Assessment

Overview

Institutional Effectiveness (IE) is responsible for ensuring USF compliance with the Florida Board of Governors (BOG) and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) assessment requirements. We are also responsible for the submission of official reports on these activities.

 Institutional Effectiveness ensures compliance for the following types of assessment at USF:

  1. Undergraduate and graduate academic programs
  2. Academic and student support services units
  3. Administrative support units

In response to the recent release of the revised Principles of Accreditation by SACSCOC, IE and the Academy for Teaching and Learning Excellence (ATLE) have formed a new partnership for the improvement of student learning outcomes (SLOs) assessment at USF. Beginning with the 2018 academic program assessment cycle, IE will target its review of program plans and reports on compliance with SACSCOC and BOG requirements. At the same time, ATLE will provide assistance to departments in improving the quality of their academic assessment activities. For an overview of these changes, please reference this presentation.

What is Assessment?

The systematic and methodologically sound examination/evaluation of educational services (i.e. student learning outcomes, missional goals/objectives) for the purpose of continuous program improvement.

Why Assess?

While the primary purpose of assessment is to improve student learning and the functioning of administrative offices, it is also required by both the BOG and our accrediting body, SACSCOC.

Section 8 of the Principles of Accreditation of SACSCOC addresses Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) assessment.

Requirement 8.2.a:
The institution identifies student learning outcomes for each of its academic programs, assesses the extent to which it achieves these outcomes, and provides evidence of improvement based on analysis of the results. (Institutional Effectiveness)

BOG regulation 8.016 requires each SUS institution to develop a process that ensures that program faculty:

  1. Develop and publish an Academic Learning Compact (ALC) for each baccalaureate program. At a minimum, the ALC must contain a list of core student learning outcomes (SLOs) in the areas of content/discipline knowledge and skills, communication skills, and critical thinking skills - and examples of assessments students might encounter;
  2. Develop methods for assessing student achievement of the expected core SLOs within the context of the program;
  3. Use program evaluation systems (which may include sampling) to evaluate the program and related assessment practices to analyze their efficacy in determining whether program graduates have achieved the expected core SLOs; and
  4. Use the evaluation results to improve student learning and program effectiveness.

Academic Learning Compacts (ALC) for all undergraduate programs are available for current and prospective students.