In an effort to fulfill the mission of the university and to produce well- rounded, employable students, BYU-Idaho has developed four university-wide learning outcomes:
- Disciples of Jesus Christ
- 2. Sound Thinkers
- Effective Communicators
- Skilled Collaborators
The Academic Administration led the development of a new messaging campaign to make these visible to students and employees and to encourage development in each area. Developed and polished for the past two and a half years, the campaign launched Fall Semester 2020. It’s hard to miss with light pole banners, pull out banners around campus, digital ads on campus video monitors, posters on campus billboards, table top set ups, and digital images displayed on the byui.edu webpage.
Associate Academic Vice President Van Christman explained that this campaign is similar to the previous campus
“Ready” campaign, but the new learning outcomes campaign is designed for students currently attending the university rather than prospective students.
“The learning outcomes campaign is for the people who are here now. We want to help them understand these four outcomes that we feel are critical that they know and develop in,” Christman said.
During the planning stages of the campaign, Christman and his team met to make a list of skill sets employers are looking for in potential employees. From this list, a group of academic leaders narrowed the potential skill set down to four, settling on a name and a short definition of each:
- Disciples of Jesus Christ believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and strive to follow Him.
It was decided from the beginning of the process that Disciples of Jesus Christ would be a learning outcome, even before any of the other outcomes were finalized because it goes hand in hand with the mission statement of BYU-Idaho. Through this learning outcome, the university aims for students to understand how they can become better disciples of Jesus Christ.
- Sound Thinkers frame and solve problems using creative and critical thinking.
The university encourages both students and employees to use sound thinking as they separate truth from false ideas. This learning outcome invites critical thinking as students solve problems in the workforce, classroom, and at home with families.
- Effective Communicators develop and express ideas that are purposeful, organized, and clear.
Through speaking, writing, and listening, BYU-Idaho teaches students to communicate effectively with their professors and peers. Employees are also taught how to exchange ideas with colleagues in a professional manner. The university hopes to create powerful leaders by teaching students how to navigate words and ideas and use those skills in the workforce after graduation.
- Skilled Collaborators work effectively with others to accomplish a shared vision.
Students are becoming skilled collaborators as they work together on group projects with their classmates. In the workplace, employees should likewise strive to help their colleagues succeed in whatever area they may need help in.
“We cannot accomplish what we need to in isolation. We need each other, and we need to learn how to work together as a team,” Christman commented.
The learning outcomes campaign is anticipated to be used in university messaging over an extended period of time. To reinforce that messaging, it will be essential that faculty members incorporate these principles in the classroom and that other employees utilize the messaging in their interactions with students.
“Faculty members are talking about the outcomes more in their classrooms and are right in line with what we are trying to accomplish,” Christman said. “All employees can help to develop the learning students have in these areas.”