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General Education Recommendations Approved

The Academic Senate and provost approved phase-one recommendations from the Liberal Studies Task Force. Larry Pagel (Business), chair of the Academic Senate, said it was suggested the name shift from liberal studies to general education to align with the trend at other institutions in Michigan and nationwide. The approved proposal establishes a process for setting outcome goals and objectives that align with national Liberal Education and America's Promise (LEAP) standards for general education courses and allows for the periodic assessment of those courses.

Another recommendation was to establish a General Education Council composed of two administrators and seven faculty representatives elected to serve on a rotating basis—two from the College of Arts and Sciences, two from the College of Professional Studies, one from the College of Business or AIS and two at-large members.

Rob Winn (Arts and Sciences), recently appointed associate dean of general education and retention, and Kim Rotundo (Registrar) are joined on the council by the following faculty representatives: Dwight Brady (CAPS), Mike Burgmeier (AIS/Library), David Donovan (Physics), Jill Leonard (Biology), Carolyn Lowe (Education), Andy Poe (Math/Computer Science) and Kristen Smith (Nursing). Pagel said the council has met a couple of times.

“When I was chair of the senate five years ago, I said we needed to do something with liberal studies,” Pagel said. “That’s one of the reasons I decided to run again—to make sure we move forward on this. There was a lot of discussion and some amendments were adopted, but in the end, the senate voted solidly for the phase-one recommendations. I’m proud we’re on the right track, doing what’s best for students and doing what’s necessary for accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission.”