Developing meaningful and effective program-level assessment is a complex, iterative process. Faculty conduct significant work toward continuous improvement of curriculum, instruction, and assessment that does not necessarily show up in the specific task of measuring student achievement. These assessment activities offer ways for faculty to think about student learning in the curriculum and how to support it most effectively in their own classes and department. While difficult to capture, these impacts also cumulate and contribute over time to promoting student learning in an effective curriculum.
ATL Mini-grant Project: In the academic year 2015-16, the College of Nursing received assessment mini-grant funding in support of their project “Building Faculty Assessment Capacity in the College of Nursing.” This project involved the development of video based faculty development modules, and the establishment of an in house library to store continuing education materials, related to assignment design, curriculum development, and classroom assessment techniques. As a result of this project, professional development materials related to student learning outcomes assessment have been made readily available to faculty, and many faculty have already taken advantage of them.
According to Lori Bailey, Clinical Associate Professor and project leader, “This project was designed specifically to build capacity for evidence-based assessment of student learning outcomes across the curriculum. The availability of quality materials directly related to learning assessment and program evaluation makes evidence-based assessment easier to achieve.”
For additional information about assessment mini-grants, including examples of other previously funded projects, see ATL’s Assessment Mini-Grant webpage.