COLLABORATIVE QUEST (CQ)

The Collaborative Quest (CQ) requirement is special to the Guilford College Curriculum. The backdrop to this set of courses is Guilford’s history itself, which is deeply rooted in practices of reflection on one’s values and actions–one’s sense of who they are (their understanding of “self ”); integrity; a commitment to justice; and peaceful problem solving. Those practices challenge and inspire our community and, at their best, help produce ethical leaders who make valuable and relevant contributions to our world.

This inquiry is based on our own individual curiosities, but remains true to Guilford in being explored and integrated through a collaborative and interdisciplinary process. The Collaborative Quest (CQ) encourages students to value a range of voices, to explore multiple disciplines and interdisciplinary methods, and to learn collaboratively, while also finding, valuing and trusting their own identity. To that end, CQ focuses on two elements: curiosity and reflection, but incorporates these historical practices to which our contemporary Guilford College community aspires. Collaborative Quest consists of the following components.

MYCQ 100 Initiate: You Are Here An introduction to Guilford College and the liberal arts. Taken during a student's first three-week session at Guilford College.
Reflective Seminars
Taken during twelve- week sessions at Guilford College.
MYCQ 101: Reflection Seminar I
MYCQ 201: Reflection Seminar II
MYCQ 301: Reflection Seminar III
Three reflective seminars designed to support students in developing and completing their Collaborative Quest.
Explore Courses
Students will work with their advising teams to identify relevant courses (totaling at least eight credits) to support their goals for their Collaborative Quest. These courses are typically identified during the MYCQ 201 and completed after that course.
These courses may double-count with general education requirements, major requirements, minor requirements, or course requirements of other programs.

Apply & Contribution

One course taken when the student has senior standing in conjunction with the development of their Contribution.


The Collaborative Quest (CQ) requirement at Guilford is also available and expected not only of traditional first-time students to the college, but also of transfer students joining Guilford after completing college credits at another institution. The modified CQ requirements for transfer students are summarized below.


All students completing a high school degree just prior to attending Guilford 

 

First-time, first year and transfer students (<24 credits)

 

All requirements listed above


Transfer students

(>24 credits but without an Associate’s Degree)


  1. Initiate recommended

  2. Required number of Reflection Seminars to be approved by Advising Team

  3. Apply and Contribution requirement as above


Transfer students 

with an Associate’s Degree


  1. Initiate optional

  2. Required number of Reflection Seminars to be approved by Advising Team

  3. Apply and Contribution requirement as above



MYCQ 100. Initiate

The Initiate course is the initial academic experience for every undergraduate degree-seeking Guilford College student. This course, team-taught by an instructor cluster of transdisciplinary faculty, provides an immersive introduction to who we are at Guilford and the learning experiences that lie ahead. Students taking this team-taught course will be supported by Guilford Guides, staff, and students. Initiate is built around two fundamental questions: “Who are we?” and “What does it mean to be curious?” Students take the first steps toward identifying an emerging curiosity that will launch their path through this experience and their entire education. Course assignments, activities, learning, and multidisciplinary content will model and anticipate the team-based, hands-on projects that students will use to address real-world problems.

Directly after Initiate, students take the follow up course, Reflection Seminar I (MYCQ 101), during the next available session. Transfer students and those who have completed an Associate’s degree will develop a Collaborative Quest (with Reflection Seminars appropriate to their number of semesters at Guilford) to complete their degree. Regular completion of Reflection Seminars is necessary for a successful Collaborative Quest.

The outcomes of the Initiate course provide a foundation for the Explore, Integrate, Apply program and for a student’s entire Guilford education. Each specific Initiate class will have academic content outcomes spanning the interests and experience, disciplinary and interdisciplinary, of the class’s instructor cluster.

Students will identify Academic and co-curricular resources at Guilford;

Who we are -- Guilford College and its range of communities;

The communities that they and their peers are connected to;

Values that they aspire to have in class, in their communities, and at Guilford;

Challenges involved with aspiring to and maintaining those values.

Students will gain insight and skills related to:

Identifying their personal needs for intentional self and group care;

Listening and communicating in small teams and with larger audiences;

Models of reflection and initial practice with academic reflection;

Models of collaboration and initial practice with academic collaboration;

The benefits of using reflective practices in academic and individual growth.

 

Reflection Seminars

MYCQ 101. Reflection Seminar I

Reflective Seminar I continues the transition to Guilford’s community and academic program and builds student experience further with each student engaging in continual reflection on their education and experience. As a continuation of the Initiate course, this course shares the same general outcomes of that course.

Students will identify:

Academic and co-curricular resources at Guilford;

Who we are -- Guilford College and its range of communities;

The communities that they and their peers are connected to;

Values that they aspire to have in class, in their communities, and at Guilford;

Challenges involved with aspiring to and maintaining those values.

Potential topics that are of interest to them (i.e., expand on their curiosity) that can be explored well in a multidisciplinary approach.

Resources and classes on campus that can help them explore those topics.

Students will gain insight and skills related to:

Identifying their personal needs for intentional self and group care;

Listening and communicating in small teams and with larger audiences;

Models of reflection and initial practice with academic reflection;

Models of collaboration and initial practice with academic collaboration;

The benefits of using reflective practices in academic and individual growth.

 

MYCQ 201. Reflection Seminar II

This course introduces students to the view that they are, indeed, academics and are capable of building upon their own academic curiosities. Students focus on their own strengths and next steps as learners and supports them in their understanding of collaboration. Each student should begin the discussion and construction of their path toward their Contribution. Instructors may include other course content as appropriate, especially when the student population is from a specific cohort, for example, Bonner Scholars or students in the Honors Program.

Students in Reflection Seminar II will:

Identify a topic that is of interest to them (i.e., expand on their curiosity) that can be explored well in a multidisciplinary approach.

  ∙Identify resources and classes on campus that can help them explore this curiosity.

Reflect on their strengths and next steps as a learner/academic and how these impact in developing one’s curiosity (and, eventually, their Contribution in the Apply component).

Build a plan, consulting with the RS 2 instructor(s) and their advising team, for the remainder of the Explore, Reflect/ Integrate, Apply experience that will provide guidance for the Integrate and Apply components, general education courses, major coursework, and other curricular and co-curricular experiences that comprise the student’s Guilford education.

Through this work and other course content, students will gain insight and skills related to:

  ∙Who they are -- personal strengths and areas for growth;

  ∙Themselves as part of the Guilford community(ies);

   ∙Areas where their major and curiosity intersect with personal and civic responsibility, and address problems;

The ways that their general education, major, Integrate courses and other coursework and co-curricular activities are meaningful to their development;

Their initial development as an academic collaborator and potential models for collaboration that support their goals at Guilford College.

 

MYCQ 301. Reflection Seminar III

Reflection Seminar 3 is a course that each student takes when they have junior standing. Students continue the process of reflection and curiosity development from the first and second courses with a focus on developing a proposal for their Contribution. Through the proposal development process, students continue refining their curiosity, making changes as appropriate. Instructors may include other course content as appropriate, especially when the student population is from a specific cohort, for example, Bonner Scholars or students in the Honors Program. At the end of this course, students will be ready for the Apply course.

Students in Reflection Seminar III will:

Develop a rich and reflective proposal for the Contribution that includes an initial articulation of the first four required elements for the project;

  ∙Begin identifying strengths and next steps for post-Guilford paths. Through this work and other course content, students will identify:

  • Their desired and needed next steps and ways to address those next steps;

  • How their connections at Guilford can help them work on next steps;

  • Areas where their major and curiosity intersect with personal and civic responsibility, and address problems.

 

MYCQ 401. Apply

The Apply course and the Contribution require students nearing the end of their degree program to participate in a project addressing a problem that applies what they’ve learned and reflected on through their entire educational experience. Students will typically take the Apply course in the fall or spring twelve-week session of their senior year. The typical expectation is for each student to complete Contribution before the spring three-session of their senior year.

Students in the Apply course will:

  ∙Identify strengths and next steps for post-Guilford paths;

  ∙Develop specific skills relevant to their curiosity;

Produce a collaborative, cooperative, or individual project (the Contribution) by bringing their insights, values, questions, collective skills and collaborative models, and personality to the work;

Provide a demonstration of interdisciplinary writing for a general audience through the project or another approved class, as part of the portfolio,

  ∙Present the project in an appropriate public forum;

Develop an inward and outward reflection on their culminating project that addresses their project’s application, connectedness to a larger community, and their next steps.

 

Contribution

The Contribution is the culminating learning experience of a Guilford College education. It represents each student’s individual expression of not just the Collaborative Quest, but also reflects additional experiences in a major, minor or other co- curricular activities.

The Contribution can be a research paper, a performance, a portfolio of “signature work,” an exhibition of artwork, significant community service, their participation in the planning, organization and administration of a significant group project or program, or a project of similar scope. A student’s Contribution builds specifically on their Reflection Seminars and Explore courses. Students do not develop their Contribution in a silo, but with groundwork that is firmly rooted in the exchanges that occurred in a collaborative community of common curiosity among fellow Guilford students, faculty and staff, and members of broader local or global communities, as appropriate. Due to the inherently individual nature of the projects, Contributions will vary widely based on student curiosities and collaborative methods within which students accomplish the goals of the projects.

All projects must include (written, oral, or otherwise) the following:

An artifact, such as a thesis, artist’s statement, research paper, reflection, or other physical or digital item, that is representative of the student’s Contribution and can be deposited in the Guilford College archives;

  ∙Clear rationale for the work and why it is important to them (and the community, as applicable)

  ∙Summary of work

Reflection on the student’s journey through the experience and their college career, identifying specific skills (individual and collective) developed, insights, values, questions, and application connections for themselves and the larger community

The models of collaboration that the student has identified as useful and important to their development as an academic learner at Guilford College.

   ∙Future directions for their curiosity, both individually and globally, based on this experience.

   ∙Sharing of the Contribution in some form (presentation, performance, etc...) with peers, including providing an opportunity for discussion and feedback.

All students, including transfer students, must complete an Apply and Contribution experience as a student at Guilford College. Students work with their advising team over the course of several semesters to develop an approved Apply and Contribution experience that will represent a capstone for their individualized Collaborative Quest.