Assessment Plans

Assessment plans are a tool to help courses, programs, and the institution outline their learning outcomes, a timeframe for assessing those outcomes, and where is the  learning data will be gathered.  

 

The plan is focuses on the three steps of assessment (collecting data, evaluating that data, and implementing changes based on that data). It provides a picture of what has been accomplished and what needs to be accomplished.  Additionally, by breaking down the assessment cycle in simpler tasks, the plan helps guide courses, programs, and the institution on where to focus energy. 

 

Course-level Assessment Plans

Course-level assessment occurs through the college's Course Assessment Reporting process.  As per Procedure 302-01 , "Faculty and/or disciplines are require to report course assessment each semester."  

 

Each semester, faculty members are asked to participate in course-level or section-level assessment.  For course-level assessment, the faculty member reports student learning on one course outcome for one course on an assessment tool of their choosing.  This information is reported using the "Course Assessment Report" located in the "Education and Learning Effectiveness" Canvas shell each semester (Login required for access).  

 

Beyond basic course information, the "Course Assessment Report" ask for:  

  1. Course outcome measured
  2. Assignment used
  3. Assessment results
  4. Criterion used to determine results
  5. Future adjustments to course, assignment, prior learning

 

Alternatively, the faculty of multiple sections of the same course may choose to conduct a section-level assessment instead.  They will determine the course outcome and develop a shared assessment tool in which to collect student learning data.  

 

In both scenarios, the Assessment Coordinator will compile information and share the results with the academic leadership.  The academic leadership will share out the results with appropriate stakeholders.  In addition, the Assessment Coordinator will post the results in the "Education and Learning Effectiveness"  Canvas shell for faculty to access.  

 

Program-level Assessment Plans

Program-level assessment occurs through the college's program review process .  Per HLC Criterion 4.A.1, “the institution maintains a practice of regular program reviews,” and while accreditation is the driving force behind program review, it is not the document’s ultimate purpose.

 

It is an opportunity to review the history of the program to determine how the program is performing and if the program needs to change its direction due to market or educational trends. The review should be conducted knowing that it will be used to inform budget and financial decisions, increase agility to respond to market and educational trends, and to provide an avenue for discourse within the program and the institution at large.

 

The Program Review document has a total of seven sections:  

  1. Executive Summary - A summary to be written last with key findings and proposed course of action.
  2. Overview - A brief description of the program for people external to the program.
  3. Teaching & Learning - Analysis of data associated with student learning assessment, student success, course curriculum, and associated program faculty.
  4. Facilities & Resources - An analysis of dedicated space and resources used primarily by the program.
  5. Analysis & Reflection - A review of the analysis and an opportunity to reflect on the ongoing needs of the program in relation to industry or academic trends.  
  6. Recommendations & Action Plans - A plan for the program to follow for the next five years.  
  7. Appendix - Evidence and data referenced throughout the narrative.

 

The entire program review process occurs over five years and has biennial reviews.  

 

General Education Assessment Plans

The General Education program participates in the program review process .  Each area block of General Education (Mathematics, Composition, Arts & Humanities, Social & Behavioral Sciences, and Physical & Biological Sciences) conduct individual processes.  

 

In addition to participating in the program review process, the General Education program also conducts program-level assessment projects for each of its four learning  outcomes : (Thinking Skills, Communication, Diversity & Global Awareness, and Ethical & Civil Values).  Originally, the process was designed to collect data on one outcome each year, spend the send year evaluating the data, and the third year implementing any necessary changes.  However, the learning outcomes assessment projects have become multi-year projects.  

 

Thinking Skills

2016-2017:  The General Education Committee worked with the area blocks to define critical thinking and hone the measurement tools.  

 

2017-2018:  The General Education Committee collected critical thinking learning data from each of the area blocks.  A Critical Thinking Assessment Report was created and shared with the area blocks.  

 

Communication

2018-2019:  The General Education Committee asked faculty to report Communication data by reporting on a course-level outcome that mapped to the program-level Communication outcome.  Area blocks were asked to review the General Education curriculum maps, create a shared assessment tool, and select particular courses in which to collect data.  The results were low participation by the area blocks and general confusion as to the purpose of using the "Course Assessment Reporting" tool to collect program-level data.

 

2019-2020:  It was agreed to separate General Education program-level learning collection from the "Course Assessment Reporting" tool.  Instead, the General Education Committee collaborated with the intensive-writing faculty.  The intensive writing courses have representation in each of the area blocks and share a writing assessment tool.  Each faculty member was asked to collect the student writing in Canvas and incorporate two of the Communication performance measures in their assignment directions:  

  • Present ideas with consideration of purpose and target audience, and, 
  • Demonstrate comprehension skills while communicating.  

 

2020-2021:  Over 321 student artifacts were collected and a stratified sample was created from the collection.  A group of General Education Committee members and writing intensive faculty created a rubric based on the two Communication performance measures.  A norming session was conducted with the rubric and the artifacts were scored.  The results were compiled by the Assessment Coordinator and shared with the General Education Committee.  

 

Diversity & Global Awareness

Scheduled to design a collection project in 2020-2021, but this project has been put on hold due to the General Education Committee reevaluating the overall General Education philosophy, outcomes, and related performance measures.  

 

Ethical & Civil Values

Scheduled to design a collection project in 2021-2022, but this project has been put on hold due to the General Education Committee reevaluating the overall General Education philosophy, outcomes, and related performance measures.  

 

Co-Curricular Assessment Plans

The college assist the students in connecting their in-class experiences with out-of-class experiences focusing on General Education Learning Outcomes.   

 

At the beginning of the academic year, the Assessment Coordinator and Student Life Coordinator will collaborate to develop assessment tools for each co-curricular event as the events have varying formats and intended audiences.