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Washington State University
UCORE: University Common Requirements Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement

Efficient Assessment: Aligning Grading Rubrics with WSU Learning Goals in UCORE [CAPS] Courses

UCORE Capstone [CAPS] courses bring opportunities for integration, application, and closure to the undergraduate experience. In place since 2015, [CAPS] Assessment Reporting for UCORE is intended to gauge student learning achievement on WSU’s Learning Goals of Undergraduate Education in the context of the general education curriculum as students near graduation. This spotlight offers insight into a tested, efficient approach to assessment of student learning achievement in a UCORE Capstone [CAPS] course through grading rubric alignment.

NEUROSCI 490: Senior Project is a UCORE [CAPS] course where seniors majors demonstrate skills and knowledge in final oral presentations of their semester-long research projects. Worth 20% of the course grade, these presentations also provide direct assessment of student performance on WSU’s Learning Goals for [CAPS] Assessment Reporting for UCORE. Dr. Samantha Gizerian, who teaches this course, has designed a grading rubric and the following three-step process to streamline the production of senior-level achievement data for [CAPS] Assessment Reporting for UCORE. » More …

WSU Core-to-Career Program Enhances Career-readiness Preparation in General Education Courses

The inaugural Core to Career cohort are learning to infuse career-ready skills into their UCORE courses. (l to r: Lisa Johnson-Shull, Amy Heile, Kate Watts, Eugene Smelyansky, Ken Faunce, Karen Phoenix, A.J. Miller, and Anna Whitehall).

PULLMAN, Wash.—Starting early in their college program, Washington State University students will soon directly experience how college coursework prepares them to be career ready, thanks to a University Common Requirements (UCORE) general education pilot program.

The inaugural Core to Career cohort are learning to infuse career-ready skills into their UCORE courses. (l to r: Lisa Johnson-Shull, Amy Heile, Kate Watts, Eugene Smelyansky, Ken Faunce, Karen Phoenix, A.J. Miller, and Anna Whitehall).

Fifteen educators make up the first Core-to-Career Program cohort. Throughout fall semester, they are attending workshops and revising course plans to include lessons and assignments that tie to desired job competencies.

“In this way, classes across several disciplines will feature messaging about career-readiness, and these lessons will impact students even before they declare their majors,” said Clif Stratton, UCORE director. UCORE is part of the Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement in the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President.

“From some of their first college courses, this unique initiative aims to help students learn, cultivate, and be able to communicate about specific, valued skills. Ultimately, this could help them reach future professional and personal goals.”

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WSU Accepts Smith Teaching and Learning Grant Applications through March 15

Retired WSU President Samuel H. Smith.

Washington State University faculty with innovative ideas to enhance teaching and learning are encouraged to apply by March 15, 2021 for a Smith Teaching and Learning Grant of up to $5,000, announced Mary F. Wack, vice provost for academic engagement and student achievement. There are two focus areas of this year’s awards: increasing course completion and student progress by reducing high C-DFW rates and redesigning large lecture courses for active student engagement in a flipped or hybrid course design.

PULLMAN, Wash.—Washington State University faculty with innovative ideas to enhance teaching and learning are encouraged to apply by March 15, 2021 for a Smith Teaching and Learning Grant of up to $5,000, announced Mary F. Wack, vice provost for academic engagement and student achievement.

There are two focus areas of this year’s awards: increasing course completion and student progress by reducing high C-DFW rates (grades of C-minus, D, F, or Withdraw) and/or closing equity gaps; and redesigning large lecture courses (100+ students) for active student engagement in a flipped or hybrid course design. Proposals should address one of the areas through innovative practices that improve student learning.

Retired WSU President Samuel H. Smith.
Retired WSU president Samuel H. Smith.

“Creative faculty have received dozens of Smith grant awards over the past two decades, and their diverse projects have resulted in many educational advances and new programs and pedagogies,” said Wack. “Thanks to Smith grants, thousands of undergraduates have reaped the benefits of faculty innovation throughout their educational experience at WSU.”

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Previous UCORE Committee Chair Named Associate Vice Provost for Inclusive Excellence

Lisa Guerrero, previous chair of the UCORE committee.
Closeup of Lisa Guerrero
Lisa Guerrero

The Office of the Provost has named Lisa Guerrero, who has previously served as chair of the UCORE Committee, as Washington State University’s associate vice provost for inclusive excellence.

Guerrero has been an active advocate for diversity and inclusion since joining the WSU faculty in 2004. She is currently a professor of comparative ethnic studies in WSU’s School of Languages, Cultures, and Race. She will maintain her faculty position, while serving as associate vice provost in a half-time appointment.

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WSU Joins WICHE Interstate Passport Network Promoting Students’ Transferability: First in Washington

Official logos of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) and its Interstate Passport program.

MEDIA CONTACT: Clif Stratton, institutional liaison, Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education’s Interstate Passport program, 509-335-2230, clif.stratton@wsu.edu

Beverly Makhani, director of communications and marketing, WSU Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement (DAESA), 509-432-3430, makhani@wsu.edu

Official logos of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) and its Interstate Passport program.PULLMAN, Wash.—Students transferring to or from Washington State University who have completed their lower-division general education courses will have a more seamless transition, thanks to a new partnership with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE).

WICHE’s Interstate Passport program provides that students who have attained agreed-upon learning outcomes from those courses can enroll at other member schools with confidence that many general education requirements have been met. It further indicates that they are equipped to tackle and complete upper-division requirements, said Clif Stratton.

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Prospective UCORE Course on Introducing Students to the Palouse

Students reflect on and sketch their observations of the Palouse at Kamiak Butte.

An interdisciplinary WSU team has received a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant to develop a series of courses for students to dig deeply into Palouse history and culture. They hope the program will give students a greater understanding of the unique region while also helping them to grow strong roots — building understanding of what it means to be an active citizen and to be part of a community wherever they end up.

Every year students from across Washington and around the world come to study at Washington State University.

But during their time here, how much do they really get to know the beauty, history, and unique landscapes of their Palouse home?

An interdisciplinary WSU team has received a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant to develop a series of courses for students to dig deeply into Palouse history and culture. They hope the program will give students a greater understanding of the unique region while also helping them to grow strong roots — building understanding of what it means to be an active citizen and to be part of a community wherever they end up. The project is one of 224 education grants for curriculum innovation in the humanities awarded by NEH.

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WSU DAESA Announces 2020 Division Awards to Faculty, Staff, and Students

The Washington State University Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement (DAESA) honored outstanding faculty, staff, and students for their contributions throughout academic year 2019-20 to its programs that promote student, teaching, and learning success and excellence university wide.

The Washington State University Division of Academic Engagement and Student Achievement (DAESA) honored outstanding faculty, staff, and students for their contributions throughout academic year 2019-20 to its programs that promote student, teaching, and learning success and excellence university wide.

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Revised UCORE website replaces handbook

As of Spring 2020, the UCORE website has become the primary resource for information concerning UCORE policy, procedure, and curriculum for faculty, advisors, and students. The website has fully taken the place of the PDF UCORE Handbook, which is now a historical document. If you currently use a link to or downloaded PDF version of the UCORE Handbook, please disregard it moving forward.

The Handbook’s table of contents has been transformed into a navigation tool that connects the information formerly documented in the PDF Handbook with its location on the UCORE website.

⇒View the UCORE Handbook-Website Crosswalk


Tell us your thoughts on the new website by filling out the UCORE Website Feedback Survey.