June 26, 2011
June 26, 2011
June 29, 2011
New Engineering Educators
22.104.1 - 22.104.23
A Streamlined Approach to Developing and Assessing Program Educational Objectives and Program OutcomesThe radical change in the process employed by ABET to accredit engineering programs with theadvent of EC2000 has produced much anguish and confusion for faculty and administratorswithin departments and institutions attempting to meet new and changing expectations. Theterminology and methods used in outcomes-based assessment are often unfamiliar to engineeringfaculty even though faculty commonly engage in informal continuous improvement efforts intheir courses and programs as they endeavor to provide a quality educational experience for theirstudents.To educate and inform engineering faculty on the evolving expectations of ABET, a plethora ofworkshops and sessions conducted at engineering society meetings and conferences provideguidance in developing assessment tools and methods. In addition, ABET sponsors webinarsand assessment workshops on an ongoing basis. While much useful information aboutassessment methodology is available through such workshops and presentations (as well as inarticles that have appeared in various journals), the novice (and expert) can leave such gatheringsoverwhelmed with options and confused about what is expected. In addition, sight of the maingoal of the process—continuous program improvement—is sometimes lost in the confusion andthe perceived effort needed to follow the rules and to meet the expectations of evaluators.While there are many valid and effective ways to address the development and assessment ofprogram educational objectives and program outcomes, many faculty and administratorscontinue to struggle with the fundamentals of ABET assessment requirements. Uncomplicatedmethods of developing such statements, and straightforward, easy-to-comprehend methods ofassessment are needed for the novice as well as those who have been working with the ABETassessment process for a while. In particular, to maintain a truly sustainable continuous qualityimprovement process, buy-in from faculty is necessary; simple assessment processes contributesignificantly to acceptance and support by the individuals who are responsible for programassessment.Presented in this paper are methods of developing and assessing program educational objectivesand program outcomes that the authors found to be straightforward, coherent, efficient andeffective as they used them within their own departments and also shared them with faculty inthe other departments at their institution. Case studies are presented as well as lessons learnedfrom recent objectives and outcomes assessment exercises and accreditation visits. The authorshave found that following the processes presented herein results in an sustainable assessmentplan that is straightforward to implement and easy for faculty and administrators to comprehend.
Weisbrook, C. M., & Schonberg, W. (2011, June), A Streamlined Approach to Developing and Assessing Program Educational Objectives and Program Outcomes Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. https://peer.asee.org/17386
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