Computer Science Majors Maintain Standard of Excellence

University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo
Posted: Oct 9, 2001

University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo students have extended a university tradition of above average performance in a key national test for computer science majors. The computer science department has encouraged its junior and senior students to take the Major Field Achievement Test each spring since 1988. During that period, UH Hilo students have consistently performed at or above national norms on the overall test and each of its four sub-areas, which includes: programming methodology; software systems; computer organization and architecture; and theory and computational math. A total of 22 students took the test in spring 2001. That is the largest group to ever take the test and included four students from the first cohort of the department's Distance Education BS degree program.

Students taking the test in 2001 achieved a mean score of 156, which placed them in the 71st percentile of the 1996-99 student scores used by Educational Testing Service (ETS) this year as its national normative data. That places UH Hilo in the 82nd percentile of the 142 institutional scores making up the national norm.

UH Hilo's performance in the four sub-areas is as follows:
UH Hilo's performance in the four sub-areas is as follows:

Sub-area Score Percentile
1) Programming Methodology 60 82
2) Software Systems 40 66
3) Computer Organization & Architecture 32 77
4) Theory & Computational Math 51 89

"We're very pleased with these results," said Dr. Judith Gersting, professor and chair of the computer science department. "Our students have traditionally performed well against their peers, and this latest group has maintained that distinction."