The posting below is a very brief summary of the conceptual underpinnings of the assessment of college student development, with a number of excellent references for further reading. It is from Chapter Six, The Scholarly Assessment of Student Development by George D. Kuh, Robert M. Gonyea, and Daisy P. Rodriguez in Building a Scholarship of Assessment, by Trudy W. Banta and Associates. Published by Jossey-Bass A Wiley Company, 989 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94103-1741. . Copyright ? 2002 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Jossey-Bass is a registered trademark of John Wiley & Sons, Inc. Reprinted with permission.
Rick Reis reis@stanford.,edu UP NEXT: The Changing Educational Scene
--------------------------- 1, 181 words -----------------------------
ASSESSING STUDENT LEARNING: 1930'S TO THE PRESENT
>From Chapter 6 The Scholarly Assessment of Student Development George D. Kuh, Robert M. Gonyea, and Daisy P. Rodriguez
Student development assessment dates back to at least the 1930s with studies of both currently enrolled students (for example, Jones, 1938; McConnell, 1934; Pressy, 1946) and alumni (Havemann and West, 1952; Newcomb, 1943). Through much of the 1960s, the focus was on measuring attitudes, interests, and other aspects of personality functioning of traditional-age college students, such as authoritarianism and motivation for learning. The Omnibus Personality Inventory (OPI), the California Psychological Inventory, and the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory were used frequently enough during the 1950s and 1960s to warrant the development of national norms. The OPI was particularly popular, becoming the instrument of choice for multiple institutional; studies of student development (Chickering, 1969; Clark and others, 1972). Then, as now, pencil-and-paper questionnaires tended to dominate assessment efforts, though some definitive work was done with individual interviews of alumni (for example, Newcomb, 1943; White, 1952) and enrolled students (Heath, 1968).
Interest in measuring the impact of college on students came of age in the 1960s, stimulated in large part by the publication of such classics as Changing Values in College (Jacob, 1957), The American College (Sanford, 1962), The Impact of College on Students (Feldman and Newcomb, 1969), Education and Identity (Chickering, 1969), No Time for Youth (Katz and Korn, 1968), and Growing up in College (Heath, 1968). This work, coupled with the emergence of the national college student research program of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) (Astin, 1977; 1993), prompted the much-needed formulation of developmental theories in the 1060s and 1970s that described the complex, holistic processes by which students grow, change, and develop during the college years. The emergence of student development theory, in turn, shaped the next generation of assessment tools and processes. In fact, the conceptual underpinnings of many student development assessment tools are rooted in one or more of four categories: psychosocial theories, cognitive-structural theories, person-environment interaction theories, and typology models (Kuh and Stage, 1992; Rodgers, 1989; Widick, Knefelkamp, and Parker, 1980).
Psychosocial theories describe how individuals resolve challenges and personal growth issues at different stages or periods during the life cycle with the development of identity being central. Chickering's (1969) theory is the best known, holding that every student must master seven "vectors of development": developing confidence, managing emotions, developing autonomy, establishing identity, developing freeing interpersonal relationships, developing purpose, and developing integrity. The Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Inventory (Prince, Miller, and Winston, 1974; Winston, 1990) measures three of Chickering's vectors: establishing and clarifying purpose, developing mature interpersonal relationships, and developing autonomy. Albert Hood, from the University of Iowa, and several of his doctoral students, developed a collection of instruments known as the Iowa Student Development Inventories, which, taken together, assess all but one of Chickering's seven vectors: developing integrity (Hood, 1986). Instruments have also been developed specifically to measure the psychosocial development of Blacks and Latinos, including Sue's Minority Identity Development model (Sue and Sue, 1990) and Cross's Model of Psychosocial Nigrescence (Cross, Strauss and Fhagen-Smith, 1999).
Cognitive structural theories describe the processes by which people move from fairly simplistic, dualistic ("right or wrong") judgments and reasoning abilities to more complicated, reflective understandings and constructions of reality. Among the prominent theorists in this family are Perry (1970), King and Kitchener (1994), Baxter Magolda (1992), Kohlberg (1981), Gilligan (1982), and Fowler (1981). Originally, development was assessed via standardized interview protocols, but, more recently, pencil-and-paper instruments have been developed to make measuring certain aspects of cognitive-structural development more feasible. In addition, certain of the theories and instruments have been adapted for use with Black and Latino students (see Atkinson, Morten, and Sue, 1993; Banks, 1993; Shaw, 2000).
Person-environment interaction theories hold that individual performance is optimized when one's needs and abilities are congruent with the demands of the environment (Strange and Banning, 2001). Although these models do not describe developmental processes or outcomes, they do help explain why some students find certain institutional environments compatible and others unappealing. This, in turn, contributes to student-institution fit and satisfaction, which directly and indirectly affect various aspects of student development (Pascarella and Terenzini, 1991) as well as student satisfaction and retention (Astin, 1977; Bean, 1986; Bean and Bradley, 1986; Pascarella and Terenzini, 1991; Tinto, 1993). Examples include Holland's theory of vocational choice (1973, 1985, 1994), Stern's need/press theory (1970), and Moos's social ecological approach (Moos, 1979; Moos and Brownstein, 1977; Moos and Insel, 1974), using such tools as the University Residence Environment scale (Moos and Gerst, 1976) and the Classroom Environment Scale (Moos and Trickett, 1976) to describe the characteristics of different environments.
Typology models sort individuals into categories according to their similarities and differences related to how they manage and cope with common developmental tasks inherent in the collegiate setting. Inventories using this approach have been developed by Myers-Briggs (Myers and Myers, 1995) and Kolb (Ballou, Bowers, Boyatzis, and Kolb, 1999; Boyatzis and Kolb, 1991). As with the person-environment models, typologies do not claim to describe development per se, but, rather, they explain individual preferences that can help predict performance under various circumstances. For example, after analyzing patters of student self-reported behavior, Kuh, Hu, and Vesper (2000) discovered eight dominant groups of undergraduates, some of whom were very engaged in educationally purposeful activities.
Another perspective that is increasingly being used to assess student development is to look at process indicators that represent the extent to which students engage in the activities that predict desired learning and personal development outcomes. Process indicators include such activities as studying, reading, writing, interacting with peers from diverse backgrounds, discussing ideas from classes and readings with faculty members, and so forth (Kuh, 2001a). The college student development research shows that these types of activities are precursors to high levels of student learning and personal development (Banta and Associates, 1993; Ewell and Jones, 1996). Among the better-known process indicators are the seven "good educational practices," such as setting high expectations and providing prompt feedback (Chickering and Gamson, 1997), as well as other features of student-centered learning environments, which include focusing resources on first-year students and creating a learner-centered culture (Education Commission of the States, 1995). This approach to assessing the student and institutional behaviors associated with student development is very appealing because it provides information that can be used immediately to improve undergraduate education. The conceptual underpinnings for this approach are consistent with Astin's "theory of involvement" (1984), Pace's concept of "quality of effort (1982), and the "involving colleges" framework described by Kuh and others (1991). Instruments that assess student engagement include the College Student Experiences Questionnaire (Pace and Kuh, 1998), The College Student Report (Kuh, 1999), and UCLA's College Student Survey.
This brief review shows that a variety of theoretical and empirical models exist to guide the scholarly assessment of undergraduate student growth and development as well as the conditions that optimize progress toward desired outcomes. Theory development is not complete, certainly-especially with regard to historically underrepresented groups such as racial and ethnic minority students and older students. For a more thorough treatment of the student development theories that undergird these and related assessment tools, see Evans, Forney, and Guido-DiBrito (1998) and Rodgers (1989).
Astin, A.W Four Critical Years. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1977.
Astin, A. W. "Student Involvement: A Developmental Theory for Higher Education." Journal of College Student Development, 1984, 40(5), 518-529.
Astin, A.W. What Matters in College? Four Critical Years Revisited. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1993
Atkinson, D., Morten, G., and Sue, D. Counseling American Minorities: A Cross-Cultural Perspective. Madison, Wis.: Brown & Benchmark, 1993.
Ballou, R., Bowers, D., Boyatzis, R. E., and Kolb, D.A. "Fellowship in Lifelong Learning: An Executive Development Program for Advanced Professionals." Journal of Management Education, 1999, 23(4), 338-354
Banks, J.A. "The Cannon Debate, Knowledge Construction, and Multicultural Education." Educational Researcher, 1993, 22(5), 4-14.
Banta, T.W. "Summary and Conclusion: Are We Making a Difference?" In T.W. Banta and Associates (eds.), Making a Difference: Outcomes of a Decade of Assessment in Higher Education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1993.
Baxter Magolda, M. B. Knowing and Reasoning in College: Gender-Related Patterns in Students' Intellectual Development. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1992.
Bean, J.P. "Assessing and Reducing Attrition." In D. Hossler (ed.), Managing College Enrollments. New Directions for Higher Education, no. 53, San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1986.
Bean, J.P., and Bradley, R. "Untangling the Satisfaction-Performance Relationship for College Students." Journal of Higher Education, 1986, 57, 293-312.
Boyatzis, R.E., and Kolb, D.A. "Assessing Individuality in Learning: The Learning Skills Profile." Educational Psychology: An International Journal of Experimental Educational Psychology, 1991, 11(3-4), 279-295.
Chickering, A.W. Education and Identity. San Franscico: Jossey-Bass, 1969.
Chickering, A.W., and Gamson, Z.F. "Seven Principles for Good Practice in Undergraduate Education." AAHE Bulletin, 1987, 39(7), 3-7.
Clark, B., and others. Students and Colleges: Interaction and Change. Berkeley: University of California, Center for Research and Development in Higher Education, 1972.
Cross, W.E., Strauss, L., and Fhagen-Smith, P. "African American Identity Development Across the Life Span: Educational Implications." In R. Sheets and E. Hollins (eds.), Racial and Ethnic Identity in School Practices. Mahwah, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1999.
Education Commission of the States: Making Quality Count in Undergraduate Education. Denver: Education Commission of the States, 1995.
Evans, N.J., Forney, D.S., and Guido-DiBrito, F. Student Development in College: Theory, Research, and Practice. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1998.
Ewell, P.T., and Jones, D.P. Indicators of "Good Practice" in Undergraduate Education: A Handbook for Development and Implementation. Boulder, Colo.: National Center for Higher Education Management Systems, 1996.
Feldman, K.A., and Newcomb, T.M. The Impact of College on Students. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1969.
Fowler, J.W. Stages of faith: The Psychology of Human Development and the Quest for meaning. San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1981.
Gilligan, C. In a Different Voice: Psychological Theory and Women's Development. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1982.
Havemann, E., and West, P. They Went to College. Orlando, Fla.: Harcourt Brace, 1952.
Heath, D. H. Growing Up in College: Liberal Education and maturity. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1968.
Holland, J.L. Making Vocational Choices: A Theory of Careers. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 1973.
Holland, J.L. Vocational Preference Inventory (vpi): Professional Manual. Odessa, Fla.: Psychological Assessment Resources, 1958.
Holland, J.L. The Self-Directed Search (sds): Professional Manual. Odessa, Fla.: Psychological Assessment Resources, 1994.
Hood, A.B. The Iowa Student Development Inventories. Iowa City, Iowa: Hitech Press, 1986.
Jacob, P.E. Changing Values in College: An Exploratory Study of the Impact of College Teaching. New York: Harper Collins, 1957.
Jones, V.A. "Attitudes of College Students and Changes in Such Attitudes During Four Years in College.: Journal of Educational Psychology, 1938, 29, 14-35.
Katz, J., and Korn, H.A. No Time for Youth: Growth and Constraint in College Students. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1968.
King, P. M., and Kitchener, K. S. Developing Reflective Judgment: Understanding and Promoting Intellectual Growth and Critical Thinking in Adolescents and Adults. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1994
Kohlberg, L. The Philosophy of Moral Development: Moral Stages and the Ideas of Justice, San Francisco: Harper San Francisco, 1981
Kuh, G. D., The College Student Report. National Survey of Student Engagement, Center for Postsecondary Research and Planning. Bloomington: Indiana University, 1999
Kuh, G. D., "Assessing What Really Matters to Student Learning: Inside the National Survey of Student Engagement." Change, 2001a, 33(3), 10-17, 66.\
Kuh, G. D., Hu, S., and Vesper, N. "'They Shall Be Known by What They Do': An Activities-Based Typology of College Students." Journal of College Student Development, 2000, 41, 228-244.
Kuh, G. D., Schuh, J. H., Whitt, E. J., and associates. A. Involving Colleges: Encouraging Student Learning and Personal Development Through Out-of-Class Experiences. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1991
Kuh, G. D., and Stage, F. K. "Student Development Theory and Research." In B. R. Clark and G. Neave (eds.), Encyclopedia of Higher Education. New York: Pergamon, 1992.
McConnell, T. "Changes in Scores on the Psychological Examination of the American Council on Education from Freshman to Senior Year." Journal of Education Psychology, 1934, 25, 66-69
Moos, R. H. Evaluating Educational Environments. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1979.
Moos, R. H., and Brownstein, R. Environment and Utopia: A Synthesis. New York: Plenum, 1977.
Moos, R. H., and Gerst, M. University Residence Environment Scale Manual. Palo Alto, Calif.: Consulting Psychologists Press, 1976.
Moos, R. H., and Insel, P. M. Issues in Social Ecology: Human Milieus. Palo Alto, Calif.: National Press Books, 1974.
Moos, R. H., and Trickett, E. Classroom Environment Scale Manual. Palo Alto, Calif.: Consulting Psychologists Press, 1976.
Myers, I. B., and Myers, P. B. Gifts Differing: Understanding Personality Type. Palo Alto, Calif.: Davies-Black, 1995.
Newcomb, T. M. Personality and Social Change. Orlando, Fla.: Dryden Press, 1943.
Pace, C. R. Achievement and the Quality of Student Effort. Washington, D.C.: National Commission on Excellence in Education, 1982.
Pace, C. R., and Kuh, G. D. College Student Experiences Questionnaire. Bloomington, Ind.: Center for Postsecondary Research and Planning, 1998.
Pascarella, E. T. and Terenzini, P. T. How College Affects Students: Findings and Insights from Twenty Years of Research. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1991.
Perry, W. G. Forms of Intellectual and Ethical Development in the College Years: A Scheme. Austin, Tex.: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1970.
Pressy, S. L. "Changes from 1923 to 1943 in the Attitudes of Public School and University Students." Journal of Psychology, 1946, 21, 173-188.
Prince, J. S., Miller, T. K., and Winston, R. B., Jr. Student Developmental Task Inventory. Athens, Ga.: Student Development Associates, 1974.
Rodgers, R. F. "Student Development." In U. Delworth, G. R. Hanson and Associates (eds.), Student Services: A Handbook for the Profession (2nd ed.) San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1989.
Sanford, N. (ed.). The American College: A Psychological and Social Interpretation of the Higher Learning. New York: Wiley, 1962.
Shaw, J. D. "Applicability of Baxter Magolda's Epistemological Reflection Model to Black and Latino Students." University of South Florida, Dissertation Abstracts, 2000.
Stern, G. G. People in Context. New York: Wiley, 1970.
Strange, C. C., and Banning, J. H. Educating by Design: Creating Campus Learning Environments That Work. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2001.
Sue, D. W., and Sue, D. Counseling the Culturally Different: Theory and Practice. (2nd ed.) New York: Wiley, 1990.
Tinto, V. Leaving College: Rethinking the Causes and Cures of Student Attrition. (2nd ed.) Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993.
White, R. W. Lives in Progress. Orlando, Fla.: Dryden Press, 1952.
Widick, C., Knefelkamp, L., and Parker, C. "Student Development." In U. Delworth, G. Hanson, and Associates (eds.), Student Services: A Handbook for the Profession. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1980.
Winston, R. B., Jr. "The Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Inventory: An Approach to Measuring Students' Psychosocial Development." Journal of College Student Development, 1990, 31(2), 108-120.