The April 1 deadline for a report from the General Education Visioning Committee (GEVC) has been extended.

The 11-member group was charged by Provost Warwick Bayly in October 2008 to provide a vision and strategy for general education. In January, he told members he expects them to decide what a general education should accomplish and to suggest how the general requirements mesh with students’ majors.

The committee – made up of eight faculty members, two administrators and a senator in undergraduate student government – has met more than a dozen times since November 2008. Carol Ivory, chair of the Department of Fine Arts, chairs the GEVC.

At least two meetings in April will be held before a report can be made to the provost.

According to GEVC meeting minutes on its public website (a WSU network ID is required for access) at https://teamsite.oue.wsu.edu/progeval/GenEdVis/default.aspx, its members have looked at general education models at other universities and are discussing subjects such as students’ “first-year experience” at the university, a capstone experience, relation to academic majors, and greater flexibility and simplicity.
 
Changes to WSU’s general education program will not be fully in place for a few years, said Mary Wack, vice provost for undergraduate education. In addition to the required internal approvals, there is a two-year waiting period before new graduation requirements take effect. This is to allow time for advising at the community colleges to align with the new program.
 
Transfer students account for about half of those enrolled in junior and senior classes at WSU.
 
The GEVC will recommend that next year be spent in consultation about possible changes with programs across the campuses and with external stakeholders such as the community colleges.