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Learning Model

Integrated Clusters

Today’s digital, interconnected age has disrupted traditional industries, and you want more than a just traditional college degree for career success. A Plymouth State education will give you the vital critical thinking and collaboration skills prized by employers.

You’ll work with students from other majors, and with faculty, regional partners, businesses, and nonprofit organizations. You’ll gain real-world, résumé-boosting experience beginning in your very first semester, tackling “Wicked Problems” of your choice (from sustainability to social justice, and education to artificial intelligence—to name just a few).

Make a difference in your education, career prospects, and the world!

Integrated Cluster Coverage

2017

Many Colleges Fail in Teaching How to Think, The Wall Street Journal

2018

Want to Revamp Your Curriculum? Here’s How to Avoid a Quagmire. The Chronicle of Higher Education

2019

Thriving in a Changing Academic Landscape, Plymouth Magazine

Cluster Pedagogy: The Next Step in PSU’s Journey of Academic Innovation, Plymouth Magazine

Reinventing the Curriculum to Provide Students with a Meaningful Education, Chronicle of Higher Education (sponsored)

The Clusters

How it Works

Today’s students need flexible educations to prepare for a fast-changing world. At Plymouth State, we emphasize communications and problem-solving skills, integrating a range of perspectives, and inspiring students to take control of what and how they learn. You can make an impact and graduate with an education as personal as your signature.

The Four Tools of Clusters

Your problem-solving skills develop in your very first semester through interdisciplinary teams, which propose solutions to difficult societal challenges that you choose to work on. Topics have included gender equity, fake news, immigration, ocean plastic, and social entrepreneurship.
PSU’s General Education courses revolve around meaningful issues. For example, the first-year Composition course, which improves your writing and fact-acquisition skills, may focus on theatre, curiosity, psychology, or social change.
“Open Labs,” including PSU’s brand new, state-of-the-industry Robotics Makerspace, are more flexible and functional than traditional classrooms. Local businesses, organizations, and alumni will join you in working on projects with a purpose.
Your own “signature work” will relate to an issue important both to you and to society. This personal achievement will propel you into the working world with confidence.

Real-World Projects

Professor Abby Goode

American Food Issues: From Fast Food Nation to Farm Stands

“One of the things that’s important in this approach is that students receive encouragement that builds confidence in themselves, their ideas, and what they want to do. As they run into challenges they receive challenging feedback and we teach them how to respond to it, which is something that I didn’t understand until graduate school. The landscape of higher education is moving in this direction and students are acquiring these skills at Plymouth State.”

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