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CCHE Quality Indicator System (QIS)
CU-Boulder Fall 1998 Submission

State indicator 8: Assessment and accountability: Existence and operation of a formal, comprehensive, and effective institutional assessment and accountability program.

Evaluation: CU-Boulder pays serious attention to evidence about student completion rates, learning, satisfaction, and success after graduation. We collect information on these measures annually or biannually through several formal assessment programs, and study the resulting time series for patterns of slippage and improvement. Academic programs, student affairs units, and the campus as a whole have as a consequence made changes in curriculum, teaching, advising, processing students' business transactions, admissions communications, and many other areas. We hope to increase emphasis on use of assessment results in the coming years.

8A-8F are CCHE-specified areas for assessment. CU-Boulder has extensive assessment activity in all these areas. Details on CU-Boulder assessment activities are in a single document; links noted below are to relevant points within the document, which itself links to many CU-Boulder web sites relevant to assessment.
St8A Student learning  
-- Details
  • CU-Boulder is known as a national leader in undergraduate outcomes assessment, in part due to our comprehensive assessment web site with information on history, methods, results, and use of results to make changes in curricula and teaching, and with summaries of activities for individual units, including knowledge and skills goals for majors.
  • Assessment of learning at the graduate level occurs in doctoral and masters comprehensive examinations, thesis and dissertation committees, and public oral examinations
St8B Student persistence and completion of educational objectives  
-- Details
CU-Boulder's enrollment management team monitors persistence and graduation rates. We compare these rates over time and with other public research institutions with similar students; see our web site on retention and graduation rates. We also monitor persistence of various subpopulations in order to improve programs. Campus-wide persistence rates have increased since 1996 but nevertheless remain the focus of serious campus attention.
Placement rates
Transfer rates
After-graduation performance
-- Details
  • Campus-wide placement rates (including success both in further formal education and in employment) are monitored primarily through ongoing biennial surveys of seniors and of bachelors recipients four years out, which also tap issues such as how alumni judge their preparation in various skill areas.
  • After-graduation performance is also assessed through feedbackfrom employers via surveys and advisory boards.
  • CU-Boulder queries non-returning students about their reasons for leaving.
St8F Student Satisfaction
-- Details
CU-Boulder employs a regular cycle of student satisfaction surveys at the campus, department, and course level, including
8G-I are additional types of assessment which span measurement areas
St8G College, school, and department committees
-- Details
Committees meet regularly to monitor course offerings and degree requirements and their fit to goals for students. The committees then recommend adjustments in curriculum, requirements, and/or teaching to ensure that degree recipients meet knowledge and skill goals set by the unit. They also review the goals themselves periodically for currency.
St8H Academic program review
-- Details
All academic programs on campus are reviewed every seven years in a process involving a self study, campus review, and external review. Program review identifies program strengths and weaknesses and results in recommendations for program development and modification.
St8I Accreditation reviews
-- Details
Every ten years the campus undergoes reaccreditation by the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges (NCA). The process emphasizes how the campus assesses whether it is meeting its own goals. In addition, many individual programs (e.g., engineering, athletics) are accredited by national bodies governing programs in their areas.

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Last revision 12/19/03

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