Re-Thinking CAS

September 25, 2011

A new truth is needed

Asking the right question

US$2.7 trillion of aid over 50 years to developing countries has not provided a sustainable solution for poverty. In 2010, 2.6 billion people, or 38% of the world, still live on less than US$2 a day. While aid alleviates the symptoms of poverty, it does not address the root causes or bring about inclusive prosperity.

Instead of asking ‘How do we address poverty?’ we ask a new question – ‘how do we create prosperity for everyone?’ History shows that a creative society is a prosperous society. Creativity is the source that unlocks unlimited possibilities. In a world of creativity, prosperity has no limits. This is our unique understanding.

Prosperity is the answer to poverty

-Richard Chandler

We feel it is now time to re-think CAS, and we are curious to hear your thoughts as students and coordinators.

Please note any changes we make will be opt-in, you will be able to decide whether you want to take part in CAS+ or whether you prefer to keep things as-is. We will not impose any changes.

These are the areas we aim to resolve through CAS+ on ManageBac:

  • CAS should be more fun and competitive – more like a game. The perception of CAS as a ‘chore’ requirement is an outcome of this design problem. Solving paperwork was domino one, solving this is domino two, and we will see where it leads.
  • We would like to create 40 sustainable activities & projects – 5 focusing on each learning outcome. The activities will be global, practical and actionable (i.e. not involving taking expensive trips). If you have ideas, please e-mail us at ideas@managebac.com. We will be setting up a voting system shortly.
  • Metrics: Hours or learning outcomes? We need a better way to measure significance of an activity and whether there is sustainable impact. Impact like Karma cannot be quantified, but sustainability can – by asking basic questions ‘did this activity address any underlying problem or make tangible progress?’ or ‘was it simply applying a bandage and leaving the underlying wound unhealed?’
  • Inspiration: CAS in its simplest form is pursuing excellence in a non-academic endeavor. The current learning outcomes capture this, but in an abstract way. What is lacking is fungible inspiration. People, who achieved great success, whether they are living today or part of the ‘eminent dead’ deserve to be studied and CAS provides an opportunity to learn from and emulate their greatness in creativity, action and service.

Here at ManageBac, we are inspired by Richard Chandler and his work Greatness that Matters and Bringing the Light. Chandler more than anyone we know embodies the learner profile in risk-taking, principled action, and reflective inquiry in pursuit of truth.



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