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Advocates for a Common Experience Committee records

Identifier: A099


In 1991 Provost Michael Baer laid the groundwork for a committee that would work to create a common experience for all Northeastern University undergraduates. The Advocates for a Common Experience Committee was created after the failure of a similar initiative during 1988—1990. Working under the direction of Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education Andrea Leskes, the committee, consisting of faculty, students, administrators, alumni, and trustees, solicited the help of experts to ascertain the essential goals for education of all undergraduates and how to go about achieving them. The committee decided on the following essential goals, which came to be known as the Academic Common Experience: Students must graduate with the skills of effective thinking, effective communication, information literacy, and interpersonal skills; students must study the world in various contexts and perspectives; and students should also understand the connections in the world, such as the connections between the theoretical and the applied, or between the individual and society. The goals were designed for all students whether in liberal arts, professional, or pre-professional programs. The Academic Common Experience did not advocate for any core courses, but advocated that each department incorporate the goals into its existing curriculum. The implementation of these goals required a great deal of faculty development and course modification. In 1993 the College of Business Administration and the Bouvé College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences were the first units to implement the new philosophy, followed by the College of Nursing in 1994 and the College of Computer Science in early 1995. By 1997, all the colleges had implemented the Committee's goals.


  • Creation: 1993-1997


Language of Materials

Materials are entirely in English.

Conditions Governing Access:

Records are closed for 25 years from their date of creation, unless researchers have written permission from the creating office.


0.15 cubic feet (1 container)

System of Arrangement:

Arranged in one alphabetical sequence by subject.

Physical Location


Finding aid for the Advocates for a Common Experience Committee Records
Finding aid prepared by Eliana Wachs Cashman
February 2008
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Northeastern University Archives and Special Collections Repository

Snell Library
360 Huntington Avenue
Boston MA 02115 US