CAA reviews learning goals objectives

The Council on Academic Affairs reviewed its ongoing learning goals revision policy at their meeting Thursday.


Stephen Lucas, the chair of the secondary education and foundations department, along with Rebecca Throneburg, a councilmember, were able to present to the council because of the council’s lack of items to act on during the meeting.

Lucas also announced the time and place for Critical Thinking workshop, which will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday in Buzzard Hall room 1103.

During Thursday’s meeting, Lucas presented to the council about how he and Throneburg, who is a communication disorders and sciences professor, have been leading the charge to review the university learning goals, specifically about general education courses.

“If we are going to be very serious about general education by actually developing some foundations, we really need to up the expectations receiving the general education designation,” Lucas said.

Lucas then spoke about how general education courses should be reviewed more frequently than the current courses are, some of which have not been reviewed since the 1999 to 2000 academic year.

“If you want that ‘G,’ which translates into more faculty lines in your department, what do we expect of you to (give them the course designation),” Lucas said. “The following (question) is, ‘how do we monitor that,’ but we will get to that. This is a beginning point to see, if we didn’t change anything in (general education) to what degree would we be addressing the new learning goals?”

Lucas said he and Throneburg will be meeting with the deans next week to disucss these implementations throughout the university and how they will affect general education courses especially.

“We are going to elicit the support of the deans,” Lucas said. “We really want to get a very thorough response to this.”

Lucas addressed the Faculty Senate meeting last Tuesday when he and Throneburg presented to the Senate the council’s plan for the ongoing learning goals and why they matter to the university.

“It was really a good discussion,” Lucas said. “Those of you who know the Senate, sometimes you feel like you are in the witness box, but by the end of the meeting, I felt like with the exception of one person, they were seeing what we’re getting at.”

He said a couple of the skeptical people came around and were supportive by the end of Tuesday’s meeting.

Before discussing the learning goals changes, the council briefly discussed two items, a communications course revision and a revision to the admission policy of the Gateway program to be added to its agenda for its meeting at 3 p.m. next Thursday in the Martinsville Room of the Martin Luther King Jr. University Union.

Jack Cruikshank can be reached at 581-2812 or jdcruikshank@eiu.edu.

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