HLC Academy for Assessment of Student Learning

Overview of the Academy for Assessment of Student Learning


The HLC Academy for Assessment of Student Learning offers member institutions a multi-year sequence of events and interactions that focus on accelerating and advancing the assessment and improvement of student learning and building institution-wide commitment to these efforts. The Academy is designed for institutions that are committed to strengthening their approaches to assessing and improving student learning.



Coconino Community College applied and was accepted into the academy in 2014. During that summer, a group of five college employees traveled to participate in the first year academy roundtable; with each person chosen as a representative from separate areas of the institution. The roundtable experience facilitated development of a student learning project through direct interaction with HLC mentors. With this guidance, a project outline was developed that focuses on assessment of student learning in the CCC General Education Program.

We will focus on refining existing general education assessment tools, incorporate some new processes, and cultivate faculty ownership with the intent of creating an ingrained and sustainable assessment of student learning practice.

General Strategy:

  • Create an inventory of our recent institutional assessment efforts
  • Identify practices being used in colleges that are “similar” to ours
  • Communicate refined set of results for feedback
  • Create and convene new standing assessment committee with responsibility for college wide assessment and reporting
  • Design process/product that links course-level, program level, and   institutional-level assessment.
  • Determine Gen Ed pilot areas, enact process and document
  • Review, modify, and repeat



The graphic below is from a roundtable activity that required our group to graphically illustrate our project. There are several layers of relationships and processes represented. Ultimately, it is the students’ successful future above/beyond the college that is the final objective. To achieve this goal, students and student learning, is supported by layers across the institution. Similarly, the assessment of student learning, and improvements guided by assessment occur throughout the college. 



Update 10/31/2014


Our group recently agreed on clarification of our current role; that we are part of the HLC Assessment Academy, dedicated to the purpose of developing and presenting an academy project and then developing a faculty assessment committee around this project.

The project has two main components: 1) annual program evaluation reports for every CCC degree/cert that are primarily made up of institutional data and generated out of IR. 2) an assessment report of student learning in the General Studies degrees (reporting cycle not yet determined). Specifically, this report will focus on assessing the general education outcome of critical thinking in a selection of general education courses; those with high enrollment in the General Studies degree/cert areas. This focus is intended to be aligned with the current work being done by the CCC Gen Ed committee. Other sources of data include: essay placement test results, course evaluations, and graduating student surveys. We will begin by using data that was collected in recent years and/or is currently available.

The intent of the project is to provide a concrete assessment structure that is aligned from the section level to the institutional level. Our assessment workgroup is eager to share this project with faculty and help create a formal assessment committee with a functioning reporting template that can be developed and expanded upon. However, it is important to have a working model to present before moving forward with creating a larger assessment committee.


Gen Ed Alignment to Course Outcomes