|James R. Woolen [a1] [a2]|
Ferris State University [u1] [u2]
Big Rapids, Michigan, USA [c1] [c2]
Furthermore, with the lack of standardized curricula for continuous improvement purposes, it is difficult to assess local outcomes against regional and national benchmarks. In an attempt to assess student learning outcomes, over 40 colleges and universities mapped their courses to the IS 2002 model curriculum learning units, participated in the creation of exam items, and tested both the exam and the internet-based management and delivery system. Of those schools, some are using the results for regional or program accreditation preparation, some are meeting state assessment requirements, and some are using the data for curriculum improvements; however, most are using the exam data for a combination of the above goals.
From an administrative perspective, issues were encountered along the way. Some gaps in knowledge among students were highlighted in the testing assessment, and strategies need to be developed to address this gap. Another issue is the various competing and collaborative models for IS curriculum within Schools of Business and within Schools of Information Systems. The pressure to address emerging skills and knowledge requirements within the IS profession (computer security, Web development, and networking design) add to the complexity of redesigning curricula to meet market needs and to provide appropriate outcomes assessment. There is also the issue of certifications, and how do we address these certification requirements in the academic setting?
The panel consists of department chairs/heads, curricula coordinators, and academic administrators. They will share their experiences from an administrative perspective on such issues as: achieving faculty buy-in for an assessment process; motivating faculty to reengineer the IS curricula to reflect IT/IS market skill needs; overcoming years of history between unionized faculty and administration; and many other administrative issues in achieving a viable assessment of student learning outcomes.
Keywords: outcome assessment, accreditation, exit assessment, continuous improvement, standardized curricula
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