Interstate Passport®  Briefing 

New Approaches to General Education and the Interstate Passport

Both of the recent Inside Higher Ed articles summarized above describe general education innovations that are not likely to fit neatly into course-and-credit based equivalency systems for students who transfer either to or from the institutions. For colleges and universities more dependent on either sending or receiving transfer students than those highlighted in the article, the need to stay in step with partner institutions' general education course and credit patterns can inhibit innovation.  


New Attention Being Paid to General Education

Gen Ed graphic

Two recent articles from Inside Education – very worthwhile reading – focus on general education and the efforts underway by several institutions to improve the curriculum to make it meaningful and rigorous. Too often students don’t understand the purpose of general education requirements and what they’re supposed to be learning.

The Future of Undergraduate Education

grads in mortar boards

A new report from the Commission on the Future of Undergraduate Education examines the issues of most concern to students and higher education institutions. Two years in the making, The Future of Undergraduate Education, The Future of America offers actionable recommendations for helping colleges of every type deal more effectively and efficiently with quality, affordability and completion.

Mapping Learning Outcomes at USAFA

The United States Air Force Academy was established in 1954, and since that time the general education curriculum has been its defining characteristic – a single core curriculum with no academic majors. Since 2006, the Academy has undergone a process very similar to the development of the Interstate Passport framework: the development and assessment of a single set of institution-wide outcomes based on the LEAP Essential Learning Outcomes.

Strategies for Effective Transfer Partnerships

Graduation cap with diploma

The latest research report from Davis Jenkins and John Fink of the Community College Resource Center focuses on partnerships between two- and four-year institutions that enable community college entrants to transfer to a four-year institution and earn a bachelor’s degree. Takes Two To Tango: Essential Practices of Highly Effective Transfer Partnerships describes the process undertaken to identify cross-sector partnerships that are high performers for transfer success.

Why General Education?

A new essay by Passport State Coordinator Jane Sherman presents a compelling case for general education in American colleges and universities. The courses and credits that make up general education are different across the country, however, the goals that institutions are trying to attain through general education and the learning outcomes they want their students to achieve turn out to be very similar at many colleges and universities. The Interstate Passport is built around the general education core because that is the common element of degree programs.

APLU Calls for New Commitment to Student and Workforce Needs


A new report from the Association of Public Land-grant Universities (APLU) urges public universities to not only help prepare students for success in life but also to address workforce needs and prepare students for successful professional careers. The report, Ready for Jobs, Career, and a Lifetime: Public Research Universities and Credentials that Count, offers several recommendations for public universities to help better prepare their graduates.

Passport Review Board to Convene in February 2018

Flatirons (D Wilmert)

The Interstate Passport Review will hold its annual meeting in Boulder, Colorado, February 1-2, 2018. The Board consists of the Passport State Facilitator from each member state -- Arkansas, California, Hawaii, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah and Wyoming -- as well as transfer, learning outcomes and state policy experts.


Time for Passport Awards and Data Submission

With the end of the fall 2017 term approaching, Interstate Passport Network institutions will be preparing to award Passports and to report that information to the National Student Clearinghouse. In addition to the Passport Completion Data file on Passports awarded, registrars and institutional researchers are reminded to submit academic progress tracking information for students who had completed a term or more after earning the Passport as well as for students who transferred in with or without a Passport.