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University-Wide Assessment

As the scope of assessment is widened, it involves multiple committees and academic programs in a well planned and organized cycle. Central to this process is the central collection point or person for the data and the accountability of committees and academic divisions for reporting, disseminating, and publishing the summative results of the assessments.

Aims of University-Wide Assessment

  • Provide a continuous source of essential information for instructional improvement and assessment of student academic achievement.
  • Provide information for making institutional decisions about budget, strategic planning, faculty development, and program changes.
  • Provide a framework for the assessment of Abilities across academic programs.
  • Provide a well-planned systematic process for data collection

Ability Assessment and Undergraduate Assessment of Student Learning

Ability Assessment at VCSU is designed to develop an overall understanding of student achievement in each ability. The Abilities provide a framework for examining changes in student learning from initial work through the General Education courses, the academic programs, and the Senior Portfolio. University-wide Ability assessment allows the University to:
  • Demonstrate the development of each of the eight Abilities during the undergraduate educational experiences at VCSU
  • Assure a consistent educational experience for all students
  • Assess learning experiences in General Education courses and strengthen the links between General Education and the major programs
  • Effectively provide data for Institutional Review and Curriculum Planning

The Process of University-Wide Assessment

University-wide assessment is as follows:

1) Student Ability survey is conducted in the fall for the incoming freshmen, in the spring with upper level general education students, and both fall and spring with graduating seniors. The surveys were implemented fall 2009 for the purpose of showing students' perceived growth.
2) Ability projects are assessed at the General Education level and again at the senior level by three-member Assessment teams using rubrics to evaluate the projects. The Curriculum Committee oversees the assessment of General Education while the campus Assessment Committee initiates the assessment of Senior projects. This assessment provides data to show vertical student growth from freshman through senior year.
3) Portfolios are required of every graduating Senior. The portfolios are based on the eight Abilities. Assessment forms are completed each semester by the faculty in the student's academic major. The portfolio review provides programs with information about student growth in their areas and provides validation of the Abilities project assessment.