Department of Communication Studies

Undergraduate Student Outcomes Assessment

Department of Communication Studies

Student Outcomes Assessment Plan

December 2006

 

Communication Program

Under the leadership of the Department of Communication Studies’ Student Outcomes Assessment Committee, the department approved five department-wide goals for the department in November 2005, consistent with the department’s mission and programs offered.  Each of the undergraduate programs then selected two learning outcomes on which they will focus over the next three years.  The goals and program outcomes are listed below.

 

Goal 1 History/TheoryUnderstanding the historical development of theory and scholarship within the discipline/profession.

1a. Understand the diversity in and evolution of theories of human communication.

1b. Apply appropriate theories to interpret and analyze verbal, nonverbal, and mediated messages, texts, and/or interactions.

 

Goal 2 Research MethodsUnderstanding appropriate methodologies to develop knowledge & to examine questions within the discipline/profession.

 2a. Understand various research methods and their role in knowledge construction.

2b. Use ethical, logical, and evidential criteria in designing research and sharing research findings that link communication theory and practice.

 

Goal 3 Ethics: Understanding the ethical/legal issues within the discipline/industry and adhering to its ethical standards.  Understanding and exemplifying the values that individuals within the discipline/profession share. 

 3a. Develop, articulate, critically reflect on, and defend one’s ethical standards.

3b. Thoughtfully apply ethical standards to one’s communication with others, and in the treatment of participants in research studies.

 

Goal 4 Culture: Understanding the interconnections among communication, community, and culture.  

4a. Understand the interdependencies of culture and communication in dyads, groups, organizations, and communities.

4b. Identify and critically analyze communication rules and patterns in texts generated by diverse communities.

 

Goal 5 SkillsUnderstanding and applying professional and personal skills in relevant contexts.

5a. Display oral and written communication skills by critically evaluating information, analyzing structure, synthesizing points of view, developing arguments, and supporting positions.

5b. Apply interpersonal, group, and organization concepts and theories to personal interaction.

In conjunction with the calendar guidelines specified by CHFA’s Student Outcome Assessment Committee, the program then came up with a plan for assessing the outcomes on the following timeline:  Goal 1 will be assessed during the Fall 2006, semester; goals 2 and 3 will be assessed during 2007; goals 4 and 5 will be assessed during 2008 (see planning grid in Appendix B).  The program will use portfolio artifacts as a direct measure of the respective learning outcomes and a self-assessment measure (indirect measure) developed and pilot tested online this Spring with graduating seniors (cf. Appendix A). 

 

 

Electronic Media Program

Under the leadership of the Department of Communication Studies’ Student Outcomes Assessment Committee, the department approved five department-wide goals for the department in November 2005, consistent with the department’s mission and programs offered.  Each of the undergraduate programs then selected two learning outcomes on which they will focus over the next three years.  The goals and program outcomes are listed below. 

 

Goal 1 History/TheoryUnderstanding the historical development of theory and scholarship within the discipline/profession.

 1a. Understand the historical development of electronic media and media related industries.

1b. Understand theories that can be applied to electronic media content.

 

Goal 2 Research MethodsUnderstanding appropriate methodologies to develop knowledge & to examine questions within the discipline/profession.

 2a. Identify research methods used to analyze electronic media.

2b. Critically analyze the content of electronic media.

 

Goal 3 Ethics: Understanding the ethical/legal issues within the discipline/industry and adhering to its ethical standards.  Understanding and exemplifying the values that individuals within the discipline/profession share. 

 3a. Identify ethical frameworks that can be used when facing ethical dilemmas.

3b. Identify codes of conduct that govern the operation of electronic media industries.

 

Goal 4 Culture: Understanding the interconnections among communication, community, and culture.

4a. Know and understand social roles filled by electronic media.

4b. Know and understand the relationship between media production and audience perceptions of media content.

 

Goal 5 SkillsUnderstanding and applying professional and personal skills in relevant contexts.

5a. Have a basic working knowledge of audio and video production systems.

5b. Have a functional knowledge of language and syntax of audio and video.

 

In conjunction with the calendar guidelines specified by CHFA’s Student Outcome Assessment Committee, the program then came up with a plan for assessing the outcomes on the following timeline:  Goal 1 will be assessed during the Fall 2006, semester; goals 2 and 3 will be assessed during 2007; goals 4 and 5 will be assessed during 2008 (see Appendix C for planning grid).  The program will use portfolio artifacts as a direct measure of the respective learning outcomes and a self-assessment measure (indirect measure) developed and pilot tested online this Spring with graduating seniors (cf. Appendix A).  In addition, the program will continue to use a paper-and-pencil self-assessment survey as an indirect measure for their majors.

 

Mass Communication Program

Under the leadership of the Department of Communication Studies’ Student Outcomes Assessment Committee, the department approved five department-wide goals for the department in November 2005, consistent with the department’s mission and programs offered.  Each of the undergraduate programs then selected two learning outcomes on which they will focus over the next three years.  The goals and program outcomes are listed below.

 

Goal 1 History/TheoryUnderstanding the historical development of theory and scholarship within the discipline/profession.

 1a. Identify the historical foundation upon which the profession of public relations has been built.

1b. Identify and discuss appropriate theories to explain and interpret the theoretical underpinnings of the practice of public relations.

 

Goal 2 Research MethodsUnderstanding appropriate methodologies to develop knowledge & to examine questions within the discipline/profession.

 2a. Identify appropriate research methods used in the practice of public relations.

2b. Demonstrate an understanding of communication methods used by public relations practitioners.

 

Goal 3 Ethics: Understanding the ethical/legal issues within the discipline/industry and adhering to its ethical standards.  Understanding and exemplifying the values that individuals within the discipline/profession share. 

 3a. Demonstrate knowledge of basic principles of the law of public communication.

3b. Provide analysis of an ethical practical case study.

 

 

Goal 4 Culture: Understanding the interconnections among communication, community, and culture.  

 4a. Interview community members, analyze findings, identify problems and offer solutions.

4b. Gain a thorough understanding of the practice of global public relations, comparative media systems and technology.

 

Goal 5 SkillsUnderstanding and applying professional and personal skills in relevant contexts.

 5a. Gain a thorough working knowledge of the principles of design and layout of newspapers, newsletters and magazines.

5b. Publish news/feature stories prior to graduation.

 

In conjunction with the calendar guidelines specified by CHFA’s Student Outcome Assessment Committee, the program then came up with a plan for assessing the outcomes on the following timeline:  Goal 1 will be assessed during the Fall 2006, semester; goals 2 and 3 will be assessed during 2007; goals 4 and 5 will be assessed during 2008 (see planning grid in Appendix D).  The program will use portfolio artifacts as a direct measure of the respective learning outcomes and a self-assessment measure (indirect measure) developed and pilot tested online this Spring with graduating seniors (cf. Appendix A).  The program also plans to also use an exit exam for their Public Relations students (direct measure currently under development & pilot testing). 

 

Appendix C

Communication Studies Outcomes Assessment Planning Grid – Electronic Media Program

 

Goal

Learning Outcome

Where is the outcome aligned in the curriculum?

How will the outcome be assessed?

When will the outcome be assessed?

Who will assess the outcome?

Goal I

 

History/Theory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2006

Students shall understand the historical development of electronic media and media related industries.

48J:002 Mass Comm & Society

48E:139 Electronic Media Industries

Survey questions 15, 26, 27, & 31-33.

Student portfolios

The last week class of each semester

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

 

 

Students shall understand theories that can be applied to electronic media content.

48E:021 Electronic Media Literacy

48E:121 Electronic Media & Culture

48E:141 Electronic Media: Process & Effects

48E:123 Television Form, Content, Criticism

Survey questions 23, 25, 28, & 8-14.

Student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

Examples of student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects will be collected by individual instructors as appropriate.

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Examples are the portfolios, research papers of junior and senior students

Goal II

Research Methods

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring

2007

Students shall be able to identify research methods used to analyze electronic media.

48E:121 Electronic Media & Culture

48E:141 Electronic Media: Process & Effects

48E:123 Television Form, Content, Criticism

Survey questions 24, 25, & 27

Student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

Examples of student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects will be collected by individual instructors as appropriate.

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Examples are the portfolios, research papers of junior and senior students

 

Students shall be able to critically analyze the content of electronic media.

48E:121 Electronic Media & Culture

48E:141 Electronic Media: Process & Effects

48E:123 Television Form, Content, Criticism

Survey questions 20 & 22

Student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

Examples of student portfolios, research papers, & senior projects will be collected by individual instructors as appropriate.

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Examples are the portfolios, research papers of junior and senior students

Goal III

Ethics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring

2007

Students shall be able to identify ethical frameworks that can be used when facing ethical dilemmas.

48C:128 Ethics Communication

48E:195 Senior Seminar: Electronic Media

Survey questions 29 & 30

 

Examples of test items

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

The exam samples from the Ethics class

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

The students taking the exams

 

Students shall be able to identify codes of conduct that govern the operation of electronic media industries.

 

 

 

48C:128 Ethics Communication

48E:195 Senior Seminar: Electronic Media

Survey questions 29 & 30

 

Examples of test items

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

The exam samples from the Ethics class

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

The students taking the exams

 

Goal

Learning Outcome

Where is the outcome aligned in the curriculum?

How will the outcome be assessed?

When will the outcome be assessed?

Who will assess the outcome?

Goal IV

 

Culture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring 2008

 

Students shall know and understand social roles filled by electronic media.

 

 

48E:021 Electronic Media Literacy

48E:121 Electronic Media & Culture

48E:141 Electronic Media: Process & Effects

48E:123 Television Form, Content, Criticism

Survey questions 8-13

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

 

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

 

 

Students shall know and understand the relationship between media production and audience perceptions of media content.

 

 

 

 

48E:021 Electronic Media Literacy

48E:121 Electronic Media & Culture

48E:141 Electronic Media: Process & Effects

48E:123 Television Form, Content, Criticism

Survey questions 14, 20, 25, & 28

 

Examples of student projects or research papers

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

The examples will be collected by individual instructors as appropriate.

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Examples from students taking those classes 

Goal V

Skills

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring

2008

 

Students shall have a basic working knowledge of audio and video production systems.

 

48E:003 Introduction to Electronic Production

48E:112 Multimedia Production, or

48E:011 Audio Production, or 48E:013 Video Production

Survey questions 16-19, & 21

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

Examples of student portfolios and audio/video/multimedia projects

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Students in Senior Seminar, and production classes

 

Students shall have a functional knowledge of language and syntax of audio and video.

 

 

 

 

48E:003 Introduction to Electronic Production

48E:071 Beginning Writing for Electronic Media

48E:112 Multimedia Production, or

48E:011 Audio Production, or 48E:013 Video Production

Survey questions 19 & 21

The survey will be conducted in the last week class of each semester.

 

Examples of student portfolios and audio/video/multimedia projects

Survey respondents are students in the Senior Seminar class

 

Students in Senior Seminar, and production classes

 

 

 


Appendix D

Communication Studies Outcomes Assessment Planning Grid – Mass Communication Program

 

Goal

Learning Outcome

Where is the outcome aligned in the curriculum?

How will the outcome be assessed?

When will the outcome be assessed?

Who will assess the outcome?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goal I

 

History/Theory

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2006

To identify the historical foundation upon which the profession of public relations has been built.

 

 

48P:005 Principles of Public Relations

 

48J:002 Mass Communication & Society

Exam and portfolio

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies class

 

End of Semester

Students will take exam and present portfolio.

 

Exam results will be standardized by multiple choice answers.

 

Student portfolios will follow standard criteria.

 

 

 

To identify and discuss appropriate theories to explain and interpret the theoretical underpinnings of the practice of public relations.

 

 

 

 

48J:002 Mass Communication & Society

 

48P:005 Principles of Public Relations

Exam and portfolio

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies class

 

End of Semester

Students will take exam and present portfolio.

 

Exam results will be standardized by multiple choice answers.

 

Portfolio will follow standard criteria.

Goal II

Methods

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring

2007

To identify appropriate research methods used in the practice of public relations.

 

48P:005 Principles of Public Relations

 

Exam

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies class

 

 

End of Semester

Exam results will be standardized by multiple choice answers.

 

 

 

To demonstrate an understanding of communication methods used by public relations practitioners

 

 

 

 

 

 

48C:180, 183, 189 or 135 Quantitative, Qualitative, or Rhetorical Research Methods, 48P:182 Public Relations Campaign Methods

 

 

 

 

 

Exam and portfolio

survey or ethnography

Department Student Outcome Survey

 

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies class

 

 

End of Semester

 

Student portfolios will follow standard criteria.

Goal III

Ethics

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring

2007

To demonstrate knowledge of basic principles of the law of public communication.

 

48C:005 Principles of Public Relations

 

48J:132 Mass Communication Law & Ethics

 

Mass communication law and ethics exam

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

48J:132 Mass Communication Law and Ethics class

 

End of semester

Students will be graded by standardized grading procedure.

 

 

 

To provide analysis of an ethical practical case study.

 

 

 

 

 

48J:132 Mass Communication Law & Ethics

 

 

48P:188g: Public Relations: cases and Studies

Case study analysis

 

 

Portfolio

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

 

48J:132 Mass Communication Law & Ethics

 

End of Semester

 

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies—Portfolios end of semester

Case studies will be evaluated by Professor

 

 

 

Student portfolios will follow standard criteria.

 


 

Goal

Learning Outcome

Where is the outcome aligned in the curriculum?

How will the outcome be assessed?

When will the outcome be assessed?

Who will assess the outcome?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goal IV

 

Culture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring  2008

 

To interview community members, analyze findings, identify problems and offer solutions

 

48P:170 Global Public Relations

 

48P:188 Public Relations: Cases & Studies

 

Oral presentations

Written paper from narrative data

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

 

48J:007 Reporting Methodologies and Sources – Oral Presentations—Middle of Semester

 

Written papers throughout  semester

 Professor evaluates

 

 

 

To gain a thorough understanding of the practice of global public relations, comparative media systems and technology.

 

 

 

 

48J:132 Mass Communication Law & Ethics

Country report analyzing media system philosophies

 

Competitive international case studies

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

 

 

48P:170 Global Public Relations – Country report – through semester---  international case studies-- End of semester

Professor establishes criteria and evaluates

Goal V

Skills

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring 2008

 

 

To gain a thorough working knowledge of the principles of design and layout of newspapers, newsletters and magazines.

 

 

48P:173 Public Relations Writing

48P:190 Public Relations Management

48J:071 Newswriting for Print Media

48J:172 Editing and Design

48P:197 Internship

Magazine project with students’ own storied,

Photos, layout and advertisements.

Portfolio

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

 

 

48J:172 Magazine project--End of Semester

 

48P:188g Public Relations: Cases and Studies--- Portfolio--- End of Semester

 

Directed by professor

 

 

 

Student portfolios will follow standard criteria

 

To publish news/feature stories prior to graduation.

 

 

48J:071 Newswriting for Print Media

Stories

Portfolio

 

Department Student Outcome Survey

48J:071 Newswriting for Print Media and 48P:172 Public Relations Writing ---Throughout the Semester

 

48P:188g -- Portfolio

Evaluated by the Professor

 

 

Student portfolios will follow standard criteria

 

Criteria for Skills Portfolio Evaluation:

 

1) Writing Quality

2) Layout/Design

3) Organization

4) Comprehensiveness/Range of Materials

            --- theory

            ---- research methods

            ---- all other materials

5) Publication

6) Creativity

7) External recognition