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Assessment

Assessment at Wilkes University is comprised of two somewhat overlapping components:

(1) Institutional Assessment, which is focused on informing a quality experience in all areas that affect the students at Wilkes; and

(2) Assessment of Student Learning , which is primary among those areas, and most central to Wilkes’ mission.

Institutional Assessment

“The institution has developed and implemented an assessment process that evaluates its overall effectiveness in achieving its mission and goals and its compliance with accreditation standards.” (Source: ‘Characteristics of Excellence in Higher Education: Requirements of Affiliation and Standards for Accreditation’, Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), Standard 7, 2011).

Assessment processes help to ensure the following:

  • Institutional and program-level goals are clear to the public, students, faculty, and staff.
  • Institutional programs and resources are organized and coordinated to achieve institutional and program-level goals.
  • The institution is indeed achieving its mission and goals.
  • The institution is using assessment results to improve student learning and otherwise advance the institution.

Assessment of Student Learning

“Assessment of student learning demonstrates that, at graduation, or other appropriate points, the institution’s students have knowledge, skills, and competencies consistent with institutional and appropriate higher education goals.” (Source: ‘Characteristics of Excellence in Higher Education: Requirements of Affiliation and Standards for Accreditation’, Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE), Standard 14, 2011).

Assessment is the ongoing process of:
  • Establishing clear, measurable expected outcomes of student learning
  • Ensuring that students have sufficient opportunities to achieve those outcomes
  • Systematically gathering, analyzing, and interpreting evidence to determine how well student learning matches our expectations
  • Using the resulting information to understand and improve student learning

Source: ‘Assessing Student Learning: A Common Sense Guide, 2nd ed.’ (Suskie, 2009)

In July of 2013, all regional accrediting agencies in the United States, along with several national higher education associations came together to endorse a statement on “Principles for Effective Assessment of Student Achievement”. That statement can be viewed HERE

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