Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

General Education Learning Outcomes Assessment for Continuous Improvement
by Coe, Geselle Y., D.Mgt., University of Maryland University College, 2019, 149; 27735375
Abstract (Summary)

For the last 30 years, student learning outcomes assessment has contributed to shaping higher education priorities and objectives. Educators, accreditors, and external stakeholders alike have recognized the exigency of measuring the knowledge and skills students can demonstrate throughout their academic careers. Assessment of learning outcomes is especially crucial due to the changing landscape of the 21st century. Although student learning outcomes assessment has gravitated to the forefront in recent years, higher education administrators and faculty still struggle to determine the most effective ways to utilize all of the data that are generated by outcomes assessment to enhance student learning (Association of American Colleges & Universities [AAC&U], 2009; Banta, 2001; Bers, 2008; Hutchings, 2011; Kinzie, 2010; Roscoe,


The component of higher education curriculum that has proven the most challenging to assess effectively has been general education outcomes. This is primarily because general education outcomes are derived from a variety of student assignments across several disciplines, which makes the results difficult to analyze (Roscoe, 2017). This dissertation explored the background and context of the national assessment movement, with a focus on general education.

A systematic review of the literature was conducted in order to gather and evaluate relevant trends in the application of general education assessment results to improve learning in general education fields. The systematic review revealed pertinent conclusions: the level of collaboration between discipline leaders and institutional researchers must be significantly high in order for general education assessment results to lead to meaningful improvement; faculty involvement in the assessment process is more readily garnered when the assessment builds on initiatives that they already embrace; administrators must make a realistic commitment to

General Education Learning Outcomes Assessment for Continuous Improvement

providing funding for assessment resources; and students should be made aware of how assessment results can be utilized to improve their learning experiences in college. These were the major findings of the current study.

Finally, a continuous improvement model is presented, based on the collection of best practices gathered from the research studies. The conceptual model presents implications for faculty development and creative collaboration, assessment plan budgeting, general education program re-evaluation, and student awareness.

Assessment of student learning outcomes is a wholistic process that educators have attempted to accomplish in silos for many years. The new research on outcomes assessment reveals the inherent collaborative nature of any assessment plan for continuous improvement.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Nunley, Charlene R
Commitee: Keir, Patricia, Luan, Jing
School: University of Maryland University College
Department: Doctor of Management
School Location: United States -- Maryland
Source: DAI-A 81/8(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Higher education, Higher Education Administration, Educational leadership
Keywords: Closing the loop, Continuous improvement, General education outcomes, Quality assurance, Student learning outcomes assessment, Summative assessment
Publication Number: 27735375
ISBN: 9781392647202
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