Unit: Art & Art History
Program: Art (BA, BFA)
Degree: Bachelor's
Date: Tue Oct 08, 2013 - 2:27:01 pm

1) Below are your program's student learning outcomes (SLOs). Please update as needed.

Our department has five degree programs: the BA in studio art, the BA in art history, the BFA (a pre-professional studio art degree), the MFA (a terminal degree for studio artists) and the MA in art history.  Each of these programs has developed five SLOs organized around five themes which are shared across programs.  The result is a matrix of 25 program-level SLOs, which is downloadable in PDF format on our departmental website at http://www.hawaii.edu/art/students/resources/PDFs/2008assess_matrix-1.pdf.

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

Department Website URL: http://www.hawaii.edu/art/students/resources/PDFs/2008assess_matrix-1.pdf
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: NA

3) Select one option:

Curriculum Map File(s) from 2013:

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.

Our department’s protocol for assessment evaluates the work of graduating students in each of our five degree programs.  In each annual round of assessment, we evaluate the work of students in a single degree program, based on the five program SLOs (per degree program) listed in item 1 above.  This year’s assessment was intended to target the BA program in art history, for which the SLOs are:

1. Technique/Practice: Demonstrate a basic grasp of the process of doing research or curatorial work with original artworks in museum and gallery collections.

2. Creativity/Originality: Demonstrate the ability to research and construct a basic but original art-historical argument.

3. Knowledge/History: Demonstrate the ability to research and construct a basic but original art-historical argument.

4. Communication/Analysis/Critique: Demonstrate an understanding of basic art historical and critical issues, methods, and theories, and the ability to use them in written work.

5. Professional Skills: Demonstrate an ability to write in the basic forms of art-historical research, including the formal analysis, the research report, and the critical or analytic argument. 

The program wanted to find out what proportion of our graduating BA students in art history are meeting or exceeding these five goals at the point of graduation.

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.

All graduating BA students in art history were required to submit a portfolio consisting of a CV, three to five student papers, and documentation of museum or gallery work (where relevant)

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

Under the new collection process (see below), 39 BA students submitted graduation portfolios last year, of which 7 were art history BAs. Assessment of the art history BA raises the same challenges as assessment of the MA and MFA: the program is so small that the number of graduates in a single year is far too small to generate any statistically significant assessment results. We therefore elected not to formally assess BA art history portfolios, as had been originally planned for this year. We will continue to collect BA portfolios from graduating students each year, and by the next round of BA assessment (in five years’ time), we will have enough to conduct formal assessment according to our departmental protocol.

9) 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)

10) 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)

11) For the assessment question(s) and/or assessment goal(s) stated in Question #6:
Summarize the actual results.

If assessment had proceeded according to the departmental protocols, the evaluation of the BA portfolios would still be ongoing.  Because the portfolios are collected from graduating students, they only become available during finals week of Spring Semester.  The actual evaluation work then takes place during the fall semester of the following academic year.

Similarly, we would ordinarily report the results of MA assessment (of portfolios collected the year before and assessed in the fall of 2012) in this year’s report, but because of the too-small sample size, we did not formally assess the portfolios we received, but filed them for assessment with a larger group when the next round occurs.

Since we didn’t have enough portfolios for meaningful assessment of the BA program in art history, we spent our efforts this year in further developing methods and strategies for reliably collecting and organizing portfolios from graduating students at all levels. We have largely solved the problem of collecting portfolios from graduating BA students in art history and studio art, but we are now confronted with further problems of organization and tracking. See item 14 below for a summary of our progress over the past year toward solving these problems.

12) State how the program used the results or plans to use the results. Please be specific.

In the absence of statistically significant results, our departmental discussions focused instead on refining our methods for collecting portfolios. See item 14 below.

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


14) If the program did not engage in assessment activities, please explain.
Or, if the program did engage in assessment activities, please add any other important information here.

The department faces an upcoming challenge: in the coming year we are scheduled to evaluate the graduation portfolios of BA students in studio art, our largest degree program. In preparation for this, we had spent the previous year (2011-12) experimenting with methods of collecting graduation portfolios from graduating BA students in both tracks (studio art and art history). 

The most effective solution was the institution (in Spring 2013) of a zero-credit course, ART 409, required for all BA students for graduation. Credit for this “course” is earned when the student submits the graduation portfolio, thus providing students with an incentive to complete and submit them. As anticipated, this has finally brought our portfolio submission rates up to 100%, enabling us to assess a truly representative sample of our graduates.

The next step is to find a way to store and access the portfolios (on CD-ROM) that facilitates assessment. Our two goals are (a) to find a more accessible method of storage than simply keeping the CD-ROMs in a filing cabinet, and (b) to find a way of separating out the art history BAs from the studio art BAs, since they are subject to different program SLOs. The challenge of (a) is to find a way of storing the portfolios electronically in such a way as to make them accessible to faculty, so that they can serve as an archive of work done by our students, while at the same time also protecting student privacy under FERPA. Similarly, (b) is now rather difficult because the two BA degrees are not currently distinguished in BANNER encoding, so we can’t produce a list of our BAs sorted by track (art history vs. studio); the size of our department makes it impractical to sort them by hand. We are working with the BANNER programmers to fix the problem. 

Collection of graduation portfolios from MA and MFA graduates still devolves on the Graduate Chair (for MFAs) and the Art History Graduate Director (for MAs). We hope that continuing efforts to raise awareness among our MA and MFA students of the need to submit portfolios will make this work more streamlined and less onerous than it currently can be for these two faculty members.