Integrated = the combining or mixing of professional learning and active learning experiences throughout the undergraduate curriculum; an interdisciplinary approach to teaching; the making of connections to solve problems; learning subjects as part of the whole undergraduate learning experience. (See ICL in action: Great Streets & Gateways Project)
Core = a General Education program that promotes four learning outcomes or competencies (critical thinking, effective communication, knowledge integration, social responsibility); a foundational liberal learning experience that follows the undergraduate student through their required courses, experiences, student reflections, and senior capstone course experience.
The ICL process is built around three touch-points in the undergraduate experience to provide all students with key opportunities to develop, review, and act upon a learning plan for degree completion:
UC's nationally known First Year Experience (FYE) program where students begin a firm foundation in courses (English Composition, common freshman readings, breath of knowledge courses) as well as experiences and reflections (learning communities, first year seminars, first year expo, lab/applied experiences, e-portfolios).
Students experience a purposeful curriculum combined with individual reflections and real world experiences (experiential learning) giving the student both disciplinary proficiency as well as contextual understanding. Our students learn to integrate their knowledge of various subjects and apply it to problem solving. Students continue to update e-portfolios, have a specialized upper-level writing course, have Just Community readings regarding diversity, and strengthen information literacy skills.
Sophomore year is a special time. The Cincinnati Sophomore Initiative is rooted in ICL with its focus on academic, career, and co-curricular resources to help students succeed. Sophomore Learning Communities have also been added to bring diverse groups of students together to engage with more complex course material.
A senior year experience that enables students to transition to a profession or graduate school and continue to pursue life-long learning and social responsibility. The capstone experience is designed to demonstrate proficiency in the General Education Core baccalaureate competencies and in the content/skills of the program/major. This high quality learning experience challenges students to draw upon many disciplines of study and encourages students to think through the myriad connections and inter-relationships among professions, cultures, and civic life.