College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences

Learning Outcomes

BA Program Student Learning Outcomes

Those enrolled in our program complete a curriculum that exposes and trains students in a full range of essential skills and abilities. As they near graduation, they will have the opportunity to master the following objectives:

Outcome 1: Knowledge

  • Gain familiarity with a range of historical subjects that span distinct eras.
  • Recognize how different individuals, groups, organizations, societies, cultures, countries, and nations have interacted in the past and how those interactions have affected history.
  • Gain familiarity with the aims and achievements of different schools of historical thought, practice, and analysis.
  • Develop an appreciation of themselves and of others through the study the past in local, regional, national, and global contexts.

Outcome 2: Analysis

  • Learn to evaluate and draw information from the narratives of past events that participants and observers produced.
  • Recognize differences in the methods and techniques of historians and learn how to compare and critique them.

Outcome 3: Representation

  • Argue historically and critically in discussions, presentations, and assignments.
  • Practice the methods of historical research, including the development of research topics, the gathering and evaluation of evidence, and the presentation of research findings to a wider audience.

Outcome 4: Pre-Credential Training

  • Develop content knowledge in the areas identified by the Board of Education of the State of California as essential for secondary school teachers.
  • Gain exposure to distinct, varied, and effective teaching methods.
  • Apply their knowledge of historical subjects to the practical task of creating lessons for other students.
  • Observe history teachers and develop an appreciation of effective teaching methods in secondary school classroom settings

Students who follow our program guidelines and fulfill all of our requirements will graduate with a set of skills and abilities that will prepare them well for a variety of careers in the private and public sector. The success of our graduates in credential programs, law schools, local businesses, and organizations demonstrate our faculty's commitment to a learning-centered experience for all our charges.

Here is a curriculum map that explains where we introduce (designated with the abbreviation "I" below) these outcomes and their components to students, where students develop ("D" in the table below) skills, abilities, and behaviors associated with the listed outcomes, and where they demonstrate mastery ("M" below) of them as they navigate our program:

Outcome

Lower Division Courses

Upper Division Courses

Courses on Methods, Historiography

Senior Thesis

HST 2990

HST 4463

Knowledge

I

D

D

M

Analysis

I

D

D

M

Representation

I

D

D

M

Pre-Credential Training

I, D

D

I

M

MA Program Student Learning Outcomes

The aim of the MA degree is to create a program of rigor and currency, clearly attractive to both teachers who wish to enhance their knowledge of history and gain greater competence in their teaching, as well as students who may wish to proceed with advanced studies or seek positions with research libraries, or simply study history for its own sake in the most up-to-date environment.

I. A: Student Learning Outcomes of the MA Program

1.  Broad Historical Knowledge

Students will demonstrate that they have gained a broad perspective on the past that enables them to better understand and evaluate the complexities of historical societies, cultures, and individuals, as well as history’s relevance to our own times.

2.  In-Depth Specialization

Students will demonstrate that they have acquired a clear, advanced, and sophisticated understanding of major themes, problems, issues, and debates in the specialized fields of study in which they will take their comprehensive exams.

3.  Critical/Historical Thinking

Students will engage in critical/historical thinking as evidenced by their ability to evaluate factors, forces and players in the themes and subjects under study and to discern global interconnections in world history.

4.  Research Skills

Students will demonstrate the research skills required of a beginning professional historian using history methodology and historiography to explore various topics and themes, including social, economic, cultural, political, and technological history.

5.  Oral and written communication skills

Students will demonstrate beginning professional historian level proficiency in oral and written communication skills.

 

B. Curriculum Map

The History MA program provides students with the opportunities to gain expertise in and to demonstrate their mastery of five learning outcomes at the degree level.  Matriculated students arrive with a varying range of discipline-specific skills.  Since all are either graduates of History programs or veteran History teachers, the program aims at enhancing and extending the skills and abilities that the stated outcomes outline.  The following curriculum map shows where in the required and elective History MA curriculum the student may expect to encounter teaching and learning strategies, materials, and faculty guidance that encourage development of the expected concepts and skills.

Table 1.  MA History Curriculum Map

SLOs

HST 5501

Reading Courses

Exam Prep or Thesis Prep

History Electives

Other Electives

Broad Historical Knowledge

X

X

X

X

In-depth Specialization

X

X

X

X

Critical Historical Thinking

X

X

X

X

X

Research Skills

X

X

X

X

X

Oral and Written Communication

X

X

X

x

X

II.  Assessment of Student Learning

Upon graduation, MA students should have achieved both broad knowledge of history as a whole and in-depth mastery of world and US history, with the demonstrated research and communication skills required of a beginning professional historian.  The specific learning outcomes to be assessed are listed below.

SLOs

Direct Evidence of Student Learning

Broad Historical Knowledge

Course research papers, course exams,

Comprehensive exams

In-depth Specialization

Research papers, course exams,

Comprehensive exams (or thesis)

Critical Historical Thinking Ability

Course research papers; course exams

Research Skills

Course exams, focused research assignments

Thesis

Oral and Written Communication

Course research papers, classroom discussions and presentations