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Assessment Procedure

The department has established a comprehensive assessment process, and a collection of assessment tools, for its Program Outcomes. The assessment process is meant to ensure that the Program Outcomes that are important to the Mission of the Department and its Program Educational Objectives are being monitored and measured. The results of the assessment process are regularly applied to the improvement of the program and the educational experience of our students.

The constituents (Faculty, Students, Alumni, and Industry) of the department are engaged in the following manner in the department assessment activities.

Faculty and Instructors. Prior to the start of an undergraduate course, every instructor is advised to review the:

  1. Course Objectives and Outcomes Form of his/her course in order to familiarize themselves with the expected outcomes for the course and how these specific course outcomes relate to the overall Program Outcomes.
  2. Past Course Performance Form of his/her course in order to familiarize themselves with the performance of the course in prior offerings and in order to identify any points of weakness that may require additional emphasis.

During the offering of an undergraduate course, every instructor is asked to:

  1. Save samples of student works (homework and exam solutions, lab and design reports) on a regular basis.
  2. Assess the contribution of the course to its Strong Program Outcomes through the selection of an ABET problem and by evaluating student performance on the problem.
  3. Upload the information pertaining to the ABET problem, its solution, and sample student responses into the course archives.
  4. Complete and file an Instructor Evaluation of Student Performance in order to comment on the overall course performance towards meeting its objectives and specific outcomes.
  5. Encourage students to participate in the End-of-Course Surveys.

The teaching assistants of undergraduate courses also participate in the above tasks


Students.
The department engages its undergraduate students and collects their feedback for accreditation purposes through the online End-of-Course Student Surveys. The Student Surveys collect student input on course material, course organization, and instruction. Besides asking students questions about the quality of a course and its instruction, the surveys also assess, for each course, the main topics that students are expected to have been exposed to during the course. Students are asked to rate, on a scale from Poor to Excellent, whether they feel they have had an opportunity to learn the Specific Course Outcomes well. The student input is then summarized and tracked in:

  1. Individual reports on Course Performance for each course offering.
  2. Yearly reports on Course Performance during an academic year.
  3. Quarterly reports on Department Performance.
  4. Yearly reports on Department Performance.

The department also collects student feedback through two additional mechanisms:

  1. Exit surveys administered to graduating seniors.
  2. Student Advisory Committee, which is composed of the Presidents of the IEEE and HKN student organizations, representatives of the SWE (Society for Women Engineers), and ESUC (Engineering Society of the University of California), and two graduate student representatives (one MS and one PhD); both graduate students are selected from among those that have completed their undergraduate studies in EE at UCLA. The committee meets twice yearly (Fall and Spring).


Alumni and Industry. The department engages its alumni in its assessment mechanism in two ways:

  1. Alumni Advisory Board, which consists of 10 representatives from industry and alumni. The board meets once or twice yearly (Fall and/or Spring) and examines issues related to alumni activities, industry feedback, and department performance in meeting its Educational Objectives and Program Outcomes.
  2. Alumni Survey administered to alumni from prior years.

Since several members of the Alumni Advisory Board are members of industry and hold management positions at leading companies that hire a good number of our graduating seniors, their input is used by the department as the link between the department and its industry partners. Likewise, the alumni survey helps to collect feedback from alumni in various industries.

ABET Problem. The ABET problem functionality engages the instructor rather directly in the assessment mechanism. It is the main mechanism used to obtain instructor feedback on whether the students in the course achieved some of the desired course outcomes. The ABET problem functionality is as follows.

Each undergraduate course in the department contributes to a list of Program Outcomes. Usually, a course contributes strongly to some outcomes and less strongly to other outcomes. While a course may contribute to several ABET outcomes, usually only a subset of its strong outcomes are used for ABET assessment under the ABET problem requirement.

The ABET problem is meant to measure how well the students in a course learned some of the most significant (strong) Program Outcomes that a course contributes to. The ABET problem could be chosen as any of the following:

  1. One of the problems in a midterm or a final examination in a lecture course.
  2. One of the problems in a quiz in a laboratory course.
  3. The instructor's personal evaluation of a student ability to participate in teamwork, to successfully complete a design assignment, to write good technical reports, or to make good presentations. This option, in combination with others, may be useful for laboratory courses required to assess student ability to function in a team or for design courses that do not have examinations or quizzes.


Saving Samples of Student Works.
Each undergraduate course is required to save samples of student homework solutions, laboratory reports, project or design reports, and exam solutions, typically from poor to good quality. At the end of each quarter, the teaching assistants of all undergraduate courses must compile a binder containing in addition to the solutions, the corresponding homework questions, exam questions, lab description, and project description.

Specifically, each course binder needs to be organized as follows, for each course offering:

  1. Please label the binder with class name, section, instructor and quarter on the spine. Also, label each section with title of what it is.
  2. Page 1. A cover page listing the number of the course, the title of the course, the quarter and year, instructor's name, and teaching assistant(s)' name(s).
  3. Page 2. A copy of the course info handout. Preferably, the completed Class Info page from EEweb should be printed and used.  
  4. Page 3. A table listing the grades of the students whose performance has been tracked for all assignments, exams, and their overall course grade. This information can be obtained from the course gradebook. Do not identify the students. Refer to the students instead as Students A, B, C, and so forth.
  5. Page 4. A histogram of the course grade distribution. This information can be obtained from the course gradebook as well. The histogram can be printed.
  6. Pages 5-6. A printout of the ABET problem for the course, its solution, and the instructor's evaluation of the student performance on this problem. The histogram of the ABET problem grade distribution should be printed and included as well.
  7. Page 7 (for design courses only). A statement by the instructor of the design course indicating how the required departmental guidelines for Capstone Design Courses and multi-disciplinary teaming have been satisfied for the course.
  8. Afterwards: Copies of sample student solutions of the ABET problem. Do not identify the students by name. Instead, refer to them as Students A, B, C, and so forth.
  9. Afterwards: Copies of the homework assignments and the exams. Remove student names and student ID numbers.
  10. Afterwards:
    Copies of work samples by Student A
    Copies of work samples by Student B
    Copies of work samples by Student C


Criteria for Capstone Design Courses. ABET Criterion 4 requires that students must have a major design experience based on the knowledge and skills acquired in earlier course work and incorporating appropriate engineering standards and multiple realistic constraints. As such, the department has formulated the following criteria for its capstone design courses.

  1. The capstone design project (CDP) should include at least seven weeks of direct effort. With so much time devoted to design, the course should explicitly use significant material from earlier EE courses.
  2. Each student must prepare a written report and an oral presentation on the CDP. The grades for these two products must include a significant component that is based on the quality of the written work and oral presentation as distinct from the quality of the project itself. There should be a department-wide handout describing how to prepare the written report and the oral presentation. There should be explicit lectures focusing on the written report and the oral presentation. There could be some team-teaching involving the writing instructor.
  3. The CDP must explicitly incorporate multiple realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability. Note that realistic design constraints such as feature size, power, range, or bit error probability are of course required, but the CDP must explicitly address at least two from the above list of constraints that are not direct engineering issues. These constraints should be explicitly discussed in lecture and appear explicitly in student reports.
  4. The CDP must explicitly incorporate at least one professional standard. The instructor should give a lecture on how the standard applies, mentioning it by its official name, and the student reports should explicitly discuss the standard.
  5. Each time a course with a CDP is taught, the instructor must file a report with the Vice Chair for Undergraduate Affairs briefly documenting how these requirements have been satisfied.


Criteria for Multi-Disciplinary Teaming.
Students should be prepared to work well in multi-disciplinary teams. For this reason, the program requires students to participate in a team project experience involving at least four (4) students who are multidisciplinary in that they bring distinct skills to the project:

  1. Students must divide the work among themselves.
  2. The team must integrate the separate parts into a cohesive overall project.
  3. Student's written reports must explicitly identify the student's individual contribution and discuss how the student functioned as part of a team.
  4. There should be an explicit discussion in lecture that focuses on teamwork.


Assessment of Program Educational Objectives. The following list summarizes the specific measurements that are used by the department to assess the achievement of its two Program Educational Objectives:

  1. PEO#1: Graduates of the program will have successful technical or professional careers.
  2. PEO#2: Graduates of the program will continue to learn and to adapt in a world of constantly evolving technology.

All measurements are applied to graduates 3-5 years beyond the B.S.E.E.

Assessment of PEO#1:
Graduates of the program will have successful technical or professional careers.

  1. Level of technical or professional contribution according to employer.
    Measurement
    : Employer survey. Goal: 95% or more of graduates meet or exceed expectations.
  2. Percentage of graduates working in technical or professional careers or enrolled in graduate or professional school.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 95% or more.
  3. Percentage who obtained another degree since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 25% or more.
  4. Percentage who have published a conference or journal article since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 10% or more.
  5. Percentage who have filed for a patent since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 5% or more.
  6. Percentage who have had a patent granted since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 5% or more.

Assessment of PEO#2: Graduates of the program will continue to learn and to adapt in a world of constantly evolving technology.

  1. Level of success in learning new areas, engaging in professional development, and adapting to technological change according to employer.
    Measurement
    : Employer survey. Goal: 95% or more of graduates meet or exceed expectations.
  2. Percentage of graduates who consulted a journal or conference article to solve a problem since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 25% or more.
  3. Percentage who have taken a class or attended a seminar since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 50% or more.
  4. Percentage who attended a conference or professional meeting since graduation.
    Measurement
    : Alumni survey. Goal: 50% or more.
  5. Percentage who obtained another degree since graduation.
    Measurement: Alumni survey. Goal: 25% or more.


Alumni Survey. The survey asks graduates to answer specific questions of the following nature:

Are you currently employed in a technical or professional career? (relates to PEO#1)

Are you currently working towards a graduate or professional degree? (relates to PEO#1)

What is you current affiliation or position? (relates to PEO#1)

  • Graduate student
  • Industry
  • Public sector
  • Independent
  • Other [ ]


Since obtaining your UCLA BSEE degree: (relates to PEO#2)

   1. Have you consulted a journal or conference article to solve a problem?
   2. Have you taken a class or attended a seminar?
   3. Have you attended a conference or professional meeting?
   4. Have obtained another degree?
   5. Have you published a conference or journal article?
   6. Have you filed for a patent?
   7. Have you had a patent granted?

Employer Survey. The survey asks employers to answer specific questions of the following nature:

Approximately how many UCLA EE graduates do you hire per year?__________

Please characterize the accomplishments of UCLA BSEE graduates in your company, focusing on their first five years after graduation:

  • Level of technical contribution (relates to PEO#1)
    (a) Exceeds Expectations (b) Meets Expectations (c) Below Expectations (d) No Opinion
  • Level of communication skills
    (a) Exceeds Expectations (b) Meets Expectations (c) Below Expectations (d) No Opinion
  • Demonstrated ability to work well on a team
    (a) Exceeds Expectations (b) Meets Expectations (c) Below Expectations (d) No Opinion
  • Level of ethical and social responsibility
    (a) Exceeds Expectations (b) Meets Expectations (c) Below Expectations (d) No Opinion
  • Level of success in learning new areas, engaging in professional development, and adapting to technological change (relates to PEO#2)
    (a) Exceeds Expectations (b) Meets Expectations (c) Below Expectations (d) No Opinion
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