Freshman Writing | Speech
| Elementary Functions |
Computer Literacy |
(Approved March 30, 2006)
Students who successfully complete Writing as Critical Thinking will
understand and appreciate the central role writing and critical thinking play in
becoming an active student of the liberal arts. Critical thinkers are able
to apply clearly articulated criteria when examining and analyzing texts, ideas,
and events; recognize the limits of their understanding and knowledge; rethink
their ideas and values as they discover new information; enthusiastically seek
out a range of views on the subjects that concern them; listen skillfully to the
ideas of others; and recognize that critical thinking requires a lifelong
commitment to self-reflection.
In Writing as Critical Thinking you will be asked to develop these and
similar attitudes by writing. In fulfilling these requirements, students
- use critical thinking to analyze readings as well as other
forms of media (such as photographs, sound recordings, or film);
- recognize and emulate the writing process of experienced
- meet the needs of readers with varied expectations and
backgrounds by using appropriate style and mechanics;
- use critical thinking, critical reading, reflection, and
discussion to compose engaging, well-organized writing;
- revise their writing using instructor and peer response as
well as self‑assessment;
- make progress towards computer literacy; and
- understand the importance of intellectual and academic
honesty, including accurate, critical, and clear quotation and
citation of the work of others.
(Approved March 30, 2006)
A liberally educated person is intellectually and practically engaged in
academic, professional and civic communities. Ethical and effective public
speaking enables that engagement. Public speaking draws on rhetorical and
other communication theory to illuminate the personal responsibility of each
citizen speaker, particularly the call to civility through reason.
Individual response to that call determines the character of democracy as a
The conscious acceptance of personal responsibility for public speaking is
intertwined with a deep understanding of the purposes, structures and delivery
of spoken messages. Students investigate the classical modes of proof –
ethos, pathos, and logos – to develop the ability to construct eloquent messages
and defensible arguments that respond to the needs of their communities.
Students practice conscious, critical, and respectful listening to gain an
appreciation for diverse points of view. Students critique their own
speaking performances and those of others to achieve confidence in and mastery
over delivery skills.
To prepare students for civic engagement, the public speaking essential
skills requirement will accomplish the following objectives:
- Students will enact ethical public discourse and accept
ethical responsibility in producing and consuming public
- Students will understand and perform the audience-centered
approach of the speechmaking process including selecting topics,
organizing speeches, using persuasive appeals and using
supporting materials effectively.
- Students will develop critical thinking skills, including
the process of listening as receiving, constructing meaning from
and responding to public messages.
Mathematical functions are used to model phenomena in the world around us, to
make forecasts, and when graphed, to summarize information in a meaningful way.
The elementary functions (consisting of the algebraic, exponential, and
trigonometric functions) are important not only because they show up so often in
mathematics courses, but because they are the functions which appear most often
in applications in other fields. Algebraic functions can model the movement of a
projectile or describe the change in the inflation rate. Exponential functions
capture both the rapid rise of populations and the slow decay of radioactive
material. Finally, trigonometric functions not only aid in solving problems
involving geometry, but are essential to modeling oscillating phenomena, such as
the pulse of a heart or the changes in air pressure formed by playing a note on
the piano. A student who has passed the Elementary Functions requirement should
be prepared for the Mathematical Mode of Inquiry requirement, the Statistics
requirement, and other courses involving mathematical reasoning.
Upon completion of the Elementary Functions requirement students
- have gained experience with mathematical reasoning in a
variety of applications that demonstrate the prevalence of
mathematics in the world around us;
- understand the fundamental concept of a function;
- understand how to use and apply algebraic, exponential, and
- have developed their basic skills in algebra;
- be prepared for more advanced mathematics courses, in
(Approved March 30, 2006)
A liberally educated person is capable of being both a producer and a
consumer of statistical information with some basic level of competency.
He or she should be able to perform basic statistical analyses (producer) and
should understand statistical information and data (consumer). As a
result, the goals for the essential skill requirement in statistics are twofold:
students are to develop statistical thinking, which leads to statistical
literacy. The American Statistical Association endorsed the Guidelines for
Assessment and Instruction in Statistics Education Project, which makes six
recommendations concerning the introductory statistics course: (1) Emphasize
statistical literacy and develop statistical thinking; (2) Use real data; (3)
Stress conceptual understanding rather than mere knowledge of procedures; (4)
Foster active learning in the classroom; (5) Use technology for developing
conceptual understanding and analyzing data; and (6) Use assessments to improve
and evaluate student learning. The statistics essential skill should
reflect these recommendations with a solid introduction to the basic principles
of statistical practice, which will, in turn, adequately prepare students for
further study in statistical applications or for wise use of data in work and
Upon completion of the Statistics requirement students will:
- recognize the overall importance and broad application of
statistics from its use in research to its use in everyday life;
- understand the techniques of random sampling and the
production of "good" data;
- be able to use basic descriptive statistics and exploratory
data analysis (EDA) to select appropriate statistics for both
univariate (one variable) and bivariate (two variable) data on
qualitative and quantitative scales;
- understand distributional characteristics of variables
measured on quantitative scales including shape, central
tendency, variability, and percentiles;
- understand the basic concepts of events, spaces, and the
rules of probability;
- understand the basic theory behind the three main areas of
inferential statistics: Point estimation, confidence intervals,
and tests of hypotheses;
- be able to use inferential statistics on a variable measured
on one or two samples, including: selection of procedures,
verification of assumptions, application of procedures, and
interpretation of results; and
- be able to use a statistical package of the creation of
graphs and descriptive statistics which allow for the meaningful
interpretation of data.
The computer literacy requirement identifies skills relevant to a broad range
of disciplines. So that professors can expect students to make use of these
throughout their academic career, all students should acquire proficiency by the
beginning of their second year.
Three features of computer proficiency necessitate frequent re-evaluation of
this requirement, perhaps as often as each year. First, students continue to
arrive on campus each year with an increasing degree of computer experience.
Second, computer software and technology continues to evolve; and third, the
expectations of student capabilities must keep pace with this evolution.
Reassessing these outcomes will also require ongoing contact with the faculty
concerning the appropriateness of the specific requirements and the competency
of students who have completed them.
Computer literacy entails understanding and knowledge of computer usage for
processing and communicating information. Information comes in many forms,
including text, numbers, pictures, and sound. Computer literate individuals
should, therefore, be able to retrieve, organize, analyze, describe, and present
various types of information in an appropriate manner. They should understand
the relationships between computers and society, including legal and ethical
issues related to software use, copyright, plagiarism, and privacy.
Students will be able to:
- use a computer to create a document in an appropriate
- retrieve and cite information from the World
- utilize electronic means of communication;
- retrieve information from a bibliographic
- organize, manipulate, and present numeric data in a
- save, retrieve, copy, print, and delete files; and
- recognize unethical use of technology including copyright
and privacy issues.
(Approved April 28, 2005)
Health Knowledge Outcomes:
- Relate the components of the physical dimension of health to
a health enhancing lifestyle: Explain how physical fitness,
diet, sexual behavior, substance abuse etc. affect physical
health as evaluated by written tests, projects or portfolios.
- Recognize the importance of engaging in creative and
stimulating mental activities in and outside the classroom to
promote lifelong intellectual growth as evaluated by written
tests, projects, or portfolios.
- Describe the components of emotional health: personal
feelings and feelings of others, the normality of human emotion,
personal abilities and limitations, controlling or coping with
personal feelings, and how to seek support when necessary as
evaluated by written tests, projects or portfolios.
- Appreciate the significance of getting along with others,
showing concern for humanity as a whole and accepting the
uniqueness of others as an essential part of social health as
evaluated by a Likert or value scale.
- Reflect on the spiritual dimension of health which requires
examination of life experiences to discover personal meaning and
purpose in life as evaluated by a reflection project.
- Explain how our reciprocal interaction with the environment
affects our health as evaluated by written tests, projects or
These objectives have been adapted from Robbins, G., Powers, D., & Burgess,
S. (1999). A Wellness Way of Life (4th ed.). Boston:
Students should experience physical activities that are classified as
lifetime activities when attempting to accomplish the outcomes indicated below.
Physical Activity Outcomes:
- Participate in activities that affect and improve
cardiovascular endurance as evaluated by an exercise log.
- Perform activities that promote muscular strength and/or
muscular endurance as evaluated by demonstration and an exercise
- Demonstrate proper technique in a variety of stretches as
evaluated by demonstration.