Baccalaureate Learning Outcomes

The conferring of the bachelor's degree at Tennessee State University recognizes a graduate's achievement of a set of connected learning goals. These five baccalaureate learning outcomes, common to all bachelor's degree programs at the University, are introduced in a student's first year and developed at progressively advanced levels through the senior year. 


Recipients of the bachelor's degree should be able to construct and communicate original knowledge effectively in writing, in oral presentations, and through the use of other media where appropriate. This learning outcome includes the ability to formulate a clear and compelling statement of purpose, to order supporting information logically, to manage and integrate multiple sources of information, and to use Standard English proficiently. Students should exhibit these competencies throughout their course of study with reference to both general and specialized audiences.

Inquiry and Reasoning

Recipients of the bachelor's degree should demonstrate the ability to define problems, discover relevant information, assess the validity of evidence, analyze complex arguments, consider alternative perspectives, and reach reasoned judgments and conclusions. This learning outcome includes verbal and quantitative literacy, the mastery of research methods, and the competent use of relevant technology. Students should consistently exhibit these competencies both generally and at an advanced level within their academic major.

Broad Knowledge of the Human and Natural World

Recipients of the bachelor's degree should possess a broad, active, and growing knowledge – informed by literacy in the arts and humanities, history, social sciences, and natural sciences – of the human world, the natural world, and their interrelationship. The University's other learning outcomes, including the competencies of the academic major, should be demonstrated in the context of an ethically informed awareness of the fragility, complexity, and diversity of the human and natural environment.

Specialized Knowledge and Skills

All bachelor's degrees awarded by the University recognize the attainment of knowledge and skills particular to a major. These include recognition of the distinctive features of the major discipline (or disciplines) in relationship to other fields, the mastery of specialized vocabulary, an understanding of theory, and proficiency in practice. These specialized competencies complement and focus the University's other learning outcomes with reference to a student's specific academic and professional goals.

Applied Knowledge and Skills

All bachelor's degree programs at the University are designed to equip students to apply their learning to real opportunities, challenges, and needs. Recipients of the bachelor's degree should have developed this ability throughout their course of study in service learning, internships, and other experiences of pre-professional and civic engagement. Both the design of these experiences and the work of the student should effectively demonstrate the application of the University's other four baccalaureate outcomes in authentic and meaningful contexts beyond the classroom.