Results of Assessment
2003-2004 (submitted 05/20/04)
The program continues to suffer in maintaining continuity for its assessment plan because of an unfortunate succession of secretaries. Nonetheless, we have achieved the goals specified in the Fall. We collected and analyzed significantly more papers than Fall 2003. We assisted the secretary in collecting data from core and cross-listed courses. We completed the outcomes grid for Senior Seminar. And we met and are completing the 2003-2004 data May, 2004.
- Samples of student writing from two core courses;
- Papers from two cross-listed courses.
Analysis of the Data:
A committee, consisting of Diane Krantz, Maria Parrilla de Kokal, and Sandra Powell, met in May of 2004 to analyze the data collected. We had papers from Introduction to Women’s Studies, the Senior Seminar, Psychology of Diversity, and Perspectives in Women’s Literature . The essay of our graduating senior provided good data concerning the program.
- Sample self analyses from Introduction to Women’s Studies, WS 2050, reveal some increase in awareness of social, global, and work place issues relating to women and of the exploitation of women’s sexuality in different circumstances. The nature of the assignment collected precluded its meeting other goals. The papers thus met program assessment goal 1.
- The paper from a single student who did the Senior Seminar, WS 4900, demonstrated the ability of the student to focus on a topic (in this case the program as a whole), thereby meeting goal 4 for program assessment. The student attests to being stimulated to think critically as well as to achieving a new world-view. She found 2050 excellent preparation, in its rigor, for other Women Studies courses. Feminist theories was thought-provoking and provided in-depth analyses of feminisms. Her research methodologies course provided a forum for deep, insightful discussions of women’s issues. A weakness in the essay was the lack of concrete examples of what she had learned. Again the student praised the faculty.
- Essays from Psychology of Diversity students showed their ability to focus successfully on one aspect of a character in the conflict situations they analyzed. That focus showed recognition of women’s diversity according to one criteria. The weakness in the papers was that students seemed unable to see past one aspect of diversity most salient to them in order to appreciate that the women studied belonged to multiple minority and/or oppressed groups.
- We assessed two different assignments for Perspectives in Women’s Literature, Engl 2710. Daily literary journals show students’ ability to analyze various pieces of literature from a gender perspective. Students recognize different types of oppression and silencing as well as self-fulfillment and achievement in differing time periods and geographic locales.
Student essays required an in-depth analysis of literature and/or a film dealing with women’s oppression. Papers varied in how well students wrote, but most students produced focused and coherent essays that used evidence from the text to support their analyses. The majority were also able to connect ideas and concepts about oppression and patriarchy as these played out in the pieces analyzed. As a whole the two assignments showed that students succeeded in attaining goals specified as 4, 5, and 6.
Program changes to be implemented in 2004-2005 are as follows:
- Remind faculty early of the stated goals of the different courses they are teaching and the types of assessment expected for those courses.
- Call for sample papers several times each semester.
- Involve additional faculty in the assessment process.