Assessing Student Learning in Higher Education

 Section 1
Introduction

Section 2
  Background  Survey
 What is Assessment?
Why Assessment?
Accountability
Accreditation
Educational Improvement 
Bloom's
Formative Feedback
Learning Paradigm
Prompting Learning
 Quiz
 
Answers

Section 3
Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Section 4
Assessment Tools and Data

Section 5
Course Assessment

Section 6
Program Assessment

 

Section 7
Closing the Loop
 

Section 8
Implementing Assessment Training on Campus

 

Section 9
References & Resources


Definitions

Workbook


Using Materials from this Website

 

Section Quiz Answers

Correct answers are highlighted in blue with notes.

1) Which of the following represent a major purpose for assessment?

a. improving student learning
b. increasing faculty workload
c. using assessment as a tool for learning
d. controlling and inhibiting academic freedom
e. providing accountability

2) Select any of the following that are important processes in assessment.

 a. identifying valid and appropriate student learning outcomes
 b. measuring success in meeting those outcomes
 c. using data to improve both teaching and learning
 d. reporting the data
 e. continually modifying and improving both the outcomes and the assessment

While all are important processes, real improvement occurs when the loop is closed connecting data to modifications in curriculum, changes in pedagogy, and budgeting and planning that supports those practices.

3) Which of the following are methods that have been used to address educational quality?

 a. mass standardized test
 b. performance-based funding linked to statistical measures
 c. outcomes and assessment linked to accreditation standards
 d. public report cards on educational performance
 e. ranking by criteria (such as Princeton Review, Peterson's, Time, and U.S. News & World Report


4) Which of the following have successfully improved and increased effective learning in higher education?

 a. mass standardized test
 b. performance-based funding linked to statistical measures
 c. outcomes and assessment linked to accreditation standards
 d. public report cards on educational performance - some may feel this has resulted in radical and helpful changes to education, but the jury is still out on whether it translates to improved or quality education.
 e. ranking by criteria (such as Princeton Review, Peterson's, Time, and U.S. News & World Report these rankings based on endowments and peer opinions have increased funding for these schools. But generally the schools that pick the very best students rank at the top. Have they improved student learning or do they provide quality education? This is a question for which the rankings have no criteria.

5) Which of the following factors have provided evidence that assessment contributes to improving education?

a. increased student engagement due to standardized testing
b. increased student learning linked to increased numbers of degrees and certificates
c. improved learning as a result of public report cards or other rating practices
d. improved learning associated with stricter government controls
e. data from research showing improved learning gains equal to 30%, two letter grades, 100 SAT points, diagnostic feedback from faculty-student interactions

6) Assessment is only going to improve education if

a. external agencies exert more power.
b. accreditation begins to use tougher measures.
c. funding is linked more specifically to educational needs.
d. faculty close the loop at the classroom and program levels.
e. institutions generate better statistical data. This is definitely an aid to substantiate conclusions and recommendations for changes. The important factor involves having supporting data from learning assessed at the student-faculty interaction level. Otherwise, it is hard to determine the actual source of statistical increases i.e. increased class success numbers could represent lowered standards resulting in higher numbers or better learning resulting in higher numbers.

Did we accomplish the outcomes for this section? Can you do the following?

Define the three purposes for assessment.
Explain guidelines used in good assessment practices.
Access appropriate resources for assessment.

Go to section three

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Resources and Links
 

Student Learning Outcomes: Considering the New Standards Gilbert  (ASCCC, 2003)

Doing Assessment as if Learning Matters Most
Angelo (1999)

 

Download Section 2 Word Document
(24 pages)

 

 

Janet Fulks (jfulks@bakersfieldcollege.edu) & Kate Pluta (kpluta@bakersfieldcollege.edu)
Assessing Student Learning in Community Colleges (2004), Bakersfield College
07/11/2006