Program: Second Language Studies (PhD)
Date: Fri Nov 16, 2018 - 1:30:16 pm
1) Program Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) and Institutional Learning Objectives (ILOs)
1. SLS PhD graduates will develop advanced understanding in three of the four broad areas of SLS: (a) Second Language Analysis; (b) Second Language Use; (c) Second Languages Learning; (d) Second Language Education.
(1. Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge in one or more general subject areas related to, but not confined to, a specific area of interest., 3. Apply research methodology and/or scholarly inquiry techniques specific to one’s field of study., 4. Critically analyze, synthesize, and utilize information and data related to one’s field of study., 6. Conduct research or projects as a responsible and ethical professional, including consideration of and respect for other cultural perspectives.)
2. SLS PhD graduates will develop mastery of research methods appropriate to their specific area of expertise in SLS.
(1. Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge in one or more general subject areas related to, but not confined to, a specific area of interest., 2. Demonstrate understanding of research methodology and techniques specific to one’s field of study., 3. Apply research methodology and/or scholarly inquiry techniques specific to one’s field of study., 4. Critically analyze, synthesize, and utilize information and data related to one’s field of study., 6. Conduct research or projects as a responsible and ethical professional, including consideration of and respect for other cultural perspectives.)
3. SLS PhD graduates will demonstrate a commitment to professional engagement and will be recognized for excellence in their selected areas of SLS: (a) Presenting at conferences; (b) Publishing research; (c) Teaching in area of expertise; (d) Assuming a leadership role in an area of expertise.
(5. Proficiently communicate and disseminate information in a manner relevant to the field and intended audience., 6. Conduct research or projects as a responsible and ethical professional, including consideration of and respect for other cultural perspectives., 7. Interact professionally with others.)
4. SLS PhD graduates should be prepared for a variety of academic and professional career paths, and in particular for tenure-track university positions.
(3. Apply research methodology and/or scholarly inquiry techniques specific to one’s field of study., 4. Critically analyze, synthesize, and utilize information and data related to one’s field of study., 5. Proficiently communicate and disseminate information in a manner relevant to the field and intended audience., 6. Conduct research or projects as a responsible and ethical professional, including consideration of and respect for other cultural perspectives., 7. Interact professionally with others.)
2) Your program's SLOs are published as follows. Please update asneeded.
Student Handbook. URL, if available online: https://www.hawaii.edu/sls/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/180522_SLS-Academic-Handbook_rvsdNov2016.pdf
Information Sheet, Flyer, or Brochure URL, if available online:
UHM Catalog. Page Number:
Course Syllabi. URL, if available online:
3) Please review, add, replace, or delete the existing curriculum map.
- File (03/16/2020)
4) For your program, the percentage of courses that have course SLOs explicitly stated on the syllabus, a website, or other publicly available document is as follows. Please update as needed.
5) Does the program have learning achievement results for its program SLOs? (Example of achievement results: "80% of students met expectations on SLO 1.")(check one):
Yes, on some(1-50%) of the program SLOs
Yes, on most(51-99%) of the program SLOs
Yes, on all(100%) of the program SLOs
6) Did your program engage in any program learning assessment activities between June 1, 2015 and October 31, 2018?
No (skip to question 17)
7) What best describes the program-level learning assessment activities that took place for the period June 1, 2015 to October 31, 2018? (Check all that apply.)
Collect/evaluate student work/performance to determine SLO achievement
Collect/analyze student self-reports of SLO achievement via surveys, interviews, or focus groups
Use assessment results to make programmatic decisions (e.g., change course content or pedagogy, design new course, hiring)
No (skip to question 17)
Investigate other pressing issue related to student learning achievement for the program (explain in question 7)
8) Briefly explain the assessment activities that took place.
1. Doctoral students’ progress in the program is monitored using course evaluation procedures primarily involving large term projects. Particularly important major assessments related to student learning outcomes (and the educational factors that contribute to them) naturally include the comprehensive exam and the dissertation itself The dissertation assessment also includes the public presentation and defense components, as well as a formal comprehensive exam and proposal development. We interpret the dissertation for program evaluation purposes as follows:
The dissertation reflects each doctoral student’s ability to: (a) engage in thorough-going research that is relevant to the field of SLS;; (b) persist in long-term scholarly projects, from inception to dissemination;; and (c) produce high- quality publishable writing. This three-part analysis allows assessment to offer valuable insights into the extent to which students have achieved primary learning outcomes (notably those listed in the initial answers above). Each of these assessments involves multiple stages of proposal, research, writing, feedback, and completion.
2. Graduating student survey: In the College of LLL exit survey, questions have been generated specifically for the PhD program, and these questions target both the levels of learning in key outcomes areas and the perception of professional value of these outcomes. In addition to these department-internal questions, SLS stakeholders have advised the College of LLL on the design of general questions to ask of all graduating students in the college
3. Alumni survey and review. A listing of doctoral graduates is maintained on the website and the department tries to stay in regular contact with these students, to a greater extent than MA graduates. In particular, the employment placement of recent doctoral students is closely analyzed and provides input into curriculum and learning objectives. Our ability to collect and utilize this data is improving as we strengthen alumni relations in general
4. Annual doctoral student progress report: Advisors of doctoral students, in consultation with doctoral students, complete an advising and progress form each semester, which includes a listing of professional presentations along with an indication of progress towards graduation. This is a formal instrument and consultation process which allows for formative evaluation of students’ achievement of learning outcomes as well as providing input into the adequacy of those outcomes.
9) What types of evidence did the program use as part of the assessment activities checked in question 7? (Check all that apply.)
Assignment/exam/paper completed as part of regular coursework and used for program-level assessment
Capstone work product (e.g., written project or non-thesis paper)
Exam created by an external organization (e.g., professional association for licensure)
Exit exam created by the program
IRB approval of research
Oral performance (oral defense, oral presentation, conference presentation)
Portfolio of student work
Publication or grant proposal
Qualifying exam or comprehensive exam for program-level assessment in addition to individual student evaluation (graduate level only)
Supervisor or employer evaluation of student performance outside the classroom (internship, clinical, practicum)
Thesis or dissertation used for program-level assessment in addition to individual student evaluation
Alumni survey that contains self-reports of SLO achievement
Employer meetings/discussions/survey/interview of student SLO achievement
Interviews or focus groups that contain self-reports of SLO achievement
Student reflective writing assignment (essay, journal entry, self-assessment) on their SLO achievement.
Student surveys that contain self-reports of SLO achievement
Assessment-related such as assessment plan, SLOs, curriculum map, etc.
Program or course materials (syllabi, assignments, requirements, etc.)
10) State the number of students (or persons) who submitted evidence that was evaluated. If applicable, please include the sampling technique used.
All doctoral students are required to take part in all of the assessment procedures. We have had an enrollment of approximately 35 doctoral students per year since 2015.
11) Who interpreted or analyzed the evidence that was collected? (Check all that apply.)
Ad hoc faculty group
Persons or organization outside the university
Advisors (in student support services)
Students (graduate or undergraduate)
Other: graduate chair
12) How did they evaluate, analyze, or interpret the evidence? (Check all that apply.)
Used professional judgment (no rubric or scoring guide used)
Compiled survey results
Used qualitative methods on interview, focus group, open-ended response data
External organization/person analyzed data (e.g., external organization administered and scored the nursing licensing exam)
13) Summarize the results of the assessment activities checked in question 7. For example, report the percentage of students who achieved each SLO.
Overall, the results of our assessment efforts in the PhD program are positive, indicating that the program is functioning well. Advising remains an area that we can always improve upon, as there is some variation due to the idiosyncratic nature of PhD advising by individual faculty members. However, graduate faculty meetings have resolved any problems that have arisen.
14) What best describes how the program used the results? (Check all that apply.)
Course changes (course content, pedagogy, courses offered, new course, pre-requisites, requirements)
Personnel or resource allocation changes
Program policy changes (e.g., admissions requirements, student probation policies, common course evaluation form)
Students' out-of-course experience changes (advising, co-curricular experiences, program website, program handbook, brown-bag lunches, workshops)
Celebration of student success!
Results indicated no action needed because students met expectations
Use is pending (typical reasons: insufficient number of students in population, evidence not evaluated or interpreted yet, faculty discussions continue)
15) Please briefly describe how the program used the results.
The SLS doctoral program, within the broad guidelines and learning objectives alluded to earlier, is a flexible program whose educational success substantially depends on individual relationships of a mentoring and advising nature between doctoral student and dissertation chair. A doctoral student’s advisor, normally the dissertation chair, monitors student progress and achievement of learning objectives on an ongoing, individually tailored basis and is in a position to make course corrections early on the basis of any observed inadequacies in learning. Nonetheless, changes to the doctoral program have included adding course options (e.g., SLS 799, which allows students to practice their undergraduate teaching alongside a faculty member). In addition, students have been limited to one SLS 699 (directed reading) so as to encourage them to take graded courses. Student success has been better celebrated through the creation of a SLS FaceBook page and more updates on the SLS website. Starting in 2017, the graduate chair began offering welcome orientations specifically designed for new PhD students as well. This provided more common foundational knowledge among the new students which had been left up to the advisors previously.
16) Beyond the results, were there additional conclusions or discoveries? This can include insights about assessment procedures, teaching and learning, and great achievements regarding program assessment in this reporting period.
It was noted that there is more variation than previously known among faculty advising practices through grad faculty meetings. These were not deemed problematic, however.
17) If the program did not engage in assessment activities, please justify.