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General Education Outcomes

The phrase “General Education” refers to the educational foundation of skills, knowledge, habits of mind, and values that prepare students for success in their majors and in their personal and professional lives upon transferring or graduating. At Northwestern Michigan College, the faculty have chosen to focus on three General Education Requirements. These are Communication, Critical Thinking, and Quantitative Reasoning. To assure that our students are progressing in these three areas, and to also determine where our students may need more support, we assess each of these outcomes every semester. Faculty members whose classes support a general education requirement are asked to score at least one assignment with the general education rubric for that outcome. Those rubrics are found here. The information gathered from those assessments is compiled after the semester is over and is analyzed a number of different ways. To see what the data looks like, and where our students may need additional support, institutionally, check out our data dashboards here.

Of course, the instructor has their own data immediately, and can make effective changes at the classroom level immediately. Those discoveries of student difficulties and changes to the classroom curriculum are recorded in the Outcomes Report Form, which is a survey from Survey Monkey. While an individual instructor may have more than one general education outcome, only reporting on one outcome (general education outcome (GEO) or significant learning outcome (SLO)) is necessary. The idea here is to identify what outcome is the most difficult for your students to master and creating a plan to help them achieve mastery within your class.

To better understand how our students are achieving within the GEOs, the Communications Department is piloting a longitudinal study within ENG 111 and ENG 112. They are using a writing prompt that was typically used in ENG 112 to see how well students progress in their communication skills in the 111/112 sequence.

Thank you for taking the time to assess your students, input those scores into Moodle, and complete the Outcomes Report Form.

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