Beyond the Major
Beyond the Major represents a campus-wide effort to help students name their skills, connect their experiences, and tell their story. Embracing a Beyond the Major mindset means that students are returning to key questions throughout their time at Boise State:
- What are the specific skills and experiences that I am gaining in this course/major?
- Why is it important to learn these skills and have these experiences?
- How will I talk about (or “translate”) these skills and experiences for audiences outside of the major?
By helping students name the what, why, and how of their college experience, we are empowering them to take ownership of their education and plot the story of their future.
Storyboard is a 2-year learning and leadership community in which faculty develop strategies for integrating reflective and narrative practices into a range of courses and experiences.
During the first year, this community will research reflection and narrative theories/practices across disciplines with the goal of creating a shareable archive of scholarship and strategies. The second year will focus on applying the theories to innovative pedagogical practices that can be implemented across campus.
Several strategies exist across disciplines and areas for teaching reflection and fostering metacognition. In the field of Writing Studies, for example, scholars couple theories of metacognition and “transfer” to develop strategies for building foundational knowledge in first-year writing that can transfer into disciplinary writing. In another example, reflective practices are integrated throughout Teacher Education programs to help future teachers reflect on their experiences as learners and build “adaptive expertise.”
The issue, however, is that reflection activities often feel like isolated experiences to our students: an essay at the end of an assignment, a journal exercise, a self-assessment. How might we draw upon a range of scholarship to create deeper and more connected reflection experiences? And how can we better support students in weaving their reflections into a larger narrative?