CORE 2.0 Assessment

Foundation Course

Ways of Knowing (Inquiry and Research & Creative Experience Courses)

Area Descriptions

  • Arts (IA or RA)
  • Humanities (IH or RH)
  • Natural Sciences (IN or RN)
  • Social Sciences (IS or RS)

University Seminar Assessment Plan

List of Approved Courses


Each year, the seminar directors will evaluate and assess one of the student learning outcomes (SLOs) in each of the US core offerings. All classes will assess the same SLO each year, starting with our first SLO: "Demonstrate critical thinking abilities." The remaining two outcomes will be assessed in the following years.

Semester Outcome to Be Assessed
*Spring 2013 Demonstrate critical thinking abilities
Fall 2013 Demonstrate critical thinking abilities (courses not offered Spring 13)
Fall 2013 Prepare and deliver an effective oral presentation
Fall 2014 Demonstrate analytical, creative and critical thinking in written communication

 * Several courses that fulfill the US core requirement are not offered in the spring. While we will begin the assessment this spring, we will assess the remaining seminars in Fall 2013. We will then move to a fall assessment schedule so all courses can be assessed in the fall semesters.

Sample Size and Selection of Student Work 

We will evaluate student work from 5-10% of the students enrolled in each US core offering. Student work will be selected randomly. Directors will review the course syllabus and select appropriate assignments to sample for each SLO. Directors will randomly pick students from multiple sections (when possible) and will collect the student work from instructors. Directors will alternate instructors whose students are selected, and directors will not rely upon, nor favor, any instructors over others.

Assessment Process 

Directors, current seminar faculty, and several retired faculty graduate students or faculty from other departments will participate in the assessment practice. Evaluators will score student work using a prepared, common rubric for each SLO. Evaluators will not score work from their own course, but from all other courses, with at least 2 directors evaluating work from each seminar. Once all scores have been tabulated the seminar directors will assess the scores and determine if next steps if necessary.


Each course must meet a minimum threshold. 60% of student work from each course should be at the level of "meets expectations."

Post Assessment 

If a course fails to meet the 60% threshold, the following steps will be taken:

  • Assessment of originally selected assignments will be completed by different group of individuals
  • Directors will identify another assignment to assess in the same semester.

If either or both of these options fail, representatives of the assessment team will meet with the correlating seminar directors to discuss re-assessment the following semester.

Assessment Report 

After the assessment is complete, a representative (rotated throughout the seminar directors group) will complete an assessment report and present the report to the Provost. The report will include summary scores and the sample rubric, as well as any information about courses that did not meet the threshold and subsequent steps.

College Writing Assessment Plan

Content coming soon

Quantitative Reasoning Assessment Plan


Learning Outcome 1:


  • The student demonstrates the ability to interpret the variables, parameters, and/or other specific information given in the model. The interpretation may contain minor flaws.
  • The student uses the model to draw inferences about the situation being modeled in a manner that may contain some minor flaw(s).
  • The interpretation(s) and/or inference(s) may be incomplete or inaccurate due to a minor flaw, such as a computational or copying error or mislabeling.

Not acceptable:

  • The student makes no appropriate attempt to interpret the variables, parameters, and/or other specific information given in the model due to major conceptual misunderstandings.
  • The student either attempts to use the model to make the required inference(s) and/or interpretation(s) but lacks a clear understanding of how to do so, or the student cannot use the model to make the required interpretation(s) or inference(s).

Learning Outcome 2:


  • The student understands most of the important aspects of the mathematical information and employs the appropriate representation(s) to display the mathematical information with possible minor flaws.
  • The student correctly and accurately employs most of the appropriate and required aspects of the representation to display the information. The representation may be lacking in a minor way.
  • There may be misrepresentations of the information due to a minor computational/copying error. The student uses mostly correct format, mathematical terminology, and/or language.

Not Acceptable:

  • The student does not fully understand the important aspects of the mathematical information and employs the appropriate representation(s) to display the mathematical information with major conceptual flaws.
  • The student may show some knowledge of how to employ most of the appropriate and required aspects of the representation to display the information, but the representation is lacking in a major way.
  • The representations may show some reasonable relation to the information but contain major flaws. The student may use some correct format, mathematical terminology, and/or language, but the representation is incomplete in some major conceptual way.

Learning Outcome 3:


  • The student demonstrates some understanding of the problem and/or can identify specific arithmetic, algebraic, geometric or statistical method(s) needed to solve the problem.
  • The student uses the method(s) to solve the problem. The plan for the solution is clear, logical, and evident but may be lacking in a minor way such misreading the problem, or a copying error.
  • The solution is generally correct but may contain minor flaws.

Not Acceptable:

  • The student demonstrates at best a slight understanding of the problem. The student has difficulty identifying the specific arithmetic, algebraic, geometric or statistical method(s) needed to solve the problem.
  • The student may attempt to use a method(s) that will solve the problem, but the method itself or the implementation of it is generally incorrect. The plan is not evident nor logical.
  • The solution may contain some correct aspects though there exist major conceptual flaws.


At least half of the students in each Q-core course demonstrate all three of the learning outcomes at an acceptable level.

Process for Assessing the Data

  • For each Q-course and each of the learning outcomes, special problem(s) or question)s) on the final exam will be created, appropriate for evaluation using the above rubrics.
  • Several sections of each multi-section course will be randomly selected, and the special problems from those sections will be evaluated by two faculty members. All student finals from single-section courses will be evaluated.
  • The two faculty members will review the special problems and, using the rubrics, determine whether each student demonstrates each learning outcome at an acceptable or unacceptable level.
  • The percentage of students demonstrating each learning outcome at an acceptable level will be reported to the Department Head, and this information will be archived.
  • If the threshold is not met for a particular Q-course, the supervisor and instructors for the course will meet to determine how the course should be improved.

Course Review Schedule

All learning outcomes for seven or eight Q-core courses will be assessed according to the following schedule:

2012 - 2013

  • M 133Q, Geometry and Measurement for K-8 Teachers
  • M 149Q, Secrets of the Infinite
  • M 151Q, Precalculus
  • M 161Q, Survey of Calculus
  • M 181Q, Honors Calculus I
  • STAT 217Q, Intermediate Statistical Concepts
  • PHL 236Q, Logic

2013 - 2014

  • M 147Q, Language of Mathematics
  • M 165Q, Calculus for Technology I
  • M 172Q, Calculus II
  • M 182Q, Honors Calculus II
  • M 273Q, Multivariable Calculus
  • M 283Q, Honors Multivariable Calculus
  • STAT 201Q, Statistics in the World

2014 - 2015

  • M 121Q, College Algebra
  • M 145Q, Math for the Liberal Arts
  • M 166Q, Calculus for Technology II
  • M 171Q, Calculus I
  • STAT 216Q, Introduction to Statistics
  • STAT 226Q, Honors Introduction to Statistics


Proposed Assessment Strategy

  • Each course instructor will be required to add a section to his/her course proposal – both for new course proposal and for renewals – that addresses what type of assignment will be used to assess the effectiveness of the course in meeting the stated learning outcomes for Diversity. This might include a specific exam, paper assignment, or, in the case of the language courses, a verbal communication requirement. Sample questions for an exam/paper/other assignment could be as follows:
  • Using [insert course and subject specific material], explain the concept of race and how it is culturally constructed. Discuss how this affects modern views and understandings of race in [insert subject specific material]?
  • Using [insert course and subject specific material], explain the concept of divinity and how it is culturally constructed. Discuss how these varying understandings affect interactions between societies and religions and how they influence conflict in [insert subject specific material]?

Or, for language classes, a sample assessment assignment might address the following question:

  • Does the student’s performance on the exam/assignment indicate that he/she understands, reads, speaks, and writes the language at a level appropriate to the term of study?
  • For each class, a random sampling of 5-10% the students who write the assignment will be taken for assessment. 
  • Because of the diverse nature of Diversity, the actual assessment will be carried out by the Department in which the course is offered, as these faculty members, are, by definition, the most qualified to address the subject matter of the course. Each class is already in an assessment rotation schedule established by each Department as part of its own assessment policy for their degree offerings. When a class with a D designation is assessed for the Department, the assessing faculty member (e.g., Japanese language instructor, anthropologist, historian, etc.), who is not the department member actually teaching the class that semester, will also assess the effectiveness of the class for the Diversity learning outcomes.
  • To demonstrate that the course has successfully met the proposed learning outcomes, two-thirds of the assessment group (66%) must pass the assignment with a C grade or higher.

Contemporary Issues in Science

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Research & Creative Experience

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