National Survey of Student Engagement - This piece from twelve years ago was quite influential in defining "the problem" for much of undergraduate education in the U.S. Note that this is not specific to the U of I.
Note that the U of I participated in the NSSE and some reforms on campus, particularly a push in undergraduate research, were a consequence of that participation. But we never shared the results of the surveys done on campus in a public venue. I saw some of the early results (from about 10 years ago). They showed the campus ranked pretty high on rigor and having a demanding curriculum. (Though I wonder if Engineering students were over surveyed in that.) But we ranked pretty low in student-instructor interaction. I'm afraid that one reason the results were not made public is that they weren't "brag points" across the board. We had some strengths but we also had some deficiencies. I believe it is quite difficult on campus to discuss the deficiencies.
NSSE and the Disengagement Compact
From Today's Chronicle of Higher Education
Here the argument isn't so much about the intensity of the teaching and learning but rather about the move away from traditional approaches which produce critical thinking, toward vocational approaches that produce narrow competence only.
The Gutting of Gen Ed
Strategic Plan - Goals
Current Initiatives - Campus Conversation
What is your nature?
Two Views about How Engagement Might Be Generated (from Psychology)
Learning is hard work - Carol Dweck Mindset
Learning comes from self-actualization (Maslow) or from finding flow (Csikszentmihalyi)