Goal Statement:

We will enhance student learning with the following definition of learning in mind: Learning is a social, transformative process that enhances career and world readiness. It is promoted through high-impact practices, intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, application of concepts, and co-curricular activities and involves students, faculty, and staff as members of a community of educators. Learning contributes to the common good, improves quality of life, increases intellectual dexterity, and motivates future learning.

OUTCOME 1: Increase student access to high impact practices (HIPs) and experiential learning opportunities (ELOs) across the curriculum and co-curriculum (Boyer Report, provocation II.3).

Initiative 1: Identify and address barriers to participation in HIPs and ELOs, with a particular focus on historically underrepresented and marginalized students.

Year 1: Inventory and assess

  • Create workgroup to coordinate initiative across university
  • Audit existing HIPs and ELOs across curriculum and co-curriculum
  • Identify barriers to participation in HIPs and ELOs, with a particular focus on historically underrepresented and marginalized students.
  • Assess effectiveness of existing HIPs and ELOs

Initiative 2: Embed academic programs with opportunities for career exploration, development, and readiness by creating and championing a holistic career integration strategy that centers on equitable access for all students.

Year 1: Create and convene a cross-divisional career readiness integration advisory committee, led by the Career Development Center, which will use internal and external data to identify and champion a campus-wide career readiness academic integration strategy.

OUTCOME 2: Use the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to create curricular and co-curricular opportunities that promote the value and importance of creating a sustainable society to foster world readiness.

Initiative 1: Promote learning related to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals by prioritizing grant funding and scholarships that align with them.

Year 1: Assess current campus opportunities and devise plan

  • Form a committee (Committee for Sustainable Development Grants and Scholarships) to assess grant funding and scholarships that currently exist on campus, in accordance with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Determine what existing funding might be renewable and align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
  • Research new sources for grants and scholarships.
  • Present findings to relevant university stakeholders for further development and implementation.

Initiative 2: Pilot a WCU-focused online sustainability literacy and engagement training that educates and promotes the adoption of sustainable practices and behaviors across the campus population.

Year 1: Assess current campus sustainability literacy and engagement

  • Form a committee, in conjunction with the Office of Sustainability, to assess sustainability literacy, engagement, and advertising on campus.
  • In coordination with the Office of Sustainability and the Sustainability Council, develop a survey to assess current campus knowledge of sustainability, striving for a 30% campus participation rate.
  • Review current campus sustainability advertising efforts based on the survey results.
  • Review findings to determine the elements of focus for the training module.
  • Search for models to use in the development of a training module.
  • Coordinate with campus shared governance groups to determine feasibility of launching the training in Year 2 and of requiring participation from the campus community.

Initiative 3: Promote learning about sustainability by expanding participation, funding, and access for WCU’s Brandywine Project sustainability workshops for students, faculty, and staff, and resources for organizers.

Year 1: Assess current workshop structure and devise plan.

  • Coordinate with the Office of Sustainability and the Sustainability Council to assess the current Brandywine Project Workshop offerings and structure.
  • Determine barriers to expansion of workshop events and to participation from different campus community groups (e.g., registration fees, time off from work, length of workshops, etc.) and work with shared governance groups to mitigate these barriers.
  • Develop plan to increase workshop offerings and participation by 50% by the end of Year 3 of the Strategic Plan.
  • Find partners to increase funding for professional development stipends, in conjunction with the Committee for Sustainable Development Grants and Scholarships.

OUTCOME 3: Improve the holistic advising experience for students as a teaching practice that promotes learning, including all relevant structures, processes, and procedures.

Initiative 1: Implement a plan for providing intentional, high-quality co-curricular advising to all students.

Year 1: Assess current situation

  • Assess the current functioning of the co-curricular transcript, including its migration into Banner.
  • Determine where students’ co-curricular education plans will be stored.
  • Inventory all the current ways students receive information related to co-curricular engagement.
  • Research best practices in the field related to co-curricular advising.

Initiative 2: Create a transparent infrastructure and process that assures coordination between student support and academic departments in the development of the Academic Support and Advocacy Center that assists in improving the overall quality of advising interactions with students for faculty and staff members, utilizing the Committee on Advising Excellence as an advisory board.

Year 1: Establish connections, define roles, and assess resources.

  • Identify directly responsible individuals in the ASA who will liaise with each academic department OR faculty members who will liaise with the ASA.
  • Communicate plans for the development of the ASA to the campus community.
  • Assure that every department has the opportunity to share their advising needs with the ASA.
  • Inventory available resources and identify any additional resources needed to improve of the quality of advising.
  • Begin to pilot processes and practices, where appropriate, to support departments, faculty, staff, and students, with specific advising needs.

OUTCOME 4: Create intentionally inclusive and engaging learning experiences using evidence-informed pedagogies.

Initiative 1: Catalog, develop, and implement new formal institutional and disciplinary definitions of and initiatives for teaching excellence that promote equitable outcomes, sustainability, and student engagement.

Year 1: Begin a campus-wide initiative to develop a WCU definition of teaching excellence

  • During the Fall 2023 term, the Teaching and Learning Center will consult with existing TLC faculty and committees to determine which groups will engage in the process of identifying, assessing, and developing training on the three focus areas. If TLC determines that a new faculty committee is needed to conduct the work, they will call for its creation.
  • The committee will meet to discuss, define, and determine what teaching excellence is based on evidence-informed pedagogies.
  • The committee will develop different assessment tools to find out how well the university's current practices align with the concepts of teaching excellence.
  • By the end of Year 1, the committee will work on developing informational materials and workshops to communicate best practices to faculty and staff together with the Teaching and Learning Center.

Workgroup Members: Cristóbal Cardemil-Krause, Ann Hiloski-Fowler, Sara Hinkle (tri-chairs); Theresa Friedman, Marc Gagne, Grace Liu, Lisa Montgomery, Cheryl Neale-McFall, Naomi Nyanungo, Thomas Pantazes, Aliza Richman, Chelsea Sammarone, Kate Shellaway, Amanda Thomas