Frequently Asked Questions about student learning outcomes (slo)
Why do I need to do SLO and PLO Assessments and how does this process help me as a faculty member?
From the College's (institutional) perspective, SLO proficiency, as defined by the accreditation commission, is an essential ingredient for accreditation eligibility and candidacy. From a faculty member perspective, the SLO process gives faculty concrete information on what is working in their classrooms classroom and provides formal process to determine how to improve students' learning. This process also confirms successes that faculty may already know about-but no one else does. This is an opportunity for their department/division to gloat about all the great things they are doing to ensure student success and progression to the next level.
Further, this process is nothing more than what good faculty members do in their everyday workings to improve their teaching. Faculty should reflect each day and after each assessment to determine what is working, what is in need of improvement and what teaching practices need to be scraped for something new.
What are SLOs?
Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) are statements describing what students will be able to do upon completing a course, program, or degree. SLOs are assessed by faculty regularly to evaluate and improve student learning in the course, program, or degree. Degree SLO statements, formerly called "core competencies," are now called "Institutional Learning Outcomes" or ILOs.
How SLOs are different from Learning Objectives?
An SLO (student learning outcome) indicates general overarching concepts in a course or program. SLOs are the skill students must acquire after they complete the course. Assessments are conducted to confirm if students have acquired these skills. SLOs are the skill students must acquire after they complete the course. Assessments are conducted to confirm if students have acquired these skills. Typically, there will be a small number of outcomes for any particular course or program. Learning objectives address the details in a course and are related to the specific course content. In short, objectives are the topics that faculty must cover in each course. There will be many individual objectives for any class.
Where do I find the SLO statements for my courses or programs?
All SLO statements and assessment reports should be available online on Nuventive Improve (click here) ) or in the alignment grids on the Compton College SLO web page (click here). Contact your SLO Facilitator for more information.
To access Nuventive Improve, most faculty members have their username as the first part of the compton.edu email address. For example, if your email address is email@example.com, your Nuventive username is "jdoe." The password for users is the same as the password you use for your email. See your Facilitator for help with Nuventive Improve or with finding SLO statements and/or assessment reports. For problems with Nuventive Improve account access, contact the SLO Coordinator (go to Contact Us for information), or the Interim Dean of Student Success Barbara Perez (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Who writes (or wrote) the SLO statements?
Program faculty (at both El Camino College & Compton College, collaboratively) wrote the SLO statements. However, if after completing an assessment, you find that these statements need to be revised or a statement needs to be added, you will need to collaborate with your discipline faculty, to agree on the new statement(s) or revisions. The new SLO statement(s) will need to be submitted for approval through a process. Talk to your Facilitator for more information about updating SLO statements.
What do I do if I want to add (create) a new SLO for a course or program?
If a faculty member wants to add or create an additional SLO statement, he/she will need to collaborate with his/her peers at his/her department. The new SLO statement will need to be submitted for approval through a process. Talk to your Facilitator for more information about creating new SLO statements.
What do I do if I want to delete an existing SLO for a course or program?
If a faculty member wants to delete an existing SLO statement, he/she will need to collaborate with his/her peers at his/her department, However, faculty may benefit from completing one assessment before making the decision to delete the statement. The deletion of an SLO statement will need to be submitted for approval through a process. Talk to your Facilitator for more information about deleting new SLO statements.
Can Compton faculty write SLO statements without consulting with their division/department faculty?
The simple answer is a resounding.....No! SLO statements are statements that all faculty members within a particular discipline have agreed upon that are the key ideas/concepts/performance skills that are essential to success in the course. The process to change an SLO requires completing an SLO/PLO Change Form and getting approvals from the Facilitator, Division Dean, and SLO Coordinator.
Which SLOs should I be assessing?
You should be assessing both course SLOs and program-level learning outcomes (PLOs) for your area. The exact SLOs and PLOs you assess during any one semester are determined by the timeline your program has established, available from the Compton SLO web page. Contact your Facilitator for more information about your program's self-selected timeline. Often, the course-level SLO assessments will feed into the Program Learning Outcome (PLO) assessments. In turn, PLO assessments may then feed into Institutional Learning Outcomes (ILOs, formerly "core competencies") assessments.
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