Wednesday, April 24th, 2024

Why We Should Care about Middle State; Standards 3 and 5

Standard 3 relates quite keenly to students because it is about the design and delivery of the student learning experience.

This is the next in a series of articles on the Middle States working groups. The purpose is to introduce the campus community to the work of each group as they prepare for a Middle States team visit to campus in spring 2020. Drs. Lynn Marquez, professor of geology and General Education Coordinator; and George Drake, Dean of the College of Education and Human Services are working on Standard 3 – Design and Delivery of the Student Learning Experience; and Standard 5 – Educational Effectiveness Assessment.

“Standard 3 relates quite keenly to students because it is about the design and delivery of the student learning experience,” explains Drake. “To the extent that we address this standard we will be providing evidence of the richness of the educational experiences we are providing to students.”

“Since a quality student learning experience is dependent on the guidance and direction of faculty, Standard 3 also relates to faculty. In this sense, their expertise and contributions are integral to a quality experience,” says Drake. “Standard 5 pertains very much to faculty and staff who have the responsibility to design and execute means of assessing the effectiveness of programs, and of ensuring that the evidence produced is used to make and document improvements and ensure quality.”

Currently the working groups are researching lines of inquiry. “For Standard 3, we are examining the extent to which our curricula allows us to meet our mission, address local and global needs, and engage students both in the classroom and in real world contexts.  We are also interested in identifying our capacity to be innovative in teaching and learning,” says Drake “For Standard 5, we are interested in learning more about how programs identify and use evidence of effectiveness. What evidence is used to improve the learning experience for a variety of different kinds of learners? How do learning outcomes established by programs comport with local and global needs? How are programs using MU tools (e.g., dashboards) to seek continuous improvement?

By the end of the process Drake and Marquez hope they and their working group members have characterized the nature of the educational experience at MU. “We will use data and evidence to help us imagine ways we can make it even better, and to provide evidence to Middle States (and reflect on it ourselves) on how we produce evidence to accomplish these important aspects of our mission,” says Drake.

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