What if the first two years of college were problem based, integrative introductions to disciplinary habits of mind? What if they explicitly taught students how to problem solve from distinct disciplinary perspectives and made visible the need for multi-disciplinary approaches to complex “wicked problems”?
What if educators from across disciplines and institutions developed these programs and courses in conversation with one another, so that students experienced a coherent transition from lower-division to upper division courses, from community college to university?
What if an explicit equity-minded approach to General Education helped us, as Tia McNair puts it in her preface to America’s Unmet Promise, “move the dialogue about student learning and success from deficit-minded approaches to asset-based approaches” (xi)?
The Threshold Project is an ongoing intersegmental effort to make this vision a reality. It is an evolving community of practice supportinglong-term, collegial, sustained learning and dialogue—across disciplines and across educational segments—about how a focus on threshold concepts and on equity can inspire us to reconsider our curricula and our approach to articulation, alignment, and assessment.
The 2015-16 program represents a collaboration between 3CSN, the CSU, and AACU’s Faculty Collaboratives Project. Participants will develop syllabi, assignments, and assessment practices that foster student understanding of threshold concepts and develop their ability to apply different disciplinary habits of mind to complex, unscripted problems.