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student learning outcomes for graduate students

Student Learning Outcomes for Graduate Students

In 2008, the Department of Biological Sciences approved the following student learning outcomes for its graduate program. The objectives are organized into three categories: attitudes, skills, and knowledge. The Department has a standing Assessment Committee which implements an ongoing assessment of the Department's activties in each of these areas.

At the completion of the Masters of Science degree in Biology a graduate student will have acquired:

The following are specific objectives in the areas of attitudes, skills, and knowledge.

1. The student will acquire the following attitudes:
  1.1 Scientific research plays a crucial role in the development of policy and decision-making for the benefit of society.
  1.2 Scientific progress should be based on the unbiased collection, analysis, and interpretation of evidence.
  1.3 The biological sciences, by their nature, are interdisciplinary.
  1.4 Understanding science is a life-long learning process.
  1.5 Scientific ethical conduct and ethical implications of scientific issues in society are important.
2. Upon completion of the Master of Science degree, the student will be able to demonstrate that he/she is skilled at:
  2.1 Developing a coherent research prospectus;
  2.2 Carrying out a research project which includes mastery of appropriate techniques and the collection, organization and analysis of data;
  2.3 Synthesizing the results of their work in a master's thesis;
  2.4 Understanding and critically evaluating the scientific work of others and discussing new results in the context of what is already known and what should still be done;
  2.5 Communicating his/her work, as well as that of others, in a seminar and thesis defense;
  2.5 Developing teaching skills.
3. Upon completion of the Master of Science degree, the student will be able to demonstrate knowledge in:
  3.1 Scientific concepts, recent developments, and areas for future research efforts in his or her chosen field;
  3.2 Traditional, modern, and emerging techniques and approaches used to conduct research in his or her chosen field of research;
  3.3 Practical applications of his or her research field and potential career opportunities.

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Last Update: 04/27/2010