Once a month, we highlight departments, programs, and committees from across the college that have great things happening motivated by a desire to improve student learning.
The library’s exhibition librarian created visual literacy outcomes that fall within the broader information competency outcome to better assess the role of exhibitions/visual imagery on student learning. The PSLO reads: Students locate, evaluate and use visual information displayed within library exhibitions and representing a variety of media. Students in an academic literacy class spent two class meetings working with their instructor and the exhibitions librarian looking at, drawing from, carefully observing, and contextualizing the Finding Home, Artwork by Veterans exhibition. The exhibitions/art reference librarian introduced the exhibition, explained the specific media included in the exhibition and taught students to use library resources on the subject of art, war and war veterans. The librarian taught students to use the online catalog, periodical and image databases and other online resources, as well as the use of MLA citation format. Students completed a culminating writing assignment which was specific to the City College of San Francisco community; students located, read, and cited an article about a City College Veteran student as a way of engaging more closely with the exhibit. Many students responded to a print entitled "Sandbags" by Yvette Pino (pictured below).
An increase of 28.25% from the previous year’s assessment for a general visual literacy rating occurred. Increased text, embedded librarianship, a more fully developed collaboration with classroom faculty and other improvements to exhibitions are credited with the improved rating. Students’ skill in evaluating visual images within an exhibition rose by 9.5% after attending two workshops and completing 3 assignments on visual literacy. In their final assignment, an essay completed independently, students were able to provide more abstract and complex analyses of the images than in the earlier assignments. Students, many of whom were English Language learners, conveyed profound ideas about art and war. Students described how they learned from visual media: 1.) “Learning about war from artwork [rather than books or movies] requires me to use more of my own creativity, imagination and interpretation in order to figure out what the artist is trying to say through his or her artwork.” 2.) [Learning about war from artwork] is really different because you get to see actual evidence from people's memories..."
Collaboration across CCSF departments and programs was key to the success of this assessment: in addition to working closely with a faculty member and her 4 classes in College Success, CCSF's Veterans Affairs program participated and an English instructor whose class focuses on military and veterans' issues wrote text for the exhibition.
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Every semester CAHS departmental retreats focus on SLO’s, assessment, best teaching and learning practices as part of ongoing professional development. Most recently, retreats have focused on incorporating LiveText assessment software into our program. LiveText is an e-portfolio and assessment management web application obtained through the Perkins allocation process. To see LiveText in action, click on the video above.
Over the summer, culinary faculty created Team Rubric. The Team was comprised of faculty from the three distinct areas in the program: culinary, baking & pastry, and Front of House. Each team of two or three people started by asking an essential question, “What are the things our students need to show to get a job?” By starting with that end in mind, our work was clarified and prioritized. For example, for the culinary discipline faculty noted that they wouldn’t hire someone that did not have knife skills. Through discussion, several other skills emerged and Team Rubric then prioritized outcomes into an A, B, and C list. Members of Team Rubric, working in smaller groups, would check in every week or two as rubrics were developed. When everyone on the team convened, our discussions looked at the commonalities and how the rubrics were translated across all departments. Culinary faculty wanted rubrics that could be utilzed by any faculty in any area. And, our larger discussions clarified what it meant to demonstrate a skill at an introductory , developing level or finally mastering the outcome or standard. After rubrics were established, all were loaded in LiveText.
For the rollout last semester we decided that all of the instructors in each discipline (Culinary, Baking & Pastry, and Front of House) would pick one rubric to use in every class. Culinary choose knife skills. We have lots of data and feedback to build upon and all our data is already identified by student.
MRSD created a survey (assessment) in Fall 2013. We developed a departmental brochure to advertise the programs and services in our 4 Retention Centers. This brochure was available to all students in our Centers. We implemented a new process where the brochure was given to students when they checked-in for their counseling appointments. During the counseling appointment, counselors referred to services provided by our Centers and some reviewed the brochure with students. A pre-survey (assessment) was given to each student when they checked-in for their counseling appointment. The survey was designed to gauge how many services each student was familiar with in our Retention Centers. After the appointment, the post-survey was conducted. The pre/post data was analyzed to ascertain whether a significant increase in awareness was achieved with the brochure. 343 pre-surveys & 340 post-surveys were collected. Students were familiar with 3.36/6.81 services on average, respectively. This represents a 102.8% increase (more than double) in awareness of our services. An 80% increase would indicate achievement of the outcome. Looking at individual services, students were most familiar in our pre-survey with "core" services - counseling (84%) and educational planning (54.2%). In our post-survey, awareness of these services rose to a very high numbers - counseling (96.8%) and educational planning (85.9%). While the actual number of students almost reached 100%, the percentage increases (14.2% and 57.0%, respectively) were smaller given the relatively high number of students already familiar with these services. The number of students aware of other less familiar services (Black College Tours/Info, Outreach) were much smaller, but had significant percentage increases of greater than 300% (3x). It is important to note that information on Black Colleges is mainly provided to students using services in AASP. Continuing the analysis of other individual services yields some useful information. After the post-survey, students had varying levels of familiarity with these services – Academic classes (77.9%), Scholarships (70.9%), Tutoring (59.4%), Book Loan (57.6%), Book Voucher (55.6%), Bilingual Counseling (50.9%) and Workshops/Orientations (46.5%). While we did not set a particular outcome for individual services, more emphasis is needed in communicating some of these services to students. Furthermore, changing the outcome to measure individual services may be implemented in later assessments. From this assessment, MRSD faculty feel that our current counseling process is very effective in providing information about MRSD services to our student population. MRSD faculty will continue to inform students of our services during counseling appointments and through active distribution of our department brochure.