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Assessing CORE Student Learning Outcomes. Summer Assessment Institute August, 2005 Presented by Jerry Rudmann Coastline Community College. Desired Outcomes of this Session. Participants will be able to…

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Assessing CORE Student Learning Outcomes

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Assessing COREStudent Learning Outcomes

Summer Assessment Institute

August, 2005

Presented by

Jerry Rudmann

Coastline Community College

Desired Outcomes of this Session

Participants will be able to…

  • Explain why robust SLOs are appropriate for representing Institutional (or “CORE”) learning goals

  • Write a robust SLO statement

  • Create and use a scoring rubric for assessing a robust SLO

  • List and describe several ways to facilitate the assessment of CORE learning outcomes

More specifically: AStudent Learning Outcome or “SLO” is…

A specific observable, measurable behavior stated in terms of what students should be able to do as a result of instruction.

The Four Levels of Student Learning Outcomes

  • Lesson or unit level

  • Course level

  • Program level

  • College level

Two General Categories of CORE SLOs

  • Content knowledge – facts, terms, concepts, dates, definitions, etc.

  • Robust outcomes – products of complex behaviors and skills that students take with them and use later (e.g., a paper, a speech, an analysis of the merits and flaws in a persuasive message)

5. The “Robust” Learning Outcome Meets These Criteria…

  • A behavior or skill beyond content knowledge

  • Bloom’s levels 3 to 6

  • Specifies the conditions / context

  • A real life skill

  • Experts agree on importance

  • Standard of excellence

  • Can assess with a rubric

  • Global in scope

  • Student is thinking, acting like a “pro”

Robust Outcomes are Critically Important Products of Learning

Handout – Robust Outcome Rubric

Examples of Robust SLOs Written by College Instructors

Course: DGA 166A Dreamweaver

Based on customer needs and specifications, create an accessible, professional-looking five-page Website that reflects the nature of the business and the intended audience and that includes text, graphics, multimedia, and interactive elements.

Eng 100 - English Composition

Students will be able to write a well organized, well-developed essay of 650 to 1,000 words using standard written English.

Psychology 1 – Introductory Psychology

Given an explanation of behavior taken from the popular media, students will critically evaluate the explanation using the appropriate evaluation criteria (e.g., indications of non-random sampling, experimenter bias, lack of peer review, the confirmation bias, and a correlational research design).

To Review: Robust Outcomes are Critically Important Competencies Meeting the Following Criteria

The “robust” learning outcome…

  • Is a behavior or skill beyond recitation

  • Bloom’s Taxonomy level 3 or higher

  • Specifies the conditions

  • Is a real life skill

  • Considered high priority by experts in your unit

  • Has a benchmark of excellence

  • Is amenable to assessment (e.g., by rubric)

  • Is an overarching outcome rather that something minute

Try Writing One

  • A CORE Student Learning Outcome defined:

    Knowledge, skills, abilities, and attitudes a student has attained upon transfer and/or graduation from your institution.

  • Try writing a robust outcome

Share Draft Robust Outcomes

Assessment of Content Knowledge


Fill in the blank


Short answer essay

Assessment of Robust SLOs

Scoring rubric


Embedded Assessment

  • A clever way to do gather SLO evidence

  • Minimal impact on current practices

  • No problem with student motivation

Introduction to the Rubric

  • Scoring rubrics are ideally suited for assessing robust learning outcomes.

Let’s Develop an Assessment Rubric for a Resume

Chocolate Chip Cookie Rubric

Chocolate Chip Cookie Rubric

A Rubric is Good!

  • Facilitates staff dialogue regarding satisfactory performance.

  • Creates a more objective assessment.

  • Makes expectation explicit to the student.

  • Encourages metacognitive skill of self-monitoring own learning.

  • Facilitates scoring and reporting of data.

Design Your Own Rubric

  • Use the worksheet in your packet to design a scoring rubric for one of your new robust SLOs

Brainstorm – Strategies for Moving Forward in Assessing CORE SLOs

Assessment of CORE SLOs –Strategies for Moving Forward

  • Look for existing sources of data

  • Multiple measures – triangulation

  • Embedded assessment

  • Map CORE SLOS to courses, programs, services

  • Assessing a sample versus population

  • Theme years

  • Technology tools

  • Commercial instruments

  • Qualitative assessment (exit surveys, interviews, focus groups)

  • Create an implementation plan

  • Make SLO assessment report part of an annual Institutional Effectiveness Report (?)

The Implementation Plan

  • Who, how, where and when will your college gather CORE SLO assessment data?

  • Who will review this assessment data?

  • Who will write and file a SLO report?


Work phone: 714-241-6338

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