Education at CSUSB top-ranked

by Stephanie Barrera | Staff Writer|

CSUSB is ranked as one of the best schools in the nation, according to the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA) and is ranked in the top four percent nationally out of hundreds of participating schools.

CLA tested students in their freshman year, and then again when they were seniors to see if their scores have improved.

As a national nonprofit organization, CLA  was created by the Council of Aid to Education, and it states on their web site that the approach focuses on the faculty as central actors. They think of it as a more authentic approached used toward the improvement of teaching and learning in higher education.
The assessment consists of three components which are sections on critical thinking, writing and verbal skills .
According to 2010-2011 CLA data, CSUSB students have greatly improved their learning skills in writing and critical thinking.
The study shows that incoming freshman scored in the 31st percentile, then senior year they scored in the 56th percentile.
This strong performance is what led to CSUSB being ranked by CLA at the top four percent.
CLA believes that there is value added in getting an education from CSUSB.
“I have seen a major increase in my critical thinking and writing skills,” said Ivannia Alay, a mass communication major.
Alay, a senior at CSUSB, said that compared to her freshman year in college there has been a definite increase in her skills.
“Professors here interact with me making my learning experience more valuable,” said Alay.

One aspect of her education she enjoys is that most professors at CSUSB interact with their students and value their input in the classroom.
“Not only do they care about their students, (but) professors are very knowledgeable about their field of study, which has a big impact in my learning experience,” said Alay.
She believes that the reason CSUSB is ranked so high is the faculty on campus.

CLA strongly believes that “faculty are the ultimate stakeholder of the assessment result.”

According to the CLA website, the assessment used on students is to discover the university’s contribution toward the development of their learning. The results of the assessment show how much progress students have made from attending their particular university.
Alay agrees that the CSUSB faculty has played a major role in developing her learning skills that she has acquired throughout her career on campus.
Furthermore, Alay said she “feels extremely proud of being a CSUSB coyote and being a part of a university that is ranked nationally in the top four percent.”
If you would like more information about the Collegiate Learning Assessment visit collegiatelearningassessment.org.

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