Current Assessment Activities
Current assessment activities are focused on academic courses and programs, general education, co-curricular programs/services and the institutional learning objectives they support. Responsibility is dispersed with significant administrative support from the Division of Student Affairs, the Office of Institutional, Research, Planning and Effectiveness as well as The Institute for Teaching and Learning.
Institutional learning objectives (ILOs), as passed through Faculty Council in 2019, are intended to provide a framework for curricular and co-curricular coherence; they are conceptually linked to the university Principles of Community. Moreover, ILOs make explicit the guiding principles that form the basis of the educational experience at Colorado State University (regardless of degree level). An assessment plan for ILOs is currently under development.
General education (GE) learning outcomes were approved by Faculty Council and are stated in the All-University Core Curriculum (AUCC). While GE-SLOs are stated in the AUCC, they are introduced, practiced, and mastered within discipline specific courses. Therefore, the assessment of them is located at both the institutional and course level. Each major must designate two courses that build upon the basic competencies of writing, speaking, and/or problem solving in an integrative and complementary way. Each major must also emphasize the connections between its course content and the concepts and intellectual approaches of the GE curriculum. Ultimate responsibility for the assessment of general education lies with the Vice Provost for Undergraduate Affairs with oversight from the Provost and Executive Vice President. It is administratively supported, primarily, by The Institute for Learning and Teaching, the Office of Institutional Research, Planning and Effectiveness and, CSU Online. Due to significant revision of the AUUC, a new plan for the assessment of GE-SLOs is currently being developed. It will be piloted in FY21 and more fully implemented the year after.
Assessment activities at the course level are the responsibility of the faculty and are initially approved through the course approval process as described in Curricular Policies and Procedures Handbook. The University Curriculum Committee requires that faculty submit a weekly schedule of all major topics and subtopics to be covered in the course; course learning objectives; proposed texts or source materials; and methods of evaluation prior to course approval. It is required that course delivery method have no adverse outcome on course quality or student learning relative to a traditional (face-to-face) form of the same or similar course. Faculty requests for non-traditional course delivery (i.e.: online, hybrid) must address how the student experience is comparable to a course in a traditional format as well as a description for assessment of student learning and how the security of that assessment will be assured. Requests for an individual course syllabus or evidence of assessment practices at the course level can be made to the faculty teaching a specific course or to the department in which the course is taught.
Disciplinary program level learning outcomes and assessment plans are required to be submitted to the University Curriculum Committee as programs are initially reviewed. Once the program is approved, the student learning outcomes are available for review in the General Catalog and on departmental online materials as well as other marketing materials (that vary across departments). Ongoing review is completed in the academic program review process at which time faculty must demonstrate alignment between course and program learning outcomes, provide evidence of their assessment practices, and describe how evidence is used to inform continuous improvement in the program. The University Program Review Committee provides feedback on each of those components. Completed program reviews as well as executive summaries of each are available upon request.
Assessment of student learning in co-curricular programming and services is the responsibility of the Division of Student Affairs. Following the Transparency Framework, those activities and outcomes are available online.