Academic Program Review Process

When the College moved to a four-year state college status and began offering baccalaureate degree programs in Fall Semester 2009, it engaged in a biennial assessment review process, utilizing one full year to gather and evaluate assessment data on all program student learning outcomes and another full year to write the assessment plan and, with input from departmental faculty, make recommendations for improvements in student learning and teaching effectiveness. Although this assessment process was especially beneficial given the infancy of baccalaureate degree programs on campus, it became challenging to effectively and efficiently manage data collection, interpret data and make appropriate adjustments in the curriculum. Therefore, in Fall Semester 2014, the College moved to an annual academic program assessment review process that now gives programs the opportunity to choose what learning outcomes they would like to measure to promote program improvement. The College’s program learning outcomes assessment process is a comprehensive, five-year cycle of assessment during which time programs need to assess each of their student learning outcomes at least once and have used the results of their assessments to improve some aspect(s) of their program/curriculum.

Annual program assessment reports are the method by which baccalaureate and career associate degree programs share their assessment activities over the past year, highlighting what they have learned and how they used the results of their assessment to make programmatic improvements that will hopefully lead to improvements in student learning. Annual reports follow the established five-year assessment calendar and are completed in two parts - Part One is completed in the Fall Semester and lays out a detailed assessment plan for each learning outcome being assessed that year; and Part Two is completed by the end of the spring term and documents the results of all assessment activities for each learning outcome that was assessed, including how those results are being used to make incremental programmatic improvements that improve student learning.

Each assessment of student learning outcomes at the program level identifies (a) linkage between program and College mission, (b) intended student learning outcomes, (c) means of assessment and criteria for success, (d) summary of data collected, and (e) the use of results. Both baccalaureate and career associate degree programs organize their internal assessments on a standard educational program assessment template. The expected student learning outcomes for graduates apply to all students, regardless of classroom delivery method or program.

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