Queen's Learning Outcomes Assessment

Learning Outcomes Project
Learning Outcomes Project

HEQCO Learning Outcomes Assessment Project

Accurate assessment of learning outcomes is an essential component of competency-based education. This project aligned well with Queen’s Academic Plan, which emphasizes the development of fundamental academic skills, transferable skills that span a range of disciplines and are essential for professional practice.


This longitudinal study focused on the following four skills:  

  • critical thinkingGraphic displaying the standardized measurements, rubric assessment, data linkage, and qualitative evaluations used in the project
  • problem solving
  • written communication
  • lifelong learning

These were being assessed in nine departments across two faculties from the first to fourth years using a variety of standardized instruments, including the Collegiate Learning Assessment and the Critical Thinking Assessment Test which measured critical thinking, problem solving and written communication, and the Transferable Learning Orientation survey (goal orientation, learning belief,  self-efficacy, transfer and organization), as well as the Association for American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) VALUE rubrics that have been adapted to specific courses and assignments.

The aims of the project were:

  • to quantify student achievement of transferable learning outcomes;
  • to develop reliable and sustainable means of assessing student learning;
  • to encourage faculty to develop and assess transferable skills in their courses and programs; and
  • to build a foundation for a wider rollout of this type of assessment across faculties and programs over the next few years.