Who Does What, When
Since undergraduate outcomes assessment began at CU-Boulder, the number of units taking the process seriously has grown year by year. Responsibility for outcomes assessment in these units varies but usually lies with those directly involved in undergraduate curriculum planning, such as
Assessment within academic units
Current reports from about 80% of the units indicate a serious effort to monitor the assessment results and take account of them in curriculum discussions.
Units gather their assessment data during the academic year. Since 1997-98 unit summaries have been updated every other year, with some units reporting in even-numbered years and others in odd-numbered years. The summaries, available as part of this Web site, describe the assessment methods used, their results, and the unit's interpretation of them, with special emphasis on the results of curricular or program changes that had been based on previous years' outcomes. They also include the unit's future plans, with any curricular or program changes proposed on the basis of the assessment results, and any changes the unit plans in its outcomes assessment methods.
CU-Boulder units also report on outcomes assessment in the program review panel (PRP) self studies that they perform every seven years. As part of its self study, a unit describes its outcomes assessment methods, summarizes results since its last self study, and discusses how outcomes assessment results have been used in program planning. Internal and external PRP review committees base their recommendations for the unit's future plans partly on the material in the self study, including the description of outcomes assessment process.
PBA offers assistance to units engaged in outcomes assessment, PRP self studies, and other internal analyses, including analyses of the university's student-records database, assistance with surveys, and consulting on research design and interpretation. Many units take advantage of these services.
Assessment across academic units
Since 1990, PBA has regularly asked seniors and alumni about satisfaction with their educational experiences at CU-Boulder, and about their after-graduation plans and experiences. PBA also maintains longitudinal tracking systems for undergraduate students, and calculates persistence and graduation rates for a variety of purposes including outcomes assessment. Information about these surveys and analyses can be found at http://www.colorado.edu/pba
The annual report
Through 1994-95, the PBA senior researcher summarized the unit reports for CU-Boulder's accountability report to CCHE. The accountability report also included information from PBA's surveys and graduation/persistence analyses. Reports from all three University of Colorado general campuses (Boulder, Denver, and Colorado Springs) were delivered to the CU regents and then to CCHE. CCHE staff summarized the accountability reports from all Colorado public institutions of higher education and delivered the summary to the legislature. Since 1995-96, this Web site has been the primary publication of CU-Boulder undergraduate outcomes assessment information.
Last revision 06/02/04
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