General Education Publications

General Education & Liberal Learning: Principles of Effective Practice
2010

General Education and Liberal Learning: Principles of Effective Practice explores elements common to strong general education programs and examines how strong programs support liberal learning outcomes essential to success in the twenty-first century. The publication surveys the changes that have occurred in general education programs—and more broadly in higher education—since AAC&U's Strong Foundations: Twelve Principles for Effective General Education Programs was published in 1994. The publication discusses how institutions may improve their general education practices and provides numerous examples of successful practices. Chapters include, "Imperatives for and Drivers of Change," "Principles of Strong General Education Programs," "Intentionality," "Alignment with the Majors," "Effective Pedagogy," "Assessment," and "Institutional Commitment." This publication is ideal for use by curriculum committees and groups working on reviewing, revising, or assessing...

Peer Review, Winter 2010
Peer Review, Winter 2010

This issue explores how departments are developing assessment approaches that deepen student learning. Recognizing that most faculty identify strongly with their discipline and that students are engaged in more complex and sophisticated practice of liberal learning as they complete their majors, the issue presents articles that advance integrative and engaged learning in and across disciplines. The features draw on sessions and presentations from AAC&U’s 2009 Engaging Departments Institute.

The Winter 2010 issue of Peer Review has sold out. Articles are available online and the full issue is available as a PDF.Read more

General Education Reform Package
2010

This series, designed for anyone undertaking general education reform, provides historical perspective, an overview of trends in general education, and direction for changing or sustaining general education programs.

Trends and Emerging Practices in General Education
2009

This report is the second of two reports summarizing findings from a survey conducted in late 2008 and early 2009 of chief academic officers at AAC&U member institutions. Institutions that are placing a higher priority on general education today compared with five years ago are placing more emphasis on many engaged learning practices than are those whose focus on general education has not increased.

Peer Review, Spring 2009
Peer Review, Spring 2009

Peer Review, Spring, 2009: This issue addresses specific challenges faculty are facing in the classroom today. It explores issues related to developing collaborative and hands-on learning opportunities, research on the relationship between expectations and achievement, and ways to teach about controversial subjects and issues that challenge students' deeply held beliefs.

SOLD OUT - full issue is available as a PDF.Read more

Learning and Assessment: Trends in Undergraduate Education
2009

This report is the first of two reports summarizing findings from a survey conducted in late 2008 and early 2009 of chief academic officers at AAC&U member institutions. From November 19, 2008, to February 16, 2009, Hart Research conducted an online survey among 433 Chief Academic Officers or designated representatives at AAC&U member institutions to measure the prevalence of specified learning outcomes in higher education institutions today and to document recent trends in curricular change, specifically in the areas of general education and assessment. A large majority of AAC&U member institutions (78%) say they have a common set of intended learning outcomes for all their undergraduate students, and these outcomes address a wide variety of skills and knowledge areas. The skills most widely addressed are writing, critical thinking, quantitative reasoning, and oral communication skills, and the knowledge areas most often incorporated are humanities, sciences, social...

Revising General Education--And Avoiding the Potholes: A Guide for Curricular Change
2009

Strategies for curricular change in the reform of general education are as important as the substance of the change. Fifty pitfalls and common errors in the process of reform are enumerated in this practical guide essential for general education committees. Revising General Education provides practical advice for how to advance a successful general education reform process—including tips in the areas of task force objectives and procedures, concepts of general education, program planning, proposal approval, and program implementation. Ideal for general education reform committees and faculty senate curriculum committees.

Peer Review, Winter 2009

Peer Review, Winter, 2009: This issue focuses on AAC&U’s VALUE project and provides an overview of new assessment approaches it is helping campuses develop, including the application of rubrics assessing a broad set of important learning outcomes using examples of student work completed over time in an e-portfolio. Articles address rubric development, e-portfolios for learning and assessment, assessment processes, and the use of assessment results for individual, program, and institutional improvements.

The Winter 2009 issue of Peer Review has sold out. Articles are available online and the full issue is available as a PDF.Read more

What Will I Learn in College?
2008

This publication is a short guide to college learning designed specifically for the college-bound high school student. It presents, in a concise and compelling way, a picture of college learning that will help students understand what will be expected of them and guides them to seek out high school experiences. The guide also features Advice from Campus - candid recommendations from college students about how to get ready for college success....

Peer Review, Fall 2008
Peer Review, Fall 2008

Peer Review, Fall, 2008: Intentionality and integrative learning, captured in the LEAP vision of essential learning outcomes, have been themes in AAC&U work for decades. This issue features articles about institutions that are aligning institutional practices with educational goals, making clear to students what the important outcomes of college are, and developing opportunities for them to integrate and apply what they are learning.

The Fall 2008 issue of Peer Review has sold out. Articles are available online and the full issue is available as a PDF.Read more

Why Do I Have to Take This Course? A Student Guide to Making Smart Educational Choices
2005

This practical guide for undergraduate students is intended to take some of the mystery out of curricular requirements and educates students about what really matters in college—the broad learning outcomes developed over the entire course of their undergraduate years. It provides specific information on the aims and purposes of general education courses and programs....

General Education: A Self-Study Guide for Review and Assessment
2005

This practical guide is designed for campuses undertaking a review of their general education programs. Organized as a series of probing questions, it can help the facultyy and academic administration plan a self-study. While not providing answers to the questions posed or recommending particular approaches, the guide presents steps of a process that can be used either for program review of an existing program or for general education redesign.

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