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ERIC Number: EJ790787
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1041-6099
Understanding Student Learning Outcomes through Narrative Transcript Analysis: Assessing General Education in an Institution without Grades or Required Courses
Marshall, David B.; Beck, Stephen L.; Coghlan, Laura K.; Kimbro, Ernestine
Assessment Update, v17 n5 p4-5, 11 Sep-Oct 2005
The Evergreen State College is a public liberal arts college in Washington that has been named the "number one learning community" in the nation by "U.S. News & World Report." There are no grades at Evergreen; instead, faculty provide a narrative evaluation of students' performance in their courses. There are also no majors at Evergreen. Most "courses" are interdisciplinary, team-taught, multiquarter academic programs taught by a team of two to three faculty, and students typically take only one full-time program in a quarter. Students also make extensive use of opportunities for independent work through individual learning contracts or group contracts, service learning in the form of internships, and part-time offerings. A central principle of education at The Evergreen State College is that students are responsible for their own work. Because of this, Evergreen's graduation requirements are minimal; in particular, there are no specific distribution requirements for graduation. This creates challenges for assessment of learning. This article describes the six Expectations of an Evergreen graduate that were given in response to direction from accreditors to address issues of general education. The Expectations, approved by the Evergreen faculty in January 2001, address skills, habits of intellect, and traits of character that are central to an active, productive life as an individual, as a citizen, and as a member of the many overlapping communities that constitute the context of an individual's life in society. This article also presents examples of results from analysis of transcripts and of coder comments on expectation scores.
Jossey Bass. Available from John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774. Tel: 800-825-7550; Tel: 201-748-6645; Fax: 201-748-6021; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Washington