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Seneca's Core Literacies | The Teaching & Learning Centre | Seneca Polytechnic

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Seneca's Core Literacies

Seneca's Core Literacies

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Seneca’s Strategic Plan 2017–2022 commits that the Core Literacies are taught, practised, and assessed in our programs. These literacy areas build on and relate to the Essential Employability Skills identified by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD), and reflect some of the work undertaken by the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AACU). Opportunities for teaching, practicing and assessing these literacies are embedded into the curriculum in every program.

While there will be numerous discrete learning experiences that focus on the various aspects required to achieve literacy in each area, it is the cumulative experiences a graduate gains across the program that will ensure achievement of each of the literacies. It is expected that areas of overlap between and among the literacies will exist.

The Core Literacies, from Seneca's Strategic Plan 2017–2022, include

Written Communication icon
Written Communication
Oral Communication icon
Oral Communication
Quantitative Literacy icon
Quantitative Literacy


Information Literacy icon
Information Literacy
Creative Thinking icon
Creative Thinking
Ethical Reasoning, Personal and Social Responsibility icon
Ethical Reasoning, Personal and Social Responsibility


Inquiry and Analysis icon
Inquiry and Analysis
Critical Thinking and Problem Solving icon
Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
Digital Literacy icon
Digital Literacy


Intercultural Knowledge and Global Perspective icon
Intercultural Knowledge and Global Perspective

Benchmark for Achievement
Aware that expectations of performance and achievement will vary across specific program and discipline areas, and will be affected by the level of credential awarded, this document identifies the benchmark or essential level of achievement that can be anticipated of our graduates irrespective of the program, discipline or credential. As such, the articulation of these benchmarks for achievement is intentionally generic.

Checklists are being developed which will assist programs with the task of assessing Core Literacy achievement as applied to specific program areas. The intent of this document is to clearly articulate the essential level of achievement for every graduate of every program at Seneca.

Mapping the Core Literacies
A mapping framework determines if, and where, the required knowledge, skills and/or attitudes are taught by faculty through the presentation of materials and experiences, practiced by students as part of the learning activities of the course, or assessed by faculty so there is a measure to ensure that the benchmark has been met. Not every course in every program will address all of the core literacies in the three components. What is important, is to map, with examples, the courses where each of the literacies is taught, practiced and/or assessed with the goal of illustrating throughout and across every program that:

  • All students have multiple opportunities to achieve the benchmarks
  • Assessments exist to evaluate achievement of the benchmarks
  • Evidence of graduate achievement of the benchmarks at the required level of performance is provided

The Core Literacies are

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