Unit: Political Science
Program: Political Science (MA)
Degree: Master's
Date: Thu Nov 19, 2020 - 5:01:43 pm

1) Program Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) and Institutional Learning Objectives (ILOs)

1. The ability to produce quality scholarship or develop expertise in one's professional field necessary to be a leader in one's chosen field-- At the graduate level we anticipate that students will use their knowledge of the discipline to contribute to their chosen academic community or chosen professional field.

(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., 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. Mastery of the areas of expertise identified by the student's advisors and/or committee necessary to complete their original dissertation, thesis, or culminating experience-- Our program offers students the opportunity to develop original research projects which make a distinctive impact on their identified scholarly community without being constrained by the traditional subfields of Political Science. Instead each graduate student will develop a unique area of expertise while enrolled in the program. We expect students graduating from the program to have mastered the relevant scholarship to which their original research agenda contributes.

(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., 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.)

3. Ability to think politically. -- Much like our expectations of the undergraduate majors, we require students to think politically about social phenomenon. Comprehending that all social, economic, and cultural processes are also political is a crucial learning outcome. That comprehension creates knowledgeable citizenry capable of acting on policy decisions and conduct. That no knowledge is innocent, but that all knowledge has consequences is key to this learning outcome.

(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., 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.)

2) Your program's SLOs are published as follows. Please update as needed.

Department Website URL: http://www.politicalscience.hawaii.edu
Student Handbook. URL, if available online: https://politicalscience.manoa.hawaii.edu/graduate-program/
Information Sheet, Flyer, or Brochure URL, if available online:
UHM Catalog. Page Number:
Course Syllabi. URL, if available online:
Other:

3) Please review, add, replace, or delete the existing curriculum map.

Curriculum Map File(s) from 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.

0%
1-50%
51-80%
81-99%
100%

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):

No
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?

Yes
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.)

Create/modify/discuss program learning assessment procedures (e.g., SLOs, curriculum map, mechanism to collect student work, rubric, survey)
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)
Other:

8) Briefly explain the assessment activities that took place since November 2018.

We completed a review of our comprehensive exam process as well as the outcomes of the last two years of comprehensive exams. We made the decision to alter the structure of the exams to accomodate student needs. Previously exams required completed five questions in 7 days. We now require four questions be completed in 8 days which can be broken up and completed separately. We believe this process better captures student capability rather than reflecting the privilege of some students to take an entire week away from their life. 

We also reviewed the last two years of dissertations completed in the department and discussed as a department our expectations for dissertations. We are were satisfied with our current output will continue 

9) What types of evidence did the program use as part of the assessment activities checked in question 7? (Check all that apply.)

Artistic exhibition/performance
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.)
Other 1:
Other 2:

10) State the number of students (or persons) who submitted evidence that was evaluated. If applicable, please include the sampling technique used.

Our review was more informal. We simply wanted to take the opportunity to reflect on how expectations may or may not have changed over the last two years. The discussion will be ongoing particularly as more of our students pursue professional rather than academic career paths. 

11) Who interpreted or analyzed the evidence that was collected? (Check all that apply.)

Course instructor(s)
Faculty committee
Ad hoc faculty group
Department chairperson
Persons or organization outside the university
Faculty advisor
Advisors (in student support services)
Students (graduate or undergraduate)
Dean/Director
Other:

12) How did they evaluate, analyze, or interpret the evidence? (Check all that apply.)

Used a rubric or scoring guide
Scored exams/tests/quizzes
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)
Other:

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.

We agreed that all students who completed a dissertation completed all SLOs.

14) What best describes how the program used the results? (Check all that apply.)

Assessment procedure changes (SLOs, curriculum map, rubrics, evidence collected, sampling, communications with faculty, etc.)
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)
Other:

15) Please briefly describe how the program used its findings/results.

A decision to make program expectations a priority for faculty discussion.

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.

No.

17) If the program did not engage in assessment activities, please justify.

The department is not likley to engage in more formal assessment activities. The process of faculty discussion, committees, and public defenses provides adequate opportunities to review how students are meeting expectations.