General Education revision (updated 11-17-2021)

GEC Timeline for Phase II

Spring 2020 (Pandemic Began)

GE proposal handed off to GEC by the GE Working Group, as this group was scheduled to dissolve. GEC voted to take ownership of the proposal for future revision efforts.

Fall 2020 (GEC virtual due to Covid Disruption)

GEC voted to continue working with the Proposal in the following three ways; a sub-committee was formed to begin this work.

  • Design and implement a transparent communication plan so that future work with the proposal or other steps in the revision would be available to campus.
  • Create a theoretical implementation process and organizational structure in order to better understand potential effects of redistribution of courses.
  • Develop a framework around which to manage the document including processes for future changes.

Spring 2021 (GEC virtual due to Covid Disruption)

The subcommittee from FL20 was further divided into two groups: Communication and Category Design.

  • The Communication subcommittee began redesigning the GE Revision page on the website to create more transparency moving forward.
  • The Design subcommittee worked with IR on a hypothetical model for redistributing courses to proposed new categories.

A separate subcommittee working on Assessment distributed a survey and used results to map courses to LEAP Essential Learning Outcomes and corresponding VALUE Rubrics.

  • Feedback on this mapping was solicited and will be included in a document posted to our webpage by Spring 2022.

FALL 2021

Similar to the year prior, four subcommittees were designated: Communication, Category Design, Assessment, and Research.

  • Communication: Continuing webpage revisions, with a goal of completion by the end of the semester. The webpage will include a document of feedback received on the proposal and notes from GEC discussion of this feedback.
  • Category Design: Distributed a survey seeking current feedback on proposed categories and distribution of courses. Feedback from this survey will be included in a document posted to our webpage by Spring 2022.
  • Assessment: Reviewing LEAP Outcome and VALUE Rubric feedback from the year prior; will be following up with departments regarding questions and concerns.
  • Research: IRAP will be seeking feedback from alumni regarding their perceptions of the program and ideas for improvement.

Other revision work underway by the full committee includes creating a request for a Gen Ed Director position, discussing the mission of Gen Ed and pedagogical approaches, and identifying problems with the current program which could be solved without a full revision (such as branding or advising).

Spring 2022

The goals for next semester include:

  • Solidify a hypothetical sorting of existing courses into new categories. Share this with campus via the website.
  • Contact peer and aspirant institutions for guidance on implementation processes and lessons learned from their revisions.
  • Continue working with departments on integration of LEAP Outcomes and VALUE rubrics into existing course instruction; partner with GEAC to brainstorm and develop additional training opportunities.
  • Determine if some changes from the proposal could be implemented without an entire revision.
  • By the end of the semester, make a decision regarding future action steps with this proposal. This decision cannot happen without clear communication to and from the entire campus; please check back here frequently for updates and additional opportunities to provide feedback to GEC.

General Education Working Group (GEWG) (Work Concluded and Group Dissolved - April 2020)

Past Membership expanding section
  • Colin Belby** (Geography & Earth Science; recent GEC chair)
  • Sam Cocks** (Philosophy; recent GEC member)
  • Natalie Eschenbaum (English; SEC, Senate Chair)
  • Anne Galbraith (Biology; recent Senate Chair, current GEC member)
  • Tav Hawkins** (Physics; SEC)
  • Shelley Hay** (Global Cultures & Languages)
  • Adam Hoffer (Economics)***
  • Heather Hulett (Mathematics & Statistics)
  • Kenneth Shonk (History; SoE affiliation)  

Previous members: Lauren Mason-student, Fa17; Aaron Bhatoya-student, Sp17; John Nunley- Economics, Fa17; Laurie Miller- Economics, Sp18; Nadia Carmosini-Chemistry and Biochemistry, Sp18

*Current membership as of June 2018

**Members who attended the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) Institute on General Education and Assessment in Chicago (Sp17).

***Joined January 2019

Advisory Groups to the GEWG expanding section

The development of three Advisory Groups to the GE Working Group was approved by Faculty Senate in '18-'19: an Assessment Advisory Board, a Logistics Advisory Group, and a Student Advisory Group. (Student Association also approved the development of the Student Advisory Group). 

The Assessment Advisory Board convened to begin discussion of assessment strategies and development of SLOs for the draft proposed model, with the knowledge that the proposed model is a draft, and therefore still quite fluid. Work continued over Summer 2019 by a sub-group of the full committee. The full membership of the AAB includes:

  • Patrick Barlow (IRAP)
  • Natalie Solverson (IRAP)
  • Megan Morey (GEAC)
  • Cordial Gillette (GEAC)
  • Chad Vidden (GEC)
  • Anup Menon Nandialath (GEC)
  • Bryan Kopp (FYS)
  • Darci Thoune (FYE)
  • Alternate: Karen Hart (GEAC)

The Logistical Advisory Group convened in Fall 2019 to provide feedback to the GEWG proposal that was developed over Summer 2019. The membership of the LAG includes:

  • Robert Allen (Mathematics & Statistics)
  • Jo Arney (DIrector of Student Success)
  • TJ Brooks (Economics)
  • Linda Dickmeyer (Communication Studies and SoE)
  • Scott Johns (Admisions)
  • Robin Tuxen (Textbook Rental)
  • Bart VanVoorhis (Psychology)
  • Jan Von Ruden (Registrar)

The Internationalization of UWL Curriculum Group convened in late Fall 2019 to provide a proposal for a non-credit bearing Global Emphasis requirement in March 2020. The membership of the IUCG includes:

  • Gerardo Aponte-Safe (Educational Studies)
  • Rose Brougham (Global Cultures & Languages)
  • Natalie Eschenbaum (English)
  • Nicole Gullekson (Management)
  • Megan Litster (Biology & School of Education)
  • Kristin Koepke (Sociology)
  • Heather Linville (Educational Studies & TESOL)
  • Diane Sasaki (International Education & Engagement)
  • Tim McAndrews (Archaeology & Anthropology, Chair)

The membership of the Student Advisory Group had not been determined as of September 2019. 

Most recent GE revision proposal (as of 04-14-2020) expanding section

The General Education Working Group used the feedback they received in the fall from campus, the various advisory groups, and the General Education Committee (GEC) to put final touches on the proposed GE revision. Because of the new emphasis (in the Mission and Goals) on global experiences for our students, the Internationalization of UWL Curriculum Group was asked to propose a rich global experience for our students that would be accessible to all students. Their ideas (and original proposals) were incorporated into the draft proposal dated 04-14-2020 (below) which will be sent to GEC and campus for review. 

NEW General Education Program Proposal (Email 04.14.2020) expanding section

Dear Colleagues,

After nearly three years, the General Education Working Group (GEWG) has drafted what we believe is the best version of a General Education (GE) program possible for this campus based on listening, responding, discussing, editing, consulting, and listening some more. The Senate Executive Committee (SEC) unanimously approved our submission to GEC on April 20 and if approved by GEC, to Faculty Senate for the requisite two readings this spring. 

If approved, implementation will occur over the next two years (minimum), and the General Education Committee (GEC) will be responsible for leading that implementation, which will result in a final roll out to students in Fall 2022 (at the earliest). 

We want to continue to emphasize that one of the goals for GE is that the program remain dynamic. We do NOT want a program that becomes inflexibly set in stone for another 25 years. (Our current model was developed in 1995). This makes change unnecessarily difficult. Therefore, this is not a "final" version because there is no "final" version, but rather, a program that will continue to be modified as needs arise via GEC, the General Education Assessment Committee (GEAC), and Faculty Senate. 

Below is a link to the draft proposal. You will see that the largest change since the October draft is the addition of a non-credit bearing Global Emphasis requirement that helps solidify our commitment (based on our mission and goals) to prepare students to become responsible global citizens and thrive in an increasingly interconnected world. We thank the Internationalization of UWL Curriculum Group for that work. We would also like to thank the Assessment Advisory Board, the Logistical Advisory Group, former members of the GEWG, and so many of our passionate faculty and staff and students for their valuable input over the years. 

We will be having an open forum via Webex on Tuesday, April 21, from 10am to noon using this link https://uwlax.webex.com/meet/senate. Please stop by and ask any questions that you have about the proposal. You can also email me (agalbraith@uwlax.edu) and get your questions answered that way. And of course you are welcome to attend the open meetings of the GEC on Monday, April 20 (3:30pm) or the Faculty Senate meetings if/when this proposal is discussed. 

Take care of yourselves!

Anne Galbraith (Biology; GEWG Chair) on behalf of the industrious GEWG:
Colin Belby (Geography & Earth Science)
Sam Cocks (Philosophy)
Natalie Eschenbaum (English)
Tav Hawkins (Physics)
Shelley Hay (Global Cultures & Languages)
Adam Hoffer (Economics)
Heather Hulett (Mathematics & Statistics)
Kenneth Shonk (History; SoE)  

The link to the proposal can be found here. Thanks for your continued interest as we try to remodel the program to make it better for our students!

Informational Readings expanding section
  1. Gaston, P. L., & Gaff, J. G. (2009). Revising General Education - and Avoiding the Potholes. Association of American Colleges and Universities.
  2. Hanstedt, P. (2012). General Education Essentials: A Guide for College Faculty. John Wiley & Sons. In particular the first two chapters: Structuring General Education and Some Examples of Integrative Curricular Models.
  3. Rising to the LEAP Challenge 
  4. PowerPoint AAC&U High-Impact Practices that focuses on general education.
  5. Resources made available from the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U).
  6. General Education AAC&U Action Team Overview, Summary and Notes.
  7. GEC Report on Size and Purpose of UWL General Education Program, Spring 2017