Program: Geography (MA)
Date: Tue Nov 10, 2020 - 2:44:55 pm
1) Program Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) and Institutional Learning Objectives (ILOs)
1. Develop a basic understanding of the discipline of geography as a whole, its relationship with cognate fields, and its contribution to knowledge. This entails a working knowledge of the general literature in geography, and familiarity with the structure of the discipline, including the principal sub-disciplines, the main philosophical approaches and unique geographical concepts.
(1. Demonstrate comprehensive knowledge in one or more general subject areas related to, but not confined to, a specific area of interest.)
2. Develop a detailed understanding of at least one specialty within the discipline. This entails thorough knowledge of a particular literature, its major works, its historical development and its main theories and empirical findings.
3. Develop an ability to do independent research of professional quality. This requires gaining theoretical and practical knowledge of specific research techniques and demonstrating this knowledge in the conduct of original research.
(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.)
4. Develop an ability to communicate the results of research in both oral and written forms. This requires the demonstration of skills in oral presentations and formal papers within the context of graduate course work. The thesis ultimately provides evidence of the ability to write up research and, although a formal presentation and defense is not required, students are strongly encouraged to present their work orally to the department.
(5. Proficiently communicate and disseminate information in a manner relevant to the field and intended audience., 7. Interact professionally with others.)
5. Develop a familiarity with, and respect for the codes of practice established for academic study, including academic honesty and research ethics (as outlined in the Appendix of the UHM General Graduate and Information Catalog [www.catalog.hawaii.edu/pdf] and the Student Conduct Code in the Schedule of Courses ). All students are expected to conform with these codes of conduct.
(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 as needed.
Student Handbook. URL, if available online: https://geography.manoa.hawaii.edu/geog-phd-handbook/
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.
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 November 1, 2018 and October 31, 2020?
No (skip to question 17)
7) What best describes the program-level learning assessment activities that took place for the period November 1, 2018 and October 31, 2020? (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)
Investigate other pressing issue related to student learning achievement for the program (explain in question 8)
8) Briefly explain the assessment activities that took place since November 2018.
- Every spring, students are required to check in with their respective advisor and re-state their target dates to achieve discreet steps towards degree goal, and propose necessary actions on the part of both the student and the advisor/department.
- When a student graduates, the thesis advisor makes an independent assessment on how the student meet the standards established in the program SLOs
- At the end of each academic year, a faculty committee convenes to evaluate the performance of all students and give awards on a) the best paper published by a graduate student; b) the best presentation (oral and poster) by a graduate student at the department symposium; and c) the best graduating student (for both MA and PhD) overall
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.
1) annual self report by graduate students: all enrolled students (15 MA students in Sp 2019; 14 MA students in Sp 2020)
2) presentation of proposals by MA students: All first year Master's students (5 in 2019; 5 in 2020) are required to present their proposal as part of GEO696
4) MA theses defense (required of all graduating students): 5 in 2018/19; 3 in 2019/20
5) Final theses evaluation (all graduating students): 8 MA theses
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 from the evaluation, analysis, interpretation of evidence (checked in question 12). For example, report the percentage of students who achieved each SLO.
Theory (SLO1, 2)
Oral Communication (SLO4)
Written Communication (SLO4)
Originality / creativity (SLO 3)
Overall assessment (SLO 1-5)
1 = unacceptable
2 = marginal
3 = acceptable
4 = exceptional
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 its findings/results.
1) the continuous conversation with graduate students led us to develop extra curricular activities
a. field camp for first year students during winter break
b. professional development series (e.g. how to present in conferences; useful apps for research; using social media for academic purpose; non-academic career paths)
2) Beginning in Spring 2016 we hold annual student symposium to celebrate students' achievement with awards given to the best papers/presentation
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.
Improved communication with graduate students