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Student Learning Assessment Program Honored for Sustained Excellence

Monday, August 22, 2016

Excellence _badge _sustained

Rose-Hulman was among four higher education institutions recognized by the national Excellence in Assessment (EIA) program for sustained excellence in student learning outcomes assessment.

This new program spotlights colleges and universities that have successfully integrated assessment practices across campus, are providing evidence of student learning outcomes, and are using assessment results to guide institutional decision-making and improve student performance.

Overall, 10 colleges nationwide were designated by EIA-four for sustained excellence and six for general program excellence.

The sustained excellence designation recognized Rose-Hulman for integrated campus-level assessment over a period at least five years.

"Rose-Hulman's recognition with the EIA award reflects our campus culture of assessment. Every faculty and staff member sees continuous improvement as an important part of their job, and our students benefit from this commitment in an ever improving learning environment," says Julia Williams, executive director of Rose-Hulman's Office of Institutional Research, Planning and Assessment (IRPA). "By receiving the award in its first year, our leadership in the field of assessment is being acknowledged by our peers."

Rose-Hulman has had a comprehensive campus-level assessment plan in operation since 1998. The longevity of the plan has allowed Rose-Hulman to focus on continuous improvement and to meet the demands of program and institutional accrediting bodies. The cornerstone of the plan was the creation of the RosEvaluation System to collect, evaluate, and report achievement of campus-level student learning outcomes to students, faculty, employers, graduate schools, and various programs and institutional accrediting groups.

The institute has a set of campus-level student learning outcomes statements that describe the knowledge, skills, and attitudes expected for each graduate. The outcomes were developed using a process that began with an extensive review of the literature and best practices in higher education.

IRPA has supported faculty and staff assessment efforts, including hosting workshops and conferences. The institute also engages in many other campus-level assessment activities, such as participating in the National Survey of Student Engagement since 2000.

"The inaugural class of EIA designees have a demonstrated commitment to measuring the impact of their student success efforts and are now working to improve that impact through evidence-based methods," said Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) President Peter McPherson in a press release announcing the honor. "Their work is rightly recognized with a designation that not only profiles their work, but provides a platform from which other institutions can learn and better track their own progress to drive improvement."

The EIA program is sponsored by the Voluntary System of Accountability, a public college and university transparency initiative led APLU and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, in partnership with the Association of American College & Universities and the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment.

Under the guidance of the Office of Academic Affairs and Vice President Anne Houtman, Rose-Hulman's IRPA office is led by Williams and includes Tony Ribera, director of assessment; Timothy Chow, director of institutional research; Sarah Forbes, director of data management and reporting; and Jayme Longo, administrative assistant.