Step-by-Step Guide

This page provides a brief overview of the process that the College will follow to develop the learning outcomes and the assessment of those outcomes.  Many of these items are already done by our departments and programs. This process will serve to document some of what we already do and use it to effectively improve our educational programs.

  1. Develop Student Learning Goals – Establish learning outcomes for the College’s majors, minors, and divisional requirements.  Express learning outcomes in behavioral terms.  Outcomes should be specific and measurable.  Examples would include demonstrated proficiencies in a specific subject area as expected or standard.
  2. Assess Achievement of Learning Outcomes– Establish a combination of both direct and indirect methods of assessing the success of stated learning outcomes achieved by students.

    Examples of direct methods can include the following:

    1. Scores on “field tests” as compared to national norms, e.g. GRE Subject Tests
    2. Achievement in capstone courses “graded” by outside faculty
    3. Presentations at professional conferences evaluated by peer professionals
    4. Success after graduation, e.g. “placement” into graduate/professional schools and jobs related to major/minor

    Examples of indirect methods of assessment can include the following:

    1. Surveys of graduating seniors and alumni in the major/minor
    2. Focus groups with students
    3. Exit interviews
    4. Evaluations by External Reviewers for departmental Program Reviews
  3. Evaluate Assessment Results – Determine achievement of actual learning outcomes and compare to the goals. Use a combination of direct and indirect assessment methods.
  4. Make changes in practices for achieving learning outcome goals as appropriate – Demonstrate improvement made in reaching goals based on assessment results.