The Assessment of Doctoral Education

Emerging Criteria and New Models for Improving Outcomes

October 2006
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  • Publisher
    Stylus Publishing
  • Published
    20th October 2006
  • ISBN 9781579221799
  • Language English
  • Pages 288 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"
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June 2011
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  • Publisher
    Stylus Publishing
  • Published
    30th June 2011
  • ISBN 9781579229559
  • Language English
  • Pages 288 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"

Following the growing commitment to assessment at the undergraduate level, doctoral programs are now grappling with what accountability means for them.

This book provides a foundation for faculty and academic leaders of doctoral programs to promote inquiry into the educational practices that define their programs and contribute to graduate students' learning. It presents an array of examples of new program- and student-level assessment practices. The ideas and practices described here expand program review to include evidence of student learning--that is, students' demonstration of their knowledge, abilities, habits of mind, ways of knowing, ways of problem solving, and dispositions--through direct and indirect assessment methods that verify or challenge the efficacy of educational practices.

The book encourages faculty and academic leaders to reconsider the process and to formulate new questions about the efficacy of educational practices and traditions, such as the dissertation, that have historically led to the conferring of the doctorate. It will prompt constructive discussion of desired student learning outcomes, and of the kinds of assessment methods that provide evidence of what and how students learn within the context of educational practices.

Stressing the importance of listening and responding to graduate students as they progress through their studies or reflect on the relevance of their studies after graduation, the book also suggests new strategies to orient and support doctoral students in their educational journeys.

“The Assessment of Doctoral Education provides a snapshot of current research on the educational practices of the doctorate in the United States. Measures and practices trailed in the USA to improve the doctorate offer a valuable resource for others dealing with pressures to improve the quality of their doctoral programs.
The notion of assessment of doctoral programs can suggest a focus on metrics and through-put and out-put measures, such as completion rates. But this is not what this book is about. As a number of its contributor’s state, our understanding of doctoral candidate learning and the nature of the research experience, for example, is only beginning to take shape. Consequently, much of the research presented in this book is focused as much on understanding doctoral practices as their assessment.
While this book appears to be written with an internal [U.S.] audience in mind it is nonetheless useful for readers outside the USA, both in terms of gaining an insight into the research being conducted on doctoral education in that country as well as for informing research on doctoral programs beyond its shores. It is not only informative but useful, comprising a veritable treasure trove of strategies, assessment models and research findings. The book makes an informative addition to the growing body of literature on doctoral education.”

Quality Assurance in Education (Australia)

"Anyone associated with doctoral education should review this work and reflect on the discussions of program prestige and ways to ensure continuous quality improvement. The book also reprints some good surveys."

Library and Information Science Research

Acknowledgments; Foreword, Daniel D. Denecke; Introduction, Peggy L. Maki; PART ONE: Emerging Criteria And New Models For Assessing Doctoral Programs; 1 Changing Our Thinking About Assessment At The Doctoral Level, Nancy A. Borkowski; 2 The Challenges Of Doctoral Program Assessment: Lessons From The Carnegie Initiative On The Doctorate, Chris M. Golde, Laura Jones, Andrea Conklin Bueschel, And George E. Walker; 3 Using An Alignment Model As A Framework In The Assessment Of Doctoral Programs, Donald H. Wulff And Maresi Nerad; 4 Paths And Perceptions: Assessing Doctoral Education Using Career Path Analysis, Rebecca Aanerud, Lori Homer, Maresi Nerad, And Joseph Cerny; PART TWO: Emerging Criteria And New Models For Assessing Student Learning Outcomes; 5 Using The Assessment Process To Improve Doctoral Programs, Kelly Funk And Karen L. Klomparens; 6 Making The Implicit Explicit: Faculty’s Performance Expectations For The Dissertation, Barbara E. Lovitts; Case Study For Making The Implicit Explicit Research Project Conducted At The University Of Colorado At Boulder: An Administrator’s Experiences And Perspectives, Candice L. Miller; 7 Doctoral Students’ Perspectives On The Dissertation, Jeannie Brown Leonard; 8 Portfolios In Doctoral Education, Thomas Cyr And Rodney Muth; 9 Recasting Doctoral Education In An Outcomesbased;Framework, Mary Huba, John Schuh, And Mack Shelley; About The Authors; Index.

Peggy L. Maki

Peggy L. Maki, PhD in literature and linguistics, University of Delaware, writes, speaks about, and consults with higher education organizations and institutions on the process of assessing student learning, an internally motivated and shared commitment to currently enrolled students’ equitable progress toward achieving high-quality learning outcomes.

She has consulted at over 610 institutions in the United States and abroad and has written books and articles on assessment for more than 20 years. Her previous book, Real-Time Student Assessment: Meeting the Imperative for Improved Time to Degree, Closing the Opportunity Gap, and Assuring Student Competencies for 21st-Century Needs (Stylus, 2017), challenges institutions to prioritize the use of chronological assessment results to benefit enrolled students compared with the more common practice of prolonged assessment cycles that generally benefit future students.

She served as the former American Association for Higher Education’s (AAHE) senior scholar on assessment; a consultant in the Association of American Colleges & Universities’ (AAC&U’s) annual General Education and Assessment Institutes; and a member of several advisory boards, including one for the Lumina Foundation.

Currently, she serves on the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) advisory board. Recently an accredited organization in the United Kingdom invited her to design and teach online professional development courses and workshops among those it offers worldwide to higher education. She is the recipient of a national teaching award, the Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching.

Nancy A. Borkowski

Nancy A. Borkowski most recently served as the Program Associate for The Responsive Ph.D. Initiative, a five-year national effort to improve doctoral education, organized by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. Nancy's background includes university positions in career services centers at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, Emory University, and Miami University (Ohio) and the Instructional Support and Development Office at the University of Georgia where she assisted graduate students and faculty with their career and teaching development.

graduate education; student-level assessment; dissertation