Western Illinois University: Macomb Campus
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Department of Psychology
Policy and Procedures The Psychology Department Curriculum Committee is comprised of five elected faculty members, the department academic advisor, and two student representatives (plus an alternate). The student representatives are chosen at random from a pool of interested students. Each year, one faculty member is elected to a two-year term. The Committee will meet within two weeks of being formed in order to elect a chair and discuss upcoming committee business. The Psychology Department Curriculum Committee is responsible for maintaining a high quality curriculum by:
- meeting within two weeks after the committee has been elected to choose a chair and discuss what needs to be done,
- complying with the curricular requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences and the University
- recommending to the department the psychology courses to be offered,
- recommending to the department the curricular requirements of a minor in psychology
- recommending to the department the curricular requirements of a major in psychology
- recommending to the department the psychology courses to be included in the universityπs general education curriculum
- carrying out other activities, approved by the department relevant to the maintenance of a high quality curriculum, such as formulating and assessing learning goals. The department's assessment plan which describes the department's nine learning goals and the results of our annual assessment cycles beginning in the early 90s are available from the chair of the department.
- The Committee solicits course proposals from faculty. Forms for proposing courses can be obtained on line by accessing the Faculty Senate web page. Most course proposals are brought to the Committee by faculty. However, occasionally the Committee may determine that a course is needed and ask for a proposal from the faculty person(s) most qualified to create the needed course.
- The Committee reviews course proposals brought to the Committee by faculty and determines whether the proposal is accepted, accepted with revisions, or rejected. A number of considerations figure into whether a proposal is accepted. These include whether the course fits in with the department's learning goals, how the course fits in with existing courses (avoiding duplication, etc.), whether the department has the faculty and resources to offer the course, whether the course will enroll, etc.
- The Committee makes recommendations for minor and major requirements. Our minor requirement is simply a matter of hours. Major requirements are based on the department's learning goals. The purpose of the major requirements is to maximize the achievement of the department's learning goals.
- The Committee makes recommendations to the department concerning learning goals, assessing the approved goals, and reporting assessment results to the department. Our nine general learning goals are based on the 1989 recommendations of the Association of American Colleges for the Psychology Major in an article entitled, Liberal Education, Study in Depth, and the Arts and Sciences Major by McGovern, Furumoto, Halpern, Kimble, and McKeachie. In 2002 the American Psychological Association (APA) put out a paper entitled, Undergraduate Psychology Major Learning Goals and Outcomes: A Report, which suggested ten learning goals. The 2002 Curriculum Committee decided that our set of nine goals adequately covered the ten recommended by the APA.
Assessment in the department is formative in nature, that is, designed to improve the major. Each year the Committee selects four or five specific learning goals (derived from the nine general goals) on which to concentrate. Expected outcomes are specified in advance. The Committee then assesses the goals and if the results meet or exceed expectations the cycle is complete. If the results fall short an intervention is set in place and the cycle repeated. For the past several years the department has been working on raising Senior Comprehensive Exam Scores, increasing participation in research and field experiences, and improving satisfaction with the major. Occasionally, ad hoc assessment projects are undertaken which are outside the yearly cycle described above. An example would be the recently completed alumni survey project.
There are no meetings assigned to this committee