How Do I Find Academic Student Learning Outcomes?

Institutional Student Learning Outcomes

General Learning Student Learning Outcomes Education

Writing Across the Curriculum Program Student Learning Outcomes

Interim Experience

All of the above outcomes are also available on a Word document here: Student_Learning_Outcomes

Department and Program Student Learning Outcomes



Institutional Student Learning Outcomes (ISLOs)

Gustavus Adolphus College students experience an innovative and rigorous liberal arts education, which equips students to develop their skills to engage broadly and purposefully with the world. As an institution, we commit our time and resources to helping students attain their full potential as persons, developing in them a capacity and passion for lifelong learning, ethical reflection, civic engagement, and global concern that prepares them for lives of leadership and service while maintaining their personal wellbeing. We are also committed to the regular assessment of four institutional student learning outcomes that measure skills that will help our students attain their potential so they can be productive, engaged members of a global community working for the common good. These four outcomes do not replace nor take precedence over our larger commitments, but serve them. Students shall develop, practice, and demonstrate these skills across the college, just as all parts of the college are united in the commitments above.

  • Analyze enduring and contemporary questions from multiple perspectives.
  • Demonstrate the ability to reason and communicate effectively in written and oral modes.
  • Demonstrate competence with the content and methods of a particular field of study.
  • Implement an effective strategy to address an open-ended question or to solve a multi-faceted problem.

The four Institutional Student Learning Outcomes (ISLOs) were endorsed by the Gustavus faculty 8 December 2017.


Outcomes for General Education Program

General Education Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students will be able to analyze enduring and contemporary questions or challenges from multiple disciplines, using qualitative and quantitative methods.
  2. Students will be able to use ethical, religious, or philosophical frameworks to evaluate their own and others’ responses to enduring and contemporary challenges.
  3. Students will be able to examine issues of cultural difference both locally and globally.
  4. Students will be able to communicate effectively in written, spoken, and creative expression with a variety of audiences.

First Term Seminar Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students will be able to identify different purposes, contexts, and audiences for their writing; they will demonstrate the ability to adapt the style and content of their writing in order to communicate effectively in a variety of situations.
  2. Students will be able to identify different purposes, contexts, and audiences for their oral communication; they will demonstrate the ability to adapt the style and content of their oral communication in order to communicate effectively in a variety of situations including discussions and formal presentations.
  3. Students will be able to thoughtfully analyze questions from multiple perspectives; will identify how contexts and unstated assumptions influence arguments; will identify the implications and consequences of arguments; will develop original and creative solutions to complex problems; and will identify and evaluate alternative perspectives.
  4. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the liberal arts curriculum at Gustavus; will demonstrate familiarity with campus resources related to advising, including using WebAdvisor; and will demonstrate an understanding of how the College functions as a community of learners.

Liberal Arts Perspectives Student Learning Outcomes

ACT Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will have opportunities to demonstrate improvement in elements of fitness such as muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, and body composition.
  2. Students will improve knowledge of rules, strategies, skills, and safety associated with the lifetime activity courses they choose to complete;
  3. Students will develop skills that promote personal health, reduce risk behaviors, and explore the body-mind connection.

ARTS Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will expand and challenge their personal and world views by assessing and participating in broad artistic endeavors.
  2. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the relationship between a work of art and its historical, cultural, and aesthetic context by identifying, analyzing, and evaluating works of art.
  3. Students will demonstrate the aptitude and skills of creative scholarship by producing or researching artistic work(s) of significance within the context of their chosen discipline.

FIT Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will analyze elements of their personal wellbeing and learn to set appropriate and achievable health goals.
  2. Students will learn and apply fitness-related principles, set fitness goals, and monitor individual progress by designing an individual fitness plan.
  3. Students will demonstrate an appreciation for lifelong fitness by fully participating in prescribed moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

GLOBL Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will show knowledge of the contemporary or past cultures, societies, religious worldviews, and/or political/economic systems of the populations being studied in the course.
  2. Students will articulate an informed understanding of the shared beliefs, values, customs, behaviors, and artifacts of the cultures/societies being studied, as well as of multiple perspectives within those cultures/societies.
  3. Students will identify, describe and understand the cultures/societies being studied using written, oral and visual materials produced within the cultures/societies where applicable.
  4. Students will demonstrate an awareness of ways that aspects of cultures/societies being studied are constructed and contested.

HIPHI Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will demonstrate understanding of human thought or historical events in one or more times, places, and/or cultures.
  2. Students will construct an informed response to one or more fundamental questions about the creation and construction of meaning, value, and knowledge.
  3. Students will evince an awareness of notions of and assumptions about truth in the discipline of the course.
  4. Students will undertake an investigation into philosophical or historical studies based on questions of their own formulation.

LARS Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will identify conventions that situate a text within a literary or rhetorical genre.
  2. Students will describe the historical and cultural contexts in which texts are produced and received and explain the mutual influence between specific texts and contexts.
  3. Students will engage critically with literary or rhetorical discourses in a variety of ways, which may include close reading, critical interpretation, personal reflection, creative expression, formulating questions, and raising issues of meaning and value.

MATHL Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students satisfying the Mathematical and Logical Reasoning requirement will:
  2. communicate and represent mathematical. logical, or statistical problems in symbolic, graphical, or numerical forms;
  3. formulate and solve problems using mathematical, logical, or statistical methods; and
  4. provide proof or justification of mathematical, logical, or statistical results using deductive reasoning.

NASP Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will demonstrate factual knowledge about some aspect of the natural world.
  2. Students will describe the ways by which scientists organize knowledge into fundamental principles or theories that explain facts and make predictions about the natural world.
  3. Students will employ scientific concepts, principles, and methodologies to solve problems or generate explanations about the natural world.
  4. Students will describe the historical and/or cultural context and analyze the philosophical implications of one or more important scientific concepts.
  5. Students will engage critically with the ethical and social impacts of science and technology.

SOSCI Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will demonstrate knowledge of major concepts and methods used in a social or behavioral science.
  2. Students will describe the historical development of the theories and principles of at least one discipline in the social sciences.
  3. Students will analyze influences on social institutions and human behavior.
  4. Student will apply disciplinary knowledge to understand ethical and social issues in at least one discipline in the social sciences.

THEOL Student Learning Outcomes:

  1. Students will demonstrate a basic understanding of selected historical, contemporary, and emerging expressions of the Christian faith.
  2. Students will evidence an awareness of critical textual interpretations of the Bible, including the historical contexts in which it was written.
  3. Students will be able to articulate a basic understanding of the nature of religious language and symbolism.
  4. Students will be able to recognize and articulate the religious and theological dimensions of cultural, political, and intellectual issues.
  5. Students will demonstrate a basic understanding of critical interpretations of religious claims.
  6. Students will think critically about their own religious experience.

Three Crowns Curriculum Student Learning Outcomes

  1.  Students will analyze enduring and contemporary questions or challenges from multiple disciplines, using
    qualitative and quantitative methods.
  2. Students will use ethical, religious, or philosophical frameworks to evaluate their own and others’
    responses to enduring and contemporary challenges.
  3. Students will examine issues of cultural difference both locally and globally.
  4. Students will communicate effectively in written, spoken, and creative expression with a variety of
    audiences.
  5. Students will make connections between fields of knowledge.
  6. Students will form personal and intellectual relationships within the Three Crowns community.

Writing Across the Curriculum Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students choose effective rhetorical strategies shaped by their appreciation for the purpose, audience, and context for the writing task.
  2. Students use writing as a tool to explore ideas, assimilate new knowledge, and reflect on the purpose of their learning.
  3. Students use writing to evaluate texts critically, and to create arguments that communicate effectively with varied audiences, while acknowledging the limits of their own judgments.
  4. Students develop a flexible process for writing that includes self-reflection and strategies for responding to feedback, enabling them to draft, revise and polish written work effectively.
  5. Students create written works that exemplify the structures, genres, and conventions of the discipline.

Writing in First Year Courses (FTS and Three Crowns) Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students choose effective rhetorical strategies shaped by their appreciation for the purpose, audience, and context for the writing task.
  2. Students use writing as a tool to explore ideas, assimilate new knowledge, and reflect on the purpose of their learning.
  3. Students use writing to evaluate texts critically and to create arguments that communicate effectively with varied audiences, while acknowledging the limits of their own judgments.
  4. Students develop a flexible process for writing that includes self-reflection and strategies for responding to feedback, enabling them to draft, revise and polish written work effectively.

WRITI Course Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students choose effective rhetorical strategies shaped by their appreciation for the purpose, audience, and context for the writing tasks.
  2. Students use writing as a tool to explore ideas, assimilate new knowledge, and reflect on the purpose of their learning.
  3. Students use writing to evaluate texts critically, and to create arguments that communicate effectively with varied audiences, while acknowledging the limits of their own judgments.
  4. Students develop a flexible process for writing that includes self-reflection and strategies for responding to feedback, enabling them to draft, revise and polish written work effectively.

WRITD Course Student Learning Outcomes

  1. Students choose effective rhetorical strategies shaped by their appreciation for the purpose, audience, and context for the writing task.
  2. Students use writing as a tool to explore ideas, assimilate new knowledge, and reflect on the purpose of their learning.
  3. Students use writing to evaluate texts critically, and to create arguments that communicate effectively with varied audiences, while acknowledging the limits of their own judgments.
  4. Students develop a flexible process for writing that includes self-reflection and strategies for responding to feedback, enabling them to draft, revise and polish written work effectively.
  5. Students create written works that exemplify the structures, genres, and conventions of the discipline.

Interim Experience Student Learning Outcomes

The list below includes a set of goals and accompanying student learning outcomes related to experiential learning developed by a working group of Gustavus faculty. These goals and outcomes have been written primarily with on-campus IEX courses in mind. Each learning outcome is accompanied by possible assessment methods. These learning outcomes are included as an optional resource for possible incorporation into the design and syllabus of an IEX course. The intent is to provide a menu of options from which the instructor may choose outcomes that are most appropriate to the course. They are not intended to be prescriptive.

Goal 1. In an IEX course, students expand and challenge their understanding of a topic through direct experiential engagement.

  1. Students will describe connections between experience and academic knowledge.
  2. Students will analyze factors that contribute to real-world issues or situations.
  3. Students will articulate how they learn through experience and the impact that experiential learning activities have had on their relationship to the world in which they live.
  4. Students will describe how experiential learning impacted their understanding of a topic.

Goal 2. In an IEX course, students engage with learning experiences in a way such that they encounter ambiguity, practice curiosity, experiment, and assume responsibility for their own learning.

  1. Students will successfully manage uncertainty by developing and testing hypotheses.
  2. Students will identify and independently research topics of interest to them and related to the learning experience.
  3. Students will define a problem and identify strategies for solving the problem.
  4. Students will articulate weaknesses and strengths of approaches they have used in problem-solving and identify evidence-based next steps to modify the process.
  5. Students will describe the ways in which ambiguity and the capacity to work within it contributed to their evolving understanding of an issue or topic.

Goal 3: Students will take prior knowledge and synthesize and apply it to the IEX experience, and likewise integrate their IEX experience into their overall understanding of a particular topic.

  1. Students will demonstrate synthesis and application of prior knowledge.
  2. Students will demonstrate an ability to apply theory to describe an environment.
  3. Students will demonstrate knowledge and skills to work in diverse populations as well as cultural self-awareness and empathy gained through their experiential learning.