Mission-Related Outcomes Assessment at a Jesuit Catholic University
This research utilized an existing survey instrument to measure mission-related outcomes in students at a Jesuit university. The dimensions assessed by the survey included Magis; Cura Personalis; Diversity; Discernment; Ethics and Professional Responsibility; Community Action/Service; Social Justice; Finding God in All Things; Faith, Spirituality, and Religiosity; and Ego-comparative Identity. Mean comparisons between cohorts of entering freshman and graduating seniors were undertaken to assess mission-related development over the course of the undergraduate experience. Surprisingly, only two constructs (Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Ego-comparative Identity) showed evidence of the hypothesized growth, and four constructs (Cura Personalis, Community Action/Service, Finding God in All Things, and Faith, Spirituality, and Religiosity) yielded results in the opposite direction, such that freshman scores on each of this dimensions were significantly higher than senior scores, on average. Subsequent analyses additionally included gender and high school type to explore their possible primary and interactive effects on each of the mission dimensions. In addition, the influence of the student’s major school of study, academic performance, and participation in curricular and co-curricular offerings such as retreats, service learning and volunteering was explored. In general, these factors produce positive effects on most mission-related dimensions, though the specific relationships vary. Additional questions and ideas for further research are discussed.