Solutions to Problems
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Defining and Teaching Learning Outcomes
At what levels (course, program, institution, other) have learning
outcomes been identified and defined at your college?
outcomes are primarily identified and defined at the course and program
level. General education
learning outcomes have been defined for the institution, but no
institution-wide assessment of these learning outcomes is occurring at
In what ways are stakeholders at your college involved in
identifying and teaching learning outcomes, and which stakeholders are
chairs, full time faculty that are awarded release time to serve in this
capacity, coordinate the identification and teaching of learning
outcomes within each department. Assessment
plans for all academic departments have been created by each
department's faculty. All
faculty are stakeholders in this process.
In what ways do learning facilitators throughout the college
design learning activities that provide students with opportunities to
achieve these outcomes, and what training do they receive?
design their own learning activities to provide students the opportunity
to achieve learning outcomes. Faculty
members in each department determine appropriate activities to use for
course and/or program assessment. Each
faculty member determines appropriate activities for classroom
part of their first year orientation program, new full time faculty are
introduced to the college's Assessment Plan and their department's plan,
and receive a copy of Cross and Angelo's Classroom Assessment
programs on conducting/refining assessment are provided for all faculty
by the College's Center for Faculty and Program Excellence.
What strategies (e.g., outcomes-based curriculum design models,
alignment of learning outcomes with institutional mission and values,
outcomes-based professional development activities) have been used to
embed outcomes-based learning and teaching in the culture of your
initiatives have been implemented to support and further a culture of
teaching and learning:
of Resource Development/Institutional Effectiveness - a professional
staff member was assigned responsibility for institutional
effectiveness - hired 2/99
Professional Development Day - focused on Assessment - 2/00
Excellence and Learning Outcomes included in 2000-2002 Institutional
Priorities and strategic planning process
Effectiveness (IE)/Assessment of Student Academic Achievement (ASAA)
Plan Updated - 12/00
Dean, Teaching and Learning - this staff member is responsible for
establishing a Center for Teaching and Learning: a staff development
center/program focused on advancing teaching and learning - hired
measurement of student learning occurs with comprehensive
- Freshman Seminar Course
addition, specific departments within the college have developed
successful strategies to embed outcomes-based learning and teaching.
communications department is using coursebooks to comprehensively
document all assessment (classroom and course) being conducted. These pieces include a complete overview of course content,
assessment conducted, results, and use of results for continuous
Information Management Systems department uses a three-prong
approach to assessment: 1)
to place students in appropriate courses, 2) to assess learning in
the course, and 3) to collect student feedback on a continuous basis
to assess student learning issues.
Assessing and Documenting Learning Outcomes
What plans or processes are under way at your college to build or
adopt assessment methods capable of determining, with consistency across
the institution, the level at which each student achieves each relevant
course, program, and institutional learning outcome?
IE/ASAA plan updated in fall 2000 is fully operational in spring 2001.
This initiative is designed to report on assessment activities
and measurement of learning outcomes collegewide.
The first collegewide report, a compilation of departmental
reports, will be completed in August 2001.
All departments will use the same report form to document their
activities during the 00-01 academic years, including the following
results document student learning, and how results have been/will be
used for continuous improvement
What plans or processes as are under way at your college to expand
methods of documenting student learning beyond the traditional
transcript (e.g., annotated transcripts, electronic portfolios)?
Valley has initiated portfolios, web-enhanced assessment measures, and
other significant measures to document student learning at the course
level, but hasn't yet developed any, such as a portfolio, to serve in
lieu of a transcript.
In what ways is your college addressing faculty, staff, and
student resistance to and fear of assessment and documentation of
Valley has incorporated assessment into the new faculty orientation
program. This introduces
all new full time faculty to the college's and their department's
assessment initiatives early on in their teaching experience.
college's fall 2000 update to the IE/ASAA plan was spearheaded by a task
group made up of individuals from all campus divisions. This group worked for 18 months to finalize the existing
plan, and during this time periodic updates on their progress were
provided to the college community.
What strategies have been effectively used to promote development
of a culture of evidence at your college?
used to promote a culture of evidence include recognizing faculty
members that have excelled in assessing student learning outcomes and
promoting their successes. For
have made presentations describing their assessment initiatives at
local, regional and national conferences.
Communications faculty served as panel presenters at the Faculty
Professional Development Day held on campus in February 2000. These faculty were recognized for their accomplishments in
assessing student learning, and served as role models for other