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“What We Learned About our Program that has Nothing to do with Student Learning Outcomes-An Argument
Unformatted Document Text:  them, or that instructors make clear the citation style expected in their particular course. Again, the clearer expectations are transmitted to students, the better the performance of students. ●Reliance on web site information only was quite common [this does NOT refer to JSTOR for example, but rather www.wikipedia.com for example]. Unless specifically required by the professor [which the assessment committee gauged based upon the prompts given to them by the instructors] students largely relied on the internet to do their research, rather than books or academic journal articles. Although some instructors expected their students to use the internet as a primary source of research information, others did not. The assessment committee suggested to the Department that instructors be more specific in their assignment prompts as to which sort of information is acceptable and which information is NOT acceptable on student works. This of course enters into the area on information competence. Although not discipline specific, knowledge of the value of information should be part of a liberal arts education. V. What do faculty members think about PDA? A common tone throughout much of the literature on assessment references faculty attitudes toward it, which is not always positive. What do faculty members think about PDA? We undertook the effort to find this out, not only because it seems like this has not been studied, but also because we wanted to determine the extent to which faculty members understood and supported the program. To do so, we surveyed faculty members at the end of January 2008. We sent a copy of the survey via e-mail to all faculty who taught in the Department, regardless of tenure status. We then put a hard copy of the survey in the box of faculty members, following up with an e-mail reminder to complete the survey. Of 28 faculty members, 17 returned the survey, for a response rate of approximately 61%. We asked faculty members how familiar they were with the assessment program and the student learning outcomes, how much work they found the assessment program to be [both as a member of the assessment committee and as 11

Authors: Cole, Alexandra. and DeMaio, Jennifer.
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them, or that instructors make clear the citation style expected in their particular
course. Again, the clearer expectations are transmitted to students, the better the
performance of students.
●Reliance on web site information only was quite common [this does NOT refer to
JSTOR for example, but rather
for example]. Unless specifically
required by the professor [which the assessment committee gauged based upon the
prompts given to them by the instructors] students largely relied on the internet to do
their research, rather than books or academic journal articles. Although some
instructors expected their students to use the internet as a primary source of research
information, others did not. The assessment committee suggested to the Department
that instructors be more specific in their assignment prompts as to which sort of
information is acceptable and which information is NOT acceptable on student works.
This of course enters into the area on information competence. Although not
discipline specific, knowledge of the value of information should be part of a liberal
arts education.
V. What do faculty members think about PDA?
A common tone throughout much of the literature on assessment references faculty
attitudes toward it, which is not always positive. What do faculty members think about
PDA? We undertook the effort to find this out, not only because it seems like this has not
been studied, but also because we wanted to determine the extent to which faculty
members understood and supported the program. To do so, we surveyed faculty members
at the end of January 2008. We sent a copy of the survey via e-mail to all faculty who
taught in the Department, regardless of tenure status. We then put a hard copy of the
survey in the box of faculty members, following up with an e-mail reminder to complete
the survey. Of 28 faculty members, 17 returned the survey, for a response rate of
approximately 61%. We asked faculty members how familiar they were with the
assessment program and the student learning outcomes, how much work they found the
assessment program to be [both as a member of the assessment committee and as
11


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