Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) currently enrolls over 21,000 undergraduate students in over 200 programs offered through 21 schools. Of the undergraduate students at IUPUI, 97% are from the state of Indiana. A high percentage of IUPUI undergraduate students are first-generation college students—48% of students have parents that have not completed a college degree. University College provides faculty across IUPUI with a shared home for general education and a mechanism by which students and faculty can come together across disciplinary lines for the purpose of enabling student learning.
Principles of Undergraduate Learning (PULs)
IUPUI's Principles of Undergraduate Learning have a 20-year history, dating from discussions about general education that began in 1990. The PULs were formally adopted by the IUPUI Faculty Council in 1998 and revised (reaffirmed) in 2007. These six PULs, articulated by the IUPUI faculty, are:
- Core communication and quantitative skills
- Critical thinking
- Integration and application of knowledge
- Intellectual depth, breadth, and adaptiveness
- Understanding society and culture
- Values and ethics
IUPUI's PULs are the essential ingredients of the undergraduate educational experience and form a conceptual framework for all students' general education but inevitably permeate the curriculum in the major field of study, as well. More specific expectations for IUPUI's graduates are determined by faculty in a student's major field of study. Together, these expectations speak to what graduates of IUPUI will know and be able to do upon completion of their degree programs. Taken together, the PULs summarize the general education outcomes and abilities IUPUI wants all undergraduate students to achieve, regardless of major.
RISE to the Challenge
RISE to the Challenge is a relatively new initiative focused on increasing undergraduate student participation in research, international, service, and other experiential learning options. It is an important piece of the IUPUI Academic Plan. Through intentional use of such pedagogy, IUPUI can make its undergraduate educational experience distinctive by taking advantage of its institutional strengths, its urban setting, and its mission as a civically engaged urban research university. RISE packages a long tradition and commitment to experiential learning (EL) outside the classroom at IUPUI. RISE emphasizes four critical dimensions of EL that are the hallmarks of an IUPUI degree:
- R: credit-bearing undergraduate research experiences to augment their understanding of research, scholarship, and creative activities
- I: study abroad curricular experiences to enhance their learning and understanding of the world
- S: service learning courses to enhance their commitment to civic engagement
- E: credit-bearing experiential learning experiences, such as internships, practica, clinical, or fieldwork experiences