This blog is the second generation of Delicious Ambiguity, a weekly column that started in the fall of 2011 in the faculty newsletter at Augustana College.  The whole idea was to help the college and everyone here who works with students to think about our student data as a means to improve student learning and the educational experience rather than just seeing the data as an ends in and of itself.  Even though the first year of columns was published as separate pages in an online newsletter, all of the them have been uploaded to this blog site.

Based purely on conversations with faculty, staff, and administrators, this column has seemed to have some impact in getting people to think just a little bit more about the way we approach “doing what we do.”  As with any effort to influence the culture of an organization, this blog is just one of the things we do in concert with a many faculty and staff who care deeply about student learning and our efforts to perpetually improve.

No, we haven’t designed a survey to measure the size of the effect.  (smarty . . . )

One thought on “About

  1. When students attend a visit day, it is important to ask them “What are you interested in?” Not what do you want to be. Interests are what engages people. Education is a stepping stone to developing interests. Many students have tunnel vision and see not outside of the box. You can only do this if you decide to focus on one subject. The student that has entwined common likes in an education will develop a strong, deep, desire to continue looking into that special interest and become engaged in learning. Some students need a focus, they know what it is they would like to do, but most have no idea. Our liberal arts education is to seek within a student their ability, not ours. We offer many diverse courses that will weave together and help students to reach inside and make that “Interest” something that can grow and they can share.

    We, too, need to be “Out of the Box”. Major/Minor are things of the past and have purpose for the students “In the Box”. When looking for a job, students are often viewed by the employer for what they have accomplished and what diverse courses they have chosen. Tunnel vision is not to go forward, “Out of the Box” is how to go forward for many students. We just need to help students seek their personal likes and tell us what the benefit will be for the future.

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