Creating A New Program SLO (PSLO)


Program SLO statements should describe what students must know, do, and value at the conclusion of a program. In addition, program outcomes tend to emphasize integrating skills into an interrelated set and often put more stress on a real-world application that provides a bridge to the student’s next experience on the job or in upper division study at a four-year university.

Every award at the College consists of a unique set of classes, and as such, leads to unique program learning outcomes. PSLOs also help students understand how program completion will lead to real-world applications such as gainful employment and/or significant preparation for upper division coursework. The Chancellor’s Office and ACCJC define a ‘program’ as “any certificate or degree that the college awards.” For the above reasons, each program at LBCC has an outcome and assessment method. Facilitators are tasked with collaborating with discipline faculty to create PSLOs that close the assessment loop on LBCC’s programs. With the exception of licensure, certification, or other capstone exams, the College uses a streamlined method of course-to-program mapping for program SLO assessment. In this way, course outcomes (CSLOs) build toward overarching program-level outcomes (PSLOs) that students should master upon completion of the program. Like CSLOs, PSLOs should begin with a Bloom’s Taxonomy verb at the appropriate level of critical thinking.

For new programs, reference the Chancellor’s Office narrative goals and objectives and catalog description when creating a new PSLO. For existing programs, reference the catalog description when writing a new PSLO. Without these references, faculty may have different ideas of the purpose of an instructional program, and therefore, may be unable to reach a consensus on the learning outcome(s) for that program.

What is the Process? 

To submit a new PSLO, faculty authors must consider the evaluation criteria set forth in the Program SLO Checklist. Faculty authors will then submit the newly created PSLO to the department SLO Facilitator, who will submit the necessary online form. After the online form is submitted, members of the ASLO Subcommittee will carry out a Technical Review of the new PSLO. New PSLOs and Assessment Methods must receive approval from the ASLO subcommittee. In certain circumstances, the SLO Coordinator may conduct the technical review. For new programs, the PSLOs will be reflected in the College Catalog (or Catalog Addendum) once the program has been approved by the Curriculum Committee, Board of Trustees, Chancellor’s Office, ACCJC, and is active. For existing programs with new PSLOs, the updates will appear in the next iteration of the College Catalog or Catalog Addendum. 

Recommended Number of Program SLOs

In keeping with the Principles of Assessment, which encourage a focused and meaningful approach to the assessment of Student Learning Outcomes, the ASLO Subcommittee recommends that faculty create the following number of SLOs per program:

  • Certificate of Completion: 1 PSLO
  • Certificate of Competency: 1 PSLO
  • Certificate of Accomplishment: 1 PSLO
  • Certificate of Achievement: 1-2 or more PSLOs
  • Associate Degree of Arts/Science: 2 or more PSLOs
  • Associate Degree for Transfer: 2 or more PSLOs

New Program SLO Creation Considerations

When developing a new program SLO:

  1. Complete the Program SLO Checklist and submit the completed form to the SLO Facilitator.
  2. Reference the Program Assessment Methods webpage to inform the development of program SLO methods of assessment.