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Liberal Studies Revision

Curriculum Revision

Update from Dr. Gerald Intemann, Provost

I want to take this opportunity to update you on our Liberal Studies curriculum revision progress. In October 2010, President Werner asked to meet with the cochairs of the University-Wide Undergraduate Curriculum Committee (UWUCC) (G. Sechrist and S. McCombie), Senate chair (P. Broad), provost (G. Intemann), Liberal Studies director (D. Pistole), and one member of the Liberal Studies Committee (LSC) (G. Wilson) to find a way to move forward from our current situation with the new curriculum. It was agreed by all at the meeting that the best way to move forward was to have the LSC create a proposal as a starting point to work with the UWUCC. The goal is to create a curriculum proposal that a greater majority of the faculty can support.

The Liberal Studies Committee delivered the initial proposal to the UWUCC in December 2010 and will be working with them during the Spring 2011 semester to finalize a compromise on the curriculum proposal, allowing it to be moved to the Senate for discussion. The implementation date will be dependent upon the approval date (if approved) of the new curriculum. For example, if the new program was approved by the Senate in the Spring 2011 semester, then it is anticipated that the new curriculum would be implemented in the Fall of 2012.

There are several important pieces of information that have come about since the original proposal that have to be considered in this new proposal. The first is that the Legislature reduced the General Education (Liberal Studies) requirements for PASSHE schools from 48 to 40 credit hours. Secondly, the University Senate approved new Expected Undergraduate Student Learning Outcomes (May 2, 2006), so that no matter what happens with the new curriculum, all new courses will have to address these outcomes when put forward for approval, and all existing courses will have to address them over the next few years. Finally, there are some Middle States issues associated with the Liberal Studies Program, such as that there is no purpose to our Liberal Studies Elective category, that are being addressed by the new proposal.

I hope that in the Spring semester all will work together to bring about a proposal that will gain broad support from the faculty and provide a strong and modern Liberal Studies curriculum for IUP.

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