Part of a larger world—Q.E.P.
Schreiner University’s commitment to the education of its students extends far beyond individual classes and textbooks—even beyond the University itself. “Information is not knowledge,” Albert Einstein once said. And although facts and figures might be the bricks and mortar, the ultimate goal of education is to produce people who, one way or another, will contribute something to the body of human knowledge. Schreiner has always seen a commitment to interdisciplinary education and scholarship as an integral part of achieving that goal, and is expanding that effort through its newly developed Quality Enhancement Plan.
The the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, an accrediting organization for colleges and universities, developed the Q.E.P. concept to help institutions of higher learning in enhancing student learning. However, Schreiner’s Q.E.P. program is far more than just a part of the University’s accreditation process.
“Our QEP encourages our students to see themselves as joining a community of scholars,” Dr. Diana Comuzzie, the director of Q.E.P., said. “In the classic Greek sense, this community of scholars is known as the Academy. We want our students to understand that a college education is much more than job training. It is preparing students to think. It is instilling in them a philosophy that the world’s collective knowledge is held in the minds of the scholars, and that society advances by scholars thinking about problems, and working to solve them.”
The idea behind the Schreiner Q.E.P. is to integrate students into the global community of scholars who safeguard and add to humanity’s knowledge. Q.E.P. is an interdisciplinary program of four required courses over four years of a student’s university education. The courses are interrelated, with each one building on its predecessor, and cover cultural perspectives, cooperative learning and research. At the end of each course, students will be expected to design and produce a creative work or other type of semester project. The ultimate goal of the program is Schreiner graduates who understand the concept of the Academy and their role within it, as well as having the necessary academic and information technology skills.
According to Comuzzie, Q.E.P. will improve students’ learning and help make them into more valuable members of society. It also will provide the students with skills they will use even after leaving Schreiner.
“When Schreiner accepted the challenge in 1982 of forming itself into a baccalaureate college, it was wise enough to shape its curriculum around interdisciplinary thinking and skills,” Dr. Tim Summerlin, Schreiner’s president, said. “As our faculty faced the task last year of developing a Quality Enhancement Plan as part of our reaffirmation of accreditation process, they focused on the same interdisciplinary core. The revision of those core skills and experiences to serve as an introduction of our students into the academy was a brilliant idea because it takes a current Schreiner strength and reshapes it to address the issues of our current world. I am proud of the Q.E.P. our faculty members have designed.”
Students, faculty and staff helped kick off a University-wide QEP campaign on March 11, 2009 with a toga contest. It was a fun way to help introduce the QEP concept to the entire campus community. Click here to view photos.