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Comprehensive Standard 3.3.1
Institutional Effectiveness - Assessment of Educational Programs

4. The institution identifies expected outcomes, assesses the extent to which it achieves these outcomes, and provides evidence of improvement based on analysis of the results in the following area: educational programs, to include student learning outcomes

Judgment of Compliance:


Narrative/Justification for Judgment of Compliance:

Florida Gateway College (FGC) identifies expected outcomes, assesses the extent to which it achieves these outcomes, and provides evidence of improvement based on analysis of the results in educational programs, to include student learning outcomes.

Identification of Expected Outcomes

General Learning Outcomes

FGC faculty have identified general learning outcomes (GLO’s) [1] that are to be mastered by students completing an associate’s degree. GLO’s represent comprehensive competencies in the areas of communication, mathematics, science, cultural awareness, critical thinking, and information literacy. They are aligned with the Florida College System’s statewide student learning outcomes [2] for the general education core.

GLO’s and course level learning outcomes are identified in the general education core courses within the discipline. The outcomes are the same for distance learning course sections. Learning outcomes, evaluation methods and performance criteria are listed on course syllabi. [3]

  • Communications: Communications and Critical Thinking
    • ENC 1101 Freshman Composition I
    • SPC 2608 Public Speaking
  • Mathematics: Quantitative Reasoning and Critical Thinking
    • MAC 1105 College Algebra
    • STA 2023 Elementary Statistics
    • MGF 1106 Mathematics for Liberal Arts I
  • Science: Scientific Reasoning and Critical Thinking
    • BSC 2010 C General Biology I with Lab
    • BSC 2085 Anatomy and Physiology I
    • CHM 2045 General Chemistry I
    • MCB 2010 Microbiology
  • Social Science: Information Literacy and Critical Thinking
    • SLS 1501 The College Experience
    • AMH 2010 United States History to 1865
    • AMH 2020 United States History from 1865
    • ECO 2013 Macroeconomics
    • ECO 2023 Microeconomics
    • DEP 2001 Child Development
    • PSY 2012 General Psychology I
  • Humanities: Cultural Awareness and Critical Thinking
    • HUM 2020 Introduction to Humanities
    • HUM 2551 Philosophy and Religion
    • PHI 2010 Introduction to Philosophy
Gordon Rule Requirement.

In accordance with Florida Administrative Code (FAC) Rule 6A-10.030 [4] students receiving an associate in arts degree will demonstrate college level writing skills and complete a minimum of six semester hours of mathematics at the level of college algebra or higher. Gordon rule courses are identified in the college catalog (marked GR) and on course syllabi.

Program Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes are identified at the program level for associate in science degree and certificate programs [5]. Program learning outcomes describe the knowledge, skills, abilities and behaviors that faculty want students to demonstrate by the time they complete the program. The program learning outcomes are posted on the college website [6]. Course learning outcomes, evaluation methods and performance criteria are identified on course syllabi [7].

Program Outcomes

Florida Gateway College (FGC) evaluates program outcomes which include

  • enrollment data
  • retention
  • graduation
  • program completion
  • job placement rates
  • state licensing examinations
  • course and program success rates

Reports on the status of the program outcomes are produced and distributed to administrators and faculty for review. Assessment of program outcomes is discussed in detail in Federal Requirement 4.1.


Achievement of outcomes is assessed at the course, program, and academic discipline levels using various mechanisms developed and assessed by faculty. Curriculum is reviewed annually and documented by program and faculty coordinators. Assessment data from course assignments, projects, exams, course grades and student success rates are used to determine if students are achieving learning outcomes within the acceptable performance standards. Assessment for Gordon Rule requirements is integrated in course assessments within identified Gordon Rule courses in communications, humanities, social science, and mathematics. These assignments also measure critical thinking skills and are related to the discipline’s specific general learning outcomes.

Comprehensive Program Review

Academic departments and occupational programs go through a comprehensive review approximately every five years [8]. The comprehensive review includes a summary of student learning and program outcomes assessment results from previous years. The comprehensive review also provides an in depth analysis of program quality and effectiveness, including curriculum review, faculty qualifications, and adequacy of resources.

In addition to completion of comprehensive reviews, departments and programs keep administrators updated on the status of programs on a regular basis with the program status report. [9].

ETS Proficiency Profile

In April, 2012, FGC expanded the assessment process for measuring achievement of general learning outcomes and began administering the ETS Proficiency Profile. The ETS Proficiency Profile is used as another tool to measure the achievement of outcomes in reading, critical thinking, communications and mathematics. The test was administered in 2012; 135 students, 2013; 128 students and 2014; 122 students for a total of 385 students. The goal was to select courses that included students which were very close to graduating. All three cohorts were not what was expected. They were in various stages of program completion. Students had no incentive to complete the proficiency profile with accuracy. FGC determined that the proficiency profile did not yield valid results that would aid in planning decisions.

Evidence of Improvement Based on Analysis of Results

Data collected from assessment is evaluated and used to make decisions that drive institutional improvement. Information from assessment is evaluated by faculty and administrators through various reporting mechanisms, including the GLO assessment summary [10]; comprehensive program review results summary [11]; comprehensive program review reports [12]; enrollment and success rates by program [13] and by discipline [14]. Assessments of distance learning course sections are included in these reports.

Results of the various assessments are evaluated and decisions are made to improve areas of concern. Curriculum changes and rationale are proposed and documented in the Educational Affairs Committee (EAC) agenda and meeting minutes [15]. Proposals approved by the EAC are then submitted to the District Board of Trustees (DBOT) for approval prior to implementation [16].


[1] General Learning Outcomes (GLO’s)
[2] Associate in Arts Degree Planner
[3] Course Syllabi
[4] Florida Administrative Code (FAC) Rule 6A-10.030
[5] Program Learning Outcomes
[6] Program Learning Outcomes College Website
[7] Occupational Programs Course Syllabi
[8] Program Review Schedule
[9] Program Status Reports
[10] Summary GLO Assessment
[11] Program Review Results Summary
[12] Program Review Reports
[13] Occupational Programs Success Reports
[14] Academic Programs Success Reports
[15] EAC Agenda
[16] District Board of Trustees (DBOT) Action Items Summary
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Page Last Updated: July 13, 2015