What is it?
"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.
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 curricular and pedagogical features and areas that are working well and are in need of improvements;
- for creating rich conversations around student learning, pedagogy, and curriculum.
to inform how resources should be allocated (for improvement, for continuity, for strengthening, etc.) and to plan for the future.
Our distinguished commitment to teaching excellence, student learning, and continuous improvement drive the assessment process.