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Institutional Assessment

Institutional assessment is managed by a committee of faculty and administrators and has been assessing student learning since 1998. In the fall of 2017, after a year-long development and review process, GCC adopted seven (7) institutional learning outcomes (referred to on other campuses as general education outcomes) to replace our previous three primary and three secondary outcomes.

These institutional learning outcomes (ILOs) focus on the marketable and life skills students should develop during their time at GCC. The ILOs will be assessed on a three-year cycle in both academic and co-curricular environments starting in the spring of 2019. See the full ILO assessment cycle. Student learning will be assessed using rubrics like the ones for Quantitative Reasoning and Information Literacy, with the remaining rubrics currently under development.

Institutional Learning Outcomes
Adopted Fall 2017

We recognize that the knowledge represented in our institutional learning outcomes (ILOs) develops through intentional, guided, and iterative experiences across disciplines and programs throughout students’ time in college, from the first semester to the last.

Technological literacy is the ability to discriminate between, select, and use technology effectively and responsibly to accomplish a task or solve a problem.[1] We recognize that technological literacy, rather than being separate from, is embedded within each institutional learning outcome and as such, ILO-specific technology rubric items are being developed to accompany the assessment of each ILO.


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated communication skills (oral, written, visual).

  • Oral communication is the development and expression of ideas with the spoken word. Oral communication in this context is a prepared, purposeful presentation designed to increase knowledge, foster understanding, and/or inspire change in the listener’s’ attitudes, beliefs, or values.
  • Written communication is the ability to convey through the written word an understanding of the purpose-driven social nature of all written communication, the use of relevant content knowledge and disciplinary conventions, the linguistic elements of writing, and the various strategies used to support the writing process through planning, drafting, and revision.[2]
  • Visual communication is the ability to analyze, interpret, evaluate and create visual materials in both physical and digital formats with well-articulated formal and conceptual choices.


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated critical and creative thinking skills.

  • Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action.[3] Critical thinking may occur in linear and non-linear fashions.
  • Creative thinking is the ability to identify problems, make guesses, produce new ideas, and communicate the results. It is also the ability to see things in new and original ways, to learn from experience, and relate it to new situations, to think in unconventional and unique ways, to use non-traditional approaches to solving problems, and create something unique and original.[4]


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated quantitative reasoning and analysis.

  • Quantitative reasoning is the application of mathematical skills to the analysis and interpretation of real-world quantitative information to draw conclusions that are relevant to students in their daily lives.


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated personal and civic responsibility.
  • We recognize the importance of students taking responsibility for their own well-being and that of the community, so we encourage our students to develop personal and civic responsibility.
  • When we take personal responsibility, we work to maintain or enhance our physical, emotional, intellectual, and social well-being. Physical responsibility involves taking care of the body with exercise, healthful eating, and adequate rest; emotional responsibility involves exploring one’s intellect and understanding of a healthy range of emotions; intellectual responsibility involves stimulating mental activities that expand a person’s knowledge and skills both in the classroom and beyond, and social responsibility involves participating in positive social relationships including friends, family, co-workers and community.
  • When we take civic responsibility, we cultivate an understanding of and a capacity for participation in activities of personal and public concern that are both life enriching and beneficial to the community.


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated awareness and appreciation of diversity.

  • Diversity awareness and appreciation include, but are not limited to, an understanding of one’s own personal biases and the development of a set of cognitive, affective, and behavioral skills and characteristics that support effective and open interaction in various contexts.

Information Literacy

By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated information literacy.

  • Information literacy is the ability to recognize information needs in context; to develop research skills in locating, evaluating, and applying information critically and responsibly.


By the end of their college experience, students at Glendale will have demonstrated clarification of career goals and the knowledge and skills needed for success in the workplace.

  • Clarification of career goals is a developmental process that begins before the student enrolls in college. It is targeted during the first year of college and may continue throughout the student’s college experience as they take more coursework, explore career information, and participate in experiences such as internships, service learning projects, career interviews, and volunteering.
  • Knowledge and skills needed for success in the workplace include both “hard skills” and “soft skills” that employers expect from college graduates. “Hard skills” may include specific content knowledge and skills that are teachable and apply directly to a specific career or general knowledge and skills that apply to many or most careers. “Soft skills” are personal attributes including self-responsibility, leadership, time management, teamwork, decision-making, and goal-setting that allow the individual to work effectively with others and be successful in a work environment.

[1] Definition from
[2] Adapted from
[3] Definition from
[4] Adapted from Wang, A. Y. (2012). Exploring the relationship of creative thinking to reading and writing. Thinking Skills and Creativity, 7, 38-47.