Learning Outcome 3 (values)

Coursework and experiences in sustainability are meant to widen social, historical, and cultural perspectives and strengthen students’ ability to take multiple viewpoints by exposing them to a wide variety of cultural constructions.

 

  •   Learning outcome 3: Students think critically about sustainability across a diversity of cultural values and across multiple scales of relevance from local to global.
    (values category)

6 Responses to “Learning Outcome 3 (values)”

  1. From BSAD says:

    For Learning outcome 3, I would consider using Bill Tomlinson’s scales of ‘Time, Space and Complexity’ framework for environmental and social problems relative to human processing. Proposed change for consideration:
    Learning outcome 3: Students think critically about sustainability across a diversity of cultural values and across multiple scales of time, space and complexity.

  2. char mehrtens says:

    i suggest specifying what activities/products a student will do that will enable us to know whether or not they can “think critically”
    Using the terminology of Bloom and others, we know a student can “think critically” when they can manipulate data and information in certain ways (synthesize, predict, hypothesize,etc) that require more complex understanding. This is not just a trivial wording issue because verbs such as these suggest how we can evaluate how well a student can critically think.

  3. Susanmarie Harrington says:

    Char and I just wrote about what an outcomes based approach is. Here’s our take on Jeff’s question:

    An outcomes-based approach to general education specifies what students should know and do in particular domains. The challenge for the campus is to come together and identify what is truly essential for all students to achieve (as opposed to what might be desirable for many, or what might be essential for those majoring in particular areas). When we focus on outcomes, rather than on counting courses, we communicate to students what drives the curricular structure. The current model of fulfilling distributive requirements by simply enrolling in various courses often fails to convey to students how knowledge acquisition proceeds in that discipline. In most cases, we implement work towards outcomes via courses, and a secondary challenge is to identify the pathways students travel toward any given outcome. With writing and information literacy, for example, that pathway begins with a foundational writing and information literacy course, and then goes into writing within the major. Many courses can contribute in different ways to different outcomes, the key is to articulate what these courses are asking students to know in that particular domain. And in some cases, co-curricular opportunities can contribute to outcomes. Assessment of various types (certainly not simply tests!) at various levels–from course to campus–will help us determine whether the implementation of outcomes is working for students.

  4. Alan Tinkler says:

    Outcome 2: Students think critically about sustainability across a diversity of cultural values and across multiple scales of relevance from local to global.

  5. Avatar of tmares tmares says:

    I am not certain that “cultural constructions” is the best term here. Perhaps:

    Coursework and experiences in sustainability are meant to widen social, historical, and cultural perspectives and strengthen students’ ability to take multiple viewpoints by exposing them to a diverse array of cultural ideals and modes of questioning.

  6. Avatar of jwhughes jwhughes says:

    I certainly agree with this learning outcome. There are two challenges, of course: (1) figuring out how to “teach”/help students acquire the skills; and (2) how to assess when or whether a student has met the outcome satisfactorily. The second challenge is harder, I think, if competency — rather than taking a course, for example — is what determines if the learning outcome has been satisfied.

    My question comes down to this: does “outcome-based” really mean

    (1) “we hope they get the desired learning outcome by taking one of the approved classes/workshops/practica/ (i.e., if a student takes an approved class and gets an ok grade, s/he has met the learning outcome)”; or

    (2) “students WILL NOT meet the outcome until they’ve demonstrated that they can do this acceptably, in an independently administered assessment test” (i.e., it’s all about — and only about — what the student can do; it’s NOT about what courses or experiences the student has had, or what grades were earned.

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