Frequently Asked Questions

What is “T2I: Think to Impact?”

This is the title of Montreat College’s current QEP.

What does QEP stand for and what is it about?

Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP). Accredited schools of higher education choose a major initiative every five years to address areas where they want to enhance learning. Montreat College has chosen critical thinking as the focus of this initiative. The stated purpose of T2I is to develop the critical thinking skills of students so that they can graciously impact the world around them.

What is the desired student outcome of T2I?

That students have enhanced ability to:

  • Think Creatively: Students will be able to identify or derive alternative interpretations of data or observations, recognizing new information that might support or contradict a hypothesis, explaining how new information can change their understanding and ability to address a problem.
  • Learn and Problem Solve: Students will be able to separate relevant and irrelevant information, integrate multiple sources of information to solve problems, and learn and apply new information to solve real-world issues.
  • Communicate: Students will be able to focus on communicating ideas graciously so they can effectively and precisely engage with the world.

Why focus on Critical Thinking?

Prior to the implementation of the QEP, Montreat College did not have a unified plan of action for campus-wide development of critical thinking for students. The lack of college-wide intentional planning created a gap in student learning and development. This hindered students from acquiring the personal and professional skills to graciously impact the world around them and implicitly allowed personal opinion and emotional reasoning rather than creative thinking, problem-solving, and communication of multifaceted ideas.

Why are we concerned with students developing critical thinking for gracious world impact?

In conjunction with learning the skills for critical thinking T2I also encourages “gracious impact” with these skills. To be gracious is to act with humility and in charitable consideration of those with whom one is interacting, remembering the dignity and worth of all people inherent in the Imago-Dei. Undergraduate curricula focusing primarily on critical thought is a great starting point however, such a skill set is of limited use if students cannot communicate learned truths in a way which graciously impacts the world.

How does Montreat assess SLOs?

All of the instruments we are using to assess critical thinking have been built into the curriculum and/or assessment cycle. There are no additional requirements for students to fulfill. In order to measure the effectiveness of T2I through multiple measures, including the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) VALUE Rubrics a macro-level and micro-level assessment plan has been established. For example, an intro-level Education course assignment focusing on critical thinking will be identified, a sample of student submissions will be selected, a committee of non-Education Department faculty will assess these submissions using the Montreat College T2I Critical Thinking Rubric and the results of this assessment will be reported to the Education Department for inclusion in their annual program assessment. All results are provided to specific departments following the completion of each annual assessment cycle. The results of each academic year will be utilized to inform the practices and goals of the following academic year.

How is the QEP connected to the Mission of Montreat College?

T2I is a means of improving the overall College curriculum by supporting the College’s mission: Montreat College is an independent, Christ-centered, liberal arts institution that educates students through intellectual inquiry, spiritual formation, and preparation for calling and career. T2I will be integrally Christ-centered through the focus on asking difficult questions, communicating and dialoguing about these questions and the use of a discipleship model in the Fellowship of Philosophers program. All of these are hallmarks of the ministry and teaching of Jesus Christ. Students, faculty, and staff will tackle contemporary issues, going into the depths of intellectual inquiry – beyond rote memorization to adaptive skills that allow for success in many fields and are integral to spiritual formation, growth, and development.

Preparation for calling and career will be an important and welcomed byproduct of T2I. The world’s most desired employers are continually seeking knowledge that goes beyond mere book smarts: they want applicants who can be creative, graciously critical and go beyond superficial standards of excellence. Finally, students will impact the world for Jesus Christ as only critical thinkers can, having a unique ability to affect change in a cynical world.

What do I need to do?

Students

  • Participate in the activities provided for you through the QEP.
  • Think about the way you approach course content: ask questions, analyze the material, make connections between your classes, etc.
  • Be a friend of critical thinking and encourage your peers to ask questions and seek deeper understanding.
  • Consider being a part of the Fellowship of Philosophers or a Wandering Philosopher.

Staff

  • Be prepared to answer questions the SACSCOC On-site committee may have about the QEP
  • Read QEP documents.
  • Create opportunities for engaging students in conversation that requires and empowers them to critically think.
  • Ask questions (email Megan Clunan at megan.clunan@montreat.edu)

Faculty

  • Read the QEP Report
  • Participate in the activities and professional development provided for you through the QEP.
  • Think about the reasoning /critical thinking competency and how you approach that in your major courses
  • Serve as a Faculty Fellow for the Fellowship of Philosophers
  • Collect and forward data when requested
  • Ask questions (email Megan Clunan at megan.clunan@montreat.edu)