I listened to Goucher College president, José Antonio Bowen, discuss the new curriculum, implemented last fall. I found the curriculum intriguing, and his thoughts on higher education to be enlightening. Here is some of what I learned:
- The curriculum is designed to help students become self-regulated learners. There are few specific course requirements.
- Students take four sequential semesters of problem-solving. They get to choose from many topics.
- Every senior presents a reflection portfolio to faculty and friends. Students have ten minutes to tell their story — who they were, how they changed, what made the difference over their four years and who they are now.
- Foreign language study is combined with culture classes.
- Relationships, Resilience, and Reflection are the new 3Rs.
- Studying abroad is required. Bowen suggests that students go someplace that makes them a little bit uncomfortable.
- There is a new data analytics (formerly known as Math) requirement.
- Students are required to take three years of writing that is portfolio, competency based.
- 95% of students engage in hands-on learning experiences.
Beyond the curriculum,
- Students can borrow a pet from the president (check out the Pets of Goucher Facebook page)
- There are seven musical ensembles
- It’s an open, tolerant campus
Goucher is located eight miles north of Baltimore on 287 wooded acres. Professors know students by name. I’m happy to tell you more.