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  1. Foundational Perspectives on Student Development: Implications for Accountability and Assessment • George D. Kuh • Council on University • Planning and Analysis • Guelph, Ontario • June 23, 2009

  2. Context Global Competitiveness in Degree Attainment The New Majority and Demographic Gaps Questionable Levels of Student Performance

  3. Context Global Competitiveness in Degree Attainment The New Majority and Demographic Gaps Questionable Levels of Student Performance In an Environment of Increasing Fiscal Strain…  We Need Higher Levels of Student Achievement

  4. Inquiring Minds Want to Know… • What frameworks and perspectives about student learning, development, and success can be instructive in guiding assessment of essential learning outcomes? • How do they fit in with the current press on institutional accountability?

  5. Overview • The context for accountability and assessment • Theoretical and empirical perspectives on student development and success • Implications

  6. Accountability 2009 • Greater emphasis on student learning outcomes and evidence that student performance measures up • Demands for comparative measures • Assessment “technology” has made great strides, but is insufficient to document learning outcomes most institutions claim • Increased calls for transparency ---public disclosure of student and institutional performance

  7. Two Paradigms of Assessment Ewell, Peter T. (2007). Assessment and Accountability in America Today: Background and Context. In Assessing and Accounting for Student Learning: Beyond the Spellings Commission. Victor M. H. Borden and Gary R. Pike, Eds. Jossey-Bass: San Francisco.

  8. Purposes of Assessment • Evidence -- Demonstrate value and return on investment for accountability purposes • Improvement – Determine what is working and what is not to improve programs, courses, departmental outcomes. • Transparency -- Provide information about educational effectiveness and what students know and can do. • Feedback -- Enable students to see their progress and learn how to improve.

  9. What’s Happening Over past 5 years institutions report… • More assessment activities; greater attention to accreditation requirements • Emphasis on clearer statements of student learning outcomes, but little student understanding of outcomes • More emphasis on engaged learning practices including learning communities, service-learning courses, internships, senior capstones, and undergraduate research • Little transparency, even less documented improvement (Ewell, 2008; Maki, 2004; Trends in Learning Outcomes, General Education, and Assessment, AAC&U, 2009)

  10. Accountability Triangle Assessment Improvement Transparency

  11. Student Development • Outcomes: Host of desirable skills, knowledge, beliefs and attitudes, persistence, educational attainment • Process: Unfolding of human potential toward increasingly complicated, refined functioning

  12. Outcome Domains • Cognitive complexity • Knowledge acquisition & application • Humanitarianism • Interpersonal and intrapersonal competence • Practical competence Source: Kuh, 1993

  13. Cognitive complexity Cognitive skills including reflective thought, critical thinking (e.g., ability to summarize information accurately and perceiving logical coherences and discernable themes and patterns across different sources of information), quantitative reasoning, and intellectual flexibility (i.e., openness to new ideas and different points of view).

  14. Knowledge acquisition & application Understanding knowledge from a range of disciplines and physical, geographic, economic, political, religious, and cultural realities, and the ability to relate knowledge to daily life including using information presented in one class in other classes or other areas of life.

  15. Humanitarianism Understanding and appreciation of human differences, including an increased sensitivity to the needs of others and contributions to common good.

  16. Interpersonal & intrapersonal competence A coherent, integrated constellation of personal attributes (e.g., identity, self-esteem, confidence, integrity, appreciation for the aesthetic and spiritual qualities of life and the natural world, sense of civic responsibility) and skills (e.g., how to work with people different from oneself).

  17. Practical competence Skills reflecting an enhanced capacity to manage one’s personal affairs (e.g., time management, decision making), to be economically self-sufficient, and to be vocationally competent.

  18. Association of American Colleges and Universities

  19. Narrow Learning is Not Enough: The Essential Learning Outcomes • Knowledge of Human Cultures and the Physical & Natural World • Intellectual and Practical Skills • Personal and Social Responsibility • “Deep” Integrative Learning

  20. Deep, Integrative Learning • Attend to the underlying meaning of information as well as content • Integrate and synthesize different ideas, sources of information • Discern patterns in evidence or phenomena • Apply knowledge in different situations • View issues from multiple perspectives

  21. Theoretical Perspectives: Student Development • Psychosocial(Chickering, 1968; Chickering & Reisser, 1993; Erikson, 1968; Cross, 1995) • Cognitive-structural(Perry, 1970; Kitchner & King, 1981, 1990; Baxter-Magolda, 1992; 2001; Kohlberg, 1969, 1984; Gilligan, 1977, 1986) • Typology(Cross, 1976; Kolb, 1976, 1984; Holland, 1968, 1997; Kuh et al., 2000) • Person-environment interaction (Astin, 1968, 1993; Barker, 1968; Horowitz, 1987; Pace & Stern, 1958, Moos, 1979

  22. Theoretical Perspectives: Persistence & Educational Attainment • Sociological (Astin, 1977, 1993; Tinto, 1975, 1987, 1993; Marsden, 2004; Pascarella & Terenzini, 1991, 2005) • Organizational (Bean, 1983; Berger & Braxton, 1998) • Psychological (Bandura, 1982; Bean & Eaton, 2000; Dweck, 2000) • Cultural (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1977; Kuh & Love, 2000; Rendon et al, 2000; Tierney, 1992) • Economic (Becker, 1964; Braxton, 2003)

  23. Pascarella’s (1985) causal model: Effects of college student development Student development

  24. Pascarella’s (1985) causal model: Effects of college student development Student development • Students • Aptitude • Achievement • Personality • Aspiration • Ethnicity

  25. Pascarella’s (1985) causal model • Institution • Enrollment • Faculty-student ratio • Selectivity • % Residential Student development • Students • Aptitude • Achievement • Personality • Aspiration • Ethnicity

  26. Pascarella’s (1985) causal model • Institution • Enrollment • Faculty-student ratio • Selectivity • % Residential • Interactions with • faculty • peers Student development • Students • Aptitude • Achievement • Personality • Aspiration • Ethnicity

  27. Pascarella’s (1985) causal model • Institution • Enrollment • Faculty-student ratio • Selectivity • % Residential • Interactions with • faculty • peers Student development • Students • Aptitude • Achievement • Personality • Aspiration • Ethnicity Institutional Environment Quality of student effort Engagement

  28. Jacobs (1956) Sanford (1962) Feldman & Newcomb (1969) Astin (1977) Bowen (1977) Pace (1979) Pascarella & Terenzini (1991) Astin (1993) Pascarella & Terenzini (2005) Major Syntheses of Postsecondary Impact Studies

  29. What Matters to Student Success Kuh, G.D., Kinzie, J., Buckley, J.A., Bridges, B.K., & Hayek, J.C. (2007). Piecing together the student success puzzle: Research, propositions, and recommendations. ASHE Higher Education Report, 32(5). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass. Commissioned papers at: http://nces.ed.gov/npec/papers.asp

  30. • Study Habits • Peer Involvement • Interaction with Faculty • Time on Task • Motivation • Other • First Year Experience • Academic Support • Campus Environment • Time on Task • Peer Support • Teaching & Learning Approaches • Other Pre-college experiences

  31. Academic preparation Pre-college Characteristics Associated with Student Success

  32. Academic preparation Ability and college-level skills Financial wherewithal Family education and support Pre-college Characteristics Associated with Student Success

  33. Goal realization Psycho-social fit Credit hours completed Academic and social support Involvement in the “right” kinds of activities Early College Indicators of Persistence and Success

  34. What Really Matters in University: Student Engagement Because individual effort and involvement are the critical determinants of impact, institutions should focus on the ways they can shape their academic, interpersonal, and extracurricular offerings to encourage student engagement. Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005, p. 602

  35. Foundations of Student Engagement Time on task (Tyler, 1930s) Quality of effort (Pace, 1960-70s) Student involvement (Astin, 1984) Social, academic integration (Tinto,1987, 1993) Good practices in undergraduate education (Chickering & Gamson, 1987) College impact (Pascarella, 1985) Student engagement (Kuh, 1991, 2005)

  36. Student Engagement Propositions • What students do -- time and energy devoted to educationally purposeful activities • What institutions do -- using effective educational practices to induce students to do the right things • Educationally effective institutions channel student energy toward the right activities

  37. Good Practices in Undergraduate Education(Chickering & Gamson, 1987; Pascarella & Terenzini, 2005) • Student-faculty contact • Active learning • Prompt feedback • Time on task • High expectations • Respect for diverse learning styles • Cooperation among students

  38. National Survey of Student Engagement(pronounced “nessie”)Community College Survey of Student Engagement(pronounced “cessie”) College student surveys that assess the extent to which students engage in educational practices associated with high levels of learning and development

  39. Student Engagement Initiatives • 2,500,000+ students from 1,400 different schools • 80+% of 4-yr U.S. undergrad FTE • 50 states, Puerto Rico • 64 Canadian IHEs • Australasian Survey of Student Engagement (AUSSE) • South African Survey of Student Engagement (SASSE)

  40. Grades, persistence, student satisfaction, and engagement go hand in hand

  41. It’s more complicated than this… • Many of the effects of college are “conditional” • Some are compensatory

  42. NSSE: Who’s more engaged? • Women • Full-time students • Students who live on campus • Students with diversity experiences • Students who start and stay at the same school • Students in learning communities

  43. Next Steps • Develop additional indicators of success for different types of students.

  44. Additional Indicators course retention transfer student success success in subsequent courses degree/certificate completion graduate school employment capacity for lifelong learning focus on gaps in success

  45. High Impact Activities • First-Year Seminars and Experiences  • Common Intellectual Experiences • Learning Communities • Writing-Intensive Courses • Collaborative Assignments and Projects • “Science as Science Is Done”; Undergraduate Research • Diversity/Global Learning • Service Learning, Community-Based Learning • Internships • Capstone Courses and Projects

  46. Integrating ideas or information from various sources Included diverse perspectives in class discussions/writing Put together ideas from different courses Discussed ideas with faculty members outside of class Discussed ideas with others outside of class Analyzing the basic elements of an idea, experience, or theory Essential Learning Outcome:NSSE Deep/Integrative Learning • Synthesizing & organizing ideas, info., or experiences • Making judgments about the value of information • Applying theories to practical problems or in new situations • Examined the strengths and weaknesses of your own views • Tried to better understand someone else's views • Learned something that changed how you understand an issue

  47. Effects of Participating in High-Impact Activities on Deep/Integrative Learning and Gains