Purpose & Goals

Academic Department/Program Reviews engage faculty, staff, and students in analyzing and reflecting on the educational effectiveness of academic programs. They assist departments and programs in clarifying their missions and goals and evaluating their effectiveness. Such reviews help determine strengths, weaknesses, and needs, as well as the challenges likely to be confronted in the near future.

Academic Department/Program Reviews also provide an opportunity for the College’s departments and programs to assess their alignment with the Agnes Scott College mission: educating women to think deeply, live honorably and engage the intellectual and social challenges of their times. Three specific goals are included in the College mission:

  • Agnes Scott College provides a dynamic liberal arts and sciences curriculum of the highest standards so that students and faculty can realize their full creative and intellectual potential.
  • Agnes Scott College fosters an environment in which women can develop high expectations for themselves as individuals, scholars, professionals and citizens of the world.
  • Agnes Scott College strives to be a just and inclusive community that expects honorable behavior, encourages spiritual inquiry and promotes respectful dialogue across differences.

In terms of general education goals, the college has formulated the following nine outcomes of an Agnes Scott College education, which also inform all Department/Program reviews:

In preparation for a lifetime of learning, the successful Agnes Scott Student should:

1. Think critically. The student evaluates the arguments of others for accuracy, significance, and fairness, and develops independent conclusions.
2. Communicate effectively through writing and speaking. The student uses language clearly and persuasively.
3. Undertake systematic inquiry for learning and problem solving. The students takes an intentional and systematic approach to research, gathering sources, making observations, conducting experiments, and analyzing data, while recognizing the factors that influence the final results.
4. Act as a responsible citizen. The student speaks to the connections between global and local events and engages in constructive dialogue about the different kinds of culture, knowledge, and belief systems that shape our world today.
5. Develop or appreciate creative expressions. The student expresses herself through at least one artistic medium or understands and interprets the creative expressions of others.
6. Appreciate and respond to the achievements of others. The student demonstrates an understanding of human achievements in the world of ideas and culture and can engage and critique those achievements as she develops her own intellect.
7. Integrate knowledge and perspectives from a broad range of disciplines. The student acquires and can analyze and synthesize ideas and information from different fields and disciplines.
8. Develop a set of values. Through an ongoing process of reflection and examination the student develops socially responsible values consonant with an honorable life.
9. Pursue the development of the whole person. The student recognizes that her education does not occur solely in the classroom. It takes place in a larger community and includes a variety of dimensions: physical, emotional, cultural, and spiritual.

Potential outcomes of the process include:

  • Enhanced “culture of assessment” on campus
  • Enhanced student learning, scholarship, and creative expression
  • Increased student satisfaction with the overall program
  • Development of innovative pedagogical approaches and techniques
  • Improvement of program curriculum
  • Increased efficiency in the use of resources, and the identification of needed resources
  • Enhanced departmental and inter-departmental communications
  • Infusion of new ideas from internal and external colleagues
  • Review and possible revision of program mission, learning goals, and outcomes