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NWU Chosen to Participate in National General Education Curriculum Project

NWU Chosen to Participate in National General Education Curriculum Project


Nebraska Wesleyan University is among 32 colleges and universities in the nation selected to participate in a general education curriculum initiative.

The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) has announced the names of 32 colleges and universities chosen in a competitive process to participate in “General Education for a Global Century,” a curriculum and faculty development project that is part of AAC&U’s Shared Futures initiative. 

“This project comes at an ideal time in the evolution of Nebraska Wesleyan’s commitment to liberal arts education,” said Nebraska Wesleyan University Provost Judy Muyskens.

As one of 32 participating institutions, Nebraska Wesleyan will revise its general education curriculum to better prepare today’s students with skills and knowledge essential for socially responsible citizenship.

This past academic year, NWU successfully completed a three-year self-study process for continued accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission. Furthermore, the university’s strategic plan, Archways 2010, articulates a future that challenges NWU to advance teaching and learning in ways that better prepare students to participate in a diverse world.

“The university is poised to reaffirm and clarify its learning goals, re-imagine general education, renew its emphasis on engaged and experiential learning, and blend academic affairs and student life,” said Muyskens. “Our general education program has had a global focus for 15 years. Participation in this national effort will inform our work as we explore what we mean by global citizenship in the 21st century.”

The institutions selected are from all regions of the country and include two-year, four-year, public and private institutions. Nebraska Wesleyan is the only Nebraska school selected for the project. Over 140 institutions applied to be part of the initiative.

Other schools selected include:

  • California State University --San Marcos, (CA)
  • Carnegie Mellon University (PA)
  • Central College (IA)
  • College of William and Mary (VA)
  • Delaware State University (DE)
  • Haverford College (PA)
  • John Carroll University (OH)
  • Keene State College (NH)
  • Kennesaw State University (GA)
  • Lynn University (FL)
  • Miami University (OH)
  • Michigan State University (MI)
  • Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MN)
  • Monroe Community College (NY)
  • Nebraska Wesleyan University (NE)
  • Oregon State University (OR)
  • Rider University (NJ)
  • San Jose State University (CA)
  • Southern Connecticut State University (CT)
  • Spring Hill College (AL)
  • St. Edward's University (TX)
  • St. Lawrence University (NY)
  • The College of Wooster (OH)
  • University at Albany, SUNY (NY)
  • University of Maryland College Park (MD)
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst (MA)
  • University of North Carolina at Charlotte (NC)
  • University of South Florida (FL)
  • University of Wisconsin Colleges (WI)
  • Utah Valley University (UT)
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (VA)
  • Worcester Polytechnic Institute (MA)

This new project builds upon innovative efforts to reframe general education courses and programs, and create coherent curricular designs that address complex, global issues across divisions and disciplines. In concert with a Global Learning Leadership Council, Nebraska Wesleyan will help lead a high profile, national effort to:

  • articulate essential global learning outcomes for all students;
  • refine and disseminate models of global general education curricula that can be adapted across all institutional types;
  • provide faculty development opportunities to assist college faculty in designing and teaching interdisciplinary, integrative courses that focus on real-world global issues; and
  • develop rubrics to assess global learning outcomes.

Institutional teams will spend the fall and winter on their home campuses refining general education reform strategies and strengthening connections between existing general education goals and outcomes and essential global learning outcomes. They will also inventory the curricular and co-curricular opportunities for global learning that already exist on their campuses and ways those opportunities could be better integrated within their larger general education efforts. Working through a social networking website, team members will help identify common areas of interest and concern. Those critical issues will be addressed in the project’s central activity—an intensive summer institute in 2011.