Curricular and Pedagogical Innovation

Through its Office of Curricular and Pedagogical Innovation, AAC&U works to promote curricular coherence through a focus on learning outcomes and the application of ePortfolios—both in general education curricula and beyond—and to advance assessment practices that meaningfully incorporate students’ demonstrated student learning. AAC&U leverages these practices to advocate for learner-centered, equitable policies and practices that engage multiple campus stakeholders in creating curricula and assessments that support a high-quality liberal education for all students.



VALUE is a campus-based, faculty-driven approach to the assessment of student learning outcomes that are considered essential by educators and employers alike. Through this approach, authentic student work—that is, the work students already produce across various their learning pathways and fields of study—is assessed using rubrics developed by teams of faculty and other educational professionals from institutions of all types and sizes. The sixteen VALUE rubrics correspond to the Essential Learning Outcomes of a liberal education.

The VALUE Institute provides external validation of institutional assessments of student learning. Certified faculty and other educators use the VALUE rubrics to score samples of student work that have been collected and uploaded to a digital repository by participating institutions, departments, programs, states, consortia, and other providers. Revealing the national landscape of student achievement of the Essential Learning Outcomes of a liberal education and enabling examination of achievement disaggregated by various student subgroups, the VALUE Institute provides systematic information on the quality of student learning in higher education.

ePortfolios are electronic repositories of student work that has been collected over time. They enable students to reflect on their personal and academic growth and to demonstrate their knowledge, skills, and abilities for purposes such as graduate school and job applications. When combined with VALUE rubrics, ePortfolios provide a means for direct assessment of student work drawn from the curriculum, cocurriculum, and beyond the campus. To support this high-impact practice, AAC&U makes available several resources for practitioners and researchers.

Through the LEAP States Initiative, educators in state systems and consortia work together in support of transformational change and educational alignment in order to raise the quality of college learning within and across individual states. LEAP States are structured as formal collaboratives and designated as LEAP States through an application process. AAC&U encourages all LEAP States to form partnerships across educational sectors and to engage P–16, civic, and business leaders.

Featured Publications


Published biannually, this open-access journal encourages the study of practices and pedagogies associated with ePortfolios in educational settings.
This community-sourced database makes empirical evidence of the effectiveness of ePortfolios accessible to researchers and practitioners.
This online guidebook is curated by the ePortfolio community of practice and updated regularly, as the field and the digital ecology evolves.

Webinars On-Demand

Video recordings of the following webinars are available for AAC&U members to watch on-demand:

Campus Models and Case Studies

Building a Culture of Reflection and Integrative Learning through ePortfolios

More than ten years ago, when the University of Puget Sound first explored implementing ePortfolios on campus, the project fizzled out as faculty and students grew frustrated with the clunky... Read More

Campus Experiences with the VALUE Approach to Assessment

In the early 2000s, faculty in Massachusetts had the same feelings about assessment as colleagues across the country. They hated it. Assessment meant tests largely divorced from real work students... Read More

General Education and Global Citizenship at Webster University

Like many first-year university students, Katie Fields cared little about general education requirements. “I just wanted to focus on my business courses as soon as I could,” she said. “I thought it... Read More

The VALUE Institute: Assessment as Transformative Faculty Development

Figure 1. The Sixteen VALUE Rubrics Intellectual and Practical Skills Inquiry and analysis Critical thinking Creative thinking Written communication Oral communication Reading Quantitative literacy... Read More

High-Impact Taxonomies: Designing Faculty Development Tools at IUPUI

Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) has a long and successful history of using high-impact practices (HIPs) to engage students inside and outside the classroom. National... Read More