The United Board is committed to education that develops the whole person – intellectually, spiritually, and ethically. Through our programs, we promote a framework that grounds teaching and learning in academic rigor, social concerns, and moral inquiry.
In the classroom, whole person education fosters critical thinking and challenges students to draw their own conclusions. It guides curricula toward exploration of ethics and service as well as knowledge. It replaces an institution’s blind pursuit of prestige and rankings with a commitment to developing sound citizens. It directs students’ attention beyond the classroom to the needs of the surrounding community.
Whole person education also embraces the intellectual breadth and values of liberal arts education, while accommodating challenges, opportunities, and traditions distinctive to the cultures, societies, and institutions where it takes root. Different colleges and universities may place varying degrees of emphasis on aspects of student development, but all acknowledge their responsibility to support their students as multi-faceted, multi-dimensional beings, not just future members of the workforce.
“Whole person education enables the United Board and the colleges and universities in its network to infuse academic life with new purpose.”Nancy Chapman, United Board President
Many of the colleges and universities in our network are translating these goals into practice. For example, Hong Kong Baptist University promotes education that fosters citizenship, knowledge, learning, skills, creativity, communication, and teamwork. Silliman University in the Philippines prepares students for well-rounded lives through the 5 C’s: rich experiences in the classroom, church, (athletic) court, cultural center, and community. At Seoul Women’s University, Bahrom Character Education trains well-rounded leaders who are willing to lead by example, cooperate rather than compete, and put the community before their own self-interest. Lady Doak College in India has introduced Life Frontier Engagement, a combination of community-based action research and experiential learning, into the curriculum for all third-year students.
Whole person education may lack the clear boundaries of a defined academic discipline. But by touching each point of a trinity – intellectual, social, and moral – it enables the United Board and the colleges and universities in its network to infuse academic life with new purpose.
Follow the links below to learn more about the importance of whole person education and the ways in which Asian colleges and universities are embracing it.