Submitted Fall, 2003
Graduate student self-perceptions show a high level of confidence in communication skills and literary appreciation but low confidence in English language/grammar and creative writing. Composite average scores range from 4.5/7 to 6.3/7; however, the larger group of students polled in the Spring of 2003 showed a wider range, from 3.75 on the language question to 6.4 on literary appreciation. Graduate students rarely take English language or grammar courses, so their self perceptions probably stem, at least in part, from professors' comments on writing assignments. These numbers reflect a consistent increase from the scores from an earlier polling, conducted in the spring and fall of 2001. Considering these scores as, in part, a measure of student satisfaction with the program, there seems to have been a definite increase in students' sense of success and accomplishment. Scores increased most dramatically in communication skills (from 5.2 to 6.3) and creative writing (from 4.2 to 5.2). Scores increased only minimally in the areas of literary periods (4.7 to 5) and English language/grammar (4.1 to 4.5). Continued assessment of these areas should enable the department to better measure whether student satisfaction is actually increasing, since the numbers of students surveyed remains low.