Assessment Brief #97 - Assessing the Global Miami Plan

Assessment Logo: assessment-revision-outcomes

January 2018


It's challenging enough to assess the major, but it is even more daunting to figure out how to assess the Global Miami Plan (GMP), which serves all undergraduate students across the University. After several years of work, the Liberal Education Council has approved and is implementing a new GMP assessment plan that includes both direct and indirect measures of the two signature outcomes of the GMP: critical thinking and written communication. The plan also includes support for several other outcomes featured in the program: global learning, intercultural perspectives, and experiential learning.

Assessment measures in the plan include:

  1. Direct assessment of critical thinking and written communication in capstone courses.
  2. Indirect assessment of critical thinking and written communication in mock interviews of juniors and seniors.

These two measures will be supplemented by discrete assessment projects relating to other GMP components, such as assessing written communication in select Advanced Writing courses, intercultural learning in Intercultural Perspectives courses, and comparison of full-semester versus accelerated delivery versions of the same GMP course.

Rubrics have been created by groups of faculty representatives from all academic divisions. The five rubrics focus on: written communication, critical thinking, global learning, intercultural perspectives, and experiential learning. In addition to assisting with direct assessment, these rubrics serve several purposes:

  1. Provide information to instructors who are developing or teaching GMP courses.
  2. Reveal to students and others the goals and expectations of particular GMP requirements.
  3. Serve as a tool for faculty to design and assess key assignments within GMP courses.
  4. Provide guidance to the Liberal Education Council when reviewing and approving proposals for the GMP.

Indirect Measure: Mock Interviews

Two questions relating to Liberal Education outcomes have been added to the mock interviews for juniors and seniors that are conducted at the Career Services Center. Trained mock interviewers to score the responses using a rubric. Interview questions are:

  • Tell me about a time in your academic experience when you had to think critically or negotiate multiple perspectives on a topic or issue. How did this experience change the way you approach issues, questions, or problems?
  • Tell me about one or two of your most significant writing experiences or projects and what you learned about yourself as a writer.

Direct Assessment: Capstone Assignments

As faculty propose new or seek final approval of the GMP Foundation, Thematic Sequence, or Capstone courses, they are asked to provide evidence that one or more of the course assignments and/or activities promote the outcomes articulated on the written communication and critical thinking rubrics.

Faculty in all GMP courses (other than the capstones) are encouraged to link the selected rubric(s) for assessment of one or more assignments and use the grading tool in Canvas to record assessment data. Assessment information and data may also be incorporated into the department's assessment activities for the major.

Beginning in 2018-2019, faculty teaching capstone courses will be required to use the rubrics (written communication and critical thinking) to shape one or more assignment(s) in their capstone course. They will also be asked to load the assignment prompt(s) that promote written communication and/or critical thinking as well as at least three samples of student work for the selected assignment(s) into a folder on Google Drive.

All identifying information (faculty and student names) will be redacted. The prompts and student work will be scored by a group of trained faculty (GMP Assessment Fellows). This approach is being piloted this year with approximately 15 capstone courses.

Additional Assessment Projects

To enhance these efforts, Liberal Education Council is spearheading smaller assessment projects. Last year, assessment was conducted on highly enrolled Advanced Writing courses. This year, Dr. Zara Torlone is working on assessing full-term and accelerated delivery versions of the same GMP course, and in 2018-2019, LEC will pilot an assessment project on Intercultural Perspectives courses. 


Each year, the assessment process and the data gathered from all these efforts (e.g., mock interviews, capstone assessment and other projects) are compiled into an annual report and shared with members of the Liberal Education Council and academic departments.