A passage that I’m noting for future reference, but I’m sure that readers of this blog are also interested in thinking about teaching and this may be of use-interest to you also:

An educated person is someone who has learned how to acquire, analyze, synthesize, evaluate, understand, and communicate knowledge and information. An educated person has to develop skills that respond to changing professional requirements and new challenges in society and the world at large. He or she must be able to take skills previously gained from serious study of one set of problems and apply them to another. He or she must be able to locate, understand, interpret, evaluate, and use information in an appropriate way and ultimately communicate his or her synthesis and understanding of that information in a clear and accurate manner. Our students will by their course of study master at least one discipline where they will gain proficiency, but an educated person should be able to apply this learning and the skills that go with it to a broad spectrum of areas, including where the person is not expert and where he or she may be confronting a set of problems for the first time. These basic skills give our human curiosity additional depth and breadth, as well as the momentum to propel it across the boundaries of disciplines, communities, nations and time.

From the summary of “The Future of the Liberal Arts and Sciences at Michigan State University” (2003). This statement isn’t revolutionary, and certainly doesn’t rank as one of the most eloquent defenses of the liberal arts, but it does have the merit of translating an idea about liberal education into the edu-speak of skills and competencies.

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