Dr. Theresa Gaul worked on a core approval committee when the TCU Core Curriculum was first introduced.

Students now have more options to fulfill their TCU Core requirements.

Professors continue to develop classes that meet TCU’s learning outcomes. Last semester, 30 classes were approved for core credit. This semester, an additional two were accepted, and another is under review, wrote Ed McNertney, the director of the TCU Core Curriculum, in an email.

The Core Curriculum is a set of required credits that TCU students must take to graduate.

The key to getting a course approved for the Core Curriculum is communication, said Blaise Ferrandino, a member of one committee that reviews the courses.

For a class to be approved, professors must submit a syllabus and a form detailing how the class meets the core category’s student learning outcomes, Ferrandino said.

A learning outcome details what students should know or be able to do after completing a course, according to the TCU Core Curriculum website.

If a course does not match the learning outcomes, the committee sends it back to the professor to explain the fit more clearly, Ferrandino said.

Dr. Theresa Gaul, Dr. Joseph Darda and Dr. Kara Dixon Vuic submitted this semester’s courses, McNertney wrote.

Gaul said her Intro to Native American Literatures class has been approved for literary traditions and cultural awareness; Vuic said her War and Memory in American Culture class is being reviewed for writing emphasis. Darda had a course approved for humanities, McNertney wrote in an email.

“They’re going to be doing it anyway, so they might as well get credit for it,” Vuic said, referring to her students’ writing.

Gaul said it’s not enough for professors to talk about their ideas of meeting learning outcomes.

“There actually has to be a way in the class that you can measure that students are learning them,” Gaul said.

The purpose of the Core is to give students foundational knowledge, Ferrandino said.

When students are forced to leave their field of study, they can “contextualize what [they] do in a more global sense,” Ferrandino said.

The core continuously expands as new professors come in and old professors start new courses, Vuic said.

Advising for the fall begins March 21, and enrollment opens March 28, according to TCU’s academic calendar.

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