Undergraduate Degree Programs

Michigan Tech has eight Undergraduate Student Learning Goals (USLGs) . USLG1 is "disciplinary knowledge" and is specific to each degree program. The remaining goals are competencies all students should develop, regardless of major, within both the degree and general education programs.

Degree-Program Report Repository: Current assessment cycle status, assessment reports, and curriculum maps are available online (log in required).

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Assessment of Undergraduate Student Learning Goals

Degree-program faculty engage in the assessment of both the USLGs and other degree-program goals, assessing USLGs according to the following schedule:

  • 2013-14 USLG5 Communication
  • 2014-15 USLG6 Information Literacy
  • 2015-17 USLG3 Global Literacy
  • 2017-19 USLG4 Critical and Creative Thinking
  • 2019-21 USLG8 Social Responsibility and Ethical Reasoning

Since 2015, faculty have been allotted two years to engage in assessment activities for the USLG being assessed university wide, as noted in the schedule above. The first year is for planning and reflecting, submitting their planned assessment methods, a curriculum map, and a reflection on the data, the process, and the impact of assessment. During the second year, faculty implement their assessment methods, report assessment results and their evaluation by degree program, and identify action plans for improvement if warranted. Action plans that emerge from this process can then be implemented with reassessment and reporting taking place in future years.

Faculty should assess degree programs using the university USLG rubrics as specified in deliverable instructions. They may also develop additional criteria for assessment. The reasoning here is to promote and generate unit input as to how an undergraduate goal is best handled for degree programs.

Assessment of Goal of Choice

Faculty also assess a Goal of Choice (GoC) for the degree program. This goal can be either a degree-program learning goal or a USLG that is not in the rotation schedule (USLGs 1,2, and 7), or one that requires reassessment. Faculty are asked to identify and use an assessment rubric when assessing their Goal of Choice.


Assessment activities and deliverable submissions occur according to the following timeline, which was revised in Spring 2016:

  Fall 2016 Fall 2017 Fall 2018 Fall 2019 Fall 2020 Fall 2021
Submit Plan for: USLG 3   USLG 4   USLG 8  
Submit Assessment Results for:  

USLG 3 +



USLG 4 +



USLG 8 +


Submit Reassessment ("close-the-loop") Report: as appropriate   as appropriate   as appropriate  
Submit Reflection on Assessment Activities for: Cumulative up to Fall 2016   2016-2018 summary   2018-2020 summary  

This timeline reflects a two-year schedule for USLG and GoC assessment taking place in academic units across the university. The timeline spaces assessment collections so that alternate years can be used for reflection and to close the loop on interventions/changes that are driven by prior assessment results and are intended to improve the degree program. This makes evident the overarching objective of assessment (to improve student learning) and allows time for continuous improvement to happen.

Preparing for Degree-Program Assessment

To prepare for assessment, academic units need to do the following for each degree program they offer:

1. Develop/identify any additional learning goals (beyond the USLGs) for the degree program.

Identify what the students will know or be able to do at the end of the program. For example, the biology degree program identified the following program learning goals:

All graduates in Biological Sciences will:

Goal 1 have knowledge of the molecular, cellular, organismal and ecological levels of organization.
Goal 2 increase critical thinking and problem solving skills.
Goal 3 employ the scientific method to synthesize and report results.
Goal 4 apply knowledge to broader global issues.
Goal 5 be aware of the ethical and moral issues in biology.

2. Align these additional program learning goals to the USLGs.

Place additional program goals into “best fit” categories with the USLGs.


Biological Science Program Goal
Students will...
Undergraduate Student-Learning Goal
maps to...
have knowledge of the molecular, cellular, organismal and ecological levels of organization. USLG 1: Disciplinary Knowledge
increase critical thinking and problem solving skills. USLG 4: Critical & Creative Thinking
employ the scientific method to synthesize and report results.

USLG 5: Communication
USLG 6: Information Literacy

apply knowledge to broader global issues. USLG 3: Global Literacy
be aware of the ethical and moral issues in biology. USLG 8: Social responsibility and ethical reasoning

3. Build a Curriculum Map for each student learning goal.

Identify which required courses in the curriculum address which learning goals (additional program goals as well as the USLGs). This will show whether there are goals that are not met by the curriculum or required courses that do not address any goals. It will also indicate where goal assessment can take place.

Support Resources for Degree-Program Assessment

Each degree program has a faculty assessment coordinator. Announcements of workshops and reminders are sent to degree-program coordinators.

A Canvas course, Resources for Degree-Program Assessment, has been established to provide additional information about goal alignment, curriculum mapping, assessment reporting, and deliverables due. Materials include tutorials, reporting templates, and past presentations as well as report examples.

Need Help?

Degree-program coordinators, as well as other faculty and staff, are encouraged to contact Jeannie DeClerck or our other Assessment Support experts for assistance.