Institutional learning objectives (ILOs) for baccalaureate programs were approved by the Mānoa Faculty Senate on May 2, 2012. An ILO Implementation Committee was formed and convened for the first time on October 15, 2012. The Committee is tasked with developing a long-term implementation strategy for the ILOs. Understanding how the ILOs have been implemented university-wide will be crucial for future WASC accreditation reviews.
All universities accredited by WASC must develop institutional learning objectives for undergraduate education and develop a plan for implementation and assessment [WASC CFR 2.3 and 2.4]. These learning objectives encompass the whole student experience and include those things students should know, value, and be able to do upon completion of a bachelor’s degree from UH Mānoa. Importantly, they are meant to be achieved by the whole of a student’s experience at UH Mānoa, not merely by completing coursework.
Working with a set of institutional learning objectives is an opportunity for the campus as a whole to understand student learning at the institutional level – the comprehensive view of what students learn and what they should know upon leaving UHM. Outcomes-based learning is not the be-all and end-all of a university education, especially given that at the end of the day it is up to students to participate in their own learning. However, the ILOs can provide a space within which the campus can think collectively about what we believe ought to be learned while at UHM, and it can help frame the future directions in which we would like to see education move. Faculty can now use the ILOs as a guide to inform student learning activities and make the learning outcomes for Mānoa students more visible and clear.
Communicating the Value of Your Degree through Institutional Learning Outcomes by Wendy Pearson, Academic Affairs Program Officer and Accreditation Liaison Officer, and Amy Schiffner, Chair of the ILOIC and Associate Professor of Theatre & Dance