June 14, 2009
June 14, 2009
June 17, 2009
14.874.1 - 14.874.9
Meet the ABET “Student Work Sample” Requirements: Document Student Learning
Assessment theory has expanded from traditional examinations that are focused on the result, to include the process of learning. ABET program evaluators (PEVs) have been instructed to look for documentation of student learning in the samples of student work required of institutions seeking accreditation. Educational theory supports this change as a positive shift to promote student success. This paper will explore the techniques which institutions can use to successfully exemplify the achievements and transformation of their students, which will meet the expectations of ABET evaluators. The benefits of this new approach, for faculty, students and the program will be highlighted.
Section II.E.3.c (10) in the Accreditation Policy and Procedure Manual of ABET describes the requirements regarding samples of student work. It states:
Representative samples of student work that reveal the spectrum of educational outcome. In order to make a qualitative evaluation of a program, it is necessary that the institution exhibit teaching materials such as course outlines and textbooks for all courses required for graduation. Sufficient examples of student work in technical, mathematics, and science courses must be available to the visiting team for the entire campus visit. The examples should show a range of grades for assignments, including homework, quizzes, examinations, drawings, laboratory reports, projects, and samples of computer usage in technical courses. Examples must also be presented to demonstrate compliance with the requirement for student competence in written and oral communications.1
To meet this directive, student assignments such as quizzes, homework assignments, laboratory reports and tests, related to a particular course, were typically duplicated and grouped in binders as display items for ABET evaluators. Each course would contain examples of poor, average and exceptional student work gathered in a tabbed binder. This was provided to ABET program evaluators as an illustration of the achievements of students, proof of student learning.
Then came the shift in ABET criteria to a more assessment driven process. Now there is an expectation to demonstrate student learning and active engagement. Clearly, Xeroxed copies of traditional assignments are not adequate evidence of group work, experiential learning and other active instructional techniques. Simply providing these traditional assignment samples does not adequately reflect student-student interactions, learning which occurs through group activities and other instructional methods which do not readily translate to paper. Certainly, these creative endeavors benefit the student, enhance learning and are important evidence of the achievements of students. A disconnect results between the expectations of program evaluators and the ability of faculty to successfully document learning activities in forms which neatly fit into binders.
Christe, B., & Cooney, E. (2009, June), Meet The Abet “Student Work Sample” Requirements: Document Student Learning Paper presented at 2009 Annual Conference & Exposition, Austin, Texas. https://peer.asee.org/4595
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