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University of Minnesota
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About the Initiative

Defining graduate student educational goals and assessing outcomes is becoming the national standard for improving teaching and learning in higher education and figures prominently in the procedures used by higher education accrediting agencies.

While much of a graduate student’s time is spent on coursework, independent study, and developing their research, graduate education goes well beyond scholarly formation. The articulation of graduate student outcomes makes transparent to students and faculty the (often unwritten) program expectations that address the different aspects of professional and scholarly development.

At the University of Minnesota, a committee established by the Graduate School under the aegis of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost has developed guidelines and other materials to help programs identify their particular educational aspirations for graduate students as well as potential measures of their achievement.

Each graduate program should produce a clear statement of its educational goals and a written process for determining how graduate students are meeting them. Collegiate deans are responsible for ensuring that programs produce a statement of their goals and a plan to examine students’ attainment of them. These documents can remain works in progress as the program develops in the future.


For more detailed information about the Graduate Student Outcomes Initiative, please download this preliminary report >

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The articulation of graduate student outcomes makes transparent to students and faculty the (often unwritten) program expectations that address the different aspects of professional and scholarly development.

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