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Reimagining General Education

Faculty groups have been working since May 2015 to craft a new intellectual core that we feel meets the goals of general education in the twenty-first century. This fall, we look forward to continuing discussions with the campus community and creating opportunities for faculty and staff to shape the student learning outcomes, using the framework for the new AU Core that was provisionally approved by the Faculty Senate as a launching point for this important work.

General Education Implementation Task Force Co-Chairs:
Cynthia Bair Van Dam, Hurst Senior Professorial Lecturer, College Writing Program
Jessica L. Waters, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Studies

Read The Proposal

The last draft received provisional approval from the Faculty Senate on May 4, 2016. A summary of the feedback we received and major revisions is also available for review.

Download The Draft

Summary of Feedback & Changes

Complex Problems Pilot

This fall, 124 first-year students elected to participate in a pilot program of the Complex Problems seminar and its associated living-learning community. Follow the link for information about the pilot program and the eight seminars being offered.

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AU Experience Pilot

Half of the Complex Problems population was randomly selected to take part in the American University Experience (AUx). AUx is a course specially designed for students transitioning into their first year of college at AU. Follow the link for more information about the AUx pilot.

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Habits of Mind Colloquia

Information will be announced soon about panels and small group discussions for the Habits of Mind. The colloquia will bring faculty together to talk about what each habit of mind means, and the subsequent small group conversations will help us to develop learning outcomes for each one.


Course Proposals

Full-time faculty are invited to submit course proposals for a larger pilot of Complex Problems that will be run in academic year 2017-18. We recommend that interested faculty attend an upcoming information session or speak with Cindy Bair Van Dam before applying.

Call for Proposals


We invite you to review some of the literature that informed the Task Force's initial proposal.

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