Please, fellow seminarians, read this and tell me if I have any misinformation here.
Here are some of the things I have learned from attending the University Seminar on General Education:
–Gardner plans to convene a committee, whose members haven’t been named publicly, to review all proposals for new tier II gen ed courses. They may require instructors fill out a form, write a few paragraphs describing the course, and/or meet the committee in person.
–They want the first of these newly proposed courses to be taught in spring 2016.
–The only successful gen ed course proposals will be ones that convince the committee the instructor will promote “integrative thinking through digital fluency.”
–The committee has no stated criteria for courses other than that. Gardner characterizes what they’re looking for as something they will “know when they see it.”
–This subjective approach was underscored by three visitors to yesterday’s seminar meeting, including Scott Oates, who declared in no uncertain terms that the learning outcomes for general education at VCU are uncharted territory and cannot be defined at this stage.
–GC’s committee has the power to recommend any course be given or denied tier II status. Approved courses will be appended with a course attribute designating them part of the core curriculum. That attribute is valid for only one section for one semester (see James Wiznerowicz’s clarification of the approval process in his long reply to my post on this blog dated June 3.
–The attribute ensures that a student who took that section that semester will earn gen ed credit that lasts for her/his college career, regardless of whether the course is deemed worthy of gen ed status in subsequent semesters.
–Gardner’s goal is to make 75% of all tier II courses emphasize integrative thinking through digital fluency by 2019 (halfway to the next QEP deadline).
–All courses currently designated as having tier II status will remain in tier II, regardless of their emphasis on integrative thinking or digital fluency.
I will add more after having some caffeine. But I hope to have some members confirm or correct the information I’ve gathered here thus far.