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Faculty ‘Academy’ Brainstorms Assessment of Students’ Headway

Health Sciences faculty member Mary Jo Saxe facilitates conversation.
Health Sciences faculty member Mary Jo Saxe facilitates conversation.

A half-day Assessment Academy was held in the Bush Campus Center on Friday, focusing on a new core educational curriculum and effective ways to assess student progress in key areas of learning that include critical thinking, communication skills, and analytical and scientific literacy. Joanna K. Flynn, associate professor of mathematics and chair of the Core Curriculum Implementation Committee, began the sessions with an overview of the framework and goals of the new core curriculum. Mary Jo Saxe, associate professor of dental hygiene and chair of Penn College’s Quality Through Assessment Committee, followed with a discussion about assessment of general education and the integration of core goals and their appraisal within students’ majors. Justin M. Ingram, assistant professor of biology and head of the Science Department, led a conversation about practical ways to develop common evaluation tools, and Christopher H. Van Stavoren, assistant professor in automotive, presented a practical assessment example of a technical skill in an automotive course, with suggestions about best practices that apply in other fields.