The Texas A&M University System delivers a common set/embraces a common view of important outcomes and is accountable for sustained measurement.
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.
Upon completion of their degree program, students will be able to synthesize knowledge from general and specialized studies.
All criteria met and results exceed expectations with little room for improvement.
Most criteria met and results indicate mastery of objective with some room for improvement.
Acceptable number of criteria met and results meet expectations with room for improvement.
Some criteria met and results indicate need for improvement.
Few criteria met; results indicate need for significant improvement or no/insufficient results reported to measure performance of objective.
Career Services: Post Internship Essay
90% of respondents were able to articulate in an essay how they integrated broad knowledge in their professional careers. Responses were graded on articulation of point of view or conclusion, influence or context and assumptions, and conclusion and related outcomes (implications and consequences) (n= 105).
Work with students to teach them to better connect experiences and marketable skills.
University Counseling Center: Annual Client Survey of students participating in Counseling Services. Students listed two ways they integrated what they learned in counseling to their daily lives.
Sufficient to Proficient
Student who (at minimum) satisfactorily describe two ways of integrating what they have learned in counseling into their daily lives = 90%. Students who proficiently described two ways of integrating what they have learned in counseling into their daily lives = 48% (n=60)
University Center: Operations Crew Training Matrix
University Center Operations staff were tested on the ability to set-up for a reservation. Average scores for each area were: AV Equipment = 91%, Stage set up = 85% and Furniture set up = 82% (n=20).
Improve and increase training in stage and furniture set-up.
Islander Housing: Islander Leadership Seminar Philosophy Statements – Ability to connect leadership training to experiences.
Proficient to Exemplary
On average, students rated 3.3 on a 4 point scale ranging from one=novice to four=expert. The philosophy statements were graded with a rubric covering definition of leadership, core beliefs, values, principles and goals, view of others relative to own leadership, how individual personality and strengths shape their philosophy and connecting experiences (n=70).
The seminar will now include True Colors training to better assist students in understanding their own personality and strengths.
National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) 2017 Results for Items 2.a and 2.g
For survey item 2.a which asks how often the student has "combined ideas from different courses" during the current school year, 67% of students responded with "Often" or "Very often". The institution's mean of 2.9 was the same as the mean of similar institutions.
For survey item 2.g which asks how often the student has connected ideas from his/her courses to "prior experience and knowledge", seventy-six percent responded with "Often" or "Very often". The institution's mean (3.1) was slightly lower than that of similar institutions (3.2).
The mean for both items was calculated by giving each of the four possible responses a value (i.e. Very often = 4, often = 3, Sometimes = 2, Never = 1).
NSSE data were not included in the last Empower U Assessment Report for Integration of Broad Knowledge. Comparisons will be made in 2020.
Pilot Scoring Session: Two faculty members and a staff member from the Office of Assessment, Accreditation, and Compliance (AA&C) applied the AAC&U VALU Rubric for Integrative Learning to samples of student work.
Connections to Experience = 2.8
Connections to Discipline = 2.6
Transfer = 2.6
Integrated Communication = 2.7
Reflection and Self-Assessment = 3.1
Performance was weakest in Connections to Discipline, Transfer, and Integrated Communication. Following the action plans outlined in the Action section will allow us to assess a larger sample. This will then allow us to make more confident assumptions based on the data.
Colleges are being notified earlier about which Empower U Outcome is being assessed for the Academic Year. This will allow for earlier collection of student samples for these scoring sessions.
This is the pilot year of this assessment method. There are no previous data for comparison.
Program-level Assessment: Measures and targets for program-level assessment of integration of broad knowledge were identified by faculty of the respective program. Direct measures included portfolios, exam items, and internship essays.
Exemplary- Exceeding target by ten percent
Proficient- Exceeding target by at least five percent but less than ten percent
Sufficient- Meeting or exceeding target by less than five percent
Emerging- Missing target by less than ten percent
Insufficient- Missing target by ten percent or greater
Based on the definitions included in the Assessment Method section, the results are:
Only seven measures of this outcome were used in 2017 across four of the five colleges. Eighty-six percent of these measures had findings that were Exemplary or Proficient.
The lack of program-level assessments of integration of broad knowledge has led the Office of Assessment, Accreditation, and Compliance (AA&C) to begin shifting towards a more centralized assessment approach towards the assessment of this outcome. Samples of student work will be identified by the colleges and then collected by AA&C to be assessed at a scoring session. At this session, faculty scorers will apply the AAC&U VALUE Rubric for Integrative Learning to these samples of student work. The Pilot Scoring Session for Integration of Broad Knowledge was held in 2017.
Results are comparable to the Empower U findings from 2014 with ninety percent of the findings from that year being Exemplary or Proficient.
Course embedded assessment and co-curricular assessment: written projects and/or presentations evaluated with rubrics and/or integration criteria.
90% proficient to exemplary;
10% emerging or insufficient.
87% of students in Fall 2013 enrolled in the core curriculum-based learning communities program demonstrated the ability to integrate knowledge from multiple disciplines in a written assignment or project.
Sample successful interdisciplinary projects include the rhetorical analysis of a historical document in first-year composition and seminar; a “campus improvement” proposal to connect political science, seminar, and composition; or a scientific poster reporting on observational research, connecting composition, seminar, biology, and chemistry.
Students in a leadership course scored between emerging and developing on connecting experiences between the course and practice. This intensive leadership co-curricular course is required for Residence Assistants and may be expanded.
1.) A university-wide Assessment Committee is reviewing assessment reports and performing other assessment-related tasks.
2.) The Assessment & Continuous Improvement Office is coordinating the process of university-wide SLO assessment.
3.) Resources will be developed by the Center for Faculty Excellence to promote the assessment of integrative thinking beyond the core curriculum.
4) The leadership course will be reviewed and revised, based on the student learning results.
Our First-Year Learning Communities Program (FYLCP) is a national model and leader for undergraduate student learning. Collaborating with the Washington Center (The National Resource Center for Learning Communities), the FYLCP has focused on helping students integrate their learning for several years. The program continues to seek better ways to make those integrative experiences deeper and more explicit for students; however, we are very happy with our success in this area. Our new leadership program shows promise and is an area we are interested in expanding.