The University of Kentucky is growing in ways today unlike ever before, and its Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) is a true testament to that progress. The QEP, titled "Presentation U," is a campus-wide initiative to enhance student learning across all majors by improving their communication and presentation skills.
With a focus on developing integrated oral, written, visual and multimedia communication skills, students are gaining valuable knowledge that is highly regarded by potential employers.
"There is an ongoing recognition that students need to communicate better," says Amy Gaffney, a UK professor of communication who helped determine the original concept of the QEP. "Employers have come back to university officials saying that they wish their students could do this, and UK needed to answer the call. Communication skills are so embedded in what professors do that sometimes they have a hard time teaching those types skills to students."
Many students already utilize these types of services at UK, such as the Writing Center, the Study, the MC3 Lab, eStudio, Media Depot and the Hub. Presentation U aims to unite these programs, while also offering a unique service to faculty in developing opportunities in their courses for students to learn these skills.
The QEP is also one of 12 core requirements the university is taking on to reaffirm its accreditation through the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). SACS reaffirmation of accreditation is mandatory for the university. SACS will evaluate the university during spring 2013.
Additionally, Presentation U continues the commitment of UK Core's Composition and Communication learning outcomes beyond the freshman or sophomore year, working with faculty and staff who choose to institute new communication-based curricula or to formalize programs already in place.