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Critical Thinking Assessment Test|Assessment of Student Learning

Critical Thinking Assessment Test (CAT)

Since 2011, UW has used the Critical Thinking Assessment Test (CAT) to assess student learning at the programmatic level. The test was initially developed by faculty at Tennessee Tech University. It has since been refined by faculty across the nation with the assistance of several National Science Foundation grants. The CAT measures critical thinking and real world problem-solving skills. Seven programs at the university with an identified critical thinking student learning outcome participated in a year long project. The units participating are the School of Pharmacy, the School of Social Work, the College of Business, College of Nursing, Kinesiology & Health, Veterinary Sciences, and Zoology & Physiology. Each program employed a different methodology for testing students based on their courses and program requirements. Nearly 800 UW students are tested each year.

Unlike other nationally developed tests, the CAT is scored by university faculty. During the year, the Office of Academic Affairs in conjunction with the ECTL, organizes several scoring sessions with faculty and staff from the seven programs using the CAT and from other disciplines across the university. These scoring sessions last approximately eight hours. Faculty agreeing to score will need to attend the entire session. As appreciation for scoring, UW scorers receive $250 for each all-day scoring session to be used for any kind of professional development activity.

Faculty interested in learning more about the CAT test or interested in participating in a scoring session should contact Erika Prager at 766-2897 or ekprager@uwyo.edu. CAT tests are scored in December and May.

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