Overview of Assessment at DePaul
Assessment is done first and foremost to improve student learning. The process involves:
- gathering information about how our students are learning;
- reviewing and reflecting on that information;
- and then using those results to improve learning.
The Office for Teaching, Learning, and Assessment with its Faculty Advisory Board developed a formal academic assessment process designed to:
- clarify and communicate learning goals and outcomes;
- gather and analyze evidence of learning related to goals;
- encourage thoughtful revisions to curriculum and teaching strategies;
- facilitate the sharing of information about student learning and successful practices among the University's colleges, departments, and programs; and,
- meet The Higher Learning Commission and other accrediting agencies’ requirements.
The assessment process incorporated input from faculty, deans, and university administrators and was approved by Faculty Council in 2001. Leadership and direction for assessment policies and procedures at DePaul University are provided by DePaul's Assessment Advisory Board .
For information on assessment in the Division of Student Affairs, please visit their website.
Steps Toward Creating a “Culture of Assessment” at an Institution*
Where is your unit in developing a culture of assessment?
||It’s a fad. If I ignore it, it will go away.
||OK. I guess we have to do it.
||I feel threatened. My department feels threatened. My campus feels threatened. Can I subvert it by not participating in the process or in some other way?
||Maybe we can learn something useful. Can we use what we’ve already been doing?
||We have a plan. Maybe it’s not perfect, but let’s get moving!
||We have a plan with long-range objectives that are clearly defined, and based on our experiences with assessment, we believe it works.
At this step, your unit has developed a “culture of assessment!”
|We can’t imagine working without assessment. It’s a permanent part of our institutional culture.
*Adapted from Allen, M. J. (2004). Assessing academic programs in higher education, p.7. Anker Publishing Company: Bolton, MA.
More on Assessment