Unit: Kamakakuokalani Center for Hawaiian Studies
Program: Hawaiian Studies (BA)
Degree: Bachelor's
Date: Thu Oct 15, 2009 - 6:31:06 pm

1) List your program's student learning outcomes (SLOs).

MISSION [excerpt]

Students are expected to demonstrate knowledge, understanding, critical analysis and synthesis of the following areas;

  • Know our genealogical ties to Papahānaumoku, our earth mother, and ko Hawai‘i pae‘āina as our ancestral home land.
  • Kanaka Maoli are one Lāhui connected by our one ancestor Hāloa across nā kai ‘ewalu.
  • History, culture and politics in academic and non-academic settings.
  • The interconnectedness of all knowledge contemporary and ancestral from a Kanaka Maoli perspective.
  • Kanaka Maoli applications, protocols and disciplines.
  • Kanaka Maoli experiences in the context of world indigenous peoples.


At the completion of student tenure in the KCHS undergraduate program, students should be able to:

  1. Organize, analyze and compose at least one major project in an area of concentration that integrates a Kanaka Maoli worldview that highlights, celebrates and critically examines indigenous identity.
  2. Recognize and express historical and contemporary Kanaka Maoli issues of languages (as methods of expression including oral, aural, visual, technological, non-verbal), law, sea, ocean, mo‘olelo, mo‘okū‘auhau, politics, origins, migration and religion.
  3. Recognize the commonality and differences between Kanaka Maoli and other indigenous peoples' world views and experiences.
  4. Know the origins and ancestral interpretations for the meaning of the past and how they are applied to life.
  5. Discuss who you are, where you come from and your inherent kuleana including proper conduct in an academic environment.

2) Where are your program's SLOs published?

Department Website URL:
Student Handbook. URL, if available online:
Information Sheet, Flyer, or Brochure URL, if available online: NA
UHM Catalog. Page Number:
Course Syllabi. URL, if available online:

3) Upload your program's current curriculum map(s) as a PDF.

Curriculum Map File(s) from 2009:

4) What percentage of courses have the course SLOs explicitly stated on the course syllabus, department website, or other publicly available document? (Check one)


5) State the SLO(s) that was Assessed, Targeted, or Studied

The 5 outcomes listed above were assessed.

6) State the Assessment Question(s) and/or Goal(s) of Assessment Activity

To understand the degree to which our program was achieving our stated mission.

7) State the Type(s) of Evidence Gathered

Students’ Senior Projects

8) State How the Evidence was Interpreted, Evaluated, or Analyzed

The assessment committee created a rubric. The assessment committee used the rubric to evaluate the senior projects.

9) State How Many Pieces of Evidence Were Collected

Pieces collected: 16 senior projects (100% participation by Spring 2009 seniors). Sampling technique: All seniors graduating in spring 2009 were encouraged to submit.

10) Summarize the Actual Results

Outcome AssessedResults (average score)
1. Kanaka Maoli concentration10
2. Recognize and express historical and contemporary Kanaka Maoli issues10
3. Commonality with other Indigenous Peoples8
4. Origins10
5. Mo‘okū‘auhau9

11) Briefly Describe the Distribution and Discussion of Results

The assessment committee reported and discussed results at the April 17, 2009 faculty meeting; Dean of Hawai‘inuiākea also received results and recommendations from the Department Chair.

12) Describe Conclusions and Discoveries

All seniors graduating in spring 2009 were encouraged to submit an example of work they had completed during their student tenure at KCHS. Submissions were to reflect their academic journey at KCHS. They were informed that their participation would help the Center to assess the effectiveness of our academic program in fulfilling our mission statement. The KCHS assessment committee reviewed the senior projects and rated them according to a rubric that was developed by the committee. The following are faculty observations and recommendations regarding the process and results of the assessment:

  1. The senior projects demonstrated a level of confidence among our students to provide their work for this process even though it was not a requirement and was not in any way going to be graded or affect their academic record.
  2. The great diversity of subject matter, styles represented, and perspectives expressed in the projects seemed to demonstrate the depth and strong interdisciplinary nature of the program. In addition, the projects indicated the growth of our senior students and their ability to communicate their ideas and articulate themselves in a diverse, yet critical manner about vastly different interdisciplinary subjects in Hawaiian Studies.
  3. The narrative submissions from students indicate that KCHS would be wise to address the writing skills among our majors in order to improve the effectiveness of our program. The assessment committee recommends tutoring, integrating more opportunities for students to practice and receive timely and clear feedback on written projects especially with grammatical construction, appropriate use of vocabulary and writing styles.
  4. The written projects also pointed out most dramatically that KCHS does not have a clear policy on writing style guides for example, footnotes, references, etc. Overall, the referencing and styles used in the written projects were weak and it was difficult to ascertain what style, if any, the student was using MLA, Chicago, APA etc. It is recommended that the Center faculty determine a writing guide, teach it to students and reinforce its use throughout their academic tenure at Hawaiian Studies.
  5. Several seniors submitted projects reflective of their work in the Hālau o Laka--the program strand of knowledge that is devoted, in part, to visual culture. These projects illustrate how well received this strand has been by our students. Hawaiian Studies would do well to invest in the development of this strand of instruction in order to increase the diversity of expression and evaluation, in accordance with the interdisciplinary aspirations of the overall program.
  6. Another important observation was that KCHS does not have a designated "capstone" course for our undergraduates. Such a course could bring together and focus the experiences of the program as well as put into context the “world of work” that students are about to embark upon when they leave the program. KCHS must begin examining this issue.
  7. Regarding the assessment process, the committee felt that:  
  • The process was long, very time consuming and demanded a lot of energy.
  • Having the submitted works structured by number and prepared for the assessment team facilitated the process.
  • Conducting the assessment at the same time and place was beneficial as it provided the ability for consultation when an assessor was not familiar with the content area in question especially in the case of the visual projects.
  • Before making drastic changes, this project as currently developed needs to continue for a few more iterations to know our program strengths and weaknesses over time and to refine the assessment process.
  • The rubric worked well and that the scoring guide was a welcome aid.

13) Use of Results/Program Modifications: State How the Program Used the Results --or-- Explain Planned Use of Results

Based on the assessment results, the faculty should develop ways to improve and support the writing skills among our students; determine a writing guide and reinforce its use during student tenure; invest in the development of the Hālau o Laka strand of instruction and examine the value of developing a culminating experience or "capstone" course for seniors.

14) Reflect on the Assessment Process

  1. In the case of visually oriented projects, a short written or even audio/video artist’s statement could accompany the work submitted in order that the artist’s intent is articulated appropriately.
  2. More faculty should be involved in the assessment and the student projects parceled out so as not to cause “burnout.”

15) Other Important Information


16) FOR DISTANCE PROGRAMS ONLY: Explain how your program/department has adapted its assessment of student learning in the on-campus program to assess student learning in the distance education program.

17) FOR DISTANCE PROGRAMS ONLY: Summarize the actual student learning assessment results that compare the achievement of students in the on-campus program to students in the distance education program.