August 31, 2017


OSCAR uses multiple assessment strategies and tools to understand the impact of our courses and programs. We start with Student Learning Outcomes that build on increasing levels of student engagement in scholarship, starting with discovery, moving through scholarly inquiry, and culminating with creation of authentic scholarly work.

Universal Student Learning Outcome

  • Students will discover how they can engage in the process of scholarship.

Discovery of Scholarship

  • Students will understand how knowledge is generated and disseminated through scholarship, and the importance of scholarship to society.

Scholarly Inquiry

  • Students will articulate a scholarly question; engage in the key elements of the scholarly process; and situate the concepts, practices, or results of scholarship within a broader context.

Creation of Scholarship

  • Students will create an original scholarly or creative project.
  • Students will communicate knowledge from an original scholarly or creative project.

Mason’s program rubric was created from a set of program and student learning outcomes identified by the Students as Scholars planning committee. These outcomes are intended to be both inclusive of all academic disciplines at Mason, and supportive of student development. The learning outcomes are organized to promote increasing levels of engagement with the process of scholarship, as students develop competence as scholars in their fields. The rubric identifies target levels of competency for each learning outcome, shaping expectations for the developmental nature of collegiate learning. Download the program rubric in Rubric.DOCX or Rubric.PDF.

OSCAR uses a course portfolio process to help faculty learn what is working and how to improve teaching and learning in RS courses: RS Course Assessment 2017

OSCAR collects information through assessment surveys that have been created to measure program outcomes and student learning outcomes. Download the most recent reports:

OSCAR Department Chair Survey Report 2016

OSCAR Faculty Survey Report 2016

OSCAR Results from the 2015 Graduating Senior Survey

The OSCAR Student Survey was developed to measure program and student learning outcomes over time as part of a longitudinal study of student learning. Survey data are collected from each participant multiple times throughout their involvement with OSCAR, thus allowing us to learn about how their attitudes and reports of their own learning change over time. Thousands of participants are surveyed each year through their involvement in OSCAR activities, including discovery, inquiry, and research courses; undergraduate research groups; and the Undergraduate Research Scholars Program (URSP). This longitudinal data will help us understand student development over time, and identify which experiences have had the most impact.

Students engaged in Discovery Experiences take the OSCAR Student Survey Discovery Set

Students enrolled in OSCAR Courses take the OSCAR Student Survey Course Set

Students engaged in independent research such as the Undergraduate Research Scholars Program (URSP) take the OSCAR Student Survey Individualized Experience Set

Students as Scholars was Mason’s 2011 Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) to enhance undergraduate education. In 2017, we received a successful review by SACSCOC for our QEP Impact Report.

For more information about assessment of OSCAR and the Students as Scholars initiative, contact Dr. Stephanie Foster at