PBA Home >
Institutional Research & Analysis >
Outcomes Assessment >Blue Ribbon Faculty Committee On Undergraduate Outcomes POLICY STATEMENT
Blue Ribbon Faculty Committee on Undergraduate
Colorado Revised Statutes 23-13-101, which establishes a higher education
accountability program, states that institutions shall be accountable
for "demonstrable improvements in student knowledge, capacities, and skills
between entrance and graduation." It requires the University to institute
by 1990 a system to assess "student knowledge, capacities, and skills,"
and to report results to the Colorado Commission on Higher Education (CCHE).
Assessment of aggregate student outcomes must involve, at least in part,
measures of gains or improvements.
The UCB Strategic Plan (March 1987) furthermore states that campus policies
- "Encourage each department to examine critically the objectives of its
curriculum and its contribution to general education requirements;"
- "Enhance the review of curricula in the program review process;"
- "Improve student skills in writing, speaking, qualititive analysis, and
- "Develop a process for the assessment of educational outcomes that will
assist in the enhancement of curriculum and the improvement of teaching skills;"
- "Enhance the well-rounded self-development of students, both in and out
of the classroom."
The committee agrees that outcomes assessment will
- help University units evaluate their programs to identify strengths and
determine areas for improvement,
- help improve our communication with the University's public constituencies
(e.g., students, parents, alumni, state citizens), and
- assist in re-accreditation reviews.
In order to initiate a comprehensive and continuing assessment process
that will benefit the entire campus and that will conform to the requirements
of . the Colorado Higher Education Act CRS 23-13-101 and to the principles
of the UCB Strategic Plan, the committee makes the following recommendations:
- Academic and support units that deal with undergraduates will participate
in the undergraduate assessment process. This includes
Three main areas will be assessed:
- academic departments, instructional programs not administered by
departments, and schools/colleges, and
- non-academic or support units such as the library system and Student
Support Services units.
- general education,
- ducation in the major discipline or specialty, and
- activities that occur outside the classroom that help develop other
skills and qualities the unit wishes graduates to have.
Academic units will assess the aggregate achievements, outcomes,
and gains of their undergraduates as a group, building on existing
procedures and adding new ones as needed.
Support units will use a similar process to measure the success effectiveness
of their programs for undergraduates.
Units at campus and school/college levels will assess the overall
combined effectiveness of instructional and non-instructional units
of the university, using surveys of student perceptions of the UCB
undergraduate experience and broad measurements of general education
skills, knowledge, and capacities.
All units will
- explicitly state goals for undergraduates in terms of skills,
knowledge, and/or capacities;
- examine current programs in light of those goals;
- choose (and/or develop) and implement ways to measure the achievement
of those goals;
- use the results of assessment to strengthen programs; and
- use the results of assessment in regularly-scheduled program and
Specific suggestions and notes on available resources are contained
in the document "Recommendations for Implementation".
The process will be a continuing one and will normally be integrated
with the program review process.
Every graduating senior will participate in at least one assessment
in addition to those involved in courses required for graduation and
for the major.
Credit and GPA requirements will continue to serve as minimum standards
of individual performance that every graduate must meet.
Deans will coordinate and supervise the assessment processes of their
academic units; appropriate vice-chancellors will coordinate and supervise
the assessment processes of support units. A campus-wide coordinating
group will oversee the process as a whole.
Unit reports of assessment results, recommendations, and their implementation
will be collected and summarized by deans and vice chancellors in a
report to the Chancellor, who will in turn report to University central
administration. Campus and central administrations will be responsible
for communicating the findings to the public, the University Regents,
the CCHE, and the legislature.
The UCB administration will provide the resources and staff needed
to accomplish these goals.