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Learning Objectives

The chemistry Bachelor's degree program is certified by the American Chemical Society (ACS) division of Chemical Education. View the most recent certification and the full set of data provided to the ACS for certification. The ACS does not have a certification program for biochemistry degrees; therefore, our Biochemistry program is designed to meet guidelines of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (ASBMB) for such programs. Differences in learning objectives for our Chemistry and Biochemistry BS programs reflect the respective guidelines of the ACS and ASBMB certification programs.

Chemistry Learning Objectives

The goal of both the Chemistry and Biochemistry undergraduate programs is to equip students with the fundamental knowledge in the diverse fields of Chemistry (Analytical, Inorganic, Organic, Physical) and Biochemistry. In addition, students learn how to think like a scientist; that is, to understand the scientific method in the context of chemistry and biochemistry. Our undergraduate chemistry and biochemistry majors have the opportunity to conduct undergraduate research early in their program, first as laboratory assistants and eventually moving on to their own research projects. Many undergraduates in the department are able to co-author research papers. This gives students a competitive advantage when they apply to graduate or professional programs, or enter the job market.

A correlation of learning objectives for individual courses has been developed and is based upon recommendations of the ACS degree certification program. Student success in these specific, course based learning objectives, is evaluated for all graduating seniors via an exit examination (see assessment page for more details).


A broader set of program-focused learning objectives for each of the department’s undergraduate degree programs is as follows:

Chemistry Degrees (Based upon the ACS recommended learning objectives for chemistry majors.)

Learning Objective 1

Senior chemistry majors, by the time of graduation, will be able to demonstrate a mastery of factual knowledge comprehensively across the five principal areas of chemistry (organic, inorganic, physical, biochemistry and analytical) and be able to analyze and solve problems, understand relationships, and interpret scientific facts and data.

Learning Objective 2

Senior chemistry majors, by the time of graduation, will have proficiency in basic laboratory techniques and laboratory safety; have experience with modern lab instrumentation and experience working as a member of a team.

Learning Objective 3

Senior chemistry majors, by the time of graduation, will be able to communicate (written and oral) scientific information to chemists and non-­chemists.

Biochemistry Learning Objectives

The goal of both the Chemistry and Biochemistry undergraduate programs is to equip students with the fundamental knowledge in the diverse fields of Chemistry (Analytical, Inorganic, Organic, Physical) and Biochemistry. In addition, students learn how to think like a scientist; that is, to understand the scientific method in the context of chemistry and biochemistry. Our undergraduate chemistry and biochemistry majors have the opportunity to conduct undergraduate research early in their program, first as laboratory assistants and eventually moving on to their own research projects. Many undergraduates in the department are able to co-author research papers. This gives students a competitive advantage when they apply to graduate or professional programs, or enter the job market.

A correlation of learning objectives for individual courses has been developed and is based upon recommendations of the ACS degree certification program. Student success in these specific course based learning objectives is evaluated for all graduating seniors via an exit examination (see assessment page for more details).


A broader set of program-focused learning objectives for each of the department’s undergraduate degree programs is as follows:

Biochemistry Degrees (Based upon The ASBMB recommended objectives for Biochemistry majors)

Learning Objective 1

Students should have general knowledge in both chemistry and biochemistry. We have used the recent recommendations of ASBMB in order to define what specific knowledge our Biochemistry majors should achieve.

 

Learning Objective 2

Students should have the ability to read, present, and analyze scientific literature and data.

 

Learning Objective 3

Students should have the ability to design experiments, choose and apply appropriate techniques to achieve a research goal, and demonstrate good quantitative skills.

Chemistry Teaching Major Learning Objectives

 

The goal of both the Chemistry and Biochemistry undergraduate programs is to equip students with the fundamental knowledge in the diverse fields of Chemistry (Analytical, Inorganic, Organic, Physical) and Biochemistry. In addition, students learn how to think like a scientist; that is, to understand the scientific method in the context of chemistry and biochemistry. Teaching majors must also complete the Secondary Teaching Education Program (STEP) in order to become state certified teachers.

A correlation of learning objectives for individual courses has been developed and is based upon recommendations of the American Chemical Society degree certification program. Student success in these specific course based learning objectives is evaluated for all graduating seniors via an exit examination (see assessment page for more details).

 

A broader set of program-focused learning objectives for each of the department’s undergraduate degree programs is as follows:

All Chemistry Degrees (Based upon the American Chemical Society recommended learning objectives for chemistry majors.)

Learning Objective 1

Chemistry majors by the time of graduation will be able to demonstrate a mastery of factual knowledge comprehensively across the five principal areas of chemistry (organic, inorganic, physical, biochemistry and analytical), and be able analyze and solve problems, understand relationships, and interpret scientific facts and data.

Learning Objective 2

Chemistry majors by the time of graduation will: have proficiency in basic laboratory techniques and laboratory safety; have experience with modern lab instrumentation and experience working as a member of a team.

Learning Objective 3

Chemistry majors by the time of graduation will be able to communicate (written and oral) scientific information to chemists and non-­chemists.

Additional Learning Objective Specific to The Chemistry Teaching Major

Learning Objective 4

All teaching majors at USU receive their teaching coursework, clinical experiences and student teaching experience in the Secondary Teaching Education Program (STEP) of the College of Education and Human Services. The STEP assessment procedure is described below and is managed by the College of Education and Human Services. In addition, all students must demonstrate mastery of content knowledge by passing the ETS PRAXIS exam prior to their student teaching experience. PRAXIS results are provided under the Outcomes section of the Assessment website. Note that this is a very low enrollment program (0-2 students a year is typical) and so there is not Outcome data every year.

The evaluation of the Secondary Teacher Education Program (STEP) is based on measures of student performance. The performances that are measured on the STEP are derived from the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC) standards:

  • Content Pedagogy
  • Student Development
  • Diverse Learners
  • Multiple Instructional Strategies
  • Motivation and Management
  • Communication and Technology
  • Planning
  • Assessment
  • Reflective Practice: Professional Growth
  • School and Community Involvement

Physical Science Composite Teaching Major Learning Objectives

The goal of both the Chemistry and Biochemistry undergraduate programs is to equip students with the fundamental knowledge in the diverse fields of Chemistry (Analytical, Inorganic, Organic, Physical) and Biochemistry. In addition, students learn how to think like a scientist; that is, to understand the scientific method in the context of chemistry and biochemistry. Teaching majors must also complete the Secondary Teaching Education Program (STEP) in order to become state certified teachers.

A correlation of learning objectives for individual courses has been developed and is based upon recommendations of the ACS degree certification program. Student success in these specific course based learning objectives is evaluated for all graduating seniors via an exit examination (see assessment page for more details).

Learning Objective 1 
Physical Science composite teaching majors by the time of graduation will be able to demonstrate a mastery of factual knowledge comprehensively across the areas of general chemistry, organic chemistry, classical and modern physics.

Learning Objective 2 
Physical Science composite teaching majors by the time of graduation will have proficiency in basic laboratory techniques and laboratory safety.

Learning Objective 3
Physical Science composite teaching majors by the time of graduation will be able to demonstrate competency in the latest and most effective teaching methods.  They will demonstrate the ability to access and utilize pedagogical resources by successfully completing the Secondary Teaching Education Program (STEP) including coursework, clinical experiences, portfolio preparation and student teaching.

Learning Objective 4
All teaching majors at USU receive their teaching coursework, clinical experiences and student teaching experience in the Secondary Teaching Education Program (STEP) of the College of Education and Human Services. The STEP assessment procedure is described below and is managed by the College of Education and Human Services. In addition, all students must demonstrate mastery of content knowledge by passing the ETS PRAXIS exam prior to their student teaching experience. PRAXIS results are provided under the Outcomes section of the Assessment web site.  Note that this is a very low enrollment program (0-2 students a year is typical) and so there is not Outcome data every year.

The evaluation of the Secondary Teacher Education Program (STEP) is based on measures of student performance. The performances that are measured on the STEP are derived from the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium (INTASC) standards:

  • Content Pedagogy
  • Student Development
  • Diverse Learners
  • Multiple Instructional Strategies
  • Motivation and Management
  • Communication and Technology
  • Planning
  • Assessment
  • Reflective Practice: Professional Growth
  • School and Community Involvement