LEAP Publications

What Liberal Education Looks Like presents a guiding vision of educational excellence that is grounded in equity and inclusion. In distilling the principles, practices, and contemporary challenges of liberal education, this signature AAC&U publication clearly describes the learning all students need for success in an uncertain future and for addressing the compelling issues we face as a democracy and as a global community—regardless of where they study, what they major in, or what their career goals are.

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Drawing from campus-based research projects sponsored by the AAC&U and the Center for Urban Education at the University of Southern California, From Equity Talk to Equity Walk provides practical guidance on the design and application of campus change strategies for achieving equitable outcomes. The authors offer advice on how to build an equity-minded campus culture, align strategic priorities and institutional missions to advance equity, understand equity-minded data analysis, develop campus strategies for making excellence inclusive, and move from a first-generation equity educator to an equity-minded practitioner. Central concepts and key points are illustrated through campus examples.

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

Signature work 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. This publication presents thirteen case studies that 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 cases are specifically tailored to provide practical advice for campus leaders seeking to design, implement, and assess integrative pathways to student signature work.

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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

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.

Collaboration for Student Transfer: A Nationwide Degree Qualifications Profile Experiment

Collaboration for Student Transfer: A Nationwide Degree Qualifications Profile Experiment highlights key lessons learned from AAC&U's Quality Collaboratives project. It focuses on learning outcomes assessment and faculty leadership in the context of increased rates of student mobility and transfer. The project sought to build the capacity of educators to use the Degree Qualifications Profile (DQP) as a framework for successful student transfer that emphasized the quality of student learning, rather than seat time or credit hours; and sought to help partnering two- and four-year institutions strengthen transfer students' achievement of AAC&U's LEAP Essential Learning Outcomes. The publication reports on the work of two-year and four-year institutions in nine states—California, Oregon, Utah, Wisconsin, Indiana, Kentucky, Virginia, Massachusetts, and North Dakota—that built on existing transfer articulation policies and practices and explored ways to enhance student...

The Quality of a College Degree

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.

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

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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

 

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 dialogue...

The LEAP Challenge: Educating for a World of Unscripted Problems

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.

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