June 23, 2013
June 23, 2013
June 26, 2013
Electrical and Computer
23.694.1 - 23.694.21
Implementation and Results of a Revised ABET Assessment ProcessThe electrical and computer engineering programs at a public land-grant university were reviewed bythe Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET during fall 2012. This paper will describe thedepartment’s revisions to its process of assessing student outcomes since the last visit in light of thecurrent criteria for accrediting engineering programs and in the interests of efficiency and sustainability.The revised process involves a larger number of faculty members in specific ways. Having a criticalmass of faculty involved ensures that the expectations of Criterion 6 are met, which states, in part, thatfaculty must be qualified to develop and implement processes for the evaluation, assessment, andcontinuing improvement of the program, its educational objectives and outcomes. At least two facultymembers in a program were deeply involved in the assessment process. These core faculty eitherattended ABET workshops to enhance their knowledge or were trained as program evaluators.Expanding the core group builds a foundation on which to sustain assessment and improvement effortsover time. In addition to the core expert group, other faculty members were enlisted for specificassessment and evaluation tasks. This had multiple benefits, including spreading the workload amongthe faculty, sharing the responsibility for program improvement, and creating greater awareness of howto assess student learning. There were also various challenges, which will also be addressed in the paper.The result, however, is that the program faculty as a whole are better positioned to understand, supportand use the assessment process.The revised process also takes a multilevel approach that leverages existing assessment tools and bestpractices. Data are collected from different types of measurements at three different levels. Informalfeedback is routinely obtained from student surveys, student forums, and comments by faculty andstudents. Direct, formal measurements tap into four sources: senior design, a required portfolio class, asmall number of required courses before the senior year, and OPAL surveys administered everysemester by the college and completed by employers of students on internships. The levels provide arange of information. Level 1 assessment uses high-level information from a cross-section of students inthe program that can be used to identify trends and potential problems. It is done frequently,automatically, and with little overhead. Level 2 assessment uses senior-level information from allstudents in the culminating capstone courses. Students demonstrate attainment of outcomes throughsenior design projects and other summative information in portfolios. Level 3 assessment usessophomore- and junior-level information from students in selected required courses. Student learning isassessed using rubrics and assignments that focus on specific outcomes of interest. This is finer grainedand more specific than the other levels. It is done less frequently. It provides more in-depth examinationof a student outcome earlier in the program at the time the student is learning about it. The multilevelapproach supports efficient data collection while also providing sufficient data to make decisions.Curriculum changes resulting from the evaluation of program educational objectives and studentoutcomes will be presented.
Rover, D. T., & Jacobson, D. W., & Kamal, A. E., & Tyagi, A. (2013, June), Implementation and Results of a Revised ABET Assessment Process Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. https://peer.asee.org/19708
ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2013 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015