Shared Capacities Initiative

During the 2013–2014 academic year, a faculty subcommittee of the University Curriculum Committee will lead a university-wide faculty conversation, both on campus and online, to help determine what capacities all undergraduate students should be expected to develop by the time they graduate, regardless of college or program. While curriculum development is primarily the responsibility of faculty, the subcommittee encourages students and alumni to join in this discussion. We hope that these conversations about the shape of undergraduate education at The New School will yield a list of shared capacities as well as a means to continue communicating with one another about our work of teaching and learning.

Our conversations will be guided by the research of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, in particular its Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP) initiative ( and the Essential Learning Outcomes defined by that initiative. AAC&U uses research from both within and outside of the academy to help guide institutions of higher education in incorporating aspirational and practical goals.

You are invited to participate as fully as you want and are able. Check this webpage for updates and invitations to hear about, comment on, and give input into this effort to create a set of shared capacities designed to give fuller life to the values expressed in our mission and vision statements, which have been developed by the president, provost, and deans ( and are supported by current research and best practices in undergraduate education.

This work will continue over a number of years as the colleges, programs, and university carefully consider how to implement the shared capacities resulting from the conversation in 2013–2014 and build an iterative process for revising and modifying them as conditions, values, and priorities evolve.

Connect with the New School