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General Education Philosophy Statement

General education courses promote and advance essential knowledge, skills, and values students need to succeed in an interdependent, diverse, and changing world.  Students are provided a foundation for lifelong learning by gaining a broad knowledge of science, math, communication, technology, human behavior, and society.

Western Dakota Tech faculty designed the general education courses to emphasize a breadth of understanding to help learners succeed in college, on the job, and in daily life.  Courses stress high-level intellectual and practical skills, critical thinking, analytical reasoning, and a sense of ethical and social responsibility.  General Education at Western Dakota Tech stimulates a learner’s ability to integrate and apply knowledge, skills, and values acquired in its courses to new settings and complex challenges.

 

General Education Outcomes (GEO) & Intentions of each GEO
Communicate Effectively 

A competent communicator can interact with others using appropriate forms of communication resulting in understanding and being understood.

Written Communication Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to adapt to a variety of audiences and rhetorical situations, organize content with effective transitions and effective introductions and conclusions; develop logical and concrete ideas with effective use of paragraph structure; use appropriate and precise word choice; and demonstrate editing techniques that result in few mechanical and usage errors.

Oral Communication Competencies: The student will demonstrate skill in idea development and verbal effectiveness by the use of language and the organization of ideas for a specific audience, setting and occasion to achieve a purpose; nonverbal effectiveness, assuring that the nonverbal message supports and is consistent with the verbal message and responsiveness, communication skills modified based on verbal and nonverbal feedback.

 

Think Critically

A competent critical thinker evaluates evidence and employs logical reasoning to decide what to believe and how to act.

Critical Thinking Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to recognize differences between correlation and causation; determine whether certain conclusions necessarily follow from information; understand and apply scientific reasoning; and distinguish between arguments that are strong and relevant and those that are weak and irrelevant to a particular question at issue.


Process Information

A person who is competent in processing information recognizes when information is needed and has the ability to locate, evaluate, and use it effectively (information literacy); possesses the skills and knowledge necessary to apply the use of logic, numbers, and mathematics to deal effectively with common problems and issues (quantitative reasoning); and, possesses the skills and knowledge necessary to use computers and associated technology for communicating, researching, organizing, storing, accessing, and presenting information (computer literacy).

Information Literacy Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to determine the nature and extent of the information needed; access needed information effectively and efficiently; evaluate information and its sources critically; and use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose.

Quantitative Literacy Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to explain information presented in mathematical forms (e.g. equations, graphs, diagrams, tables, words); ability to convert relevant information into various mathematical forms (e.g. equations, graphs, diagrams, tables, words); ability to correctly perform calculations; ability to make judgments and draw appropriate conclusions based on the quantitative analysis of data, while recognizing the limits of this analysis; ability to make and evaluate important assumptions in estimation, modeling and data analysis; and the ability to express quantitative evidence in support of the argument or purpose of the work.

Computer Literacy Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to use word processing software to create a document; use presentation software to enhance an oral presentation; use spreadsheet software to organize, manipulate, and present numeric data; use the Internet and e-mail to retrieve and communicate information; and develop strategies to address questions by searching and retrieving information available electronically.

Understand Behavior and Interactions 

A person who is competent in understanding behavior and interactions demonstrates knowledge of what motivates, influences, and/or determines the behaviors and beliefs of individuals, groups, and one’s self.

Understand Behavior and Interactions Competencies: The student will demonstrate the ability to identify and understand differences and commonalities within diverse groups; understand the relationship of personal behavioral choices and interactions with other individuals and groups; and develop and express self-awareness.


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