Academic Affairs

Assessment and Program Review

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Undergraduate Learning Outcomes (ULOs)?

  • To assure multiple, varied, and intentional learning experiences centered around a shared, campus-wide articulation of expectations for CSUMB degree recipients.
  • To assure the measurement of student learning in a systematic way consistent with the CSUMB commitment to outcomes based education.
  • To improve student learning in a systematic way consistent with the CSUMB commitment to outcomes based education.
  • To comply with requirements of accreditors (e.g., WSCUC)

Are the ULOs to be pilot-tested?

Yes, a timeline for pilot-testing and renewal of the ULOs is being proposed as follows:

The Preamble and the Undergraduate Learning Outcomes will be reviewed by the Academic Senate five years from their effective date (December 2018), by which time the Assessment Committee will consider the implication of the ULOs for:

  • Annual assessment work across programs
  • Program review process and manual
  • Alignment with GE Learning Outcomes
  • Alignment with University Requirements Learning Outcomes

The Assessment Committee will work with faculty, staff, and administration across campus to ensure that our work in assessment is strongly linked with efforts to support continued discourse around teaching and learning with respect to our aspirations and goals.

To whom will the ULOs apply?

The ULOs will be applied to all undergraduate degree programs. During the first adoption period, the opportunities and implications of the ULOs for co-curricular environments, general education, and university requirements will be explored.

How will the ULOs be used?

The ULOs will serve to focus institutional level assessment activities. A current model for this is the ongoing campus wide Critical Thinking & Information Literacy (CTIL) assessment work. The Assessment activities will also be used as needed for external accreditors (e.g., WSCUC).

What is the shared understanding of the terms in the ULOs?

Ethical Reasoning
Ethical Reasoning is “reasoning about right and wrong human conduct. It requires students to be able to assess their own ethical values and the social context of problems, recognize ethical issues in a variety of settings, think about how different ethical perspectives might be applied to ethical dilemmas and consider the ramifications of alternative actions “ (
Global Awareness
[LEAP refers to this as Global Learning] “Through global learning, students should 1) become informed, open-minded, and responsible people who are attentive to diversity across the spectrum of differences, 2) seek to understand how their actions affect both local and global communities, and 3) address the world's most pressing and enduring issues collaboratively and equitably” (
Civic Engagement
Civic Engagement is "working to make a difference in the civic life of our communities and developing the combination of knowledge, skills, values and motivation to make that difference. It means promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes." (Excerpted from Civic Responsibility and Higher Education, edited by Thomas Ehrlich, published by Oryx Press, 2000, Preface, page vi.) In addition, civic engagement encompasses actions wherein individuals participate in activities of personal and public concern that are both individually life enriching and socially beneficial to the community (
Intercultural Engagement
[LEAP refers to this as Intercultural Knowledge and Competence] is "a set of cognitive, affective, and behavioral skills and characteristics that support effective and appropriate interaction in a variety of cultural contexts.” (Bennett, J. M. (2008), as cited in
Social Justice
Equity “Our students come from and return to an increasingly diverse society; therefore, students need the knowledge, skills and dispositions to successfully contribute to the creation and maintenance of inclusive and just communities” (CSU East Bay Institutional Learning Outcomes, 2012, p. 3). Sustainability “Through ethical behavior based on an understanding of how individual choices and actions affect society, our graduates can help build a sustainable future that ensures environmental integrity, economic vitality, and a just society for present and future generations (CSU East Bay Institutional Learning Outcomes, 2012, p. 4).