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Southeast Missouri State University Learning Outcomes

Southeast Missouri State University is committed to building and maintaining a student outcomes assessment program that meets and exceeds all expectations for institutional accreditation and accreditation of academic programs.   As an institution recognized for its leadership in the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) of the Higher Learning Commission, Southeast reports its assessment activities in its Systems Portfolio (See link below).  Assessment of student learning includes assessment of general education proficiencies using the ETS Proficiency Profile (formerly, MAPP), and a three-tiered approach to assessment of writing proficiency at entry to the University, at exit from the capstone English composition course, and upon completion of 75 credit hours.  All undergraduate courses now report the results of assessments of selected student learning outcomes related to course objectives. The assessment program for student outcomes in academic majors is under revision to respond to current trends in outcomes assessment.

Southeast Missouri State University administered the ETS Proficiency Profile in 2013.

Southeast Missouri State University conducted a Value-added administration of the ETS Proficiency Profile in 2013. The results are displayed below in the SLO Results tab.

For additional information on SE’s process for administering ETS Proficiency Profile, please click on the Assessment Process Tab below. For information on the students included in the administration, please click the Students Tested Tab.

Why did you choose the ETS Proficiency Profile for your institutional assessment?

Southeast Missouri State University has been administering the ETS Proficiency Profile (formerly MAPP) since 2009.  The test was chosen because it was judged to have the best potential among competing products of providing benchmark data.  The primary challenges in adminstering such a test are cost, administrative logistics, and, above all, providing sufficient motive for students to perform at their best when taking the test.  Even while the University faces continuing budget cuts from the State, sufficient resources have been allocated to fund the test and its administration.  The University offers to waive the graduation fee for any student scoring above the 50th percentile as an incentive to do one's best.

Which Southeast Missouri State University students are assessed? When?

A sample of freshmen and seniors is assessed over a designated period of time within each semester.

How are assessment data collected?

Results of the test are received from ETS.

How are data reported within Southeast Missouri State University?

Proficiency levels and mean scores are reviewed by the University Studies Committee.

How are assessment data at SE used to guide program improvements?

Assessment results have not yet been used to guide program improvements because it is not yet clear to those who have reviewed the results how they might be tied to specific components of curriculum and instruction. 

Of 1729 freshmen students eligible to be tested, 1392 (81%) were included in the tested sample at Southeast Missouri State University.

Of 2607 senior students eligible to be tested, 1013 (39%) were included in the tested sample at Southeast Missouri State University.

Probability sampling, where a small randomly selected sample of a larger population can be used to estimate the learning gains in the entire population with statistical confidence, provides the foundation for campus-level student learning outcomes assessment at many institutions. It's important, however, to review the demographics of the tested sample of students to ensure that the proportion of students within a given group in the tested sample is close to the proportion of students in that group in the total population. Differences in proportions don't mean the results aren't valid, but they do mean that institutions need to use caution in interpreting the results for the groups that are under-represented in the tested sample.

Undergraduate Student Demographic Breakdown

  Freshmen Seniors
Eligible Students Tested Students Eligible Students Tested Students
Gender Female 56% 62% 60% 57%
Male 44% 38% 40% 100%
Other or Unknown <1% <1% <1% <1%
US Underrepresented Minority 17% 15% 10% 8%
White / Caucasian 78% 81% 81% 85%
International 4% 3% 7% 5%
Unknown 1% 1% 2% 2%
Low-income (Eligible to receive a Federal Pell Grant) 17% 16% 12% 11%

The institution does not have access to data that support an independent judgment about the representativeness of the samples for each administration of the test.  The consistency of scores over time and their relationship to national means indicates that the samples are valid.

The VSA advises institutions to follow assessment publisher guidelines for determining the appropriate number of students to test. In the absence of publisher guidelines, the VSA provides sample size guidelines for institutions based on a 95% confidence interval and 5% margin of error. So long as the tested sample demographics represent the student body, this means we can be 95% certain that the "true" population learning outcomes are with +/- 5% of the reported results. For more information on Sampling, please refer to the Research Methods Knowledge Base

The increase in learning on the performance task is at or near what would be expected at an institution testing students of similar academic abilities.

The increase in learning on the analytic writing task is at or near what would be expected at an institution testing students of similar academic abilities.

Critical Thinking Detail

The chart below shows the distribution of student scores on the ETS Proficiency Profile Critical Thinking test. Students are scored as Not Proficient, Marginal, or Proficient.

Written Communication Detail

The charts below show the distribution of student scores on the three levels of the ETS Proficiency Profile Writing Test. Students are scored as Not Proficient, Marginal, or Proficient on each level. Writing 3 represents more advanced writing skill than Writing 2, which represents more advanced writing skill than Writing 1.