UNIVERSITY ASSESSMENT PANEL
Notes from Meeting of
16 April 2010
The eighth meeting of the University Assessment Panel (UAP) was held on Friday, 16 April 2010, at 10:00 a.m. in Altgeld 203.
This is the last UAP meeting of the 2009–2010 academic year. All panel members were thanked for their attendance and service.
Assessment Plan and Status Report from University Honors Program
Daniel Kempton and Jes Cisneros were present to discuss the assessment plan for the University Honors Program. Although a detailed plan was developed in 2001, there have been two changes in leadership since then, so the current plan is one that has been developed over the course of this academic year. Kempton explained that students participate in honors work by being part of an honors section or by writing a contract for extra activity while enrolled in a regular section. As seniors, all honors students write a capstone report on their culminating project. Assessment tools need to measure all of these activities. Beyond student surveys of their experiences, several suggestions were made for incorporating direct assessment methods that include faculty evaluation of students’ attainment of learning goals; some of these would have the added benefit of clearly articulating to faculty the goals that the honors program has set for participating students. Suggestions were also made for coordinating and seeking funding for an outside review of the assessment plan and its implementation in the next year or two.
The Department of Management submitted additional information that addressed questions that the UAP had raised about a funding request last November. The panel thought the questions had been addressed, and the current funding request of up to $1,500.00 was approved.
Judicial Affairs submitted a funding request to cover an external review on April 1–2, which followed an internal review that was completed over the winter. The request covered both the consultation fee of $5,000.00 and associated travel costs of $619.30. The panel approved funding for the non-consultative costs only, up to $619.30.
Voluntary System of Accountability (VSA)
Will Boelcke gave an
overview of the VSA, and its online report, which is called the College
Portrait. This national initiative is intended for institutions in the Association
of Public and
University Writing Project Presentation
Ellen Franklin gave a history
of the University Writing Project and the team of readers that evaluates the
compositions that are submitted each year. The team has worked together for
many years, and they have developed techniques for calibrating their
evaluations to keep their inter-rater reliability very high. For the past three
years, the writing project has used course-embedded writing assignments so that
class time is not diverted to accommodate this activity. The rubric was revised
to a three-point system from a six-point system, although the evaluation
criteria remained essentially the same. To help faculty understand the process
better, it was suggested that for the 2010 review of essays Franklin provide
the Office of Assessment Services with good and not-so-good writing examples
that can be shared with faculty
The meeting was adjourned at 12:00 p.m. The panel will reconvene next autumn.