ERIC Number: EJ936578
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Reference Count: 1
Learning about Learning Outcomes: A Liberal Arts Professor Assesses
Fort, Andrew O.
Liberal Education, v97 n1 p56-60 Win 2011
Although the author has been teaching for over a quarter century, he was never trained in, nor truly understood, "outcomes assessment." He regarded it as a task to be completed for an outside accreditor that had little relation to his real "liberal arts" goals for students. Those goals include teaching critical self-awareness, developing empathetic understanding of others, realizing people exist in and are shaped by their historical context, and in particular, comprehending the disciplinary ways of thinking found in religious studies. He had no sense that assessment could actually benefit him as a teacher. Further, assessment always came as an uncompensated addition to his already busy schedule. In this article, the author describes how his thoughts about the value of measuring outcomes have changed over time, but there has been no single "conversion moment." Incrementally and cumulatively, he has begun truly to see the point of focusing on student learning, and that doing so has improved his teaching and his students' learning.
Descriptors: Religion Studies, Liberal Arts, College Faculty, Teacher Attitudes, Outcomes of Education, Educational Objectives, History, Educational Improvement, Student Evaluation
Association of American Colleges and Universities. 1818 R Street NW, Washington, DC 20009. Tel: 800-297-3775; Tel: 202-387-3760; Fax: 202-265-9532; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://www.aacu.org/publications/index.cfm
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A