(Columbia, S.C.) The Southeastern Assessment Institute (SAI) at Midlands Technical College is a two-day event where participants learn the ins and outs of Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs). SLOs are statements that specify what students will know, be able to do, or be able to demonstrate when they have completed or participated in a program or activity. SLOs are usually expressed as knowledge, skills, attitudes, or values and are generally reported during college reaffirmation periods.
Janice Stoudemire, a now-retired MTC faculty member, created this event in 2010 when she was directing the college’s reaffirmation of accreditation, and MTC needed to submit SLOs for the first time. Not only did MTC’s own faculty need to know how to do SLOs, but they realized people at other colleges needed help too.
The first SAI had two tracks and six presenters. This year, MTC led four tracks and had 26 presenters.
“The event is organized with a great deal of MTC community help, and the presenters are almost all MTC faculty and staff. We pride ourselves in knowing how to demonstrate the best ways to produce effective SLOs,” said Diane Carr, Associate Vice President of Arts and Sciences, and this year’s Southeastern Assessment Institute coordinator.
Participants of the June 2018 session came primarily from the S.C. technical colleges, but others have come from as far away as North Carolina, Georgia, Arkansas, and Alabama.
“This is a great college initiative that we are proud to host on a regular basis,” said MTC President Dr. Ronald L. Rhames. “Participants are eager to learn from the knowledge our incredible team has garnered through hosting this event in the past. I am proud of our group for hosting such a prestigious event every year.”
Most colleges have been through a couple rounds of reaffirmations since the Southeastern Assessment Institute started, so it’s mostly new faculty who need to learn about SLOs.
“We plan to continue this institute next year,” said Carr. “As long as there’s a need for it, we’ll continue to provide the resources to help people learn all they can about student outcomes.”
About Midlands Technical College
Midlands Technical College (MTC) is a non-profit, six-campus, two-year public college serving Richland, Lexington, and Fairfield counties in South Carolina. MTC enrolls approximately 14,000 credit students annually making it the fifth-largest provider of higher education in South Carolina and one of the largest providers of transfer students to the University of South Carolina. The Corporate and Continuing Education (CCE) program is one of the largest and most comprehensive in the Southeast, with approximately 13,000 students and provides training to hundreds of area businesses each year. www.midlandstech.edu