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Visualizing the Mapping of Outcomes, Content, and Curriculum Between Programs to Support Transfer

July 2018

Authors: Nerissa Mulligan, Jake Kaupp, Vijay Mago, Sahib Singh Budhiraja, Brian Frank, Roderick Turner, Mary Pierce

Project photo

Executive Summary

This project was developed from two previous projects funded by the Ontario Council on Articulation and Transfer (ONCAT). The first project was conducted in 2015 (Zakani et al., 2016), and involved the creation of a framework to compare engineering technology diploma programs and engineering degree programs in Ontario. This was primarily accomplished by comparing selected courses and skills that were found to be part of most engineering programs, such as Calculus and Physics. In 2016, the second project (Waller et al, 2017) focused on engineering discipline-specific program comparisons using parts of the Zakani et al. (2016) framework to compare electrical engineering to electrical engineering technology and mechanical engineering to mechanical engineering technology. Information visualizations of large data sets of information was a key technique used in the analysis in both the Zakani et al. (2016) and Waller et al. (2017) studies. The idea for the current research project came from the extensive use of visualizations in the two previous ONCAT-funded projects. One of the primary goals of the current project is to enable those working with transfers to produce similar visualizations to help support student transfer and mobility in Ontario and possibly lead to bridging programs or pathways between programs and institutions. Information visualizations can be a useful way to display data, particularly data that may otherwise only be available in text-form. They can also help identify trends, similarities, connections, and gaps between courses or programs.