The assessment of student learning is central to a robust, engaging and dynamic GenEd curriculum. We need to systematically explore and document our program’s ability to develop key skills and abilities in our undergraduate students.
We want to know if we’re living up to the promise of the curriculum and if not, we want to use our findings to improve the teaching and learning climate for our students.
Three central tenets reside at the heart of the programmatic assessment of GenEd:
- Faculty are integral to the assessment process
- Student learning is best measured by examining work created in response to a classroom assignment
- Locally derived questions or instruments are most useful in evaluating student work
Assessment within GenEd is similar to the evaluation of student performance in a classroom. As with a faculty member’s evaluation of a student there are four basic steps in programmatic assessment. We construct courses with goals and objectives in mind, we develop assignments and exercises for students to meet the goals and objectives; we collect assignments and exercises and provide students with feedback and information on their strengths and weaknesses, and finally, we provide students with new and revised learning opportunities based on what we have discovered.
We describe the steps as the 4-Ds—Declare, Design, Document and Do-Over. More information on these steps, as well as information regarding the GenEd competencies is available here or by clicking on the competencies listed below.
- Assessment Cycles
- GenEd Competencies
For a list of the GenEd series working definitions, please click here.