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Current Assessment Activities

Faculty members and students engaged in discussion

We aspire to become a national model for student learning and engagement within higher education. We recognize our responsibility to advance the learning of students by demonstrating a commitment to meaningful and intentional approaches to our assessment activities. Our current assessment activities include a wide range of projects and activities that address student learning, continuous improvement, and dedication to our institutional mission and vision. 

General Education (Liberal Studies)

Our General Education (Liberal Studies) engages in an on-going assessment of student learning within its curriculum. Assessment of learning within the General Education (Liberal Studies) Curriculum is based on eight student learning outcomes (SLOs) that include: Inquiry, Information Literacy, Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, Means of Expression, Awareness of Self, Awareness of Cultural Diversity, and Awareness of Impact.

Quality Enhancement Program 

Our institution's Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP), DegreePlus, is an experiential learning program that integrates curricular and co-curricular learning activities. DegreePlus aims to educate students on the value of their experiences through the use of an experiential transcript that logs their extracurricular activities and organizes them according to student learning outcomes associated with professional skills, including, leadership, cultural responsiveness, teamwork, and professionalism.

Surveys

We utilize the following surveys to assess current activities at the institution-level:

  • The National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) is administered to first-year and senior students across the nation to learn more about their academic and social engagement patterns.
  • The CLA+ for Higher Education measures college students’  performance in analysis and problem solving, scientific and quantitative reasoning, critical reading and evaluation, and critiquing an argument, in addition to writing mechanics and effectiveness.
  • The Faculty Survey of Student Engagement (FSSE) complements findings of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), which is administered to undergraduate students. 

Program-Level

We expect our academic programs to have a minimum of three student learning outcomes (SLOs) that relate to the knowledge, skills, and/or behaviors faculty and staff deem important for students to attain during their educational

experience. Programs assess their operational and/or program outcomes and report them in an annual Continuous Improvement Report (CIR). Examples of program outcomes may relate to retention, recruitment, enrollment, graduation rates, pass/fail licensure exam results, job placement, student/alumni satisfaction, and more. 

Continuous improvement reporting (CIR) and assessment for academic programs follow the expectations and principles of our institutional accreditor, Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA)

Assessment of learning at WCU is used to collect, analyze, and use data to drive improvements in educational experiences and enhance student learning. At the program-level, assessment strategies measure student skills, knowledge, and accomplishments. We believe that assessment of learning is an on-going process designed and implemented by faculty and staff while keeping in ordiance with the university's mission statement, and the mission of our schools and departments in which our programs are located. 

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