Objectives and Outcomes

Objectives and Outcomes

Computer Science (CMPBC) Educational Objectives

The program educational objectives of the Penn State Behrend Computer Science Program are to produce graduates who, within three to five years after graduation, are able to:

  1. Be employed in industry, government, or entrepreneurial endeavors to demonstrate professional advancement through significant technical achievements and expanded leadership responsibility;
  2. Demonstrate the ability to work effectively as a team member and/or leader in an ever-changing professional environment; and
  3. Progress through advanced degree or certificate programs in computing, science, engineering, business, and other professionally related fields.

Graduates of the program are expected to demonstrate:

  1. an ability to apply knowledge of computing and mathematics appropriate to the program's student outcomes and to the discipline.
  2. an ability to analyze a problem, and identify and define the computing requirements appropriate to its solution.
  3. an ability to design, implement, and evaluate a computer-based system, process, component, or program to meet desired needs.
  4. an ability to function effectively on teams to accomplish a common goal.
  5. an understanding of professional, ethical, legal, security and social issues and responsibilities.
  6. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences.
  7. an ability to analyze the local and global impact of computing on individuals, organizations, and society.
  8. recognition of the need for and an ability to engage in continuing professional development.
  9. an ability to use current techniques, skills, and tools necessary for computing practice.
  10. An ability to apply mathematical foundations, algorithmic principles, and computer science theory in the modeling and design of computer-based systems in a way that demonstrates comprehension of the tradeoffs involved in design choices. 
  11. An ability to apply design and development principles in the construction of software systems of varying complexity. 


According the ACM and IEEE, “Learning objectives are central components of any body of knowledge; basically they capture important elements that are typically absent from a mere list of knowledge topics. They are intended to capture what students are able to do with knowledge.”

The Program Educational Objectives were established through input from employers of our students, alumni, and faculty. The achievement of Program Educational Objectives is assessed through the use of surveys.

The Program Educational Outcomes are assessed using a combination of:

  • Direct assessment of Student work. Each year faculty members in the program assess graded examples of student work to determine the level of achievement. The examples of student work are linked directly to the Educational Outcomes.
  • Senior Exit Surveys. This assessment survey is completed by all graduating seniors in which they are asked to rate how well the Educational Outcomes were achieved.
  • Internship Employer Surveys. This assessment survey is completed by supervisors of students who receive internship credit. Employers are asked to rate how well the Educational Objectives were achieved.
  • Senior Project Evaluations. This assessment tool is completed by faculty judges of senior projects at an annual research conference. The judges, from Penn State Behrend and other colleges, measure how well the deliverables of the senior projects perform and how well students present their deliverables, processes, and professional demeanor.

The Program Educational Outcomes are assessed annually and the Computer Science program employs at least three of the listed measurement tools. More detailed information for the program is available upon request.