Developing an Assessment Plan for Community-Engaged Learning in Global Development
As a new Associate Professor of the Practice Julie Ficarra is responsible for leading engaged teaching and learning initiatives in the Department of Global Development. Carrying forward the work of department colleagues in establishing Global Development as an “engaged major” her Engaged Faculty Fellow project involves honing a set of assessment tools that will enable her to measure student learning and partnership outcomes across the department’s engaged curriculum. Beyond the assessment of engaged learning outcomes in a particular course, some questions that she is tackling through her Engaged Faculty Fellowship work are: 1) how can we confirm that the goal of scaffolding various types of engaged learning opportunities across the major are achieving our desired outcomes?, 2) What are metrics of “success” in an engaged major?, and 3) How can we center community partner outcomes in our criteria for success?
“I’m excited to take a deep dive into the engaged learning literature and through discussion with the Engaged Faculty Fellows cohort, determine research-based approaches to building an assessment plan for engaged learning in my department. Building a culture of engagement across the curriculum is a complex task, particularly in such an interdisciplinary department. So, ensuring that we are planful in designing research-informed assessment and evaluation strategies and integrating them into the fabric of our scaffolded engagement is really important. It’s one of the ways that we can model the type of forethought and intentionality with which we hope students use to engage ethically with communities through our engaged courses.” — Julie Ficarra