College of Arts and Sciences Rollinda Thomas, Ph.D. Assessment Coordinator

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Assessment Made EasyCollege of Arts and SciencesRollinda Thomas, Ph.D.Assessment CoordinatorWhy Assessment?We can seek to improve anything that we care about: (sports…
Assessment Made EasyCollege of Arts and SciencesRollinda Thomas, Ph.D.Assessment CoordinatorWhy Assessment?
  • We can seek to improve anything that we care about: (sports performance, scientific experiments, business or financial performance, production of goods, instructional practice, etc.)
  • We identify a baseline, choose targets or goals, then document actual performance! We can then learn what we need to improve.
  • Know Your SLOs
  • Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) are knowledge skills and dispositions that students should be able to demonstrate
  • Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs) are a few major goals that we expect our graduates to reach
  • Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs) are goals that are specific to a particular course
  • Both PLOs and CLOs are types of Student Learning Outcomes. Sometimes they may be called PSLOs and CSLOs.
  • Program Evaluation Made Easy
  • SACS will ask for continuous evaluation of Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs).
  • PLOs are the main things that graduates of your program are expected to demonstrate.
  • The PLOs for your program are listed on the FSU Course Catalog.
  • They should be few and focused.
  • Program Evaluation Made Easy
  • We can select assignments within certain courses as evidence of program learning outcomes.
  • Required 300 – 400 level courses are a great resource. They should teach at least one of the degree program learning outcomes (PLOs) at a level of mastery. They are also more likely to reach your majors.
  • Program Evaluation Made Easy
  • When we document program improvement on a form, we will:
  • Identify program learning outcomes (PLOs)
  • Select a required course to provide evidence for each PLO (300-400 level is useful). Some courses may meet more than one PLO.
  • Determine how many students were successful in meeting the program learning outcomes
  • Decide which changes to make for improvement
  • You can add course learning outcomes to the list, if you choose
  • Let’s Make Documentation Easy!
  • We will use the Matrix of SLOs:
  • Why Assessment?
  • This form, filled out once near the end of the semester, tells us:
  • What skills our students need to improve
  • What skills we should focus on in class
  • Whether our current approach is working (If not, adjust! Kaizen!)
  • It tells administrators (who gather all forms):
  • What general number or percentage of students in our program are proficient in certain skills
  • Provides documentation that candidates for graduation that have demonstrated proficiency
  • Documents continuous improvement efforts
  • Shortcut!
  • These forms do not have to completed for every class taught – just a few required courses to represent each PLO.
  • All an instructor must do is fill out three columns (evidence, number of students proficient, and changes made). If he/she chooses to add more course learning outcomes to the PLOs, that’s fine.
  • Why Assessment?
  • SACS and other accrediting bodies want to see that we use data to make evidence-based decisions.
  • We can use one form to document that we use data (student performance on specific tasks) to inform our curriculum and instructional decisions.
  • By using the form each semester, we will build a continuous stream of evidence that can be used whenever we are reaffirmed or reviewed for new accreditations.
  • Matrix of PLOs
  • Asst. Chairs may use a summary document (Matrix of PLOs) to give evidence of student learning in an entire program, not just individual classes.
  • Gather the forms about PLOs from Area Coordinator or participating faculty.
  • Use them to summarize student performance in each Program Learning Outcome.
  • Matrix of PLOs
  • Example: Let’s say that participating faculty in the Biological Sciences identified the number and percentage of students who were successful on PLO 1 in their classes (multiple sections).
  • The Assistant Chair would add up the number and calculate the percentage of students from participating classes who were successful in PLO 1.
  • If we use higher level required courses to provide evidence, we can learn about student performance in the program.
  • How Will This Be Used? Workflow
  • Instructors provide forms to the Asst. Chair, Course Coordinator, or Assessment Coordinator.
  • The Asst. Chair summarizes the forms in a Matrix of PLOs.
  • The Chair can attach this to the OPAR as evidence of student performance in program goals.
  • Operational Plans
  • The Operational Plan and Assessment Report (OPAR) shares the extent to which our Departments or Units are achieving their goals.
  • Try to ensure that:
  • Goals are measurable
  • Goals are aligned with mission
  • Measures (Advisement surveys, CLA, NSSE, retention and graduation rates, etc.) are consistently used from one semester to the next. This makes it possible to compare outcomes.
  • Goals are numbered the same each semester
  • OPARs on TaskStream
  • TaskStream is a data management system for assessment purposes.
  • We can use it to edit the OPARs and upload documents, rubrics, video, or other files as evidence.
  • Our Graduate Assistant, Mr. Hamzah Kharabsheh, can help us gain proficiency in the use of TaskStream.
  • Thank You and Good Luck!
  • Feel free to contact me for help or any resources I can provide:
  • Workshops
  • Individual support
  • Forms
  • TaskStream
  • Rollinda Thomas at or (910) 303-2763!
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