What is it? 

Program evaluation provides faculty and staff an opportunity to have a data-driven discussion on program environment, student and faculty needs, policies and procedures, and educational outcomes and impact. Outcomes assessment is one type of program evaluation activity that is focused on examining student learning outcomes and curricular improvement. Both assessment and program evaluation can reveal program strengths and potential limitations, and recommend improvements. 

"Assessment is an ongoing process aimed at understanding and improving student learning. It involves making our expectations explicit and public; setting appropriate criteria and high standards for learning quality; systematically gathering, analyzing, and interpreting evidence to determine how well performance matches those expectations and standards; and using the resulting information to document, explain, and improve performance. When it is embedded effectively within larger institutional systems, assessment can help us focus our collective attention, examine our assumptions, and create a shared academic culture dedicated to assuring and improving the quality of higher education." (Thomas Angelo, AAHE Bulletin, November 1995, p. 7)

Program-level assessment is NOT about evaluating individual students or faculty teaching effectiveness. Rather, it is about examining student performance and experience across a cohort of students and using the information to continuously improve curriculum effectiveness.

Why Engage?

Program-level assessment is an opportunity...

  • to discover whether students are learning in the ways we hope and expect;to understand, verify, or strengthen student learning and experience in the program;
  • to identify areas in need of curricular improvements;
  • for creating rich conversations around student learning, pedagogy, and curriculum.

Our distinguished commitment to teaching excellence, student learning, and continuous improvement drive the assessment process.