Table 1: History Department Goals and Assessments Measures

Institution: Saint Vincent College

Location: Latrobe, PA

Tuner: Tim Kelly

Year: 2014

This table contains two columns. The first column lists the goals for our majors that have existed for many years. We revisited them in light of the goals that the Tuning Project developed and found them to be consistent with that set. Rather than switch wording to match up exactly with specific Tuning goals, we determined to keep the uniquely Saint Vincent language. (This also provided the benefit of maintaining a consistent assessment mechanism.) The second column identifies the ways that the department assesses the goals. (I have included additional material on the assessment later in this document.)


Assessment mechanism for majors
Awareness of forces[1] that shape societies and institutions in order to better understand a particular institution's or idea's rise or fall.    
a. "Identify the particular forces most relevant to the development of an idea or institution, and trace the interactions of those forces through inception, development, transformation and decline"   Senior Thesis (The thesis argument and structure)
b. "relate historical forces to one's own growth and"   Portfolio Reflection
c. "understand a work of literature in relation to literary and cultural history."   Historiographical essay in each of the three seminars
Develop students' "intellectual understanding of both the facts of historical events and their broader significance;"   Senior thesis (The thesis argument and structure)
"nurturing [students'] skills in critical thinking and..."   Article review thesis Book review thesis Historiographical essay argument and structure
"effective oral communication" and...   Presentations of work in HI 300, HI 301, and conferences
"effective written communication[2]"   Article review Book review Historiographical essay Prospectus Senior Thesis
"Students can more fully appreciate the complexity of human experience.[3]"   Transcript evaluation: have students taken three pairs of introductory sequences?
Develop the "ability to weigh evidence and arguments that are essential for those who live in a rapidly changing world." Historiographicial essay; thesis argument; thesis evidence/sources
 By the time of graduation a history major will be prepared to enter a graduate or professional program, or pursue a career broadly construed as being related to history.  Survey of graduating history majors' plans for after graduation. Survey of alumni five years out (not yet developed.)

[1] These forces include, "but are not limited to, political, economic, scientific, philosophic, military, religious, and cultural" phenomena.

[2] "Effective" in this case is defined as meeting the criteria that we set out for each of the separate assignments listed: book review, article review, historiographical essay, prospectus, and thesis.

[3] "Complexity" here is defined as "variety" of human experiences, so that students who take three sets of 100 level sequences and one non-Western course will satisfy this goal.