Recent news about General Education

So I’ve become one of those bloggers! I was doing really well, making sure I posted thoughtful content regularly, and then I disappeared. My apologies! Like just gets in the way sometimes, but I’m more committed than ever to write about and share any news I find interesting about the world of General Education.

On that note, I read two great items this week. First, a student at the University of North Carolina – Wilmington wrote a very encouraging letter to her school paper about the importance of General Education. I was fairly surprised to see that. Each term I look at these letters that are published online, and like clockwork, I see the ones that come in about how Gen Ed requirements are a waste of time and money. This letter made for a very refreshing change. This student understands that, when done thoughtfully, Gen Ed courses can open your mind to new ideas and give you important new experiences. She even went as far as to proclaim that we may be pleasantly surprised by what we find. Huzzah! I’m very grateful to her for her honest and thoughtful appraisal.

A few days later, I came across the proposed Gen Ed changes at both Harvard and Duke Universities. These sound like very intriguing ideas, and ones that should be explored. As much as I support a “traditional” approach to Gen Ed, any way that we can get students to embrace these courses helps a great deal. Ideas like pass-fail and mentorship may not work for each institution, but they are worth looking into.

I’d love to know if anyone from any other institution has tried these ideas, and if so, what have the results been. Thank you all!



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