Assessment Report – 2010
Evidence collected in spring & fall 2010 Report due March 31, 2011
Directions: Please complete a form for each of the programs within your department. This form was designed to provide a format for
assessment reporting and should not be used to limit the amount of information provided. Each box that is attached to each of the sections is
designed to adjust to varying lengths. If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Bea Babbitt at x51506 or via email.
***Email form to firstname.lastname@example.org (Academic Assessment/UNLV)
Program B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science
Program Assessment Coordinator David K. Kreamer
Report submitted by
(include phone/email) David K. Kreamer email@example.com 702-895-3553
Date Submitted March 31, 2011
1. Student Learning Outcomes for the program. List the Student Learning Outcomes for the program. Number for later reference.
1. Demonstrate the ability to recognize, formulate, employ, and interpret the scientific methodology
2. Demonstrate the knowledge of major rock types, geologic time, evolution, and earth history events
3. Demonstrate the knowledge in various specializations within the field of earth and environmental science to solve appropriate research
or applied problems.
4. Demonstrate the ability to function independently, collaboratively, and ethically with others in the profession as colleagues and
5. Demonstrate the written and verbal communications skills required to convey contemporary theories in earth and environmental
science and in how the Earth operates as a system
6. Demonstrate sufficient skills in computers and multi-media system for the application and presentation in earth and environmental
2. Planned assessments: Methods, Instruments and Analysis. According to the Assessment Plan for this program, what were the planned
assessments to be conducted during the Spring & Fall 2010 Academic Semesters?
Which outcomes for this How did you What results did you expect? If the students performed well what would their
program were measured? measure the performance look like, i.e. percentages, means, or comparisons to a national
1) Understanding of Course grades Grades in GEOL 220, 221, 301, and 303 are reported. Students are expected to
scientific methodology achieve grades of C or better.
2) Knowledge of rock types, Course grades Grades in GEOL 220, 221, 301, 302, 303 and 330 are reported. Students are
geologic time, and Earth expected to achieve grades of C or better.
3) Knowledge of various Course grades Grades in GEOL 102, 220, 221, 301, 302, 303, 330 and 427 are reported. Students
specializations within the are expected to achieve grades of C or better.
field of Earth and
Course Grades, Grades in GEOL 220, 221, 301, 302, 333 and 330 are reported. Students are
4) Independence, individual expected to achieve grades of C or better. Incorporation of reports on student
collaboration, and ethics faculty reporting independence, collaboration, and ethics from instructors
Course Grades Grades in GEOL 220, 221, 301, 302, 303 and 330 are reported. Students are
5) Communications skills expected to achieve grades of C or better.
Course Grades Grades in GEOL 220, 221, 301, 302, 303, and 330 are reported. Students are
6) Computer skills expected to achieve grades of C or better.
3. Results, conclusions and discoveries. What are the results of each planned assessment listed above? Is the outcome at, above, or below
what was expected? What conclusions or discoveries do you draw from the results? Describe below or attach to the form.
During 2010, seven Earth and Environmental Science (EAS) majors were enrolled in GEOL 102, Earth and Life Through Time. The average
grade was B+. Eight EAS majors were enrolled in GEOL 220, Mineralogy. The average grade for those students was a B-. Two EAS majors
were enrolled in GEOL 221 Introduction to Optical Mineralogy and Petrography, receiving an A and B. Seven EAS majors were enrolled in
GEOL 301, Fossil Record, with an average grade of B-. Seven EAS majors were enrolled in GEOL 302, Paleontology Laboratory, with an
average grade of A-. Six EAS majors were enrolled in GEOL 303, Global Environmental Change, and received an average grade of B. No
EAS Majors were enrolled in GEOL 330. No EAS majors received a grade lower than C in any of these courses. Other courses used for this
evaluation, GEOL 333 and 334, were not offered in 2010. One EAS student took an upper division class GEOL 427, Igneous and
Metamorphic Petrology/Petrography and received a D-. Student independence, collaboration, and ethics, as indicated from instructor reports
appears to be healthy, although reported results are scant and often comprise a lack of any negative comments.
Concepts and skills in learning outcomes 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 are introduced in courses such as GEOL 101 and 102. These are enriched and
reinforced in the courses for which results are discussed above. The minimum department expectations for student performance in each of
these courses is a C. All EAS majors students performed above department expectations in the courses evaluated, with the exception of one
student taking a 400 level class. Student independence, collaboration, and ethics, as indicated from instructor reports appears to be healthy.
Overall, these results indicate successful completion of the learning outcomes assessed for 2010.
4. Use of results. What program changes are indicated, and how will they be implemented? Include a description of who will review and act
on the findings. If none, describe why changes are not needed.
The results of the assessment plan analysis for the B.S. in Earth and Environmental Science demonstrate that all criteria considered for 2010
exceed the minimum department standards, with the exception of one student who received a D- in GEOL 427. (Four students out of
seventeen in this class received a D- (23.5%); perhaps better advising and instructor advocacy for dropping the course for those who are not
performing to standard is warranted.) This indicates that the program is satisfying student learning outcomes well with one exception, and
that no significant program changes are indicated at this time. Future instructor reporting results, which were not robust in this report, will
allow us to assess other important issues such as student abilities to function independently, collaboratively and ethically as colleagues and
There are a low number of Earth and Environmental Science Majors currently in the program, an issue which is beyond the performance
assessed here, and which is being addressed by the Department. A proposal for streamlining, updating and improving this program was made
in 2010 under great faculty effort, as suggested by a NSF-sponsored UNLV Geoscience curricular review in which all Geoscience faculty
actively participated. This proposal was accepted by the Geoscience faculty after considerable discussion, and included a program name
change. This program may be impacted by budget cuts in the future
5. Progress. Describe program changes that have been recommended in past reports. What progress has been made since the
No major program changes were recommended. The tabulated results of the assessment and a written evaluation of them will be made
available annually in the department office. Assessment results will be distributed to Geoscience Department faculty and discussed at a
The UNLV Geoscience undergraduate program has just undergone a complete reevaluation and revision. This review involved a 1 ½ day
National Science Foundation external peer workshop attended by all faculty. There followed data gathering and committee reports on
Objectives (what the goals are for our academic programs), Expectations (what the professional/academic community expects of our
graduates and how we can improve), and Models (surveys of other geoscience programs and their approaches). As a result, two of our three
undergraduate programs have been entirely revised, the third is still under consideration.