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Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success Student Success & Retention University Testing Center

Undergraduate Education and Academic Success publishes annual report

Undergraduate Education and Academic Success is an area within the Office of the Provost’s Division of Student Academic Engagement and Success, which oversees a wide range of academic support and engagement office units.

Our 2023 – 2024 offices and initiatives included:

 

A copy of the annual report is now available for download.

Questions, comments, and feedback can be directed to Dr. Dustin Grabsch (dgrabsch@smu.edu).

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Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success

The Office of General Education begins recruiting students for the Common Curriculum Reading

The Office of General Education has begun recruiting undergraduate students for this Fall’s Common Curriculum Reading – a revised version of the Common Reading.

The Common Curriculum Reading is open to all SMU undergraduate students, but will target juniors and seniors who have not completed their Civics & Individual Ethics Proficiency and Experience. Students who opt-in to the program will engage in 8 reading group meetings and discussions with their peers and program facilitators. The facilitators represent various areas across campus, including:

The book selection for Fall 2024 is “Artificial Unintelligence” by Meredith Broussard. Broussard discusses the rise of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in modern society, and the public’s belief that AI can solve all the world’s problems. However, Broussard argues that there are social and ethical issues that AI can’t resolve.

Staff and faculty are encouraged to promote the program to their undergraduate students. Students who are interested in this co-curricular activity should complete the Qualtrics sign-up survey.

The Office of General Education is excited about this unique reading experience, and looks forward to the program’s first meeting on September 10th, 2024.

 

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Disability Accommodations & Success Strategies Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success Student Success & Retention University Testing Center

Undergraduate Education and Academic Success units closed Monday, July 1 for staff retreat

The Undergraduate Education and Academic Success area within the Division of Student Academic Engagement and Success will close on Monday, July 1, for a staff retreat.

We encourage our constituents to use our websites or office self-service portals during this time for answers to common questions and requests.

Units include:

We will reopen during standard operating hours on Tuesday, July 2.

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Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success Student Success & Retention

Crossing the Finish Line cohort continues to thrive in Spring 2024

The Office of Student Success and Retention (SSR) is committed to providing support and resources to help students overcome challenges and achieve their goals on the Hilltop.  

Crossing the Finish Line is a program that assists SMU students with completing their degrees. The Office of Student Success and Retention works collaboratively with University Decision Support, academic advisors, and School Records Offices to identify undergraduate students who have left SMU and were close to graduation based on credit hours but did not attend another university. The purpose of Crossing the Finish Line is to use re-engagement efforts to support those students in graduating within the four to six-year timeframe. 

SSR invited a select number of students to participate in the Spring 2024 cohort, and 4 out of 15 invited students decided to return to SMU, or students currently attending SMU utilized this initiative to complete their degree.  

Dr. Sheri Kunovich, Associate Provost for Student Academic Engagement and Success, Dr. Dustin Grabsch, Assistant Provost for Undergraduate Education and Academic Success, and Shun Colter, Assistant Director of SSR worked together to identify eligible students who meet the requirements for Crossing the Finish Line. This criteria includes a GPA of 1.8 or above, in good standing with the University, and residing in the Dallas area. 

Crossing the Finish Line, is one of the Student Success initiatives led by SSR, such as Summer Forge, that support and empower students to succeed from their first day through graduation.  

Please contact Shun Colter for more information about Crossing the Finish Line. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Office of General Education SMU in Four Student Academic Engagement & Success Student Academic Success Programs Student Success & Retention

Summer Forge returns for Summer 2024 with a 29-student cohort 

Following the successful completion of the inaugural Summer 2023 cohort, Summer Forge is back with a cohort of 29 students. Summer Forge provides invited undergraduate students with financial, academic, and social support to accelerate their path to on-time graduation.    

Invited students receive up to 8 paid semester credit hours over May, Summer, and/or August terms. To make the program more accessible, housing costs were included for non-local students. The Summer 2024 cohort consists of 29 students attempting over 167 credit hours during the summer terms. The average participant takes 6 hours to fulfill major, minor, or Common Curriculum requirements.  

Summer Forge is a collaboration between the Office of Student Success and Retention, SMU in Four, Office of Financial Aid, and Student Academic Success Programs. It reflects the university’s commitment to improving retention and graduation rates. Program Co-Directors Brittaney Wilson, General Education and Academic Appeals Coordinator, and Jay Guillory, Success Counselor in the Office of Student Success and Retention, initially identified the students based on various criteria, in addition to their commitment to complete classes in the Fall 2024 semester at SMU. They would like to thank the many advisors who recommended students and assisted with student outreach for their support.   

To kick off a successful Summer Term, Becca Umobong and Chris Meyers from Academic Skill Development led a Learning Strategies Workshop focused on: Time Management Resources and Improving Academic Success. In addition to the workshop, all students have individual academic counseling sessions. Students are also encouraged to visit the A-LEC for tutoring services across course content areas.  

Please contact Brittaney Wilson or Jay Guillory with any questions about the program.  

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Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success

Save the date for #1Day4Dallas on October 12

Join the Office of General Education at Engage Dallas’ 4th annual fall day of service, #1Day4Dallas!The Residential Commons fall service day, known as #1Day4Dallas, is an annual tradition in which every Residential Commons participates in service around their community-identified need on the same day.

Each Residential Commons will have a goal of meeting the needed number of students to serve in the same geographic location at various non-profit organizations and community agencies (the same organizations the Residential Commons work with for monthly programs).

Save the date for Saturday, October 12, from 8 AM – 3 PM. Learn more at smu.edu/engagedallas.

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Office of General Education Peer Academic Leaders Student Academic Engagement & Success

Peer Academic Leaders wrap up their first year of General Education programming

This year, the Office of General Education relaunched the Peer Academic Leaders (PALs) program during the 2024 Academic Year.

The PALs are a diverse group of undergraduate students who aim to help their peers better understand the Common Curriculum, utilize academic resources, and navigate academic challenges. They are also inserted into the Residential Commons (RCs) and facilitate monthly programming meant to build a sense of community in the RC.

The PALs had a very successful first year with many highlights, such as:

The Office of General Education is proud of the PALs’ success this year and looks forward to seeing their continued impact in the 24-25 academic year.

Students, staff, and faculty can stay up to date with the PALs events and programming on SMU 360 and the PALs website.

 

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Office of General Education

Approved meeting minutes from the Council on General Education on April 5, 2024

The Council on General Education met on April 5, 2024. The meeting minutes for March 8, 2024, were approved at this meeting. Below is the agenda, and the meeting minutes have now been posted on the General Education website.

  1. Approval of Agenda for April 5, 2024, Council on General Education meeting.
  2. Approval of Minutes for the March 8, 2024, Council on General Education meeting.
  3. External Test Credit Review (AP, IB, CLEP) Working Group (Melina)
    1. Field specialists have been reviewing External Test Credit for AP, IB, and CLEP exams. They reviewed exam syllabi, compared them to SMU’s Common Curriculum rubrics, and assigned/maintained tags where applicable. This is still an ongoing review, and we are currently seeking volunteers to assist in reviewing the remaining exams.
    2. Recommendations and Vote (see below after agenda)
  4. Rubric Review (Dayna)
    1. Global Perspectives-Update
    2. SL- American Sign Language
  5. CC Proposals (Peter)
    1. Course Proposals
      1. MUHI 1313 (Introduction to Critical Music Studies)- Critical Reasoning
      2. ASCE 1310 (Ceramic Technology)- Technological Advances & Society (revised)
      3. BUSE 2311 (Perspectives of Business: Automobile)- Technological Advances & Society
      4. ARHS 3376 (Latin American Art)- Creativity & Aesthetics
      5. ASAG 1310 (Word and Image: 1900-present)- Creativity & Aesthetics
      6. ASAG 1350 (On Beauty)- Creativity & Aesthetics
      7. FM 1300 (Fashion Communication)- Social & Behavioral Sciences
      8. PHIL 3384 (Capitalism and Its Critics)- Philosophical, Religious, & Ethical Inquiry
      9. RELI 3392 (World Films, World Religions)-Philosophical, Religious, & Ethical Inquiry and Global Perspectives
      10. WL 3307 (Perspectives on French Identity)- Global Perspectives and Civics & Individual Ethics
      11. UNIV 1270 (Personal Finance and Branding)- Quantitative Applications
      12. FM 1350 (Fashion & Diversity)- Human Diversity
    2. Activity Proposals
      1. Lavender Leaders- Human Diversity
      2. CORE- Human Diversity
      3. Dr. Dennis Simon Civil Rights Pilgrimage- Civics & Individual Ethics
  6. General Education Office Updates (Dustin)
    1. Catalog Updates Finalized
    2. Peruna Passport Updated
    3. Degree Planner Pre-Approved and Individual Activities in the Co-curricular
    4. Critical Reasoning Fulfillment Requirements Vote Results

Please contact the Office of General Education for questions or proposal development support.

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Office of General Education Student Academic Engagement & Success

The Office of General Education to re-launch Common Reading in revised format

As the Spring 2024 semester comes to an end, the Office of General Education is working to re-launch the Common Reading program for SMU undergraduate students in Fall 2024 in a revised format.

This version of the Common Reading will target first-year students, allowing them the opportunity to earn their Civics & Individual Ethics (CIE) Common Curriculum (CC) Proficiency. Due to budget and logistical constraints, it will only be a targeted group within the first-year cohort rather than all first-year students.

The Office of General Education has created a campus-wide survey to get feedback from students, staff, and faculty members on the following:

  • Book selection and its alignment with the CIE rubric
  • Time commitment and requirements for students intending to receive the CIE credit
  • Time commitment for faculty/staff facilitators

This survey will assist the General Education team in these early planning stages as they work to create a meaningful program for students that also supports their academic endeavors. The Office of General Education encourages undergraduate students, and faculty/staff that work primarily with undergraduate students, to complete this survey.

More information will be provided regarding the Common Reading program as it continues to be developed throughout the spring and summer months.

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Office of General Education

Approved meeting minutes from the Council on General Education on March 8, 2024

The Council on General Education met on March 8, 2024. The meeting minutes for February 23, 2024, were approved at this meeting. Below is the agenda, and the meeting minutes have now been posted on the General Education website.

  1. Approval of Agenda for March 8, 2024, Council on General Education meeting.
  2. Approval of Minutes for the February 23, 2024, Council on General Education meeting.
  3. CC Tag Proposals (Peter)
    1. Course Proposals
      1. HRTS 4399 (Human Rights Research) REVISED-Civics and Individual Ethics; Human Diversity; Global Perspectives
      2. AMAE 3387 (Principles of Creative Entrepreneurship) – REVISED-Oral Communication
    2. Activity Proposals
      1. Honor Council – Civics and Individual Ethics
      2. SMU Outdoor Adventures – Community Engagement; Oral Communication
  4. CC Rubric Update (Dayna)
    1. Approved pending revisions.
      1. Social and Behavioral Sciences
      2. Technological Advances and Society
    2. Tabled
      1. Exploring Science
      2. Global Perspectives
  5. Student Progress Toward Degree and Throughout (Sheri)
    1. Role of the Schools in satisfying CIE/CE
  6. Proposals (Peter)
    1. Critical Reasoning Fulfillment Requirements
      1. CR proposals-voting ballot will be sent out with a 3/21 deadline.
      2. In Development – WIM to W Progress; Modification to Course Content Criteria (4000-level)
  7. General Education Office Updates (Dustin)
    1. Catalog Review

Please contact the Office of General Education for questions or proposal development support.