» Why do we do it?

Learning outcomes assessment at Chapman is designed to serve students, faculty, departments and administrators in achieving our academic vision.  There are many reasons for assessment:

  1. First and foremost, students have the right to know why they must take a particular course, how it will help them achieve their goals, and what they will learn in a course or program, or by attending a particular institution.  Learning outcome statements at the course and program levels help students understand these connections.  Curriculum maps show how the outcomes of courses are aligned with the outcomes of their larger program or learning goals.
  2. Designing learning outcome statements for their courses and programs help faculty make sure that the curriculum is coherent and builds toward common abilities, skills or behaviors that they would like to see in their students upon completion.  Assessing student achievement of learning outcomes help faculty understand whether their courses and programs are effective.  Assessment data can inform whether a course or program is functioning properly, or needs to be redesigned.
  3. Defining and assessing learning outcomes is required by our accrediting agency, the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. WASC expects Chapman to demonstrate that its students are achieving the stated learning outcomes upon graduation.