Jul 14, 2024  
2023-24 NSU Undergraduate Catalog 
2023-24 NSU Undergraduate Catalog

Degrees of Excellence

The Degrees of Excellence institutional learning outcomes articulate high expectations for students’ success, and provide an inclusive framework for a distinctive educational experience emphasizing lifelong learning, intellectual growth, citizenship, and social responsibility.  They reflect NSU’s heritage, mission, vision, and values. Institutional learning outcomes are designed by NSU as a whole, taking into account the role that both instruction and student services play in contributing to a student’s success. Institutional learning outcomes assume achievement of general education learning outcomes and the stated program learning outcomes of the student’s discipline.

Outcome 1: Intellectual Skills

1.1 Analytic Inquiry

A. Raises vital questions and problems, formulating them clearly and precisely;

B. Evaluate approaches to address complex problems;

C. Test proposed solutions to complex problems.

1.2 Information Literacy

A. Determine the extent of information needed;

B. Access the needed information effectively and efficiently;

C. Evaluate the reliability and comparative worth of various information sources;

D. Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose;

E. Use information ethically and legally.

1.3 Engaging diverse perspectives

Explain alternative systems of thought, including their assumptions, implications, and practical consequences.

1.4 Quantitative fluency

A. Write an equation using mathematical symbols that expresses a relationship;

B. Perform arithmetic operations on algebraic expressions and solves linear equations;

C. Evaluate the validity of procedures in solving a mathematical problem;  

D. Interpret mathematical models such as formulas, graphs, tables, and schematics, and draws inferences from them.

1.5 Communication fluency

A. Construct coherent written and oral arguments for general and specific audiences;

B. Construct coherent written and oral narratives for general and specific audiences;

C. Collaborate with others to advance an argument or design an approach to resolving a social, personal or ethical dilemma.

Outcome 2:  Integrative knowledge

Produce, independently or collaboratively, an investigative, creative or practical work that draws on specific theories, evidence, tools and methods from diverse perspectives.

Outcome 3: Specialized knowledge in the major

3.1 Explain the boundaries and major areas of specialization within the major;

3.2 Properly utilize discipline specific vocabulary;

3.3 Demonstrate the ability to effectively use the tools, technologies and methods common to the major;

3.4 Evaluate a complex question using appropriate perspectives and evidence drawn from the student’s major; and

3.5 Construct a summative project that draws on current research, scholarship and/or techniques in the major.

Outcome 4: Capstone Experience in the Baccalaureate Degree

The integration of the major with baccalaureate degree expectations reflecting the intersection of academic and post-baccalaureate settings. Demonstrate competency at the baccalaureate level in analytic inquiry, information literacy, engaging diverse perspectives, quantitative fluency, and communication fluency. Demonstration can be achieved through one or more of the following as appropriate:

4.1 Formulate a question on a topic that addresses more than one academic discipline, a public issue, or practical setting where the student:

A. Locate appropriate evidence that addresses the question;

B. Evaluate the evidence in relation to the problem’s contexts,

C. Articulate conclusions that follow logically from such analysis.

4.2 Complete an immersive performance, field-based project, exhibit, or internship related to the discipline and course of study where the student:

A. Implement insights from others into the project;

B. Evaluate a significant challenge or question faced in the project in relation to core concepts, methods or assumptions in his or her major field; 

C. Describe the effects of learning outside the classroom on his or her research or practical skills;

D. Explain in writing or another medium how those elements were combined in the product to shape its intended meaning or findings;  and

E. Employ appropriate citations to demonstrate the relationship of the product to literature in its field.

Outcome 5: Citizenship - emphasizing leadership and engagement, experiential learning, cultural foundations, and personal and career development.

5.1 Cultural Foundations

A. Analyze the advantages and challenges of a culturally diverse society;

B. Identify the connectedness of culture and society;

C. Discuss how culture influences one’s perspective;

D. Define one’s identity in relation to cultural differences;

E. Work across cultural differences.

5.2 Leadership & Engagement

A. Distinguish between leadership as a process and leadership as a position;

B. Demonstrate commitment to positive change;

C. Demonstrate respect for the rights of others;

D. Employ ethical considerations when making leadership decisions;

E. Practice engaged citizenship by contributing to the positive welfare of the community.

5.3 Life Skills & Personal Development

A. Achieve personal goals;

B. Recognize personal strengths and challenges;

C. Identify personal values or beliefs;

D. Manage resources effectively.

5.4 Professional & Career Development

A. Develop professional or career goals;

B. Match strengths and interests to chosen paths;

C. Build professional relationships and networks;

D. Translate acquired knowledge to professional skills.