Gosh. Mei's comment raised my eyebrows a bit. If after spending 2 years on GP and not knowing what its purpose is, then that really is my fault for not making it clear. I'm not making that mistake again with my sole GP tutorial this year. For the record, the purpose of GP (as I define it) is as follows:
The GP student should learn to...
1. Observe things that are not right in society/the world.
2. Empathize with the situation.
3. Seek to understand what’s going on (from different points of view).
4. Evaluate the situation from a socially responsible, moral/ethical basis.
5. Make decisions to initiate/facilitate change for the better...
6. in a respectful, yet authoritative manner.
I think most of the problem is that I/we tend to focus almost exclusively on step 6 -- which is where the essay and the comprehension exercises actually fit in -- while conveniently forgetting to train students in the previous 5 steps beforehand, where the meat and potatoes of GP actually are. See what happens when we all focus on working for grades instead of working to develop the self as a person first?
Sorry, guys! Thank God you all passed anyway, despite the oversight, eh?