Current plans for the Assessment of Student Learning
Each semester two of the K-State 8 areas will be assessed using a learning assessment survey. The assessment plan is designed so that all eight areas will be assessed over a two-year period—two areas each semester for four semesters. The long-term plan will also rotate the assessment of each of the eight areas across both fall and spring semesters so that different courses are included in the assessment.
At the end of each semester a survey will be sent electronically to a number of randomly selected students who have just completed courses tagged under the two selected areas. The surveys, designed in conjunction with faculty within each specialty area, include questions that identify learning related to the specific K-State 8 area. Perceived knowledge and applied skills gained in the specific area are examined using a Likert scale format as well as open-ended questions.
Under the leadership of the provost designee for general education, these assessment results will be analyzed. Reports will be provided to the colleges to share with their departments. Departments will be encouraged to consider how the assessment results demonstrate their majors’ breadth of knowledge across the K-State 8 as well as how effectively their tagged courses contribute to the K-State 8. Solutions to fill educational gaps will continue to be the responsibility of the academic programs.
Proposing changes to the program based on the assessment results will be the responsibility of the provost designee and the two K-State 8 councils. Decisions about such changes will be the responsibility of Faculty Senate.
Surveys from all eight areas are to be piloted during the fall semester of 2011 with groups of randomly selected students representing all undergraduate colleges. The survey results will be examined for validity and reliability to determine their ultimate usability for assessment purposes. Based on these results, alterations will made as deemed necessary. A second pilot test is planned for spring 2012 to retest the surveys for validity purposes.
Beginning fall 2012 the survey will be utilized to assess the initial two K-State 8 areas. As noted earlier, the survey will be sent electronically to a sample of randomly selected students who have completed a course in one of the two areas being assessed. The two K-State 8 councils in conjunction with the Academic Affairs Committee of Faculty Senate will set an initial target for a satisfactory level of understanding indicated by the students’ responses to the survey, as well as long-term objectives to be reached in the assessment of all eight areas.
Chronology of the Development of the K-State 8 Assessment Plan
The K-State 8 Assessment Proposal was designed by members of the K-State 8 Faculty Council and forwarded to Academic Affairs of Faculty Senate on September 1, 2010.
Academic Affairs discussed the proposal on September 7, 2010, and forwarded it to Executive Committee for their September 27 meeting.
The Executive Committee placed the proposal as a first reading on the agenda of the Faculty Senate Meeting on October 12, 2010.
After listening to discussion at the October meeting, Academic Affairs made one small revision. The revised proposal was presented to Executive Committee, which placed it on the agenda of the Faculty Senate Meeting on November 9, 2010 as a second reading. The proposal, K-State 8 Assessment of Student Learning (pdf), was passed by Faculty Senate on November 9, 2010.
The K-State 8 Assessment Committee was established in December, 2010, to assist the Office of Assessment in implementing the plan outlined in the proposal approved by Faculty Senate.
Fred Burrack, Chair, Office of Assessment
Vicki Clegg, K-State 8 Provost Designate, CATL
Scott Finkeldei, Office of Mediated Education, AXIO
Jan Middendorf, Office of Education Innovation & Evaluation
David Sachs, Architecture, Faculty Senate
John Schlup, Chemical Engineering, UGE Council
Nathan Spriggs, Agricultural Economics, Student Senate
Rick Zajac, Arts, Science and Business, Faculty Senate