Basic Skills Courses

The departments responsible for designing and teaching the Basic Skills courses are also given the responsibility for assessing the outcomes in terms of individual students and for assessing the training provided to those who teach the courses. Statements from the three departments regarding how they accomplish such assessment are attached to this document. The General Education Committee reviews these procedures periodically, in discussion with the program directors from the concerned departments.

In addition, during the appropriate part of the assessment cycle, the three departments report summary statistics to the General Education Committee to aid in the assessment of the overall program. These include: number of students who have taken the courses, course grade distributions, exit/final exam grade distributions, and whatever other measures they have accumulated.

For instance, the Elliott School of Communications reports the results of their pre-test/post-test of students’ self-reported attitudes regarding speech competency and both the instrument used and the cumulative scores for the persuasive policy speech required of all students in Communication 111.

The English Department reports numbers of students in the composition courses and the grade distributions in the courses and on the exit exams.

There is no required Basic Skills course for library research, but the librarians are developing means of assessing student skills using an on-line self-test. Librarians also provide in-class instruction at the request of course instructors.

Introductory, Further Studies and Issues & Perspectives Courses

Assessment of the rest of the general education program (including further assessment of the basic skills courses) is accomplished through: