Welcome To

General Education Assessment

Preamble

Following St. Ignatius of Loyola’s directive to “find God in all things, the University of Scranton understands General Education to be the foundation for the spiritual development and character formation of its students. Founded on Catholic and Jesuit principles of liberal education, the curriculum aims to integrate the intellectual, spiritual and moral aspects of learning to provide our students with a transformational experience that will aid them in rising to the challenge of engaging in the service of faith and the promotion of justice. Assessment of General Education follows a cycle outlined in the University's Comprehensive Plan for the Assessment of Student Learning. Assessment activities are coordinated by Dr. Cyrus Olsen, Director of General Education Assessment. Contact Dr. Olsen by emailing assessment@scranton.edu .

Background and Context

The Faculty Senate subcommittee on General Education spent 2013-2014 developing six goals for General Education. The following two paragraphs come from “The Purpose of General Education”.

A general education at The University of Scranton aims to generate opportunities for students to obtain and demonstrate broad knowledge of human cultures, social formations, and the physical and natural world. Moreover, philosophy and theology enjoy a special place in the Jesuit and Catholic educational traditions; in tandem with other disciplines, they encourage students to reflect on fundamental questions of ethics and faith in their personal and professional development. As such, the transformation for which we strive builds on shared, formative educational opportunities. 

Students who take full advantage of the breadth of opportunities afforded to them by the general educational curriculum will develop a commitment to life-long learning and be practiced in the creative and compassionate imagination required to respond to the spiritual, intellectual, and material needs of others in a diverse and globalizing world. These include a range of courses that support the acquisition of intellectual and practical skills for formal and informal communication (oral and written) and for the critical and innovative thinking that guides inquiry and analysis. While we speak of foundational learning as skills, we do so in full knowledge of the fact that no skill can be taught or learned in isolation from contents or processes. To that end, the general education program is designed to achieve the goals articulated below by engaging students in fundamental areas of technological and information literacy, diversity, humanities, natural sciences, philosophy, quantitative reasoning, social-behavioral sciences, and theology.

Click here to view the University of Scranton's general education learning outcomes.  Access the template for General Education course approval here.

These are further reinforced for all students in the University's institutional learning outcomes, the first of which directly addresses general education competencies: oral and written communication, scientific and quantitative reasoning, critical analysis and reasoning, and technological competency and information literacy.

In addition to GE assessment activities outlined in the Comprehensive Plan, the Weinberg Memorial Library's faculty play an important part in the assessment of information literacy. Visit the Library's web site to learn more, and view reports on recent assessments.