General education is a gateway to identity and becoming, a pathway to self-discovery and growth for students. However, gen ed courses have more frequently been viewed as checkboxes to quickly complete. But those who are passionate about and understand the long-term investment of gen ed, developing students into graduates who contribute back by going and making a difference in the world, are recommitting – working, partnering, and coming together.
Reforming gen ed to ensure students can see themselves in the curriculum and incorporating it into minor studies provides meaningful, transformative, life changing experiences. Dr. Stephen Biscotte, president of AGLS and assistant provost for undergraduate education at Virginia Tech, speaks with us about the importance of gen ed, its reform, and the impact it has on the educated future of our nation.
Join us as we discuss:
- Transforming understanding of gen ed and accreditation
- Delivering on what’s important for students
- Finding passions and embracing transformation
Read Dr. Biscotte’s full bio below!
Dr. Stephen Biscotte
As Assistant Provost for Undergraduate Education at Virginia Tech, Dr. Stephen Biscotte provides leadership for the Pathways to General Education and First-Year Experiences program as well as oversees communication and program evaluation and data analysis efforts across the unit of Undergraduate Education. He teaches graduate level courses in Educational Psychology as well as a First-Year Seminar.
Dr. Biscotte is the President of the Association for General and Liberal Studies (AGLS) and Co-PI on an NSF Cultivating Cultures of Ethics in STEM Grant. Dr. Biscotte’s general education relevant scholarship, particularly focused on the non-STEM student experience in STEM general education courses, has appeared in The Journal of General Education, ASCN’s volume on Transforming Institutions: Accelerating Systemic Change in Higher Education, The Teaching Professor, and IUPUI’s Trends in Assessment. He leads workshops and teaches several courses on Gen Ed Reform for Weave Academy. In addition to serving on and chairing external academic program review teams, he has given keynote, plenary, and concurrent sessions as well as facilitated workshops on such gen ed related topics as innovative structures, university reform efforts, and program evaluation both locally and nationally.
Prior to his role at Virginia Tech, for 10 years Biscotte taught high school courses in anatomy and physiology, biology, and physical science in Roanoke, Virginia and Columbia, South Carolina. Biscotte received a bachelor’s degree in biology from James Madison University. He received a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction: Science Education and a PhD in Curriculum and Instruction: Educational Psychology, both from Virginia Tech.
Host: Dr. Amy Dykens, CEO, Weave
Guest: Dr. Stephen Biscotte, Virginia Tech & AGLS
Episode #: 15