Assessment of Student Learning
Assessment is the practice of identifying student learning outcomes, measuring/observing student progress toward learning outcomes, and using that information to improve student learning. Student learning assessment occurs at the course, program, and institutional levels.
For effective program assessment, programs and faculty systematically collect information about student learning, regularly discuss results, and use that information to guide decisions that affect teaching and learning in the curriculum and the student experience in the program. Assessment allows programs to examine key areas including curriculum design, instructional effectiveness, and student experience. For guidelines on developing your program assessment, see Assessment Resources.
Assessment at WSU
Departments and degree programs are responsible for setting their own assessment measures and processes within frameworks of good practice.
- Faculty drive the assessment of student learning. They have a central role in identifying questions, conducting assessment, and interpreting results.
- Departments should review and discuss assessment results, direct and indirect measures of student performance, and institutional data, to evaluate student learning (including all campuses and online).
- Chairs and directors are responsible for implementing and using assessment of student learning in their programs and departments.
- Undergraduate programs are required to have student learning outcomes, an assessment plan, a curriculum map, direct and indirect measures, and use of assessment. ATL supports programs wanting to develop or revise these elements, see Key Assessment Elements at WSU.
- Other tools designed to help WSU programs include the Wheel of Assessment Roles and Flowchart of Reporting.
- Degree programs, including professionally accredited programs, report annually on assessment. See annual WSU-wide program assessment summaries.
For good practices in program assessment see our list of Best Practices.