University Curriculum and Student Learning Essay

Excerpt from Essay :

Student Learning

Nationwide discussion within the last ten years on the subject of education has given considerable attention to the ideal means of evaluating pupil learning. Ever more intense deliberations are being carried out regarding how to determine the aspects undergraduate learners learn in the course of their degree program. The engineering program has emerged at the learning curve’s head (Breslow, Lienhard, Masi, Seering, & Ulm, 2008).

Pupils have feelings which may positively or negatively impact their learning, to the same extent as skill, efforts or knowledge. Motivated pupils show much greater likelihood to learn; further, motivation may be impacted greatly by how learners feel. Maslow’s 1943 need hierarchy theory cleverly explains this idea. While self- actualization is situated at the peak of this model, the theorist contends that the requisite drive to achieve self- actualization will surface only after the fulfilment of the prior four more essential and elementary needs, which are: physiological needs; security/ safety needs; belongingness; and self- esteem (Rust, 2013).

Learners’ outlook towards, and beliefs regarding, knowledge influence their learning. Numerous evidently divergent stands exist in this regard, which may be arrayed in the form of a cognitive and intellectual developmental hierarchy. Experience and education will probably facilitate the pathway leading across the aforementioned relevant stands. Ever since William Perry’s first ideas, multiple theoreticians have described and organized these stands in their own, somewhat different way. But they basically commence with an original stance in which pupils perceive things to be either incorrect or correct (‘dualist’), believing all issues have a ‘correct’ solution which people may not have found as yet. Furthermore, they traverse stances which commence accepting uncertainty and perceiving knowledge to be more concerned with opinion. In the end, this stops at the understanding that certain proven explanations depict greater validity compared to other explanations (‘relativist’) (Rust, 2013).

The year 1998 saw ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) implementing Engineering Criteria 2000; this required engineering courses to submit information displaying learning outcome attainment. After shortly completing the next cycle as per novel rules, engineering program departments, supported by EIA (Education Innovation and Assessment) directors, have come up with theories and instruments for improving evaluation of pupil learning which suits individual departments’ distinctive needs. Evaluation techniques may be grouped as both external and internal. The former are typically administered just prior or subsequent to graduating whereas the latter are utilized prior to graduating (Breslow, Lienhard, Masi, Seering, & Ulm, 2008).

A majority of scholars assume additional refining of research techniques, more stringent standards and novel statistical controls will increase knowledge. At present, several are doubting this premise. Of late, it takes hardly any scrutiny of literature…

Sources Used in Document:


Breslow, L., Lienhard, J., Masi, B., Seering, W., & Ulm, F. (2008). How Do We Know if Students are Learning? Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Cross, K. P. (2012). WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT STUDENTS\\' LEARNING AND HOW DO WE KNOW IT? In C. Conrad, & J. Johnson, College andUniversity Curriculum: Placing learning at the epicenter of courses, programs and institutions (pp. 700–708). Boston: Pearson Custom Publishing.

Rust, C. (2013). What do we think we know about student learning, and what are the implications for improving that learning? Oxford Brookes University.


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