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Summer 2017 Campus Update

It was another active year for assessing student learning! Assessment focused on seventeen program three-year summary reports and three program reviews.  Essential Learning assessment took place in Written Communication, Critical Thinking, Oral Communication and Quantitative Literacy. 

Program Assessment

Seventeen programs submitted the new three-year summary report to the Assessment Committee using a template created by Committee members.  Programs from Cycle 1 and Cycle 2 on the review schedule submitted in the same year in order to give sufficient time for collection of data and analysis of results.  In addition to the summary, faculty submitted three years of assessment plans/reports and any program minutes documenting discussion of the reports.  Program faculty also described the actions taken based on analysis to enhance student learning in the curriculum and courses.  The summaries demonstrate that program assessment is taking place and that changes were made based on analysis of the results. 

Essential Learning

Both Written Communication and Critical Thinking outcomes were assessed in fall, 2016.  The assessment report and review are in Appendix A.  A second pilot of Oral Communication with more artifacts and reviewers took place in the fall of 2016.  A full assessment of Oral Communication using a greater number of artifacts from the Essential Speech courses was conducted in spring, 2017. The results for both assessments are in Appendix B.

Faculty from Natural Sciences and Math performed a pilot review of artifacts from Biology 101 lab to determine if the Quantitative Literacy Value Rubric would be a viable tool to use for assessment.  A revised rubric based on VALUE was also used in the review.  The group developed a rubric that was a combination of the other two and will use the revised rubric for the next pilot review in fall, 2017 using artifacts from Biology and Math. The CDHE/CCHE expects assessment to be on two performance indicators from the AAC&U VALUE rubric in Quantitative Literacy for Natural Sciences and five performance indicators for Math. The revised rubric is in Appendix C.

ETS Proficiency Profile

The ETS Proficiency Profile was administered in both the fall and spring semesters.  Analysis of the results is in Appendix D.

Assessment Committee Activities

The Assessment Committee subgroups reviewed seventeen 3-year summary reports and provided feedback to program faculty.    The Committee also evaluated the assessment portion of three program reviews.  The Assessment Committee submitted the annual report to Faculty Senate in May.  The Director of Assessment of Student Learning and/or the Faculty Assessment Coordinator met with each external reviewer to discuss program assessment.  Overall, the external reviewers indicate a more favorable report on program assessment since the revision of the process back in 2012. 

The Assessment Committee also reviewed the results of the ETS Proficiency Profile for fall of 2016.  Given that there has been little change in the average scores from semester to semester, and that program faculty indicate the ETS results have not helped them in terms of program assessment and analysis, the Committee submitted a proposal to the Faculty Senate to discontinue the use of the Profile.  The Committee believes that discipline-specific assessments would and will be more meaningful than the generic ETS Proficiency Profile.  Given that there is current assessment in Essential Learning and beginning assessment in the Maverick Milestone courses, the next step will be to assess the same skills in program capstone courses to determine if there is improvement.  The Faculty Senate approved the proposal and the Assessment Committee will be working on a new process in the next year.

Bette Schans

Director of Assessment and Accreditation Support


Appendix A -Report of Essential Learning Review Written Communication and Critical Thinking. Fall, 2016

Appendix B -Colorado Mesa University Assessment of Oral Communication,2016-2017

Appendix C - Colorado Mesa University Assessment Quantitative Literacy Pilot

Appendix D - Comparison of ETS Scores, Spring 2013 through Spring 2017