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Facilitating the Integration of Learning

Five Research-Based Practices to Help College Students Connect Learning Across Disciplines and Lived Experience

In important research by King et al. (2007) and the AAC&U (2005; 2007), ‘integration of learning’ is considered to be one of the central learning outcomes of the liberal arts approach to education. Often the most powerful learning experiences that students report from their college years are those that prompt integration of learning, yet it remains an outcome that few educators explicitly work towards or specify as a course objective. Professor Barber, one of the contributors to Liberal Arts Global Lens, offers a guide for college educators on how to promote students’ integration of learning, and help them connect knowledge and insights across contexts, whether in-class or out-of-class, in co-curricular activities, or across courses and disciplinary boundaries.  

Barber describes practices that readers can integrate as appropriate in their classes or activities, under chapters respectively devoted to Mentoring, Writing as Praxis, Juxtaposition, Hands-On Experiences, and Diversity and Identity. 


Association of American Colleges and Universities(AAC&U). (2005). Liberal education outcomes: A preliminary report on student achievement in college.Washington, DC: AAC&U.  

Association of American Colleges and Universities(AAC&U) (2007) College Learning forthe New Global Century. A Report from the National Leadership Council forLiberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP). Washington DC: AAC&U. 

King, P. M., Brown, M. K., Lindsay, N. K., & Vanhecke,J. R. (2007). Liberal arts student learning outcomes: An integrated approach. About Campus, 12(4), 2-9. 

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