Assessment

Kauai Community College Institutional Student Learning Outcomes
(Effective January 1, 2013)

Here at Kauai Community College, we believe that all of our graduates should possess a solid grounding in the major areas of knowledge, the capability to be productive individuals and life-long learners, and an understanding of what it means to be ethical and effective citizens.  All C.A., A.A.S., A.S., and A.A. curricula at KCC include study of the cultural, social, and/or natural environment (humanities/fine arts, social sciences, and natural sciences), and all programs ensure that students receive expert instruction in and capable assessment of their achievement of the following Institutional Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Written Communication: Write in clear and organized Standard American English to present, explain, and evaluate ideas, to express feelings, and to support conclusions, claims, or theses.
  2. Oral Communication: Speak in understandable and organized Standard American English to explain ideas, to express feelings, and to support conclusions, claims, or theses. Receive, construct meaning from, and respond to spoken and/or nonverbal messages.
  3. Reading:  Read, evaluate, and interpret written material critically and effectively. (*note that the precise wording of this ISLO is still under review.*)
  4. Symbolic Reasoning: Use appropriate mathematical and logical concepts and methods to understand, analyze, and explain issues.
  5. Integrative Thinking: Use problem-solving skills and creative thinking strategies to make connections among ideas and experiences and to synthesize and transfer learning to new and varied situations. 
  6. Information Literacy: Locate, retrieve, evaluate, and interpret the value of information gained from reading text materials, making observations, and using electronic media, and reflectively use that information.
  7. Technological Competency: Identify, allocate, and utilize technological resources effectively. 
  8. Teamwork: Participate proactively and interact cooperatively and collaboratively in a variety of settings.
  9. Respect for Diversity: Demonstrate cognitive, affective, and behavioral skills and characteristics that are respectful of others’ opinions, feelings, values, and individual expression.
  10. Ethics: Demonstrate an understanding of ethical issues in public and personal contexts that can be used to make sound judgments and decisions.

What do these outcomes involve?

Written Communication is the development and expression of ideas in writing. It involves learning to work with different writing styles and technologies and can include combining texts, data, and images in order to communicate clearly and effectively. All students receive instruction in written communication and have opportunities to develop their writing abilities through iterative experiences across the curriculum.

Oral Communication encompasses speaking, non-verbal, and active listening skills.  Speaking is the process of transmitting ideas and information orally in a variety of situations.  Effective oral communication involves generating messages and delivering them in a manner suitable to the topic, purpose, and audience, with attention to paralanguage and non-verbal signals.  Effective listening includes both literal and critical comprehension of ideas and information transmitted in oral language.  All students receive instruction in effective oral communication.

Reading is the process of simultaneously extracting and constructing meaning through interaction and involvement with written language.  Skilled readers are able to peruse written material fluently and are also able to control their reading in relation to their purpose, the nature of the material, and their level of comprehension.  Students become skilled readers through continuous practice, development, and refinement in experiences across the curriculum, learning to reason about written material using knowledge from everyday life and from their individual fields of study.

Symbolic Reasoning – also known as Quantitative Reasoning – is the ability to reason logically and solve quantitative problems from a wide array of authentic contexts and everyday life situations.  It also involves understanding, creating, and communicating arguments supported by quantitative evidence in a variety of formats (using words, tables, graphs, diagrams, mathematical equations, etc., as appropriate). All students receive instruction in logical and/or mathematical reasoning and have the opportunity to develop competency and comfort in working with numerical data. 

Integrative Learning is characterized by thinking critically and synthesizing relevant issues, ideas, artifacts, events, and expertise in original, innovative, and imaginative ways.  Students develop this understanding and disposition through experiences across the curriculum, from making simple connections among ideas and experiences to transferring learning to new and varied situations, to considering issues and ideas before accepting or formulating opinions or conclusions, to designing, evaluating, and implementing strategies to achieve desired goals and to solve problems.

Information Literacy is the ability to know when there is a need for information and to be able to identify, locate, evaluate, and effectively and responsibly use and share that information for the problem at hand.  It involves extracting and evaluating meaning from a variety of sources and using a variety of methods, including critically reading written texts, actively listening to audiovisual materials and oral presentations, analyzing interpersonal communication, and making observations.  Students receive information literacy training in a variety of settings and have the opportunity to apply their skills across the curriculum.

Technological Competency is the ability to utilize equipment and technology appropriately and confidently.  Depending upon a student’s area of study, this may include computer operating systems and software, business technology, musical instruments, scientific laboratory equipment, agricultural technology, specialized medical technology, and/or tools and equipment utilized in specialized trades and technologies.
Teamwork is the ability to use individual skills collaboratively and cooperatively within a group, despite any personal conflict between individuals, in order to achieve a goal.  Individuals have personal responsibility for the effort and initiative they put into team tasks, their manner of interacting with others on team, and the quantity and quality of contributions they make to the team.  Good teamwork skills also involve determining when team efforts are and are not most likely to be effective and knowing when and how to exercise leadership.  Students have the opportunity to learn individually and as members of a team in a variety of settings and courses.

Respect for Diversity is an understanding of and respect for other people and cultures.  Individuals demonstrate intercultural knowledge and competence by effectively and appropriately interacting in a variety of social and cultural contexts.  Students participate actively in a multicultural learning community which values diversity in all forms and has opportunity to receive formal instruction in social sciences, interpersonal and intercultural communication, and comparative religion, among other fields.

Ethics involves reasoning about right and wrong human conduct in matters of personal and public concern.  It requires students to be able to assess their own ethical values and the social context of problems, to recognize ethical issues in a variety of settings, to think about how different ethical perspectives might be applied to ethical dilemmas, and to consider the ramifications of alternative actions.  Students’ ethical self-identities evolve as they develop the combination of knowledge, skills, values, and motivation to engage in activities of personal and public concern that are both individually life enriching and socially beneficial to their communities.