Strategic Planning

The Integration of Curricular and Co-Curricular Learning

The College is committed to “the highest standards of instruction” and expects that “Amherst undergraduates assume substantial responsibility for undertaking inquiry and for shaping their education within and beyond the curriculum.”  Close interaction between faculty, and students, and between students and their classmates, in the classroom, lab, and studio, and on the stage, defines an Amherst education.  Our students broaden their knowledge, perspectives, vision, and character not only within these curricular learning structures, but also through participation in athletics, community service, student governance, clubs, and musical, theater, and dance groups; time spent at our museums, libraries, and cultural events of all kinds; discussions in dorms and in Val; friendships with people whom they would not have met at home; and now even through working on our farm.  The ability to create and experience a seamless web of curricular and co-curricular opportunities is a defining feature of our “purposefully small residential community.”

Charge to the Committee

  • What case will we make for an four-year residential college in the world of tomorrow envisioned by the four scenarios?
  • What intellectual foundations, personal abilities, and life skills do we want our students to have when they graduate in the world of tomorrow? In short, what do we want our students to learn?

More specifically:

  • How do we create a more dynamic relation between the classroom, extra-curricular and co-curricular spaces--a web of learning and human development that is appropriate to our learning goals? How do we create a range of options that motivate our students and create opportunities for them to engage in many forms of learning?
  • Are we advising, teaching, modeling, mentoring, and/or encouraging personal initiative? Are we teaching students to take advantage offered by our diverse and global community? Are we creating learning environments that are adequate to our goals? 

Johnson Chapel