Colorado Revised Statutes 23-13-101
Passed in 1985

SECTION 3. Title 23. Colorado Revised Statutes, as amended, is amended BY THE ADDITION OF A NEW ARTICLE to read:

Higher Education Accountability

23-13-101. Higher education accountability program.

(1) It is the intent of the general assembly:

(a) That institutions of higher education be held accountable for demonstrable improvements in student knowledge, capacities, and skills between entrance and graduation;

(b) That these demonstrable improvements be publicly announced and available;

(c) That institutions express clearly to students their expectations of student performance; and

(d) That these improvements be achieved efficiently through the effective use of student and institutional resources of time, effort, and money.

(2) The general assembly declares that the higher education accountability program developed under this article be designed to measure objectively both qualitative and quantitative achievement. The program shall first develop broad goals and specific performance objectives for higher education and then identify the activities of institutions of higher education which can advance students towards these goals and objectives. The program shall then develop a means for evaluating the achievement and performance of students.

(3) The higher education accountability program shall require that:

(a) Institutions of higher education shall design and implement a systematic program to assess the knowledge, capacities, and skills developed by students in academic and cocurricular programs. In changing current systems of assessment, institutions of higher education shall ensure that the instruments and methods used are appropriate for:

(I) The knowledge, capacities, and skills addressed; and

(II) The stated objectives of undergraduate education at each institution.

(b) Statements of expected student outcomes shall be described in terms of knowledge, intellectual capacity, and skills and may include other dimensions of students growth, such as self-confidence, persistence, leadership, empathy, social responsibility, understanding of cultural and intellectual differences, employability, and transferability;

(c) Each institution of higher education shall continuously examine and adjust the content and delivery of its curriculum and cocurriculum offerings to correspond with its expectation of the knowledge, capacities, and skills of its students.

(4) The results of the institutional assessment shall be communicated to the public, its students, and potential students.

(5) The development of institutional goals and objectives, student outcomes, standards of expectations, and actual student performance and assessment and evaluation procedures shall be accomplished by the institutions of higher education with a high degree of public involvement.

(6) The governing boards and institutions shall carry out the direction of this article under the policy direction of the Colorado commission on higher education. The commission shall report annually to the governor and the general assembly on the development and implementation of this article.

(7) Commencing July 1, 1990, the commission is authorized to retain a sum not in excess of two percent of the appropriation for any institution which has not implemented of is failing or refusing to some degree to implement any part of the higher education accountability program or fails to comply with the policies and standards of the commission in regard to this program. Any such funds retained by the commission under this subsection (7) shall be reverted back to the general fund.