE Institute. The VALUE Institute is a resource for colleges and universities to document, report, and use learning outcomes evidence to improve student learning and success. VALUE (Valid Assessment of Learning in Undergraduate Education) is a campus-based assessment approach developed and led by AAC&U as part of its Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) initiative. Using the proven approach of the VALUE rubrics to assess authentic student work, the VALUE Institute provides institutions with data and reports to determine whether and how well students are meeting graduation-level achievement in learning outcomes that both employers and faculty consider essential. VALUE Institute assessment results provide participating institutions with actionable information about students’ learning and support capacity-building for faculty, institutions, and policy makers on how to use evidence to support student success and effective pedagogy.

New Issue of “Liberal Education”

The Summer 2018 issue of Liberal Education is available in print and online. This issue explores approaches to claiming the narrative about the value of liberal education, with a focus on combining personal narratives and persuasive data to make the case to a range of different but overlapping audiences, including students, parents, colleagues, employers, and the public. Additional articles focus on interfaith literacy and the new American holy war, lessons for higher education from neuroscience and kindergartens, why assessment is good for faculty, hybrid course communities that improve student learning, and interdisciplinary writing and history courses as a social justice portal.

New Issue of “Diversity and Democracy”

The Summer 2018 issue of Diversity & Democracy is available in print and online. This issue examines how colleges and universities are studying the histories of their institutions and local communities, connecting history to present-day issues, and working to create a better future. The colleges and universities featured in this issue are working to promote equity, integrity, and civic responsibility by strengthening campus/community relationships and creating new programs, practices, and legacies.

Recordings Available for Webinars on VALUE Rubrics and Advancing Diversity

Recordings and other resources are now available online for two recent AAC&U webinars, “Finding and Designing Assignments for the ‘Tricky’ VALUE Rubrics” and “Advancing Diversity and Inclusivity through Multilevel Strategic Leadership.” These webinars, which are free to AAC&U members, highlight the work being done at colleges and universities to address challenges and identify best practices for enhancing the teaching and learning experience and demonstrating the value of liberal education for work, life, and global citizenship. 

Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement (CLDE) Action Network News

Resources to Support Teaching for a Healthy Democracy

Teaching for a healthy democracy should be a sustained endeavor throughout students’ college years. AAC&U offers a growing library of recorded civic webinars, and two webinars explore how building a civic lens into the major offers a dynamic way to teach for the public good through the disciplines. Learn how faculty representing environmental studies, psychology, history, nursing, civic communication and media, and anthropology are creating curricular designs in the major through strong civic learning pathways in “Civic Prompts in the Major: Disciplinary Knowledge, Democratic Culture, and the Public Good” and “Redesigning Majors: Disciplinary Knowledge, Civic Learning, and Public Responsibility.” A new report from the Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE), Expanding the Electorate: How Simple Changes in Election Administration Can Improve Voter Participation Among Low-Income Youth, shares statistics and offers recommendations that can help address voter engagement with first-generation students in the face of a “large disparity in voter participation by educational attainment, which is highly correlated with social class.”

National Meetings Related to Civic Learning and Democracy

The AAC&U Annual Meeting will be held January 23–26, 2019, in Atlanta. From March 9 to 13, NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education will host its annual conference in Los Angeles. Both events have rich civic themes woven throughout. Please also save the date for the 2019 Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Meeting, which will be held June 5–8 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE), NASPA: Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, AASCU’s American Democracy Project (ADP), and the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) are members of the CLDE Action Network, an alliance of twelve leading civic learning organizations convened by AAC&U. Responding to the ambitious goals set forth in A Crucible Moment: College Learning & Democracy's Future, the CLDE Action Network coordinates, constructs, and advances efforts to prepare college students for informed and responsible citizenship and make civic inquiry and engagement expected rather than elective in college. See the CLDE events calendar for upcoming civic conferences and webinars.

BTtoP News

Workshop at AAC&U’s Diversity, Equity, and Student Success Conference

BTtoP will host a pre-conference workshop at AAC&U’s Diversity, Equity, and Student Success Conference, which will be held in Pittsburgh from March 28 to 30. Facilitated by Joselyn Schultz Lewis, Timothy K. Eatman, and Caitlin Salins, the workshop will address two questions: What does it mean to place support for student flourishing at the center of the equity agenda, and what does it mean to place equity, diversity, and inclusion at the heart of our understanding of student well-being? It will focus on the experience and needs of students whose experience of marginality often undermines their success: students of color, first-generation students, low-income students, and adult working students. It will combine research on student well-being and precarity, discussion of best practices, and reflection on what general commitments constitute a "well-being equity agenda." To learn more about the workshop, click here.

BTtoP Director David Scobey Featured on Reboot Higher Ed Podcast

BTtoP Director David Scobey was recently featured on episode twelve of the Reboot Higher Ed podcast. Interviewed by Paul Bolton, the podcast host and director of adult enrollment at Spalding University, David spoke about the experience of adult and nontraditional students, who now make up the majority of US college and university students. The conversation not only focused on the barriers that this nontraditional majority encounters but also on the richness of their educational aspirations, which often mix economic, family, personal, community, and intellectual goals.

BTtoP Hosts Strategic Retreat at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County

BTtoP hosted a strategic retreat October 25–26 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, attended by the national staff, members of the advisory board, and thought partners from across higher education. The group discussed the mission and values of BTtoP, discussed its role in the current context of higher education, and distilled priorities and projects.

BTtoP Releases New Infographic Charting Fifteen Years of Success

BTtoP released a new infographic charting the first fifteen years of the project’s work. The infographic, which can be found here, highlights the project’s history of grant giving, community building, convening, and publishing.

Other News

Two Institutions Win Delphi Award for Supporting Adjunct Faculty

The Pullias Center for Higher Education at the USC Rossier School of Education has announced that Harper College and California State University–Dominguez Hills have won the Delphi Award, given in partnership with AAC&U and with funding from the Teagle Foundation to recognize innovative approaches to support adjunct faculty in promoting student success. Each institution will receive $15,000 cash awards to continue their work to support adjunct, contingent, and non-tenure-track faculty. The Delphi Award is an initiative of the Delphi Project on the Changing Faculty and Student Success, which is dedicated to enhancing awareness about changing faculty trends using research and data to better support faculty off the tenure track and to help create new faculty models to support higher education institutions in the future.

Apply Now for WPI’s 2019 Institute on Project-Based Learning

AAC&U and Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) are pleased to announce that the application process is now open for the 2019 Institute on Project-Based Learning, to be held June 18–21 at WPI in Worcester, Massachusetts. The institute, a flagship offering of WPI’s Center for Project-Based Learning, will bring together teams of faculty and administrators from colleges and universities for interactive workshops, consultations with institute faculty, and collaborative teamwork guided by a dedicated coach. Participants will come to the institute with a proposal outlining a specific goal or project they would like to advance and will leave the institute with an enhanced understanding of project-based learning and a tailored plan to advance work on their own campuses. Randy Bass, vice provost for education at Georgetown University, will be returning as keynote speaker. Applications are open through February 12. Hear from past participants about the impact of the institute on advancing project-based learning initiatives on their campuses.

"Catalyst in Action: Case Studies of High-Impact ePortfolio Practice”

Catalyst in Action: Case Studies of High-Impact ePortfolio Practice, edited by Bret Eynon and Laura M. Gambino with a foreword by Carol Geary Schneider, offers guiding principles and classroom-based ePortfolio practices that improve student success, deepen learning, and catalyze change. In 2017, Eynon and Gambino released High-Impact ePortfolio Practice, which drew broad acclaim from faculty and educational leaders. Now, Catalyst in Action offers twenty powerful case studies drawn from campuses ranging from Bronx Community College to Yale University, from the University of South Carolina to Dublin University and Arizona State University. The book is published by Stylus in association with AAC&U, and AAC&U members receive 25 percent off by using the code AACU25.

Thought Leadership from Presidents’ Trust Members

Articles and Op-Eds by Members of AAC&U's Presidents' Trust

The Presidents’ Trust is a leadership group of nearly three hundred college and university presidents from all institutional types who are committed to advocating for the value of liberal education and inclusive excellence and rebuilding public trust in higher education. More information and a roster of all trust members can be found here. For more information about the Presidents’ Trust membership, please contact the President's Office at presidentsoffice@aacu.org.

What 6 College Leaders Wish They Knew Before Taking Their Jobs
By Natalie Schwartz
Featuring Presidents’ Trust Members Gail O. Mellow, President, LaGuardia Community College, City University of New York, and John Williams, President, Muhlenberg College
October 31, 2018
Education Dive

Liberal Arts Education Offers Key Ingredient in Tech Economy
By Joel Lee
Featuring Presidents’ Trust member Carmen Ambar, Oberlin College
October 25, 2018
Korea Herald

President Speaks: Helping Students Believe College Is “Worth the Investment”
By M. Duane Nellis, President, Ohio University
October 25, 2018
Education Dive

Dear College Students: My Grandmother Waited 70 Years for the Right to Vote. Don’t Ignore This Chance.
By G. Gabrielle Starr, President, Pomona College
October 23, 2018
Washington Post Grade Point Blog

Most Republicans Still Aren’t Crazy About Higher Education. And That’s OK.
By Brian Rosenberg, President, Macalester College
October 12, 2018
Chronicle of Higher Education

Seeking Balance in Cost and Services
By Scott D. Miller, President, Virginia Wesleyan University
October 7, 2018
Virginian-Pilot

Globalizing the Liberal Arts
By Adam Weinberg, President, Denison University
October 2, 2018
LinkedIn Pulse

About AAC&U News

AAC&U News is written and edited by Ben Dedman. If you have questions or comments about the newsletter's contents, please e-mail dedman@aacu.org.

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