General Education Program

Home » Faculty Resources » High Impact Practices

Menu

Each class within the Integrating Knowledge category must include at least one HIP from this AAC&U modified list Faculty proposal and syllabi must include evidence of how at least one HIP is specifically integrated. Two or more of these HIPs may naturally be integrated or have natural ties with one another.

Writing-Intensive Courses

These courses emphasize writing at all levels of instruction and across the curriculum, including final-year projects. Students are encouraged to produce and revise various forms of writing for different audiences in different disciplines. The effectiveness of this repeated practice “across the curriculum” has led to parallel efforts in such areas as quantitative reasoning, oral communication, information literacy, and, on some campuses, ethical inquiry.

Addendum for WOU: With the ‘W’ distinction being removed, is there a need for a strict definition for what constitutes writing-intensive? Should faculty need to periodically submit examples of how writing is embedded into the courses in which they proposed to embed writing-intensive elements?

Collaborative Assignments and Projects

Collaborative learning combines two key goals: learning to work and solve problems in the company of others, and sharpening one’s own understanding by listening seriously to the insights of others, especially those with different backgrounds and life experiences. Approaches range from study groups within a course, to team-based assignments and writing, to cooperative projects and research.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad is a high-impact practice that fosters intercultural awareness and competence. As with other High Impact Practices, Study Abroad experiences rely on interaction, engagement, and reflection. Students collaborate with other students, with professors, and with individuals in the host country. They are engaged through immersion in novel experiences, environments, and cultures. The emphasis on multicultural experience and the opportunity to view one’s own culture through new lenses allows for personal reflection. The emphasis of Study Abroad experience on citizenship and global awareness clearly align with the Integrating Knowledge requirement and Study Abroad courses can be applied to Citizenship, Social Responsibility, and Global Awareness requirement.

Undergraduate Research

Many colleges and universities are now providing research experiences for students in all disciplines. Undergraduate research, however, has been most prominently used in science disciplines. With strong support from the National Science Foundation and the research community, scientists are reshaping their courses to connect key concepts and questions with students’ early and active involvement in systematic investigation and research. The goal is to involve students with actively contested questions, empirical observation, cutting-edge technologies, and the sense of excitement that comes from working to answer important questions.

Addendum for WOU: The students in a given course produce research, scholarship and/or creative activities leading to presentations at the Academic Excellence Showcase.

Service Learning, Community-Based Learning

In these programs, field-based “experiential learning” with community partners is an instructional strategy—and often a required part of the course. The idea is to give students direct experience with issues they are studying in the curriculum and with ongoing efforts to analyze and solve problems in the community. A key element in these programs is the opportunity students have to both apply what they are learning in real-world settings and reflect in a classroom setting on their service experiences. These programs model the idea that giving something back to the community is an important college outcome, and that working with community partners is good preparation for citizenship, work, and life.