To begin our efforts to reimagine the general education program at the University of New Orleans, a team from the UNO General Education Committee attended the Association of American Colleges & Universities’ (AAC&U) Institute on General Education and Assessment in Salt Lake City in the summer of 2018. Founded in 1915, the AAC&U has grown to become the leading national association dedicated to advancing the vitality and public standing of liberal education by making quality and equity the foundations for excellence in undergraduate education in service to democracy. As we learned in Salt Lake City, the AAC&U’s Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) Initiative lies at the heart of its efforts to advocate for liberal education. Launched in 2005, LEAP champions liberal education as the best means to prepare America’s students to succeed in a rapidly changing economy and as global citizens in a vital democracy.
We believe that the LEAP program provides a useful starting point for ideas and resources as we reimagine our general education program. Not only does LEAP make a strong case for the decisive importance of a liberal education for the future success of our students. It also provides guidance in developing the learning outcomes, educational best-practices, and authentic assessments that are the hallmarks of effective general education programs. Above all, LEAP’s emphasis on designing general education to make excellence inclusive for all students is a goal we believe we should strive to attain at the University of New Orleans.
For more information on the AAC&U and its LEAP Initiative: