Student Learning Outcomes

We embrace a common set of student learning outcomes and we are accountable for sustained measurement of these outcomes

Texas A&M University-San Antonio: Discipline Specific

TAMU System Student Learning Outcome–Discipline Specific Knowledge

Bold statement:

The Texas A&M University System delivers a common set/embraces a common view of important outcomes and is accountable for sustained measurement.

Institutional Effectiveness:

For all TAMU System universities, the rationale for assessing student learning outcomes (SLOs) originates primarily from efforts to maintain institutional effectiveness, which is defined as a process of identifying outcomes, assessing the extent to which they are achieved, and providing evidence of improvement based on their analysis.

Discipline Specific Knowledge Outcome:

Upon graduation, students will demonstrate mastery of the depth of knowledge required for their respective degrees.

Generic Descriptions of Campus Assessment Results:

EXEMPLARY
All criteria met and results exceed expectations with little room for improvement.

PROFICIENT
Most criteria met and results indicate mastery of objective with some room for improvement.

SUFFICIENT
Acceptable number of criteria met and results meet expectations with room for improvement.

EMERGING
Some criteria met and results indicate need for improvement.

INSUFFICIENT
Few criteria met; results indicate need for significant improvement or no/insufficient results reported to measure performance of objective.

UNIVERSITY

TAMUSA

ASSESSMENT METHOD

All academic programs at A&M-SA participate in annual cycle of program assessment. Academic programs identify 3-5 student learning outcomes, set benchmarks, collect and analyze data, and use the results for program improvement. Assessment requires the collection of student artifacts, including papers, exams, projects, portfolios, and standardized test scores.

RESULTS: 2014

Emerging. Results from each program’s assessment of student learning outcomes are reported in the program’s Institutional Effectiveness Report or IER. The IERs are collected in the Office of the Provost.

Two examples from each College are provided.

ANALYSIS

Program: BA in English
Outcome: Have a demonstrated knowledge of British and American literature, both canonical and non-canonical, from the Early Modern period to the present in all genres.
Results: Student work was evaluated using a rubric to determine historical and literary knowledge. 40% of students exceeded benchmarks for both. 80% of students exceeded benchmark for at least one category.
Analysis: Achievement was improved from previous cycle, probably due to the fact that the adjunct teaching the course was a specialist in early American literature.

Program: BS/BA in Mathematics
Outcome: Will be able to demonstrate mathematical reasoning in clear, well-organized written form using higher-level math content.
Results: Data were collected from the final exam in MATH 4340 and evaluated using rubric. 55.6% of students demonstrated achievement of this outcome, which is below the benchmark of 70%.
Analysis: Although achievement has improved since Cycle 5 (2012), it is still below expectations for this outcome.

Program: Masters of Professional Accountancy
Outcome: Graduates of the MPA program will be able to recognize and respond appropriately to situations that present ethical dilemmas for the practice of accounting.
Results: Student work was evaluated using a rubric to determine how well the student recognizes and describes the ethical quandary, alternative courses of action, and the best resolution. 76.7% of students met expectations for this assignment
Analysis: Student achievement was just below the benchmark of 80% of students meet expectations.

Program: BS in Computer Science
Outcome: Graduates should have the ability to make effective presentations to a range of audiences about technical problems and their solutions, involving face-to-face, written, or electronic communication.
Results: The average score for students’ written work was a 77.4% (n= 7), and for oral presentations was a 90.0% (n=6).
Analysis: Since student performance met the benchmark for this outcome, no corrective action was needed at this time.

Program: M.Ed. in Early Childhood
Outcome: Students in this program will successfully demonstrate knowledge of the theoretical foundations of early childhood education.
Results: Student work was evaluated by two early childhood faculty members using a rubric. 100% of students met the benchmark.
Analysis: Since student performance met the benchmark for this outcome, no corrective action was needed at this time.

Program: BS in Kinesiology-Exercise Science
Outcome: Demonstrate an understanding of the physiological responses associated with physical activity.
Results: Students’ achievement of this outcome was assessment using an objectively scored classroom test. Only 50% of students met the benchmark for success.
Analysis: This learning outcome was not met.

ACTION

Program: BA in English
Action: Given that there have been several cycles of low performance with respect to this outcome, the department has requested funding to hire an additional tenure-track faculty position with a specialization in early American literature.

Program: BS/BA in Mathematics
Action: The Math program is examining multiple ways of improving student achievement of this learning outcome, including: additional faculty support, expanded tutoring capacity, improved teaching practices, and other support mechanisms.

Program: Masters of Professional Accountancy
Action: An effort is being made to identify individual courses that contain ethical dimensions and to map that content to this SLO in the hope that a more “holistic” approach will improve student achievement of this outcome.

Program: BS in Computer Science
Action: This was the first assessment of this outcome, and it involved a small sample size. However, since students’ performance was lower on the written portion of the assignment, students will be required to submit written work for comment while still in the draft form to allow for early identification of potential problems. This will also force students to work on the paper earlier in the semester.

Program: M.Ed. in Early Childhood
Action: Early Childhood faculty will continue to monitor students’ progress early in the program to assess and provide remediation, if needed, well in advance of comprehensive exams.

Program: BS in Kinesiology-Exercise Science
Action: Since only half of the students met this outcome, the Kinesiology program plans to provide additional practical, real-world examples of material, and to make lecture materials available online for review. In addition, kinesiology tutoring services will be available beginning in Fall 2014.

COMMENTS

The examples provided were selected from the most recent cycle of academic program IERs, and demonstrate multiple measures of assessment. They also demonstrate variation in both attainment of benchmarks set for student learning outcomes, and in the actions taken in response to results. Lastly, these examples show that programs continue to refine their assessment methods.

Information by System Members
Texas A&M University
Prairie View A&M University
Tarleton State University
Texas A&M International University
Texas A&M University Corpus Christi
Texas A&M University Kingsville
West Texas A&M University
Texas A&M University Commerce
Texas A&M University Texarkana
Texas A&M University Central Texas
Texas A&M University San Antonio
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