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Building the Intentional UniversityMinerva and the Future of Higher Education$
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Stephen M. Kosslyn and Ben Nelson

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780262037150

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262037150.001.0001

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Assessing Student Learning

Assessing Student Learning

(p.239) 17 Assessing Student Learning
Building the Intentional University

Rena Levitt

Ari Bader-Natal

Vicki Chandler

The MIT Press

This chapter describes the tools and procedures we have developed to assess students’ intellectual progress at Minerva. These tools and procedures rely on six design principles: implement learning outcomes; grade consistently; provide feedback in context; aggregate meaningfully; show and share progress; and supplement with external measures. In general, faculty use rubrics to score how well the students have mastered and applied the learning outcomes during the video-recorded classes and in their assignments; these scores, often accompanied by explanatory comments, provide significant, regular feedback. We developed tools to help students and faculty explore the assessment data and to know how well students are doing in each class throughout the semester. Minerva’s unique requirement that faculty assess students on how well they apply Habits of Mind and Foundational Concepts in every class, across all four years, led us to develop novel tools to record and aggregate individual assessments across multiple courses. Finally, we used externally developed tests to provide summative data on whether our students were actually learning.

Keywords:   cross-course assessment, learning outcomes, annotation-based feedback, rubric design, longitudinal assessment

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