June 22, 2003
June 22, 2003
June 25, 2003
8.154.1 - 8.154.9
During our department’s preparation for an ABET EC 2000 visit, we likely considered issues similar to those addressed by other departments during their EC 2000 preparations. By way of background, over the previous several year period, under guidance by experts at Ford Motor Company, we had gained valuable experience attempting to introduce the concepts of continuous quality improvement (CQI) into our academic programs. Through this early exposure, we had become firm believers that the general notion of continuous improvement could be applied in an academic setting. Also helpful to our EC 2000 preparatory work was the fact that we had a tradition of investing considerable time, effort and resources in our undergraduate program and were committed to maintaining a strong program. We recognized that to bring about improvements, specific measures had to be identified so that one could quantify the results of changes made to a program and were thus willing to go through the process of identifying appropriate measures and gathering data. We were more than willing to once again invest time to organize our self-study report and gather samples of student work and other supporting documents so that our next ABET visit, our first under the new EC 2000 criteria, would go very well. It was clear, however, that to satisfy EC 2000 more of our time would be required than had been the case with previous ABET evaluations, and one troubling apprehension began to emerge: would there be a meaningful return on the investment of our time. This initial apprehension spawned three primary concerns. How could we sustain our continuous improvement process during the years following the ABET visit? How could we maintain faculty enthusiasm over an extended period? How could we use what we had learned and apply the processes we had developed to improve our graduate programs? We realized that our challenge was twofold: first to handle EC 2000 well, and second to structure an overall process-improvement approach so that faculty members would recognize that we would likely be getting a positive return on the time we were investing in our BS program, year after year. It was clear that it would not be those of us who were already committed and who were leading the EC 2000 effort who would ultimately make the judgment of whether or not we were in fact getting a positive return on our time, but rather our departmental colleagues. This paper describes what has emerged as the key element in our overall process-improvement structure, how this element evolved, how it is woven into the core operations of our department, and how it is being used in efforts to improve our MS and PhD programs.
Kline, K., & Ku, J., & Tan, C., & Singh, T., & Gibson, R. (2003, June), Achievement Of Course Learning Objectives: An Assessment Tool That Promotes Faculty Involvement Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. https://peer.asee.org/12438
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