Assessing Student Learning in Higher Education

Author's Home Page 

Section 1

Section 2
Background and Rationale for Assessment

Section 3
Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

Section 4
Assessment Tools and Data

Section 5
Course Assessment

Section 6
Program Assessment
Setting the Stage
Defining Programs
Program SLOs
General Education Programs
Program Assessment Tools
Homegrown Program Assessment Tools
Program/Course Matrix
Program Review and Program Assessment

Sample Program Assessment Reports

Section 7
Closing the Loop

Section 8
Implementing Assessment Training on Campus


Section 9
References & Resources



Using Materials from this Website



Program Review and Program Outcomes Assessment

Typically the program review process is a periodic evaluation involving an intensive self-study. Components of program review may include:


documentation of the program activities


requests for additional funding


assessing present and projected staffing needs


describing facilities


cataloging equipment


verification of the program's values and effectiveness


accounting how the program supports the overall institutional missions and goals.

Program review is an excellent reflective process that easily lends itself to the outcomes reporting process. In fact, some institutions have noted significant redundancies in program review, outcomes assessment reporting and periodic accreditation reviews. Thoroughly reviewing these process and aligning the reporting for each of these processes provides a considerable time savings, increases the efficiency of the reporting, and the effectiveness of the processes contributing to each final product.

Program review provides an opportunity to align courses with program outcomes and overall program outcomes with the accreditation standards. Several institutions have revised these governance processes to reduce the additional work to faculty and administration. Kennesaw State, Riverside Community College, and Bakersfield College, among others, have been revising their program review processes to streamline accreditation, program review and outcomes assessment reporting. Drafts of their work are linked in the resources section.

Aligning these three processes will determine what the outcomes reports look like. The next page provides examples of program assessment reports.

Proceed to Sample Program Assessment Reports


Resources and Links


Kennesaw State University Program Review Realignment

Program Review Models Academic Senate of California Community Colleges

Bakersfield College Revised Program Review Draft Format a commercial product

Riverside Community College contact



Janet Fulks
Assessing Student Learning in Community Colleges (2004), Bakersfield College