General Education Assessment Model

Nota bene: The terms goals, learning outcomes, and outcomes are all used interchangeably. They represent what you expect students to know and be able to do once they complete the program and/or course.

Use the general education (G-PAC) objectives for each of the fundamental elements of the general education curriculum (i.e., perspective, analysis, and communication). The general education assessment templates are designed to streamline the reporting of course assessments and alings with the reporting modules in TaskStream.

Develop and implement at least two assessment strategies:

For each of the relevant G-PAC objectives, select or design at least one assignment or test (or test questions) that both teach and elicit the kind of learning that will convince you that students have achieved the selected learning objective. A second measure can include another assignment or test or evidence that students are probably learning (e.g., student survey; course evaluations that include questions about what students learned in the course; focus group). The Examples of Direct/Indirect Measures lists examples of direct and indirect measures that can be used for assessment. 

Use the rubrics developed for general education courses as a starting point. These rubrics distinguish levels of performance when evaluating how well students are achieving the learning objective---or develop your own scoring tool. Feel free to revise them. Caution: A grade without a rubric indicating the criteria used to determine that grade is not a valid assessment tool as it does not provide information about what and how well students are learning.

Note: The assessment need not include every student in the course. Rather, a random sample of students’ work may be used. Make sure that the sample is large enough to provide adequate and useful information about how well students are achieving the learning objectives.

Analyze and interpret assessment findings: Summarize the assessment findings in terms of what it suggests about how well students are achieving the learning objective. In what areas do students have difficulty in the course? In what areas do students excel? What do you wish your students could do better? If multiple sections of the same course are used, how consistent is student learning across those sections? 

Create an action plan: Data collection is of little value unless it is used to improve instruction and student learning. Describe how the information will be used to improve student learning. What revisions will you make in your course based on the information collected?

The completed assessment or worksheet should be inputted into the appropriate TaskStream site. Use TaskStream to elaborate on your findings. Program chairs should include these reports in their annual report to the dean.