LINKAGES TO ENGAGEMENT AT UNIV. WISCONSIN-PARKSIDE
First, we embraced our niche as the environmental resource, specifically offering urban or other developed settings for our focus on environmental quality.
Secondly we revamped our majors' curriculum to enable our students to learn to integrate practical technological skills in sampling, analysis, instrumentation use, and civic engagement to produce positive outcomes at both physical and social levels.
Thirdly, our Department has become a strong and active supporter of a teacher preparation program that is undergoing important curriculum and organizational changes. Our newest faculty addition is an atmospheric chemist with significant teaching responsibility in our campus' new Liberal Arts major for elementary school teachers.
Geosciences faculty also vigorously support a certificate program in Community Based Learning, direct the campus minor in Environmental Studies, and have actively participated in campus initiatives such as First Year Experience, General Education reform, the campus' Teaching and Learning Center, and collaborative course offerings that link academic skills (math, reading, writing) courses to extra support in General Education science courses. In addition, the Department has taken campus leadership in participation in the national SENCER initiative, which links science education and civic engagement.
Finally, we have also amended and upgraded our merit review criteria so that they explicitly support faculty participation in active learning approaches in the classroom, and faculty research that is applied to issues of active regional concern, and which involves our students in the research process.