Office of Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness
Effective Assessment: Focus on Cohort Learning
"Assessment has more to do with cohort learning than individual student learning. I'll use an academic example. When I grade students taking a course, I assign grades to specific students based on their individual work. That is not assessment, that's grading. My assessment is: After I've graded all of their papers, I will take the rubric and tally-mark: for each student learning objective, how many students who completed this assignment were advanced? How many were competent? How many were at a 'needs improvement' level? You are assessing the learning of a student cohort." --John Hoffman, California State University, Fullerton
Assessment Bibliographies, Booklists
- An Assessment Bibliography
- Association of College & Research Libraries
- Student Services Assessment Institute (Univ of N. Colorado)
- CLA Common Scoring Rubrics
Curriculum Mapping in Program Assessment and Evaluation
Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U)
The Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) provides a current and comprehensive resource page on assessment. Resources may be
searched by category of special interests in addition to assessment publications,
guides and campus practices.
The AAC&U VALUE rubrics contain the most common and broadly shared criteria or core characteristics considered critical for judging the quality of student work in 15 outcome areas including problem solving, critical thinking, quantitative literacy, teamwork, etc. Users may complete a one-time short survey to access the VALUE rubrics, which can be downloaded as PDFs.
Developing Student Learning Outcomes
The University of Texas at Austin Teaching and Learning Center provides guidelines and tips on creating effective student learning outcomes. Examples are provided as well as a checklist and essential outcome components. The information is helpful to those developing new learning outcomes or to those interested in strengthening their supporting evidence that current outcomes are task specific, measurable, student-oriented and align with the program mission statement.
Authentic Assessment Toolbox
John Mueller explores the process and rational for an alternative (authentic) model of assessment in his article Authentic Assessment Toolbox for Higher Ed Faculty. Mueller provides examples of students performing "real-world tasks'' that demonstrate meaningful application of essential knowledge and skills. Mueller also describes how to construct such authentic assessments to improve student learning within any academic program. The Authentic Assessment Toolbox website provides excellent examples of using student portfolios for assessment.
Developing Assessment Methods at Classroom, Unit and University-Wide Levels
Trudy Banta presents a comprehensive review on the definitions of outcomes assessment, characteristics of effective assessment and using assessment findings. The paper also provides practical guidelines for involving stakeholders in assessment. The rationale to include both direct and indirect measures in good assessment practices is discussed along with examples of each measurement type. Additionally, learning outcome action verbs that reflect higher order thinking skills using Bloom's Taxonomy provide the reader with information that may be adapted to any academic program or co-curricular program.
"Creating a Culture of Evidence"
ETS Releases Third White Paper on Creating a Culture of Evidence. In 2006, the nation turned its attention to accountability in higher education. As a leader in educational research and measurement, ETS added to the dialogue by examining the general topic of student learning outcomes. This examination resulted in a series of 3 Culture of Evidence reports in which ETS researchers identified the key issues of accountability and surveyed current practices in assessing student learning.