Baccalaureate Learning Outcome - Integrated Learning. Students will differentiate and evaluate theories and approaches to complex, multidisciplinary problems and articulate a solution to the question or challenge using evidence from a variety of fields and co-curricular and life experiences.
The artifacts I chose to demonstrate achievement in the Integrative Learning outcome are my senior thesis and project. The senior project and senior thesis make up the undergraduate research experience, which is part of the degree requirements for graduation from the Biology department at the University of La Verne. My project and its accompanying thesis paper focused on ePortfolios as they will be used at the University of La Verne. As a part of my project, I was to create an ePortfolio from my perspective as a transfer student. In the creation of this project, I used my academic and personal experiences from both my previous university (University of New Haven) and University of La Verne (ULV), as well as experiences from my co-curricular and extra-curricular activities. Within the artifact, I provide background information on ePortfolios as they are used in the context of higher education, my purpose in creating the ePortfolio and completing the project, detail the process of the entire project, show and interpret the resulting ePortfolio, and discuss both what was learned from my perspective and from the university’s prospective as a result of this project.
This project provided me with the space and opportunity to reflect on myself, my work, and my experiences both inside and outside of the classroom for the first time. Through these reflections, I was able to learn from my past while recognizing my accomplishments. This self-reflection and learning helped me to improve on my work as I progressed through my undergraduate career. For example, reflecting on my leadership and teamwork skills from my sophomore year helped me to be better prepared to be a group leader for a class project in my senior year. Reflecting on my oral speaking skills from a class in my junior year helped to give me more confidence going into my project presentation at a conference in my senior year. Overall, my experience working on this project was a positive one, and I am fairly satisfied with the effort I put into the project.
Looking at the rubric for Integrative Knowledge, I would give myself a three for Connections to Experience. Within the ePortfolio I selected examples of work from various areas of my academic and life experiences to illuminate my achievement in various fields of study while also developing reflections for each example that further help to illustrate the concepts. I believe this artifact earns a three in Connections to Discipline because it connected the different perspectives of the authors whose articles I used in my research. For the Transfer category, I believe that the artifact earns a three. By the end of this project and in the discussion section of the thesis, I take what I have learned in creating the ePortfolio from my perspective, and adapt and apply the knowledge I have gained to create new solutions that would minimize the challenges faced by future students. I believe that I also score a three in the Integrated Communication category. By using both a paper and the ePortfolio, I meet the explicit connection of content and form, and both the thesis and ePortfolio show awareness of purpose and audience. For the Reflection and Self-Assessment category, this artifact earns a score of three. In the reflective portions of this project and in the discussion of the thesis, I evaluate my changes in learning over time while recognizing various complex contextual factors.