An Assessment Approach to Project-Based Service Learning

Antonette Cummings, James Huff, William Oakes, Carla Zoltowski
2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition Proceedings   unpublished
Strategies for assessment are important to engineering educators and researchers as they evaluate the quality of student learning in courses and other experiences. Assessment can be particularly challenging in project-based service-learning (PBSL) experiences because the types of learning do not lend themselves to traditional modes of assessment, such as tests or quizzes. This paper describes a strategy of assessing a broad set of skills in EPICS, a well-established and recognized PBSL program
more » ... nized PBSL program where students earn academic credit for their work on community-based designs. Although the assessments presented are specific to a particular program, we present them here with sufficient detail and underlying objectives so that they can be adapted to other courses and programs as appropriate. Assessments discussed include individual learning, team and project assessments and programmatic assessments including alumni surveys. Grades A+ A A- A student who receives a grade of A in EPICS must exceed overall expectations and demonstrate and document excellent achievement in each of the following areas: Accomplishments: Responsibilities associated with project work are appropriate, but ambitious for junior/senior course level, major, semester in EPICS, and number of credits. Individual contributions to and/or ideas about the project are excellent and has a significant impact on design and/or deliverables. Excellent understanding of relevant discipline-specific issues related to the project. All work is documented, and significant contributions related to the project are incorporated into the digitally archived design documentation. Process: Demonstrates and documents an excellent understanding of the processes inherent in design and an ability to employ these processes in the development of the project. Reflective/Critical Thinking: Demonstrates and documents an ability to think critically about many of the disciplinary, social, ethical, personal, and interpersonal aspects of the project, project partner, and their relationships. Teamwork/Leadership: If applicable, puts forth excellent effort to fulfill responsibilities associated with team position. Demonstrates initiative and excellent participation in class and group work. Shows a willingness to work with other team members, within and/or outside of formal team roles, to accomplish team goals and leads when appropriate. Promotes team unity. Excellent attendance. Assists others to learn new skills. Communication: Communicates very effectively both written and orally, formally and informally, to all audiences: people familiar with project, and those who are not; people with both similar and different backgrounds; to teammates and to external people; to those who will be asked to continue your project in the future. Grades B+ B B- A student who receives a grade of B in EPICS must meet overall expectations and demonstrate and document good achievement in each of the following areas: Accomplishments: Responsibilities associated with project work are appropriate for junior/senior course level, major, semester in EPICS, and number of credits. Individual contributions to and/or ideas about the project are good and has a positive impact on design and/or deliverables. Good understanding of relevant discipline-specific issues related to the project. All work is documented, and significant contributions related to the project are sufficiently incorporated into the digitally archived design documentation. Process: Demonstrates and documents a good understanding of the processes inherent in design and an ability to employ these processes in the development of the project. Reflective/Critical Thinking: Demonstrates and documents an ability to think critically about some of the disciplinary, social, ethical, personal, and interpersonal aspects of the project, project partner, and their relationships. Teamwork/Leadership: If applicable, puts forth good effort to fulfill responsibilities associated with team position. Demonstrates some initiative and good participation in class and group work. Shows a willingness to work with other team members, within and/or outside of formal team roles, to accomplish team goals. Good attendance. Acquires new knowledge when prompted by others. Communication: Communicates effectively both written or orally, formally and informally, to most audiences.
doi:10.18260/1-2--19165 fatcat:ilk2livw7naofoywv3jrgoayte