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General Education: Assessment of Student Learning

General Education is the component of the undergraduate curriculum devoted to those areas of knowledge, methods of inquiry, and ideas that the University and scholarly community believe are common to well-educated persons. General Education provides a foundation for future learning.

The generally well-educated student will demonstrate:

  1. broad knowledge and understanding of the natural sciences, social sciences, and humanities;
  2. an ability to analyze, think critically, and form reasoned conclusions;
  3. competence in communicating his or her views and ideas clearly and cogently;
  4. an understanding of the methods by which people pursue knowledge;
  5. an understanding of differences and relative power among peoples, both in the United States and across the globe; and
  6. knowledge of the principles of wellness for living a healthy and fit life, both physically and mentally.

The general education curriculum is foundational to all programs within the university.  Western Illinois University's general education curriculum requires students to complete a specified number of semester hours from across six categories of classes:  Communication Skills, Natural Sciences and Math, Social Sciences, Humanities, Multicultural Studies, and Human Well-Being.

Assessment of learning outcomes in general education occurs at the course level.  Assessment of student learning in General Education represents course-level embedded assessment.  The current plan, Plan for Assessment of Student Learning in General Education, developed by the General Education Review Committee (GERC) and approved by the Faculty Senate, describes the assessment process in general education.