MLL Outcomes Assessment
The faculty of the Modern Languages and Literatures Department, in response to several movements in the university, hereby makes this declaration of outcomes assessment goals for students who are enrolled in the MLL program leading to a B.A in Modern Languages and Literatures.
The department is extremely interested in integrating a whole and complete student. It is difficult to measure, in quantifiable form, the value of a humanities-based education. The department strives to graduate students with skills and values that will not only make them more marketable in the workforce, but will also make them better and more aware global citizens.
To this end, the department has developed a Rhetorical Syllabus as a contract between faculty and student, so that specific language, culture, and literature targets can be monitored throughout the student’s career. The Rhetorical Syllabus was created in 1997, as preparation for the major. It has been in implementation for majors since 1999, the first year that the major was approved. The goals stated in that document are many, and from these, the department has chosen the following as its assessment tool.
With the idea of producing a student who is more aptly equipped to deal with globalization, students at the end of their academic career and upon receiving their B.A. in Modern Languages and Literatures will:
- Be able to function at the advanced level of the ACTFL language scale in the Primary language.
- Be able to function at the intermediate level of the ACTFL language scale in the Secondary language.
- Be able to find, understand, assess, review, and report on information, in written form, in both the primary and secondary language to the desired target language capabilities, as stated above.
- Be able to engage in subject-specific conversations with native speakers.
- Be able to perform in-depth analysis of themes, authors, literary and artistic movements, and literary theory.
- Exit with specialized knowledge of both target languages, cultures and literatures.
Such knowledge includes: advanced internalization of diversity; multilinguism; multiculturalism; analytical, expository, and creative writing skills; advanced knowledge of social, political, anthropological, humanistic, military, religious or philosophical aspects of target languages; and the understanding of the relativity and dynamic nature of language and culture.
Outcomes Assessment in the Primary Language
The MLL Department reviews the outcomes of student learning in the primary language at four learning plateau levels:
- Upon Entrance: by use of the Spanish placement exam. All students who are accepted to the MLL major must take the Spanish placement examination to evaluate their skills in the primary language prior to beginning studies.
- At the end of the Intermediate level: by having samples of their writing evaluated at the time that they have completed their first course in composition.
- At the early advanced level: by sampling students’ analytic capabilities via their writing after completion of their advance composition course.
- At the end of their academic career: by sampling materials produced as part of the Senior Project when it is done in the primary language.
Outcomes Assessment in the Secondary Language
Additionally, the MLL Department will also review the outcomes of student learning in the secondary language at two learning plateau levels:
- At the completion of the intermediate level of language study by sampling writing assignments produced in the target language.
- At the end of their academic career: by sampling materials produced as part of the Senior Project when the secondary language is used in a significant way in the Senior Project or it is written completely in the secondary language.