Program: Interdisciplinary Studies (BA)
Date: Tue Sep 24, 2013 - 12:53:29 pm
1) Below are your program's student learning outcomes (SLOs). Please update as needed.
The Interdisciplinary Studies Program (IS) is primarily an advising unit: students work closely with IS academic advisers in designing a proposal, which is an admissions requirement. We believe that the strength of our program is the interdisciplinary nature of the major. By allowing students to design programs with an area or problem focus, we help students to think creatively and to learn how to look at issues and problems from interdisciplinary perspectives. They learn to compare, contrast or synthesize different perspectives as they undertake their course of study.
The educational objectives in terms of student learning outcomes for IS majors are the following:
- to acquire knowledge and understanding in students’ chosen interdisciplinary field of study
- to develop skills in exploring interdisciplinary relationships
- to be able to communicate clearly both orally and in writing
- to develop critical thinking skills
- to develop problem-solving skills for life-long learning
- to develop skills of comparing, contrasting, differentiating, and synthesizing a variety of perspectives
- to develop an ability to follow problems across disciplinary boundaries.
NOTE: Question 4 below is not applicable. The IS Program offers only two courses per semester as it is a primarily academic advising unit. These courses are explicitly interdisciplinary in their conception and application, and they aim at developing critical thinking skills and interdisciplinary perspectives in students.
2) Your program's SLOs are published as follows. Please update as needed.
Student Handbook. URL, if available online:
Information Sheet, Flyer, or Brochure URL, if available online:
UHM Catalog. Page Number:
Course Syllabi. URL, if available online:
3) Select one option:
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) Did your program engage in any program assessment activities between June 1, 2012 and September 30, 2013? (e.g., establishing/revising outcomes, aligning the curriculum to outcomes, collecting evidence, interpreting evidence, using results, revising the assessment plan, creating surveys or tests, etc.)
No (skip to question 14)
6) For the period June 1, 2012 to September 30, 2013: State the assessment question(s) and/or assessment goals. Include the SLOs that were targeted, if applicable.
Some of the goals of the 2012 Current Student Survey were to find out:
How satisfied IS students were with the interdisciplinary focus of their program and if it opened them to different academic perspectives and helped them value new viewpoints?
Did the interdisciplinary curriculum helped them develop problem solving skills for life-long learning?
7) State the type(s) of evidence gathered to answer the assessment question and/or meet the assessment goals that were given in Question #6.
Evidence gathered through 2012 Current Student Survey and 2013 Graduating Seniors Exit Survey using Survey Monkey to find out
1) perceptions of the current IS students (Fall 2012) using a questionnaire consisting of 14 Likert-scale questions and 6 short-answer questions
2. perceptions of graduating 2013 IS seniors using a questionnaire consisting of 14 Likert-scale questions and 6 short-answer questions
B. IS Student Proposals
3. Evidence gathered—Ongoing
Students’ IS proposals (each student must submit a detailed proposal containing a narrative statement and course plan)
8) State how many persons submitted evidence that was evaluated. If applicable, please include the sampling technique used.
1. Current IS Student Survey (Fall 2012) Student Survey was sent electronically to 150 current students. 54 Current students completed the survey.
2. Graduating Seniors Exit Survey was completed by 38 students between January 23-Septermber 3, 2013.
3. IS proposal review & monitoring (ongoing assessment)
Each prospective IS major submits an IS proposal before he/she can officially declare IS as a major. IS has around 200 declared majors (Fall 2013). Student progress is then monitored throughout their IS degree.
9) 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: Survey Monkey
10) 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)
Other: Survey Monkey
11) For the assessment question(s) and/or assessment goal(s) stated in Question #6:
Summarize the actual results.
2012 Current Student Survey results (September 21-October 21, 2012)
83.3 % of the current IS students who completed the survey agreed or strongly agreed that the IS Program helped them develop problem-solving skills for life-long learning.
90.6 % of the current IS students who completed the survey agreed or strongly agreed that they felt their IS Program effectively opened their personal perspective and assisted them in learning to value new viewpoints.
96.3 % of the current IS students who completed the survey agreed or strongly agreed that as IS majors they were able to explore different academic perspectives.
79.3 % of the current IS students who completed the survey agreed or strongly agreed that they would give the IS Program a high overall rating.
83.4 % of the current IS students who completed the survey agreed or strongly agreed that the IS Program was a valuable contribution to their overall education.
2. Graduating Seniors' Exit Survey (January 23-September 3, 2013)
94.6 % of the graduating seniors agreed or strongly agreed that the IS Program helped them develop problem-solving skills for life-long learning.
100 % of the graduating seniors agreed or strongly agreed that they felt their IS Program effectively opened their personal perspective and assisted them in learning to value new viewpoints.
97.4 % of the graduating seniors agreed or strongly agreed that as IS majors they were able to explore different academic perspectives.
89.5 % of graduating seniors agreed or strongly agreed that they would give the IS Program a high overall rating.
89.2 % of the graduating seniors agreed or strongly agreed that the IS Program was a valuable contribution to their overall education.
3. IS proposal review & monitoring (ongoing assessment)
IS advising is critical to help students learn strategies to see connections between disciplines that encompass their interest. They learn to create an academically coherent interdisciplinary major, to use effective strategies in creating, revising, and editing a final proposal, and to acquire the basics of interdisciplinary thinking by choosing courses from different departments that help them develop an integrated perspective.
12) State how the program used the results or plans to use the results. Please be specific.
The response by students in the 2012 Current Student Survey and the 2013 IS Graduating Seniors was valuable both as a monitor of what aspects of the program needed attention as well as an indication of the success of the Interdisciplinary Studies Program. As in our previous major assessment study, students commented on the benefits of their interdisciplinary programs. It helped them get a broader knowledge of many disciplines and thus prepared them better for their desired career goals.