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Assessment Planning

Developing an assessment plan at each level is critical to achieving a systematic framework for collecting needed information to guide improvements at each level.

At the course level, assessments take several forms. Assessments of student learning can be informal or formal. Informally, tasks and assignments can be given to students for completion in class, out-of-class, or in online environments that students complete not for a grade but for a check on understanding and/or for feedback in order to complete a formal or graded assignment. It is useful to consider multiple forms of assessment spaced out periodically over the term. The following publications are a good start for developing effective assessments of student learning at the course level:

  • Angelo, T.A. and Cross, K.P. (1993). Classroom Assessment Techniques: A Handbook for College Teachers. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
  • Miller, R. (2007). Assessment in cycles of Improvement: Faculty Designs for Essential Learning Outcomes. The Association of American Colleges and Universities.
  • Nilson, L.B. (2010). “Part 6: Assessing Learning Outcomes,” in Teaching at its Best: A Research-Based Resource for College Instructors. San Francisco: John Wiley and Sons.
  • Stevens, D.D. and Levi, A.J. (2005). Introduction to Rubrics: An Assessment Tool to Save Grading Time, Convey Effective Feedback and Promote Student Learning. Sterling, VA.: Stylus Publishing.
  • Suskie, L. (2009). Assessing Student Learning: A Common Sense Guide. San Francisco: John Wiley and Sons.

Links to short PowerPoint Presentations:

For more information, please contact the Center for Teaching and Learning, located on the third floor of the library, which has a wealth of publications on the topic and dedicated staff.

For academic programs, the assessment plan is developed by the Chair, Program Coordinator and the tenured or tenure track faculty members in the program. On occasion, some programs may also invite instructors , staff and students to contribute. Plans covers a range of activities that are implemented over a 1 to 3 year period. Not all assessment activities are necessarily covered every year. Each year, goals, learning outcomes, assessment activities, and the results are shared with program members and with the University as a whole through annual reporting in the University Annual Assessment Survey.

At the University level, the University’s Assessment Plan defines terms, further describes the levels of assessment, and provides greater depth of understanding of the activities that take place in each college. It also includes charts that explain the critical relationships that exist among the various levels of assessment activities, the strategic plan and priorities and budgeting.

OAPR administers the Annual University Assessment Survey. Click on the links below to see related information.

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