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Office of Assessment of Teaching and Learning Indirect Measures

Types of Indirect Measures Used at WSU

WSU encourages programs to choose measures that provide useful information to the program’s faculty and fit with disciplinary expectations. The following are examples of some types of indirect measures used at WSU.

Student Perspectives and Experience:

Indirect MeasureDescription
Focus GroupStudents discuss their experiences, motivation, and perspective about aspects of their educational experience, skills, or knowledge.
InterviewOne-on-one dialog with a student to determine his/her perception regarding learning outcome achievement, related academic experiences, and future plans.
Survey: Student or AlumniStudents/alumni report their beliefs about their knowledge, skills and/or abilities, and perspective on aspects of their educational experience, motivations and rationales. May be locally developed or a standardized instrument (e.g. National Survey of Student Engagement).
Course Evaluations/ Student Ratings of ClassesResponses about learning outcomes, academic experiences, perceptions and motivation can provide useful data about curricular effectiveness.
Student Review of Portfolio or ProjectStudent self-reflection of their performance or evaluation of peer performance on a work product.


Professional Perspectives and Input:

Indirect MeasureDescription
Advisory BoardConsultations with advisory board providing professional input on program.
Faculty Review of Curriculum, SLOs, Syllabi, or Assignment PromptsFaculty identify and review where the program SLOs are taught and developed in the curriculum, with opportunities for students to practice and deepen their skills before mastery is expected.
Feedback from External AccreditorsFeedback from external accreditors providing professional input on program.
Internship Supervisor, Preceptor, or Employer Feedback on Student Activities, Motivation, or BehaviorTypically a written evaluation of student performance in a work setting.
Employer SurveyPotential employers indicate the job skills they perceive are important for college graduates, other provide other professional input on program.


Indicators of Progress, Success, Retention, etc:

Indirect MeasureDescription
Course GradesCourse grades can give information about cohort progress through the curriculum, which can complement direct measures.
Internal DataCentrally collected data (e.g. registration or course enrollment data, class size data, graduation rates, retention rates, grade point averages) can, for example, give information about cohort progress through the curriculum, which can complement direct measures.
Participation RatesStudent participation in research, internship, service learning, study abroad, etc.