UC Davis Global Learning Outcomes Working Framework

UC Davis is working towards an ambitious goal of Global Education for All, aiming to provide 100% of students—undergraduate, graduate and professional—with global learning experiences before graduation, preparing them to succeed in this global job market and interconnected world.

The following working framework (as of June 2019) of UC Davis Global Learning Outcomes, developed by the Global Education for All Steering Committee, describes the broad vision and learning objectives of Global Education for All.

Why is Global Learning Important?

Global happenings profoundly shape our lives, including in the following ways.

  • Vital resources such as water, medicine, and food flow across boundaries.
  • Humanity's most urgent challenges transcend borders. For example, managing public health epidemics, addressing economic inequality, engaging with transnational migration, fostering safety and security, and developing sustainable solutions for the planet’s future.
  • Global networks provide our information and services. Worldwide collaborations produce scientific discoveries and social awareness: ideas and cultural practices can travel around the planet in a matter of seconds.
  • Global events influence our economies and policies at a national, state, and local level, and international demand propels industry practices.
  • Global dynamics (e.g., climate change or violence that drives migration, employment or educational opportunities that require mobility) shape who we meet in our communities as our neighbors, co-workers, and friends.

We need scholars, entrepreneurs, educators, artists, and employees who are ready to navigate across different cultural, political and regulatory environments. And we need empathetic, curious leaders, caregivers, and community members who understand issues in cross-cultural contexts and collaborate to resolve them equitably.

Global learning prepares UC Davis students to develop skills, knowledge, networks, and attitudes that will help them thrive in these roles.

What Does Global Learning Mean?

Global learning helps students develop their capacity to be informed, open-minded, responsible people who are responsive to diverse perspectives and able to address the world’s most pressing issues collaboratively, equitably and sustainably.

It entails analysis of and engagement with complex, interdependent global systems and legacies (natural, physical, social, cultural, economic, and political) and their implications for people’s lives and planetary sustainability.

Global learning should enhance students’ sense of identity, community, ethics, and perspective-taking, and foster the ability to define and advance equity and justice with respect to human and natural systems.

How Does Global Learning Take Place?

We recognize that students come to UC Davis with varied—and sometimes extensive—global experiences, and our goal is to help each take next steps.

Global learning cannot be achieved in a single course or a single experience but is acquired throughout students’ time at UC Davis through multiple global learning opportunities.

Global learning may take place through:

  • coursework at and away from UC Davis;
  • domestic and international experiential learning (e.g. research, community-engaged service-learning, internships, externships); and
  • local co- and extra-curricular activities (including those that are student and/or community-led) that relate to global issues, systems or perspectives.

What are Global Learning Outcomes?

Global learning opportunities at UC Davis focus on cultivating skills, knowledge, networks and attitudes tied to building global awareness, embracing linguistic and cultural diversity, and extending global engagement. A specific global learning opportunity may emphasize one or more outcomes.

Key elements of these three outcomes*

  1. Building Global Self- and Systems-Awareness

    • Develop global self-awareness by learning about interrelationships between our own experiences and global dynamics.

    • Increase awareness of complex and overlapping global systems, including natural systems (e.g. biological, chemical, physical) and humansystems (e.g. cultural, economic, political, and built) in order to understand how they are constructed, affect us, operate with differentialand often inequitable consequences, can be influenced and altered, and shape fields of study and work.

  2. Embracing Linguistic and Cultural Diversity

    • Build skills to engage with and learn from differing perspectives and experiences while maintaining a sense of cultural humility—an understanding that our backgrounds and how we are situated in the world and societies both inform and limit our knowledge.

    • Explore multiple and intersecting dimensions of cultural diversity (including, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender, nationality, religion, language, and class).

    • Increase understanding of our own and others’ cultures and histories, including experiences of privilege and oppression, and expand our ability to cross boundaries associated with language, culture, histories and status in order to bridge differences, recognize similarities and collaboratively reach common goals.

  3. Acting Globally

    • Learn about ways to contribute to society at multiple levels-- locally, nationally, and globally—and build the ethical and moral reasoning skills needed to navigate power relations and biases and have positive impacts.

    • Practice applying knowledge and skills gained at UC Davis to address real-life problems through collaboration across intercultural contexts in ways that account for cultural diversity, global systems, social justice and planetary sustainability.

*Adapted from the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) Global Learning VALUE Rubric (2014).

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