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Assessment

Research Master’s Degree in Soil and Crop Sciences

A candidate for a research master’s degree in Soil and Crop Sciences is expected to demonstrate mastery of knowledge and skill in the Field of Soil and Crop Sciences. Recipients of the research master’s degree will demonstrate the ability to conduct original research in the field of soil and crop sciences. Candidates are expected to synthesize and create new knowledge, making a contribution to the Field in a timely fashion.

Proficiencies

  1. Demonstrate professional skills
    1. Always maintain ethical standards in the discipline
    2. Listen, give, and receive feedback effectively
  2. Mastery of advanced research skills
    1. Recognize and apply fundamental concepts from Soil and Crop Sciences
    2. Synthesize existing knowledge, identifying and applying appropriate resources and critically analyzing and evaluating one’s own findings and those of others
    3. Recognize and apply existing research methodologies, techniques, and technical skills
    4. Communicate research findings through publishing in scholarly literature and oral presentations in professional settings
  3. Demonstrate commitment to advancing the values of scholarship
    1. Conversant of current advances within one’s field and related areas
    2. Show commitment to personal professional development through engagement in professional societies, publication, and other knowledge transfer modes
    3. Show a commitment to creating an environment that supports learning through teaching, collaborative inquiry, mentoring, or demonstratio
  4. Make an original and substantial contribution to the discipline

Doctoral Degree in Soil and Crop Sciences

A candidate for a doctoral degree in Soil and Crop Sciences is expected to work independently and to demonstrate mastery of knowledge and leadership in the Field of Soil and Crop Sciences. Recipients of the doctoral degree will demonstrate the ability to initiate, lead and complete research in the field of soil and crop sciences. Candidates are expected to independently synthesize and create new knowledge, making an original and substantial contribution to the discipline in a timely fashion.

Proficiencies

  1. Demonstrate professional skills
    1. Always maintain ethical standards in the discipline
    2. Listen to, give, and receive feedback effectively
  2. Mastery of advanced research skills
    1. Recognize and apply fundamental concepts from soil and crop sciences
    2. Synthesize existing knowledge by identifying and applying appropriate resources and critically analyzing and evaluating one’s own findings and those of others
    3. Master application of existing research methodologies, techniques, and technical skills
    4. Communicate research findings through publishing in scholarly literature and oral presentations in professional settings
  3. Demonstrate commitment to advancing the values of scholarship
    1. Show awareness of current scientific advances relevant to the field of Soil and Crop Sciences and show the ability to synthesize and discuss their implications to the Field and beyond
    2. Show commitment to personal professional development through engagement in professional societies, publication, and other knowledge transfer modes
    3. Show a commitment to support learning through teaching, collaborative inquiry, mentoring, or demonstration
  4. Make an original and substantial contribution to the discipline
    1. Think originally and independently to develop new concepts and methodologies
    2. Identify new research opportunities
    3. Apply research methodologies independently to generate new information and concepts of relevance to Soil and Crop Sciences

Aspirational Goals for All Degree Candidates in the Graduate School

Cornell University has expectations of Cornell graduates that may defy explicit measurement scales.  These aspirational goals (listed below) are intended to encourage students’ growth and development but do not necessarily lend themselves to assessment as readily as the learning proficiencies. In some fields of study, these aspirational goals may be measured; whereas, in other Fields may not have quantitative or qualitative assessment.

  • Serve as an ambassador for research and scholarship
  • Effectively engage in one’s broader community through various forms of outreach
  • Explore interconnections
    • Recognize plural contexts and cultures
    • Respect research in other areas
    • Understand and articulate the impact of research on society

Mechanisms for assessment of graduate student achievement in the Field of Soil and Crop and Sciences

ϯ     Proficiencies are defined in detail in the preceding pages. Whole numbers in the table are meant to include all relevant dependent categories (ie: 3 = 3a, 3b, 3c).
ψ  Note that not all categories of assessment will apply to all students. The Table shows mechanisms of assessing student learning outcomes and does not show degree requirements. Guidance on degree requirements can be found elsewhere, for more information refer to http://css.cals.cornell.edu/cals/css/graduate or contact the Field GFA or DGS.

Dan Buckley
Director of Graduate Studies, Soil and Crop Sciences