Undergraduate Academic Assessment Process (Annual)
It is expected that all undergraduate programs and transcripted certificates offered for credit by NCSU regardless of method or location will fully participate in the assessment process. However, University requirements are flexible enough to allow programs and/or colleges wide latitude in implementing the procedures, including integration of undergraduate and graduate program review where desired.
Assessment activities will continue to be centered in the programs and are facilitated by the colleges. The associate deans for academic affairs are the central figures in managing both the ongoing assessments of student learning outcomes and the eight-year self-studies. Each year the associate deans will collect reports from each undergraduate academic program and transcripted certificate and write a summary for the college. The associate deans will present the summaries at a meeting of the Associate Deans Council in August.
Basic expectations for the assessment process:
- Each program and transcripted certificate must have a set of comprehensive student learning outcomes which are measurable (i.e., need to use action verbs such as those found in the Bloom’s tables online) and can all be assessed within a 3 to 5 year cycle. We generally recommend narrowing down the list of outcomes to 4 to 7 high-level outcomes (e.g., analyzing, synthesizing, creating, etc.) the faculty would expect students to be able to do or know as a result of graduating from the program.
- Each program and transcripted certificate must use direct measures of learning that are aligned with the outcomes such as test questions (not grades) or projects with a rubric (or other method that will allow for systematic review of the course product) from upper level courses. When done well and in the aggregate, these methods will allow programs to determine not only if the students achieved the outcome, but will allow faculty to identify both strengths and weakness for the program. Each program can measure as many outcomes as they deem appropriate each year as long as they are all assessed within 3 to 5 years. A single tool or set of questions from a major exam may be used to asess multiple outcomes.
- Each program and transcripted certificate must make clear decisions based on the data collected. Decisions may or may not include changes to the overall program or courses and changes to the program may or may not be big changes. The spirit of the process is that the faculty review the data and make decisions regarding whether changes are needed and if so, what those changes should be. If the faculty determine that no changes are needed, please explicitly indicate that as a decision made based on data.
- Each program and certificate must enter their plans/reports into Infoweb every summer (dates determined by the Associate Deans). Instructions can be found below under Links.
It is recommended that each program and transcripted certificate complete a curriculum map to help identify the courses in which outcomes are addressed and where the best direct evidence can be collected. The first link below will take you to a page where you can download a curriculum map template as well as a reporting template that can guide programs and transcripted certificates as they write up the yearly report.
- Assessment Workshop (September 13, 2013)
- Assessment Report Writing (April 12, 2013)
- Academic Program Assessment: Using Scores Guides With Student Work (Feb 15, 2013)
- Classroom Assessment (Oct 12, 2012)
- Refining Courses Through Course Assessment (Feb 2, 2012)
- Forms and Assessment Resources
- Undergraduate Academic Assessment and Comprehensive Program Review Steering Council
- Guiding Principles of Undergraduate Academic Assessment (by AAAPT, May, 2005)
- Common Language for Assessment Document (CUPR, August, 2001)