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Development of Evidence Management and Gap Analysis Tools for Continuous Improvement of Engineering Programs

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Biological and Agricultural Engineering Education Technical Session

Tagged Division

Biological & Agricultural

Page Count


Page Numbers

25.461.1 - 25.461.14



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Paper Authors

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Evan T. Curtis Univeristy of Nebraska, Lincoln

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Abby M. Kelly University of Nebraska, Lincoln

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Johnathan Ian Edward McCoy University of Nebraska, Lincoln


David Jones University of Nebraska, Lincoln

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David Jones is a professor of biological systems engineering and the Associate Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.

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Dennis D. Schulte P.E. University of Nebraska, Lincoln

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Development of evidence management and gap analysis tools for continuous improvement of engineering programs The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate the development and structure of recentlycreated data management tools used to assist in the continuous improvement of both anagricultural and biological engineering program. With the arrival of automatic document feederscapable of transforming paper materials in electronic documents, evidence of course contributionto student outcomes is easier to map than ever before. Additionally, electronic storage enablesthe ability to search within documents and connect related data more effectively than could beachieved with paper documentation. As a result, the following paper includes the development ofkey components for establishing relationships between course evidence (student work, syllabi,etc.) and student outcomes, a critical component of criterion 3 of the general criteria forbaccalaureate level programs seeking ABET accreditation. Furthermore, the developed structureincludes a means for collecting data and correlating the evidence to specific ABET a-k studentoutcomes in combination with a modified Bloom’s taxonomy for classifying competency. In addition to evidence collection and classification of course student outcomes, thedesign of a gap analysis tool for relating targeted student outcome levels with each course’sachieved student outcomes will also be discussed. The function of the gap analysis tool is toinform instructors as to whether a course, based on the supplied evidence, is under or overachieving its specified target of student outcome performance. These tools were recently used foran ABET accreditation cycle and have the potential to be powerful resources for programshoping to close the loop as part of their continuous improvement process. In summary, this paperwill demonstrate the development of a database tool implement for capturing, reviewing, andassessing student output on a course by course basis.

Curtis, E. T., & Kelly, A. M., & McCoy, J. I. E., & Jones, D., & Schulte, D. D. (2012, June), Development of Evidence Management and Gap Analysis Tools for Continuous Improvement of Engineering Programs Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21219

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