The Role of Instructional Support Materials in Higher Education Learning Assurance Programs

By Joseph L. Rosetti, Leonard Stokes and Anna Gifford.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper is based on the collaborative activities of an undergraduate student and two professors engaged in an analysis of instructional materials utilized in school of business curricula. During the past decade measures of student success in higher education has shifted dramatically from input to outcomes-based assessment processes. Driven by stakeholders such as employers and graduate schools; governmental regulatory agencies; and professional as well as regional accrediting bodies, educational institutions have invested time and resources in the development of formal learning assurance programs within their curricular programs. This particular paper focuses on the role and contribution of commercially developed textbooks on the effectiveness of learning assurance programs within the curricular subject matter of marketing. The collaborators have analyzed the development of learning outcomes by textbook authors in terms of their level of refinement and specificity. The study is based on a review of five representative courses within the curricular subject area and widely adopted corresponding textbooks for each. The analysis of this feature in the textbooks was conducted through a categorization of the stated outcomes for every chapter content area in the context of the specific learning levels within the hierarchy of Bloom’s Learning Taxonomy. Additional support for this categorization was drawn from McBeath’s research in the development and application of learning outcomes based terminology. The overall examination reveals the extent to which textbook based learning outcomes address curricular learning levels modeled from Bloom’s seminal work. The paper concludes with recommendations for enhancement and improvement of this textbook feature as well as an identification of future research activities.

Keywords: Curriculum, Student Learning, Outcomes Assessment, Learning Assurance, Textbooks

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 5, pp.179-186. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 550.978KB).

Prof. Joseph L. Rosetti

Professor of Marketing and Management, School of Business, Siena College, Loudonville, New York, USA

Professor Rosetti’s research focus is the development of pedagogical tools in subject matter designed to address the challenges of enhancing learning through an integration of learning taxonomy theory in curricular hierarchy design. He has served as the co-chair of the outcomes assessment initiative within the school of business at his college and has represented the school at the professional accreditation body assessment program. Additionally, he has published on higher education issues and has presented two national workshops on the subject of maximizing outcomes data to contribute to continuous learning improvement.

Dr. Leonard Stokes

Accounting Professor, School of Business, Siena College, Loudonville, New York, USA

Dr. Stokes has served as the director of the MBA program at his institution, and has been an active participant in curricular design. He has published in the area of learning outcomes and has spearheaded initiatives within his department and the school of business to advance the effectiveness of classroom pedagogy.

Anna Gifford

Student, Siena College, Loudonville, New York, USA

Anna Gifford is an undergraduate student who has conducted collaborative research on the subject of learning assurance with two professor mentors and has presented on the subject at the 2008 International Conference on Learning. She has also been awarded a summer 2008 research scholarship/fellowship at her college based on a research proposal to investigate the retail consignment industry from a macro and micro perspective. She has also collaborated on a paper based on that project which has been accepted for publication in the Proceedings of the 2008 Northeast Business and Economics Association Annual Conference.

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