Evaluation of Engineering Students’ Learning Outcomes: Creating a Culture of Continuous Quality Improvement
Keywords:continuous quality improvement, CQI, outcomes-based assessment, OBE analytical tool, constructive alignment, culminating model
Assessment and evaluation of outcomes and continuous quality improvement often lead to uneasiness among engineering educators, which is a barrier to implementing an effective system of results-assessment. The sophisticated evaluation models and analytical instruments adopted by higher learning institutions are believed to worsen this uneasiness, impeding the successful implementation of programme quality improvement. In this paper, the challenges in assessing and evaluating learning outcomes, types of programme outcome assessment model and an analytical tool known as Engineering Outcome Analytics developed by Tunku Abdul Rahman University College for the assessment were presented. Documents related to quality improvement from two higher learning institutions in Malaysia were reviewed and discussed based on the key elements of continuous quality improvement. The results can be used to avoid the shortcomings and adopt the best practices in continuous quality improvement. With proper understanding on the key elements of continuous quality improvement, and adoption of culminating assessment model and a highly integrated analytical tool, engineering educators and programme owners are expected to benefit from this re-search in three ways. First, it cultivates a culture of continuous improvement of quality by increasing the educators' willingness to evaluate results. Second, it enhances their existing analytical tools to reflect students' actual developments, resulting in significant continuous actions to improve quality. Third, it satisfies the accreditation requirements on outcomes-based assessment.
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