Department Name When Scholarship Produced

Management, Marketing, and International Business

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Mission-driven accreditation standards were established by AACSB in 2003 and updated in 2013, and these standards required accredited business and accounting programs to establish and assess student learning outcomes. This approach was a major change for AACSB accreditation, so beginning in 2003 universities were given a few years to design and implement their Assurance of Learning (AoL) programs. The result has been an array of measures to assess student learning outcomes. All too often, however, the AoL programs were stand-alone efforts to comply with the standards for assessment and were not linked to meaningful continuous improvement processes.

Assessing basic business content knowledge gained by students continues to constitute an important element for AACSB accreditation. The challenge for universities is how best to measure content knowledge. While there are a variety of alternative approaches, many universities use the Educational Testing Service’s Major Field Test of Business (MFTB) as a component of their AoL programs. Between September 2013 and June 2015, 563 domestic institutions administered the MFTB to a total of 68,594 students (Educational Testing Service, 2015). The MFTB is a nationally-normed assessment instrument that enables business schools to compare their students’ content knowledge with that of students at other universities.

Despite widespread use of the MFTB, concerns are sometimes expressed regarding the validity of the MFTB data. At issue is the extent to which students taking the test are sufficiently engaged and serious about doing their best, because if not, the test results cannot provide a reasonable estimate of students’ true knowledge and have little or no value as an assessment tool.

Question: Is it possible to increase student motivation on a learning outcome assessment test and get results that are closer to each student’s true score?

Conference Name

Appalachian Research in Business Symposium (ARBS)