Abstract: A study of faculty views about General Education requirements, paired with a review of faculty syllabi, revealed concerns about communication of General Education goals to students. Syllabi reviewed were those for courses meeting the Natural Sciences General Education requirement. At our institution, students demonstrate Natural Science competency with work from various science courses that is deposited in an electronic portfolio. Electronic portfolios are evaluated systematically as part of the university General Education assessment plan. We explore possible reasons for gaps in faculty communication about the Natural Science competency requirement, including issues such as institution type and faculty desire for autonomy. Factors that contribute to the creation of successful syllabi are also reviewed, and we discuss how these factors could be employed to better communicate General Education requirements to students.
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Appling, J., Carson, S., Dippre, A., Gregory, E., Hembree, M., Kooi, K., Pazzo, K., & Shawen, A. (2015). General Education and ePortfolios: Syllabi and the Role of Faculty. International Journal of EPortfolio, 5(1), 55–62. http://theijep.com/pdf/IJEP159.pdf