Standard Measures

A total of fourteen (14) different types of measures have been defined for the Ferris Learning Outcomes (FLOs). These methods represent a spectrum of different activities commonly used in Higher Education to evaluate student work. The measures are not intrinsically better or worse than each other. Rather, like a set of tools in a tool box, you must determine which one is most appropriate to the task at hand. These measures fall into three broad categories: exams, products, and performances. A brief overview of each and links to their full descriptions follows below.


EXAMINATIONS

Assignments that evaluate students’ ability to recall and apply the facts, theories, and concepts covered in the course. There are four different types of exams, instructors should select the type that best describes the overall character of the assignment used in their courses.

01) Selected response exams – Questions, or a specific subset of questions, from a selected response quiz or exam are selected to measure student competence in the course materials. Question formats may include true/false, multiple-choice, matching, or multiple, multiple-choice. The raw student scores are recorded using the SCORE data workbook.

02) Constructed response exams – Questions, or a specific subset of questions, from a constructed response quiz or exam are selected to measure student competence in the course materials. Question formats may include fill in the blank, diagramming, or short answer essay. The raw student scores are recorded using the SCORE data workbook.

03) Pre- and post-tests – An assessment instrument based upon the primary course materials is given to all students near the beginning and end of instruction. The number of student scores meeting or exceeding a threshold score of 70% correct is determined for each time point. The average class score at each time point is calculated and compared using a paired t-test. Cohen’s d is used to determine the magnitude of any effect sizes found. The raw student scores on these tests are recorded using the PREPOST data workbook.

04) Standardized tests – Student performances on standardized exams (e.g. ETS Field Exams or ACS exams) are evaluated against the national norms. The percentile ranking of each student is recorded using the NORM data workbook.


PRODUCTS

Assignments that result in tangible objects that students produce. These discrete student artifacts are evaluated using the appropriate FLO rubric. There are seven different types of products defined, instructors should select the type that best describes the overall character of the assignment used in their courses.

05) Short written reports ­– Students write a paper that responds to a specific prompt related to a course topic. A short paper is around one to two pages in length and typically consists of fewer than 750 words. Citations are often not required for these works. The FLO rubric is used to evaluate the student paper. The student rubric scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

06) Medium written reports – Students write a paper that responds to a specific prompt related to a course topic. A medium paper is around three to nine pages in length and typically consists of between 750 and 2,000 words. These include the typical five-paragraph essays. Citations are often required for these works. The FLO rubric is used to evaluate the student paper. The student rubric scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

07) Long written reports – Students write a paper that responds to a specific prompt related to a course topic. A long paper is ten or more pages in length and typically consists of over 2,000 words. These essays include student research papers. Citations are nearly always required for these works. The FLO rubric is used to evaluate the student paper. The student rubric scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

08) Student projects – Students conduct activities that result in the creation of a tangible product. These student artifacts may take on a variety of forms (e.g. games, 3-D printing, business plans, technical drawings, etc.). The FLO rubric is used to evaluate each product and the student rubric scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

09) Laboratory reports – Students create written or oral reports pertaining to observations and analyses made during a field or laboratory experience. The FLO rubric is used to evaluate the structure and content of the reports. The student rubric scores from the assignment are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

10) Student portfolios – Students assemble a printed or electronic portfolio of works over time. These collections are evaluated using the corresponding FLO rubric. The student rubric scores from the assignment are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

11) Capstone projects – As part of a programmatic capstone experience, students produce a culminating work. These student artifacts may take on a variety of forms to fit the context of the program involved. The FLO rubric is used to evaluate each project and the student rubric scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.


PERFORMANCES

Unlike products, these assignments produce an intangible result. The process that the student carries out is evaluated instead of any sort of physical end product. Three different types of performances are described below; instructors should select the type that best describes the overall character of the assignment used in their courses.

12) Oral presentations – Students make an oral presentation on a selected topic. These talks may be based upon an assigned topic or one of the students’ choosing.  The FLO rubric is used to evaluate the effectiveness and content of the presentation. The student rubric scores from the assignment are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

13) Student performances – Student prepare and execute a creative work. Unlike student products, where the final artifact is evaluated, in this case the actual student performance is evaluated using the FLO rubric. Examples of performances include demonstration of laboratory skills, oral recitations, dances, and acting. The student rubric scores from the assignment are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.

14) Oral interviews – Students are either interviewed or carry out an oral interview. These activities may be based upon specific coursework or the pursuit of independent research. The interview process is evaluated using the FLO rubric and student scores are recorded using the RUBRIC workbook.