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Plan for Assessment

Basic Steps of Program Assessment

  • Articulate the department’s mission.
  • Establish student-learning outcomes.
  • Complete a curriculum map for the program. This map is useful for determining where the learning will take place.
  • Determine when (e.g. which years, semesters) and where (which course (s) will be used to assess the learning) the actual assessment will take place.
  • Complete an assessment process: choose an outcome to assess; collect data; evaluate, analyze, and interpret data.
  • Based on the results, create and implement an action plan to improve student learning in the program.

Create a Program Assessment Plan

A program assessment plan is useful for documenting the way in which a program intends to assess student learning. This plan is also useful for dissemination among faculty who teach in the program, the Office of Assessment, and regional and specialized accreditors.

Supplemental materials

Office of Assessment workshop presentation slides:

  1. Writing Program student learning outcomes, part 1 - Plan for Assessment\First ITTC Workshop Presentation (PPTX)
  2. Writing Program student learning outcomes, part 2 - Plan for Assessment\Second ITTC Workshop Presentation (PPTX)
  3. Developing a Curriculum Map/Audit - Plan for Assessment\Third ITTC Workshop Presentation (PPTX)
  4. Setting benchmarks and accountability timeline - Setting Assessment Benchmarks and Accountability Timeline\Fourth ITTC Workshop Presentation(PPTX)
  5. Reporting Assessment Results - Plan for Assessment\Fifth ITTC Workshop(PPTX)


Characteristics of Good Assessment Planning

  • Focuses on the programs (e.g., the major) rather than individual courses
  • Has 4-7 student learning outcomes
  • Collaboratively created with input and discussion by the entire department
  • Is systematic and manageable
  • Multiple data-collection methods are used over time
  • Leads to improvement in student learning within the program
  • Anticipates how the results will be used for improvement and decision-making


Content on this page was adapted from University of Hawaii-Manoa, Assessment Office

Updated 9/28/15