Student Learning Outcomes
Institutions of higher education (IHEs) are paying increased
attention to the development and assessment of student learning outcomes
(SLOs) in all realms of campus life, not just in the classroom. As part
of the movement to include student services in the student learning
mission of the institution, ACHA conducted a survey on the degree to
which Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) are utilized by student health
services. It is hoped that the survey results posted below will also
assist to benchmark knowledge and resources pertaining to the assessment
of learning outcomes.
A Student Learning Outcome (SLO) is defined as: particular
levels of knowledge, skills, and abilities that a student has attained
at the end (or as a result) of his/her engagement in a particular set
of collegiate experiences (Ewell, 2001).
Further, the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education, (2009) CAS professional standards for higher education (7th ed.). Washington, DC: author, designated six broad categories (called domains). These domains of learning include:
- knowledge acquisition, construction, integration and application
- cognitive complexity;
- intrapersonal development;
- interpersonal competence;
- humanitarianism and civic engagement;
- and practical competence.
Lastly, learning can be understood as “a complex, holistic,
multi-centric activity that occurs throughout and across the college
experience” (ACPA and NASPA, Learning Reconsidered: A campus-wide focus on the student experience. Washington DC: authors, 2004).
A Student learning outcome can sometimes refer to a written
statement that denotes what students should learn (the “intended
learning goals for students”) from participating in student affairs
programs and services.
The student will be able to define three health-related
stress impacts on the body when interviewed two weeks after the clinical
appointment with back pain as a chief complaint.
The student will be able to explain the meaning of
self-validation after participation in a session of a writer’s block
group at the counseling services.
The student will be able to analyze the institution’s food
purchasing policies for the level of support they provide to a healthy
choices environment and submit an editorial for possible submission to
the student newspaper.
The student will be able to design a proposal for a “sleep zone”
in a campus residence hall and present the proposal at a student
CAS professional standards for higher education (7th ed.). Washington, DC: author, 2009.
FALDOS – Frameworks for Assessing Learning and Development Outcomes
Learning Reconsidered: A Campus-Wide Focus on the Student Experience ACPA, NASPA 2004.
Learning Reconsidered 2: A Practical Guide to Implementing a
Campus-Wide Focus on the Student Experience ACPA, NASPA, et al 2006.
Assessing Student Learning and Development: A Handbook for Practitioners (2004) Marilee J. Bresciani et al.
Assessing for Learning: Building a Sustainable Commitment Across the Institution (2004) Peggy L. Maki.