Passport Learning Outcomes and Transfer-Level Proficiency Criteria
Passport Learning Outcomes
Faculty selected by participating two-year and four-year institutions in seven states developed Passport Learning Outcomes (PLOs) for nine lower-division general education knowledge and skill areas. In Phase I of the project, PLOs for the three foundational skill areas were completed: oral communication, written communication, and quantitative literacy. In Phase II, PLOs were developed for the remaining six content areas: knowledge of concepts in the natural sciences; human cultures, human society and the individual, and creative expression; and crosscutting skills in critical thinking, and teamwork and value systems. The Passport Interstate Faculty Teams – one for each content area and comprised of faculty members with expertise in the designated area – reviewed, compared, and contrasted the sets of learning outcomes submitted by each state and then negotiated to arrive at an agreed-upon set of learning outcomes – the Passport Learning Outcomes. Institutions that sign the Passport Agreement acknowledge that their lower-division general education learning outcomes map to and are congruent with the Passport Learning Outcomes. WICHE’s role has been to provide logistical support for face-to-face and conference call meetings of faculty during which they developed the PLOs and the PC. WICHE did not generate, does not judge, and will not censor the PLOs or PC produced by these faculty members.
Transfer-Level Proficiency Criteria
Following development of the PLOs, the Interstate Faculty Teams began work on developing the Passport Transfer-Level Proficiency Criteria (PC). The PC are how students demonstrate proficiency – through successful completion of a wide range of course assignments and exercises. In developing these PC, team members shared their work with stakeholders in their states over several rounds of review, soliciting feedback and resulting, as appropriate, in new versions of the criteria. The resulting PC are examples only, not requirements, and many of them are currently in place at participating institutions. Sample activities come from different disciplines, may span multiple learning outcomes, and cover a range of formats (written, oral, visual, performance, individual, group). Indeed, each faculty member will have his/her own ways for students to demonstrate proficiency with the PLOs.
Proficiency criteria have been developed for all nine of the areas.