What's New

AAC&U Joins with 37 Associations in Support of UT-Austin Before Supreme Court

Monday, November 2, 2015 - 10:30

AAC&U has submitted an amicus brief to the US Supreme Court supporting the University of Texas in the case, Fisher v University of Texas at Austin, which the court will hear on December 9th.  The brief argues for the continuing compelling interest in colleges and universities considering race as part of holistic reviews in admissions.  AAC&U has consistently affirmed the educational value of diversity as a key component of a high-quality liberal education, noting in its 2013 Board Statement on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Excellence that, "In embracing a diversity of ideas and experiences, liberal education likewise embraces a diversity of people, for the opportunity to learn with and from diverse peers is also a critical element of educational excellence. This commitment to diversity and equity in all their forms is what we mean by inclusive excellence."

Excellence in Assessment

AAC&U Joins with Other Higher Ed Organizations to Sponsor Excellence in Assessment Designation

Tuesday, October 27, 2015 - 08:00

A group of higher education organizations, including AAC&U, has developed new national designation program for colleges and universities that demonstrate excellence at self-assessment to drive internal improvement and advance student success.  The Excellence in Assessment (EIA) program recognizes institutions that successfully integrate assessment practices across campus, provide evidence of student learning outcomes, and use assessment results to guide institutional decision making and improve student performance. Institutions working to implement and sustain comprehensive use of assessment of student learning outcomes in written communication and critical thinking are eligible to receive the designations, which will be awarded in two tiers—Excellence Designees or Sustained Excellence Designees—depending on the phase of development. The designations were developed in partnership by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment, and AAC&U.  AAC&U also offers a range of assessment resources and tools for colleges and universities, including the VALUE rubrics.

Singapore Embraces Liberal Education

Singapore Embraces Liberal Education

Thursday, October 22, 2015 - 15:30

Yale-NUS College, a new liberal arts college in Singapore, hosted a Symposium on International Liberal Education on October 11 to mark the inauguration of the college. The symposium was attended by leaders in higher education from around the world, including AAC&U president Carol Geary Schneider. Read more about the new college and the growth of liberal education in Asia, with perspectives from President Schneider and others, including National University of Singapore President Tan Chorh Chuan.

Learn How Campuses are Using VALUE Rubrics in New AAC&U Publication

Friday, September 25, 2015 - 09:15

In the latest AAC&U VALUE publication, Assessment That Works, author Peggy L. Maki challenges higher education to make authentic approaches to assessment focused on students’ work a nationally visible and shared core commitment. See how different institutions are using the VALUE approach to assessment in this publication, including a series of case studies.  To purchase, see AAC&U’s online shopping cart. Learn more about the VALUE family of projects and new findings from the VALUE/MSC initiative.


Multi-State Collaboration Releases Initial Findings on Student Achievement of Key Learning Outcomes Assessed Using Common VALUE Rubrics

Thursday, September 24, 2015 - 08:15

AAC&U and SHEEO announced today the preliminary findings from the Multi-State Collaborative to Advance Learning Outcomes Assessment (MSC) Pilot Study—including data about student’s achievement of three Essential Learning Outcomes: critical thinking, writing, and quantitative literacy.  In the pilot study, faculty used AAC&U’s common VALUE Rubrics to assess 7,000 samples of student work submitted by faculty from 59 institutions in nine states. See the MSC pilot summary slide deck for full information on preliminary results of faculty scoring of student work products, as well as demographics of students whose work was assessed, and rubrics used in the assessments.. See: www.sheeo.org/msc for the full list of participating institutions involved in both the pilot and continuing phases of the MSC work. For more information read the press release, or see also VALUE and Multi-State Collaborative to Advance Learning Outcomes Assessment. See also articles published by Inside Higher Ed and The Chronicle of Higher Education.

AAC&U President Comments on Release of College Scorecard

AAC&U President Comments on Release of College Scorecard

Saturday, September 12, 2015 - 07:45

President Carol Geary Schneider issued a new statement about the release of the College Scorecard, noting that the Scorecard’s focus on limited data about graduation rates, default rates, and post-graduation salary levels “reinforces the message to students that college is primarily about getting in, getting out, and getting a job….The Department’s energies and resources would have been far better spent supporting efforts to strengthen the quality of college learning and to ensure that all students have equitable access to a liberating education.”  See the full statement and other statements from AAC&U on this topic. See also President Schneider’s Letter to the Editor of The New York Times.

Susan Albertine

AAC&U Vice President Susan Albertine Honored with Award from AGLS

Friday, September 25, 2015 - 06:00

Susan Albertine, AAC&U vice president for diversity, equity and student success, was chosen to receive the 2015 Joseph Katz award by the Association for General and Liberal Studies (AGLS). The award, given every other year, honors someone “whose commitment and activity has contributed greatly to the improvement of the educational experience of students and to the understanding of the theory and practice of general and liberal education at the national level.” Albertine will officially receive the award and deliver a plenary address at the AGLS annual meeting in Milwaukee, WI, September 24–26. Vice President Albertine oversees many projects and programs at AAC&U, including the LEAP States Initiative, and the recently launched Faculty Collaboratives project. 

AAC&U Cosponsoring Goucher College Conference on Issues of Diversity and Equity in A Changing Admissions Environment

AAC&U Cosponsoring Goucher College Conference on Issues of Diversity and Equity in A Changing Admissions Environment

Friday, September 11, 2015 - 09:45

AAC&U is cosponsoring the conference, “Admission: The Road to Higher Education for All,” on September 25-26 at Goucher College. On September 25, Dawn Whitehead, AAC&U’s Senior Director of Global Learning and Curricular Change, is a featured speaker presenting on  “Attaining Inclusive Excellence: Guided by an Equity-Minded Framework.” Register here for the conference and learn more online about AAC&U’s resources on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Excellence.

Register Now for AAC&U Annual Meeting on Equity, Inclusive Excellence, and Democratic Renewal

Register Now for AAC&U Annual Meeting on Equity, Inclusive Excellence, and Democratic Renewal

Monday, September 14, 2015 - 12:00

AAC&U’s 2016 Annual Meeting, “How Higher Education Can Lead—On Equity, Inclusive Excellence, and Democratic Renewal,” will be held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, DC, January 20-23, 2016. Cathy N. Davidson, a distinguished scholar of the history of technology, will kick off the meeting Wednesday night with “Educating Higher: Toward an Equitable, Innovative Future for Higher Education.” Annual Meeting featured events include the Pre-Meeting Symposium on “The LEAP Challenge and the Equity Imperative” and the ACAD Deans’ Institute on January 20; and the 7th Annual E-Portfolio Forum on January 23.  Registration opens September 14. 

Submit Proposals by September 21 for AAEEBL's Conference on E-Portfolios and Learning

Submit Proposals by September 21 for AAEEBL's Conference on E-Portfolios and Learning

Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - 07:15

AAC&U is pleased to share information from our partner, The Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL). AAEEBL now invites proposals for its Southeast Regional Conference at the University of Georgia, Athens on November 9-10, 2015. Submit a proposal by September 21 at: http://www.aaeebl.org. Conference registration is now open. AAC&U's Vice President for Quality, Curriculum, and Assessment Terrel Rhodes serves on the advisory board of AAEEBL.

Qatar University Signs Partnership Agreement with AAC&U

Tuesday, September 8, 2015 - 07:00

AAC&U and the Core Curriculum Program at Qatar University, Doha, Qatar, announced that Qatar University is an AAC&U partner institution. Dr. Maha Al-Hendawi, Director of the Core Curriculum Program, will serve as coordinator on behalf of Qatar University.  Susan Albertine, AAC&U’s Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Student Success and Director of LEAP States, said, “AAC&U is eager to cooperate with Qatar University in a variety of ways to advance mutual understanding of the meaning of general education in global context and to discover both shared values and distinctive differences.”

New Report from California Compass Project Describes Lessons from LEAP General Education Reform

Wednesday, September 2, 2015 - 06:00

Giving California Students a Compass, a new report from the California State University System Office, describes lessons learned about general education reform in a series of projects called Give Students a Compass, sponsored by the CSU system from 2008 to 2015. The CSU series of projects, which continued the work of AAC&U’s original LEAP States project, Give Students a Compass, focused on making general education in both two-year and four-year institutions in California more integrative, engaging, and transferable between institutions. This new Compass report offers case studies and key lessons distilled from the initiative. The report is available free on AAC&U’s website.

Inside Higher Ed Webinar on Teaching Ethics

Wednesday, October 21, 2015 - 09:00

On Thursday, October 22, at 2 p.m. EST, Inside Higher Ed is sponsoring “Teaching Ethics: A Key Role for Educators,” a free webinar featuring Scott Jaschik, founder and co-editor of Inside Higher Ed. The event will explore some of the ways that educators are talking about and debating ethics and the teaching of ethics. Click here to register.

Twelve Institutions Chosen to Participate in New Initiative on Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence

Monday, August 31, 2015 - 10:00

Supported by a grant from USA Funds, AAC&U announced the institutions chosen to participate in “Committing to Equity and Inclusive Excellence: Campus Based Strategies for Student Success.”  This project builds on work developed as part of AAC&U’s signature initiative, Making Excellence Inclusive, and will advance AAC&U’s Centennial-Year focus on equity and excellence in higher education.  Throughout the two-year project, AAC&U will develop baseline evidence about existing campus efforts to track, improve, and close gaps in the achievement of key learning outcomes for all students. Participating campuses will design, implement, and assess measurable campus action plans that can serve as replicable, equity-focused models for improving student learning and success. Read the press release or see the project web page for more information.

LEAP Featured in Inside Higher Ed: AAC&U Members Comment on AAC&U’s Work to Bring Quality and Equity Together

Tuesday, August 18, 2015 - 07:45

In Inside Higher Ed’s recent article about AAC&U’s work in the LEAP initiative to advance a vision of quality and to bring together the national conversations on quality and equity, educational leaders reflect on where we are and where we need to go. (See President Schneider’s “Comments on Competency-Based Education,” written in response to the article.) In the IHE article, Governors State University president and former AAC&U board member Elaine Maimon notes that “AAC&U really helps translate some of the values and principles of the academy at its best.” “Of all the national associations,” says Gary Rhoades, a professor of education at the University of Arizona and the former general secretary of the American Association of University Professors, “AAC&U most consistently and publicly points to the significance of quality in a broad and deep sense, emphasizing the ways in which the accountability and completion agendas and discourse can undermine that quality….[AAC&U] consistently understands, emphasizes, and promotes the significance of local faculty.” Ken O’Donnell, senior director of student engagement for the California State University (CSU) System, also notes that “LEAP has been helpful…in working on the thorny transfer challenge…in part by helping to define ‘essential’ learning outcomes outside of the traditional credit hour system.” For more information and resources, see the LEAP web page