Jennifer Lindholm: Capstones and Core Competencies: Emerging Pathways for Assessing Student Learning


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Jennifer Lindholm presents on capstones at the WASC Resource Fair, January 2012.

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Jennifer Lindholm: Capstones and Core Competencies: Emerging Pathways for Assessing Student Learning

  1. 1. Jennifer A. Lindholm UCLA Capstones and Core Competencies: Emerging Pathways for Assessing Student Learning
  2. 2. ● 27,199 undergraduates ● 125 undergraduate majors offered within 5 units: --College of Letters & Science --School of the Arts and Architecture --Henry Samueli School of Engineering & Applied Science --School of Nursing --School of Theater, Film, & Television ● Student-faculty ratio: 17 to 1 UCLA Undergraduate Education
  3. 3. UCLA Assessment Framework for Undergraduate Education Focus on the : Student Course Program Foster students’ academic, personal, and professional development Inform faculty members’ course development and teaching methods, and to inform personnel evaluations for faculty merit and promotion. Assess whether departmental learning outcomes are being met, to ensure continuity of performance standards, and to inform curriculum development. Determine whether program quality and student performance are appropriate for an elite research university. Findings Used To :
  4. 4. Outcomes Assessment for Undergraduate Academic Programs Establishing a foundation for helping faculty understand the utility of learning outcomes assessment as an important tool for improving the quality of undergraduate education. Academic programs articulate expected student learning outcomes. Academic programs develop outcomes-based assessment plans around which to evaluate the curriculum. Completed during WASC Review 2008-2010 To be completed over 3 years: 2009-10 2010-11 2011-12 To be completed in 3 phases over 6 years: 2012-13 and 2013-14 2014-15 and 2015-16 2016-17 and 2017-18 PROJECT 1 PROJECT 2 PROJECT 3
  5. 5. UCLA Undergraduate Majors (125 total) CAPSTONE NON-CAPSTONE Goal is to have capstone options for all undergraduates by UCLA’s centennial in 2019 ~55% ~45%
  6. 6. The UCLA Capstone Pyramid Senior seminar with paper; advanced product-design class; senior performance or art portfolio; group project in an advanced science lab with paper, etc. An Individual Project: campus research; civic or corporate internship; community- based or study-abroad project. Honors Thesis Individual Major
  7. 7. ● Must be a creative, inquiry-based learning experience that deepens the student’ s knowledge and integration of the discipline. ● Must be part of an upper-division course of at least 4 units and (preferably) taught by ladder faculty. ● May be completed individually or by a group, provided each student’s contribution is significant, identifiable, and graded. ● Must culminate in a tangible product that can be archived (electronically) by the department or program for three years. ● Must be opportunities for students to share capstone projects with peers; this can occur in class or outside of class. UCLA Capstone Criteria
  8. 8. History Community Project Students complete a course sequence that includes a community-based project with paper. Spanish Senior Seminar Paper Students complete a senior seminar and demonstrate mastery of a specialized field with a term paper. Team Design Project Students work in groups to design and describe a (new) chemical process. Chem. Eng.
  9. 9. Neuroscience Research Students do independent research or take an advanced lab class and do a group research project. Statistical Consulting Clinic Students work in small groups to solve real problems posed by community or campus-based clients. Statistics Art Studio Project Students complete advanced studio-based classes and create a portfolio of their art work. Art
  10. 10. Students completing the history capstone seminar will be able to: ● demonstrate appropriate mastery of a specialized area of history. ● demonstrate a critical understanding of current scholarly concerns, literature and debates. ● identify and analyze primary sources. ● design and carry out a research project, drawing on both primary sources and appropriate scholarly literature. ● demonstrate the ability to organize and present a brief oral presentation about the research to the seminar class or another venue deemed appropriate. Capstone Learning Outcomes: History Sample
  11. 11. Through required coursework leading to and including Art 150, Senior Studio, students demonstrate: ● familiarity with and competence in a range of techniques and media, and a level of proficiency in utilizing particular media appropriate to advanced- level studio projects. ● development of a body of original artwork. ● familiarity with historical precedents for, and issues in, contemporary art. ● understanding of terms and concepts relevant to contemporary art discourse. ● ability to effectively articulate analysis of works of art in order to participate in a studio critique. Capstone Learning Outcomes: Art Sample
  12. 12. ● Integration ● Research/discovery ● Information literacy* ● Critical thinking* ● Data analysis/quantitative skills* ● Writing* ● Oral communication* ● Teamwork ● Service *WASC core competency Capstone Learning Outcomes: Common Themes
  13. 13. Student Voices
  14. 14. Honors Thesis 98% Senior Seminar 94% Independent Study 94% Community Project/Internship 85% Capstone Experience Provided “Strong Intellectual Challenges” ( “agree” strongly or somewhat) Source: 2011 UCLA Senior Survey
  15. 15. Paper/project helped me better understand concepts in related courses 94% My instructor challenged me to do my best 92% Seminar enhanced my ability to integrate aspects of my major coursework 91% I made meaningful contributions 91% Capstone Senior Seminar Perspectives ( “agree” strongly or somewhat) Source: 2011 UCLA Senior Survey
  16. 16. “ The most memorable experience of my time at UCLA.” “ I learned to work effectively with others.” “ I became a colleague, not just a student.” “ Solidified my interest in, and desire for, graduate study.”
  17. 17. For more information…