MINUTES OF THE GENERAL EDUCATION COMMITTEE
                                            October 7,  2002

MEMBERS PRESENT:
  Emily Johnson (chair), Mike Winfrey, Sandra Grunwald, Justin Odulana, Jess Hollenback, Mary Leonard, Jean Hindson   
CONSULTANTS & GUESTS PRESENT:  Diane Schumacher, Chuck Lee, Guy Herling, Dorothy Zeisler-Vralstad

The chair called the meeting to order at 3:35. 

APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE SEPTEMBER 30, 2002 MEETING: It was M/S/P (with two abstentions) to approve the minutes as amended.

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS:  Tom Pribek has resigned from the committee; Faculty Senate is seeking a replacement. 

 

CONSIDERATION OF THE HST 151, HST152 PROPOSAL:  Chuck Lee and Dorothey Zeisler-Vralstad presented changes to HST 151 and 152.  This is a change that has been discussed in the History Department for a long time.  It reflects both an attempt to bring a greater coherence to the History offerings in Gen. Ed. and an evolution in program and in faculty.   There is a new emphasis on the process of historical inquiry.  At the request of Emily Johnson, the History Department did address some of the changes the Gen Ed. Committee has been looking at in terms of outcomes.  It appears as if the new focus in HST 151 and 152 will encourage more linked courses.  MSP to approve HST 101 and HST 102 and to waive the second reading.

 

CONSIDERATION OF THE TITLE CHANGE TO MIC 100:  MSP to approve the proposed title change without a second reading.

 

NEXT MEETING (OCT 21):  The Ethnic and Racial Studies Course will be on the agenda;  there are also a couple of WIMP proposals  (Therapeutic rec and rec. management) which are close to being ready.

 

OLD BUSINESS:  Emily Johnson (Chair) presented the committee with two working drafts (IN PROGRESS) in which she attempted to outline possible components and outcomes of two of the elements the committee has identified as desirable in a UW-L graduate:   Effective Communication and Critical Thinking.  She reminded us that we are moving from a model of inputs to outcomes and that this is a major mind shift.  We need to change from thinking about what courses students should take to what students should be able to do (learn).  Emily urged us to go back to the BLUE BOOK (look at the process involved, review the role of assessment) and to think about how a student who has the abilities we have identified will think and speak differently from one who doesn’t.   Emily noted in particular the example she was giving us in her use of action verbs.  Other issues that still need to be addressed include:  l)the idea of Gen. Ed. across all student levels (freshmen on up to seniors); 2)  helping students see evaluation and assessment as part of the culture (making assessment part of the expectations we put on students, helping them to assess their own abilities); 3) incorporating the literacy component (content literacy, information literacy, technological literacy, quantitative literacy) 

The Chair requested volunteers to work on one of the other areas and to begin to develop a “draft” of outcomes based on the model she presented.  She was drafted and convinced by the committee to try to flesh out herself some of the other areas using the same model she had used for the first two. 

            Emily agreed but stated that she would like someone to begin working on:  l) an assessment plan for writing on campus,  and 2) the area of the freshman experience.  It was suggested that at least some of the instructors who have been teaching the freshman experience course should make a report to the Gen. Ed. Committee and that they are the appropriate group to propose action to be taken in this area.  The question here is:  What outcomes do we want for freshmen in order to guarantee their successful progress toward eventual graduation?  Emily reminded us of our need to address the Faculty Senate charge regarding the freshman experience.

Assuming that Emily will take on some of the work of doing initial drafts in the other areas identified as characteristics of a UW-L graduate, small working groups should work hard on recruiting members from the campus in general for their groups.

 

DISCUSSION OF A TIMELINE FOR COMMITTEE WORK  On Mike Winfrey’s suggestion committee members remaining after 5:10  discussed a possible time line for the committee’s work.  The following suggestions were put forth:

           

By the end of this academic year                                    Have all outcomes written

                                                                                    Have carried some discussion

                                                                                    of what the “structure” of  Gen Ed. will

                                                                                    look like

 

During the next academic year                                       Assessment and restructuring of the

                                                                                    “Gen. Ed.package” will be the focus

 

By Dec. 2004 (next catalog deadline)                             Outcomes, and what the “Package” consists of

                                                                                    will be ready for the new catalog

 

During this discussion of the committee time line,  Emily encouraged us to be thinking in terms of experiences and not in terms of classes.  (ie. Will students be required to have cross-cultural experience, could there be blending of topics in course typically taken in Gen Ed)

 

The proposed time line which evolved from this discussion was quite positively received by the majority

of members still present.


Meeting adjourned at 5:35. 

Respectfully submitted,

Jean Hindson
Secretary