Faculty-led Inquiry into Reflective and Scholarly Teaching (FIRST)


Date of this Version

Spring 2022

Document Type



This portfolio reviews ALEC 480, the undergraduate senior capstone course for Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Communication (AESC) majors in the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communication (ALEC). The goal of ALEC 480 is to provide a culminating experience for AESC majors that incorporates all learning outcomes for the AESC program. During this course, students investigate topics identified by the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources (IANR) as critical to the state of Nebraska. Once identified, students then conduct interviews with researchers and Nebraska Extension educators and write, edit, design, and assist in the production of print and multimedia versions of the Strategic Discussions for Nebraska (SDN) student publication. This portfolio reviews the student learning objectives for the course and gauges the student experience to ensure students are prepared for the work industry. Findings indicated that students feel competent in all skills outlined in the student learning objectives for ALEC 480, and by the end of the semester, appreciate the course and workload, along with the real-world experience gained throughout the course. However, students also reported being overwhelmed during the semester, due to the external nature of their senior capstone project and requested a revamp of deadlines and course design.