University of Hawaii Community Colleges
Instructional Annual Report of Program Data (ARPD)

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Review Year: College: Program:

College: Honolulu Community College
Program: Architectural Engineering & CAD Tech

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The last comprehensive review for this program was on Fall 2012. STEM Program

Program Description

The Architectural, Engineering, and CAD Technologies program is designed to prepare students for immediate employment as architectural or engineering drawing technicians. Some students, however, use the program to prepare for employment in building construction, interior design drawing, construction supervision and various other fields. Other students use the program as a step on the way to a bachelor’s degree in architecture or engineering.

The mission of the Architectural, Engineering and CAD Technologies program is to:

The program-level student learning outcomes are listed in the next section of this document.

Part I. Quantitative Indicators

Overall Program Health: Cautionary

Majors Included: AEC     Program CIP: 15.1303

Demand Indicators Program Year Demand Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
1 New & Replacement Positions (State) 42 19 11 Unhealthy
2 *New & Replacement Positions (County Prorated) 33 16 9
3 *Number of Majors 112.5 109.5 90.5
3a     Number of Majors Native Hawaiian 23 22 13
3b     Fall Full-Time 61% 44% 52%
3c     Fall Part-Time 39% 56% 48%
3d     Fall Part-Time who are Full-Time in System 3% 7% 3%
3e     Spring Full-Time 50% 40% 50%
3f     Spring Part-Time 50% 60% 50%
3g     Spring Part-Time who are Full-Time in System 0% 3% 1%
4 SSH Program Majors in Program Classes 1,293 1,135 1,034
5 SSH Non-Majors in Program Classes 562 614 538
6 SSH in All Program Classes 1,855 1,749 1,572
7 FTE Enrollment in Program Classes 62 58 52
8 Total Number of Classes Taught 30 32 27

Efficiency Indicators Program Year Efficiency Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
9 Average Class Size 21.7 19.3 20.6 Healthy
10 *Fill Rate 85.3% 75% 78%
11 FTE BOR Appointed Faculty 2 2 2
12 *Majors to FTE BOR Appointed Faculty 56.2 54.7 45.2
13 Majors to Analytic FTE Faculty 36.2 33.2 32.2
13a Analytic FTE Faculty 3.1 3.3 2.8
14 Overall Program Budget Allocation $190,272 $185,535 $180,065
14a General Funded Budget Allocation $190,272 $156,900 $171,609
14b Special/Federal Budget Allocation $0 $0 $0
14c Tuition and Fees $0 $28,635 $8,456
15 Cost per SSH $103 $106 $115
16 Number of Low-Enrolled (<10) Classes 2 2 1
*Data element used in health call calculation Last Updated: January 27, 2014

Effectiveness Indicators Program Year Effectiveness Health Call
10-11 11-12 12-13
17 Successful Completion (Equivalent C or Higher) 74% 80% 80% Cautionary
18 Withdrawals (Grade = W) 28 33 35
19 *Persistence Fall to Spring 71.9% 76.5% 66%
19a Persistence Fall to Fall     47.1%
20 *Unduplicated Degrees/Certificates Awarded 17 19 23
20a Degrees Awarded 16 18 13
20b Certificates of Achievement Awarded 1 2 11
20c Advanced Professional Certificates Awarded 0 0 0
20d Other Certificates Awarded 0 0 0
21 External Licensing Exams Passed   Not Reported Not Reported
22 Transfers to UH 4-yr 12 7 5
22a Transfers with credential from program 5 3 2
22b Transfers without credential from program 7 4 3

Distance Education:
Completely On-line Classes
Program Year  
10-11 11-12 12-13
23 Number of Distance Education Classes Taught 2 3 3  
24 Enrollments Distance Education Classes 54 68 66
25 Fill Rate 90% 76% 73%
26 Successful Completion (Equivalent C or Higher) 41% 43% 48%
27 Withdrawals (Grade = W) 8 12 15
28 Persistence (Fall to Spring Not Limited to Distance Education) 61% 75% 77%

Perkins IV Core Indicators
Goal Actual Met  
29 1P1 Technical Skills Attainment 90.00 88.46 Not Met  
30 2P1 Completion 50.00 57.69 Met
31 3P1 Student Retention or Transfer 74.25 90.48 Met
32 4P1 Student Placement 60.00 64.29 Met
33 5P1 Nontraditional Participation 17.00 27.42 Met
34 5P2 Nontraditional Completion 15.25 17.65 Met

Performance Funding Program Year  
10-11 11-12 12-13
35 Number of Degrees and Certificates     24  
36 Number of Degrees and Certificates Native Hawaiian     3
37 Number of Degrees and Certificates STEM     24
38 Number of Pell Recipients     32
39 Number of Transfers to UH 4-yr     5
*Data element used in health call calculation Last Updated: January 27, 2014
Glossary | Health Call Scoring Rubric

Part II. Analysis of the Program

Although quantitative data is critical in the evaluation of any program, it is not in this case accurate or meaningful enough to paint a fair picture of the AEC program.  Specifically:

New & Replacement Positions in the County

The AEC program has regularly placed more students in AEC jobs than the figure given indicates there should be positions available for them to fill.  Employers very certainly find skilled people elsewhere as well, which is essentially evidence of the figure given being inaccurate.  The Demand health call is also focused exclusively on employment, while the description and mission of the program and the purpose of it being an A.S. degree program are in part to serve people interested in transfering to baccaulaureate programs in architecture and engineering.  The mission is also to serve people who are self-employed or otherwise already employed in the AEC industry, enroll for reasons other than that of simply obtaining employment, are military spouses who cannot remain in the State past graduation, etc.  AEC  students are not as traditional as the evaluation model seems to expect them to be.  They are not fresh out of high school and getting a year or two of training just to find a decent job.  Being an open door institution, potential enrollees cannot be screened to ensure that they fit the evaluation model by being traditional job-seekers.   What makes this item doubly critical is that it is a part-basis of both the Demand and Effectiveness health calls

Number of Majors

This has always been problematic.  At any one time, there are no more than 50 students taking regular-program courses (26 first-year students and 24 second--year students).  One course, though, does accommodate non-majors, and another is a pre-program course that reduces the number of declared majors to those who are genuinely interested in AEC, competent, and sufficiently dedicated to stick with the program for two years.  A better classification of AEC students would be all those enrolled in two or so regular-program gateway courses (as they were defined some years ago).  Prior to enrollment in regular-program courses, students could be classified "unclassified" as they are at many other colleges.  A number based simply on what students declare upon enrolling at HCC, whether they ever enroll in AEC courses or not, is just too soft.  This item is also doubly critical because it is a part-basis of two health calls. 

Apart from these systemic problems in the evaluation, the program added a one-year Certificate of Achievement so that students who do not continue to the second year because of employment, military deployment, or other reasons can leave with a credential rather than empty-handed.  There has been no gain or loss of instructional positions, and no major program revisions.  An action plan item in the 2012 report was to refine program SLO rubrics and develop rubrics for courses that still needed them.  This was fully accomplished along with additional rubrics for assessing student portfolios and student satisfaction.  Another action plan item was meeting with the AEC Advisory Committee twice a year, rather than only once, and to encourage more direct involvement of the members with students.  We now have probably the most energetic and involved committee we have ever had, the committee has already met once (September 12), and members have met with students as a group at a Meet the Advisory Committee event where each member gave a presentation of approximately 30 minutes.  Still another action plan item was to better keep minutes of advisory committee meetings, which has been done.  Coming up this year will be a number of fairly major program changes (see "Action Plan" below). 

Although the program health data paints a poor and potentially damaging picture of the AEC program, we believe the program is very strong. Beginning regular-program courses were full or nearly so, all graduating students obtained the employment they sought, a number of students transfered to UH Manoa or other university, and nearly all students had met their training goals by the end of the program (as indicated on a student satisfaction survey).  Students do very well in employment, they do exceptionally well at the UH School of Architecture, and they and employers rate the program highly.  As indicated elsewhere in this report, student satisfaction on 14 aspects of the program was 95%, and both guests and AEC Advisory Committee members at the end-of-year portfolio review rated evidence of student achievement very high.  


Part III. Action Plan

The following Action Plan items support the "meets the evolving... needs of individuals, business, [etc.]" statement of the College Mission, particularly the "by... offering high quality courses" part of it.

  1. Further refine and continue to use the course and program assessment tools that have been developed to more fully "close the loop."  The entire assessment process needs to become more integrated with course planning and teaching -- and more of a routine.
  2. Develop charts, graphs, or other tools for comparison of assessment results over the years for the purpose of identifying long-term improvements or continuing weaknesses in the program.
  3. Continue to use the Student Satisfaction Survey and the P-SLO Assessment Survey by students.
  4. Expand the storage of assessment evidence for all courses and the program.
  5. Continue the effort to involve the AEC Advisory Committee more in curriculum matters and greater direct contact with students in the program.
  6. Continue to meet with the advisory committee at least twice a year, take and publish meeting minutes, and maintain or expand active membership.
  7. Propose changing the format of all courses that are lecture/lab to lecture only now that all students can complete drawings on their home  computers and with software that is free to them (as students with e-mail accounts) just as easily as research papers and other assignments for general education and other classes are completed as homework.  This change will also permit greater instructor attention to planning, assessment, and advisory committee tasks, include increasing the credits of three core AEC courses, deleting a course from the program that will no longer be available, and adding a one-credits ethics course to meet a certification requirement.
  8. Consider making the online construction materials course, AEC 118, either a co-requisite or prerequisite of the first semester regular-program courses to limit enrollment to only people who are AEC students in fact rather than in name only, or make the course an Interdisciplinary Studies course so that students who drop or fail the course do not impact AEC health indicators.  The pre-program AEC 81 course might be proposed as an IS course for the same reason. 
  9. Continue to advocate for a regular and more frequent replacement of classroom computers (a 2012 action plan item).

Part IV. Resource Implications

A scheduled replacement of classroom computers (Action Plan Item 9) would require additional funding.  Replacement costs and computer life spans will change, and alternatives to 24 and 26 stand-alone computer classrooms may develop, but planning and budgeting are required.

3D printing might require additional funding for equipment and supplies.  At this time, however, there is no item in the College Strategic Plan or other specific plan for further integration of this technology into the curriculum.

No other items in the Action Plan will likely require special budgeting.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

For the 2012-2013 program year, some or all of the following P-SLOs were reviewed by the program:

this year?
Program Student Learning Outcomes


Draw objects of various orientations as may be prescribed, draw sections and elevations of objects, and identify the relationships of objects or object features to demonstrate visualization proficiency and knowledge.


Identify or describe the typical characteristics and uses of common construction materials, products, and systems, document them in drawings, and make appropriate selections based on design project requirements.


Under the supervision of an industry professional, design a residence or small commercial building and create the required design, construction, and site drawings and a materials estimate for it.


Use with reasonable efficiency the latest 2D and 3D CAD software programs to create industry standard architectural and engineering drawings, both constructional and presentational.


Model habits and attitudes for success in professional employment, prepare and present a professional resume and portfolio, and demonstrate developed interviewing skills in preparation for employment.


Demonstrate computation, communication, critical thinking, research, and problem-solving skills as well as a sensitivity and appreciation of diversity and community to perform effectively as a team member in a professional, competitive, and diverse work environment and as a responsible member of the community.

A) Evidence of Industry Validation

AEC Advisory Committee members assessed the technical and general career readiness of graduating students at the 2013 Annual Portfolio Review.  The portfolios, in particular, evidenced students’ visualization and graphic representation skills, their knowledge and application of construction materials, products, and systems, their planning and construction documentation abilities, and the level of their computer drawing and modeling skills.  At the same time, students’ verbal communication skills and general career readiness were assessed to the extent that committee members’ time and effort afforded.

There were nine assessment items, and committee members scored each student at one of three levels (developing, competent or higher, or exemplary).  All but one student scored at least "competent," so there is little variation in the "developing" and "competent or higher" percentages.  The "exemplary" percentages vary more and may be more useful for comparative purposes.  All advisory committee members were given achievement level descriptions ahead of time.

Industry P-SLO Assessment Items and Results

Assessment Item Developing Competent or Higher Exemplary P-SLO's
Portfolio -- 2-year Extent of Work 2.63 % 97.37 % 60.53 % 1 - 5
Portfolio -- Range of Examples 2.63 % 97.37 % 52.63 % 1 - 5
Portfolio -- Graphics and Creativity 2.70 % 97.30 % 54.06 % 1, 3, 4, 5
Portfolio -- Mechanics 2.63 % 97.37 % 44.74 % 1, 3, 4, 5
Portfolio -- Craft 2.63 % 97.37 % 47.37% 5
Résumé 5.41 % 94.59 % 54.05 % 5
Oral Communication -- Substance 0 % 100 % 55.26 % 5, 6
Oral Communication -- Engagement 0 % 100 % 71.05 % 5, 6
Personal Presentation 2.63 % 97.37 % 78.95 % 5


Industry validation has also been indicated by employers regularly contacting the program for employees -- also the fact that the program places more students in jobs than what the data given us indicates should be the number of new and replacement positions available.  All of our graduates in employment have also maintained or bettered their employment, and many have risen to very responsible positions within their firms.

B) Expected Level Achievement

In respect to P-SLO's, the expectation in the above-described assessment is that 95% of students score at the "competent or higher" level upon completion of the program.  The goal is always 100%, but 95% allows for one exception usually due to an extenuating circumstance that interferes with completing a portfolio of the quality intended but upon which assessment of final achievement is primarily based.  Of those students who are scored "competent of higher," it is expected that at least 10% are scored "exemplary."  

In respect to course SLO's, typically 70% of first-year students are expected to score 70% or higher, which is consistent with a "C" letter grade. 70% of second-year students are expected to score 80% or higher, which is roughly consistent with employers' expectations of a solid skill base upon which on-the-job training in similar software, office practice, experience, and often knowledge of an industry specialization make the students as valuable to the firms as needed.

C) Courses Assessed

All AEC courses were assessed during the 2012-13 school year.  

D) Assessment Strategy/Instrument

Individalized rubrics are used to assess all course SLO's.  The type of rubric is determined by the course instructors and the nature of the courses.  Some involve "developing," "competent," and "exemplary" categories to assess students' achievement level of each SLO based on a detailed description of each category.  Others involve number matrices in which student projects or other activities/data are assigned component values and scored accordingly, again one rubric per course SLO.

The program uses an assessment levels chart to obtain P-SLO assessment figures in part from course SLO assessments.  According to the chart, specific course SLO's are aligned with two or three P-SLO's.  Assessment of each P-SLO is therefore addressed by anywhere between five and thirteen courses in the program, in every case including at least one introductory, reinforcement, and emphasis level course.  More alignments could be used, but those identified in the chart are more than sufficient.  Additional P-SLO assessment data is obtained from student and advisory committee assessments.

Course and Program Assessment Alignments

P-SLO  >> #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6
Course Visualization Materials Design & Constr Software Employment Gen'l Educ
  AEC 81, Basic CAD Drafting 2 SLO's     2 SLO's    
  AEC 110, Basic AutoCAD® 1 SLO     3 SLO's    
  AEC 114, Architectural Graphics 2 SLO's     3 SLO's    
  AEC 118, Construction Materials   3 SLO's       1 SLO
  AEC 120, Intro Construction Drwg     2 SLO's 2 SLO's    
  AEC 123, Residential Design & ...     2 SLO's 1 SLO   2 SLO's
  AEC 124, Bldg Info Modeling Soft.     1 SLO 1 SLO    
  AEC 127, Civil Engineering Drawing 3 SLO's   2 SLO's 3 SLO's    
  AEC 130, Residential Wrkg Drwgs     2 SLO's 1 SLO    
  AEC 131, Construction Codes   1 SLO       1 SLO
  AEC 135, Intro to Built Environ.         2 SLO's 1 SLO
  AEC 136, Structural Drawing     2 SLO's 2 SLO's    
  AEC 138, Construction Estimating   1 SLO 1 SLO 1 SLO   1 SLO
  AEC 139, Field Shadow Experience         n/a n/a
  AEC 140, Commercial Wrkg. Drwg     2 SLO's 1 SLO    
  AEC 141, Building Services   1 SLO 1 SLO 1 SLO    
  AEC 146, Advanced Modeling & ... 1 SLO     2 SLO's    
  AEC 149, Prep for Employment...         2 SLO's 1 SLO


How to integrate general education courses (which are important parts of the AEC program) into the plan is still a problem because every general education class is made up of students of different disciplines, and extracting data for AEC students alone is difficult.

E) Results of Program Assessment

In respect to the assessment strategy described directly above, these are the results obtained:                                                                                                                                                                                                        

No. Abridged Program Students Learning Outcome  Outcomes Average
1    Visualization and graphic representation proficiency and knowledge 78.89 %
2    Knowledge of common construction materials, products, and systems 79.17 %
3    Ability to create design, construction, and site drawings 81.00 %
4    Efficient use of 2D and 3D CAD software 83.96 %
5    Preparation for employment  (résumé, portfolio, interviewing skills, etc.)  96.00 %
6    Computation, communication, ethical behavior, problem-solving, etc. 83.86 %
  1. P-SLO #1 (VISUALIZATION) AVERAGE OUTCOME:  The outcome of this assessment item is the lowest of the six, but it is in the general range of several others.  Visualization is an ability that is very difficult for students to develop if they have not been challenged to develop it from a very early age.  But because it is important in the majority of AEC courses and because modeling software that students enjoy and use quite extensively in the program, students do significantly develop their ability.  Even those who have difficulty with it early in the program greatly improve their visualization skills as they progress through the program.  The slightly under-80% outcome (80% being a soft target) is based on the outcomes of five pre-program and first semester course SLO's, three second-semester course SLO's, and only one second-year course SLO, so it is quite certainly lower than it would be if we obtained the percentage from an equal number of SLO's each of the four semesters.  Visualization is a topic that is emphasized the most early in the program, as we believe it should be.  We might use other courses on which to base this assessment, but as long as the outcome is in the range of 80% or so, we will pay more attention to the trending of this outcome..                                                                                                                                                               
  2. P-SLO #2 (CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS) AVERAGE OUTCOME:   The outcome of this assessment item is also in the satisfactory range of 80% -- to a significant extent due to the better course SLO outcomes from second-year courses where materials, products, and systems are applied in projects rather than introduced as in the AEC 118 survey-type course.  As noted elsewhere in this report, though, a number of significant changes have been made in the AEC 118 course, student performance has already improved, and the P-SLO outcome, based in large part on the AEC 118 outcomes, will almost certainly be stonger at the next annual assessment.  We will specifically look for an improvement in this outcome in the next report.                                                                                                                                                                                                     
  3.  P-SLO #3 (CONSTRUCTION DRAWINGS) AVERAGE OUTCOME:   This outcome is in the same general range of 80%.  The courses most closely related to design, construction, and site drawing, especially the working drawings courses, pull material together from a range of the other courses, and because of their scope and the challenge imposed on students to synthesize what they've learned, an average outcome in the neighborhood of 80% is good.  The subjects of this P-SLO probably resemble what students will do with their training upon graduation from the program.  If they enjoy the challenge and the work and do well, they will most likely do very well in AEC employment.   No specific change is planned, but we will look at any trending that might occur over time.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
  4. P-SLO #4 (CAD SOFTWARE) AVERAGE OUTCOME:    This outcome is significantly higher than most of the others, in part because it is the computer work and software that attracts students to the program in the first place.  Different from knowlege of materials, construction, etc., it is the ability to work efficiently and independently with various CAD software programs that represent unique, clear, and marketable skills that students value.  They learn to apply their skills to construction documentation, modeling, and animation that few other people know, and they are introduced to new and specialized programs as quickly as they are ready for them.  No changes related specifically to this P-SLO are planned, although new software programs are continually added to courses to prepare students for an ever-changing employment landscape.                                                                                                                                                                   
  5. P-SLO #5 (PREPARATION FOR EMPLOYMENT) AVERAGE OUTCOME:   This outcome is very high.  96% of students who can write professional résumés, create portfolios containing outstanding examples of their work, efficiently search for professional employment opportunities in architectural and engineering offices, and interview well is remarkable.  Finding employment and performing successfully in a professional position, though, is not easy, and there are numerous aspects of the employment process that are difficult to address in a classroom, including motivation to aggressively search for employment, networking, and interviewing with strangers and possibly teams of interviewers (rather than AEC instructors or others who are familiar).  Consideration will be given to those and other aspects of the employment process that are difficult to address -- to better prepare students for serious, professional, and competitive employment upon graduation.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
  6. P-SLO #6 (COMPUTATION, COMMUNICATION, PROBLEM-SOLVING, ETC.) AVERAGE OUTCOME:   The oucome of nearly 84% is quite satisfactory.  Considering the shyness, speech, and writing difficulies that students have upon starting the program and the progress they evidence in speaking before the second-year Field Shadow class, writing reports, and presenting their portfolios at an end-of-program Portfolio Review, an 84% overall assessment of their P-SLO #6 skills is impressive.  The AEC program places great emphasis on developing these skills -- in AEC class activities, requiring community service, encouraging AEC Club engagement, involving students in shadowing industry professionals, and requiring high-level general education courses.  No specific changes are planned as a result of the P-SLO outcome.                 

F) Other Comments

Improvement in P-SLO assessment figures will undoubtedly occur in concert with improvement in course SLO assessment figures.  Changes in courses to improve learning are described in most every course assessment report (submitted elsewhere) where SLO's, expected achievement levels, data, and results are shown.  The AEC 118 report, in particular, describes a number of changes designed to improve learning (inclusion of YouTube videos, greater emphases on core material, more follow-up after exams, etc. in this online course).  The changes were made this Fall semester, and improved results are already apparent.  Also, both program and course SLO's (for almost all AEC courses) are currently being refined, and at the time of this report, modification proposals are making their way through the approval process.

G) Next Steps

The next steps associated with assessment are included in the Action Plan.  They are as follows: