Unit: Cell & Molecular Biology
Program: Cell & Molecular Biology (PhD)
Degree: Doctorate
Date: Wed Sep 29, 2010 - 8:49:00 am

1) Below are the program student learning outcomes submitted last year. Please add/delete/modify as needed.

1.Sufficient breath and depth of knowledge to assume responsibility for teaching classes in Cell and Molecular Biology at least at the undergraduate level, and teaching experience in these and related topics; 

2.Knowledge of the process of research, including: familiarity with techniques for searching the literature; principles of measurement; and practical experience in the design and conduct of scientific experiments, collection of data, and interpretation of data sufficient to enable students to interpret current literature, and to embark upon the next  level of development as researchers;

3.Familiarity with the mechanics of scientific reporting sufficient to enable students to prepare a publication for a scholarly journal; 

4.Experience with oral presentation of material sufficient to enable students to prepare and deliver reports on their work at seminars or meetings of scientific societies; 

5. A degree of understanding and scientific maturity sufficient to enable students to assess the work of others; 6. An understanding of the administrative procedures common to academic departments.

2) As of last year, your program's SLOs were published as follows. Please update as needed.

Department Website URL: http://www.hawaii.edu/graduatestudies/fields/html/departments/cd/cmb/cmb.htm
Student Handbook. URL, if available online: http://www.cellmolecularbiology.org
Information Sheet, Flyer, or Brochure URL, if available online:
UHM Catalog. Page Number: 245
Course Syllabi. URL, if available online: NA
Other: Portions are distributed to prospective applicants by e-mail

3) Below is the link to your program's curriculum map (if submitted in 2009). If it has changed or if we do not have your program's curriculum map, please upload it as a PDF.

Curriculum Map File(s) from 2010:

4) The percentage of courses in 2009 that had course SLOs explicitly stated on the syllabus, a website, or other publicly available document is indicated below. Please update as needed.


5) State the assessment question(s) and/or goals of the assessment activity. Include the SLOs that were targeted, if applicable.

All 6 SLOs listed in question 1 were assessed.  The goal of the continuous assessment activity of the Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program   is to intercept any student with deficiences as soon as possible and to remediate those deficiencies.

6) State the type(s) of evidence gathered.

A. Written examinations include 2 midterms and 1 final exam in  both the Fall and Spring semesters of both core courses, CMB 621-622 Cell and Molecular Biology I and II. These courses  are  required of all first year Ph.D. students. Exam questions are written and graded by a cross-section of the CMB graduate faculty  and results are tabulated by the graduate program administrator.  Written exams are the main basis for grades in our core courses.  The exams are intended to define a minimal competence in the subject matter of each course.

B.  Seminars and journal club courses further expand our ability to evaluate each student's progress by having them participate in behaviors defined by the instructors  (class participation, giving oral presentations, reviewing a classic or recent paper, literature review paper, etc.)  These behaviors form the basis for the course grades.

C.  Literature review papers are an important part of the evaluation scheme in some courses. They are intended to excercise literature search techniques, critical thinking and expository writing skills.  The students are evaluated by the faculty who teach the subject matter of the course.

D.  The Qualifying Exam is given to all Ph.D. students in their 2nd year.  This exam consists of 2 parts.  The first part is a written exam.  The questions are selected by the cell and molecular biology graduate faculty who delivered the corresponding content.  The second part of the exam is an oral presentation of a peer-reviewed publication before a panel of 5-7 expert judges.   These two parts are intended to test  depth of knowledge  in several areas of cell and molecular biology and supporting biological sciences.  Students must pass both parts of this exam to continue on in our graduate program.

E. Presentations at scientific meetings.

F.  Peer-reviewed publications 

7) Who interpreted or analyzed the evidence that was collected?

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)

8) How did they evaluate, analyze, or interpret the evidence?

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)

9) State how many persons submitted evidence that was evaluated.
If applicable, please include the sampling technique used.

All Ph.D. students submitted evidence to be evaluated by cell and molecular biology graduate faculty.  The evidence evaluated was course exams, qulaifying exam results, reports of laboratory work, publications of work, conferences and scientific meetings attended, oral presentations in seminars, journal clubs and scientific meetings and oral defense of Dissertation..

10) Summarize the actual results.

All Ph.D. students are expected to pass the qualifying exam in their second year. In the past three years, 98% of the students passed on the first try. Students are given 2 chances to pass the different parts of the qualifying exam.

All students must pass course exams with at least a "B" grade.  All have done so in the 2009-2010 period.

The results of the other pieces of evidence listed in question #9 are evaluated on an individual basis.  There have been no unacceptable performances from Ph.D. students in the 2009-2010 period.

The majority of our Ph.D. students (98%) meet all SLOs and graduate within 5 years. 

11) How did your program use the results? --or-- Explain planned use of results.
Please be specific.

The Cell and Molecular Biology Graduate Program assesses each student continuously in order to identify problems as early as possible.

The graduate program Chair utilizes cell and molecular biology graduate faculty committees and student advisors as need be.

When a problem is identified, the cell and molecular biology Chair, the cell and molecular biology education committee and the student's academic advisor discuss the issue.  A brief report generalizing the student's performance is then presented at a faculty meeting.  

Recommendations are made and usually implemented.

12) Beyond the results, were there additional conclusions or discoveries? This can include insights about assessment procedures, teaching and learning, program aspects and so on.

In the last assessment period our department identified the need for a biostatistics course.  We are still working on creating a new course on biostatistics.  Due to budget cuts and unexpectred personnel changes, we have not been able to realize this goal but will by Fall 2011.

13) Other important information: