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Today we embark upon an exciting new phase of the General Education reform process at Penn State.

After more than a year of conversations and discussion, we are now in a position to engage in serious deliberation about General Education on a University scale.

It has been a long time coming, but to do deliberation well and with integrity, we needed to understand the institutional topography, chart a path, and develop an open deliberative process that will enable the entire university to participate in a way that will inform the curriculum the General Education Task Force will ultimately propose to the Penn State Faculty Senate.

In the draft of the informational Progress Report to the Faculty Senate we released today, we put it this way:

For a deliberative process to be more than mere lip-service to inclusion, it must be structured to enable members of the community to participate to the extent possible in the process by which decisions are made.

To do this, we developed three curriculum prototypes that will inform our online and in-person conversations about Gen Ed at Penn State this semester.

These prototypes are designed to facilitate deliberation by drawing out specific features of a possible Gen Ed curriculum. None of the three are designed to be adopted as such. Rather, the hope is that by presenting three different curriculum prototypes, each with its own opportunities and trade-offs, we will be able to engage in a dialogue that will draw out the dimensions of Gen Ed we as a university community most value.

This video describes our process:

Here are the three prototypes as they now stand, but because this deliberative process is iterative, we will adjust the prototypes over the course of the semester as determined by our deliberations:

The Modern Literacies Prototype

Learn more about the Modern Literacies prototype on the Gen Ed website.

The Chosen Topics Prototype

Learn more about the Chosen Topics prototype on the Gen Ed website.

The Scaffolded Prototype

Learn more about the Scaffolded prototype on the Gen Ed website.

I invite you to join the conversation on our General Education website.

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