The Big Five: Addressing Core Competencies

Event Date: 
Thu, 10/20/2016 - 8:30am to Fri, 10/21/2016 - 3:00pm

October 20-21, 2016 
Kellogg West Conference Center
Pomona, CA

Click here for a draft of the program schedule.

The five core competencies – writing, oral communication, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and information literacy – are critical higher-order intellectual skills for students to develop in order to be successful at school, at work, and in their private and civic lives. Accordingly, WSCUC’s institutional review process calls upon institutions to describe how the curriculum addresses each of these competencies, explain their learning outcomes in relation to the core competencies, and demonstrate the extent to which these outcomes are achieved.

This newly revamped 2-day workshop offers numerous approaches to addressing these five core competencies: how to define each outcome in a way that makes sense for your institution; set appropriate standards of performance; assess using authentic, direct methods; use findings to improve students’ performance and strengthen programs; and find intersections among the core competencies to strengthen student learning and assessment practices. Don’t miss this opportunity to get a bird’s eye view of the “big five” before you dive into the details of planning and implementing your own work on the core competencies.

Intended Audience:
The workshop is designed for institutional teams that – ideally – will include faculty and other educators representing each of the five core competencies. Academic administrators and assessment coordinators would also be good additions to a team. However, individual participants are more than welcome to attend and will be encouraged, during hands-on activities, to work with other individuals. If you have attended previous WSCUC workshops on this or similar topics, this workshop will help you refresh your approaches, gain new ideas, and engage with a community of scholars and practitioners doing this work.


Susan Elrod, Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs, University of Wisconsin – Whitewater

Jen Fabbi, Professor and Dean of the Library, California State University, San Marcos

Richard Fliegel, Adjunct Professor of English and Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs, University of Southern California’s Dana and David Dornsife College of Letters Arts and Sciences

Susan Hatfield, Faculty Emerita, Winona State University

John Holland, Director, The Writing Program, University of Southern California

Laurie A. Pinkert, Assistant Professor and Director of Undergraduate Programs, Department of Writing and Rhetoric, University of Central Florida

Click here for facilitator bios

Lodging:  Participants are responsible for their own hotel reservations. Kellogg West Conference Center and Lodge, located on the Cal Poly Pomona campus, is offering WSCUC workshop participants a discounted room rate of $100.00 Single $105.00 Double/night plus occupancy tax. To reserve rooms, contact the conference center at 909-869-2222. Mention "WASC Senior College and University Commission to secure our group discount rate. The deadline for booking rooms in the WSCUC room block is October 4, 2016 or while rooms are available.

Registration: Registration fee includes Thursday continental breakfast, lunch, dinner; Friday continental breakfast and lunch. Beverages and snacks will be available during breaks. Attendees will be on their own for all other meals.

Registration fees:  $495/per team member.  After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $525 /per team member. 

Discount for Combined Registration: Meaning, Quality, and Integrity of Degrees will be offered on October 19 at Kellogg West Conference Center. The special rate for a combined registration for MQID and The Big Five: Addressing Core Competencies is $700 until 10/5/2016. After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $730 /per team member.

Registration deadline:  October 5, 2016


This educational program has been developed by national and regional experts and is offered as a service to WSCUC member institutions and others who wish to learn about good practices applicable to all institutions. It is entirely optional, and our hope is that member institutions will find it helpful. WSCUC staff will be present to answer questions related specifically to accreditation expectations.