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Using Direct Assessment to Resolve TAC/ABET Criterion 3 Program Outcomes

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

ABET Accreditation, Assessment, and Program Improvement in ECE

Tagged Division

Electrical and Computer

Page Count


Page Numbers

22.1614.1 - 22.1614.14



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Paper Authors


Tammie Lea Cumming New York City College of Technology, CUNY

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Dr. Cumming is the Director of Assessment and Institutional Research office at the New York City College of Technology, CUNY. Dr. Cumming has been a consultant on a wide variety of higher education assessment topics with over 20 years of experience in education including assessment, educational and social research, institutional research, and psychometrics. Dr. Cumming has taught graduate courses in educational research methods and assessment as well as undergraduate courses in statistics, quantitative methods of research, and remedial mathematics. Dr. Cumming holds a bachelor's degree in mathematical statistics and a master’s degree in quantitative educational research methods from the University of Florida, and a doctoral degree in applied statistics and psychometrics from The University of Iowa.

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Iem Heng New York City College of Technology

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Professor Iem Heng earned his bachelor’s degree from Providence College (Providence, RI) with double majors in Pre-Engineering Program and mathematics. In addition, he earned another bachelor’s degree from Columbia University (New York, NY) in mechanical engineering and master’s in applied mathematics from Western Michigan University (Kalamazoo, MI); his Ph.D. in computational and applied mathematics from Old Dominion University (Norfolk, VA). Before joining the EMT/CET department at City Tech in fall of 2007, he was a faculty member and chair of the CET department at DeVry Institute of Technology (Long Island City, NY). He worked as a researcher for NASA – Langley Base in Hampton, VA, for two years. His research activities include embedded systems, software development for embedded systems with real time simulation, real time gaming simulation programming, and web application programming.

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Rachel Tsang New York City College of Technology, CUNY

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Using Direct Assessment to Resolve TAC/ABET Criterion 3 Program OutcomesAbstract:Colleges and universities across the nation value the importance of accreditation, which providestwo fundamental purposes for an institution: assuring the quality of the institution or itsprograms and to assist in the improvement of the institution or programs through the self-studyprocess. The comprehensive process for producing a self-study report provides an opportunityfor an institution or program to review its goals and expectations, as well as identify studentstrengths and weaknesses. By providing a process to identify weaknesses with respect to studentattainment of student learning outcomes, institutions or programs are better able to makenecessary improvements, as well as understand their institutional or program strengths.The Computer Engineering Technology (CET) program, in CET department, at New York CityCollege of Technology/CUNY is accredited by the Technology AccreditationCommission/Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (TAC/ABET). TheTAC/ABET is the world leading accreditation organization in engineering and engineeringtechnology programs. When a program is accredited by TAC/ABET, it communicates to aninstitution’s constituencies that the program has met the quality standards established by theABET professions. This paper details the assessment process developed by the program, withthe support of the college’s Assessment and Institutional Research office, in response to aprogram weakness identified by ABET with respect to ABET Criterion 3 Program Outcomes.The focus of the assessment process was on developing and administering reliable and validdirect methods to assess student outcomes. The direct methods of assessment, based on the list ofdirect measures recognized at the 2008 TAC Commission Summit, developed by the CET facultyincluded tests, constructed with a test blueprint, and performance appraisals with scoring rubrics.These direct assessment measures provided evidence of student strengths and weaknesses.Furthermore, CET faculty found the interpretation of the data much easier with these measuresof assessment. The assessment process developed for the program not only included thetraditional summative approach, but also included formative assessment within the overallContinuous Quality Improvement (CQI) model. The inclusion of formative assessment withinthe overall CQI model provides an opportunity for early intervention for program-level attrition.Specifically, this paper provides information regarding assessment planning, the assessmentprocess, the development of assessment instruments, and the challenging encountered by thedepartment and should provide information that will benefit other engineering and engineeringtechnology programs seeking accreditation or re-accreditation.

Cumming, T. L., & Heng, I., & Tsang, R. (2011, June), Using Direct Assessment to Resolve TAC/ABET Criterion 3 Program Outcomes Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18547

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