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Midsemester Regroup
Spring Break is just around the corner. How have your students been faring? Is there anything you can learn from these past couple months that will help you finish out the semester even better than you might have imagined?
Spotlight on Assessment: History Department


Spurred by internal conversations about what is best for its students and faculty, and supported by conversations in the discipline (see "Confessions from the Field" and "The Benefits of Self-Assessment"), the History Department has been working hard over the past few years to explore the state of key courses and the curriculum overall. This past year, the Department's Assessment Committee took on defining shared learning outcomes for two of its largest introductory courses, 151 and 152, in order to ensure the integrity of the course across sections.

This iterative process, aided by the help of Writing Fellows Young-hwan Byun and Ben Hellwege, involved gathering current syllabi, looking for overlaps in outcomes, and creating new shared outcomes through several loops of discussion and revision with both full-time and part-time faculty. By building on outcomes already in place, and retaining the ability of faculty to teach to these outcomes in whatever way suited their strengths and interests, the Committee ensured that students would understand what they would be able to know and do upon completing those courses, but get there by engaging with the unique expertise brought by each faculty member. Next on the docket is using these new learning outcomes to assess!

First Annual Assessment Day: April 21, 2015

On Tuesday, April 21st, the Provost's Office will host a half-day seminar on assessment featuring the 2014-2015 Assessment Fellows. Come learn from your colleagues about the latest ways faculty are using the process of assessment to innovatively and creatively solve classroom and programmatic challenges.

Food will be provided. Check the website and join the listserve to stay in the loop!

New Annual Assessment Progress Report

This year we decided to revamp the assessment portion of the annual report for academic departments and programs in order to 1) clarify expectations about assessment practices, 2) reduce the time needed to complete the report, and 3) enable quicker and richer feedback. At the end of the semester you will be filling out a new, two-part 2014-2015 Assessment Progress Report, including a short self-assessment rubric and an assessment cycle grid, as part of your annual report submission. Best part? You can fill it out with a few clicks online!

The Office of Assessment will also be holding two Assessment Breakfast workshops on filling out the new report, on April 15 and April 29. Take the opportunity to learn more from assessment staff and hear how your colleagues are approaching it in other departments and programs.

The Office of Assessment works with faculty and staff across the College to help them explore student learning and success in their courses, departments, programs, and offices.

Visit us online, by phone at x6299, by email, or drop by 1008 East Bldg.

Assessment Cycle

Newsletter No. 6, March 2015