What is an assessment plan?
It describes, in detail:
- Each department’s mission, vision, and goals
- Signature and significant programs and services offered in the Division of Student Affairs
- Links between departmental efforts and the division’s mission, values, and priorities
- Assessment efforts employed to examine programs and services
- Key metrics and measurements used to gauge efficacy
Why do we need a division-wide assessment plan?
- The Division of Student Affairs has nearly 30 departments and over 50 functional areas
- No division-level understanding of all efforts exists
- A lot of our individual work is similar to others’ work in the division
Our ability to tell a cohesive story hinges on a clear understanding of what everyone in each department is doing, at least at a high level.
- Department Assessment Plan Template (MS Word document)
- Completed Department Assessment Plan Template – Multicultural Student Affairs (PDF) (courtesy Denise Williams-Klotz; program-oriented department)
- Completed Department Assessment Plan Template – Student Affairs Assessment & Research (PDF) (service-oriented department)
Program reviews are designed to allow departments and staff understand their work, specifically:
- What’s working (and why)
- What isn’t working (and why)
- What could be added (and why)
- What doesn’t need to be done any longer (and why)
They are data-driven processes that occur in three steps:
- An internal-to-the-department self-study
- An external review of the department conducted by department-identified experts in the field
- Consideration of the external review team's recommendations and developing plans for moving forward
- Overview, Roles, and Responsibilities (PDF)– this is an overview of the program review process, and details out who will oversee what components of the program review.
- Self-Study Outline – this outline (in PDF) provides the structure for a department’s self-study
- External Committee Member Identification – this form is used to identify potential members of a department’s external review team.
- Program Review Recommendations Worksheet – this Excel worksheet is to be used by departments when reviewing the final report from the External Review Team. It is a means for identifying all recommendations made and determining if and/or when they will be addressed by the department.
- External Review Team Example Schedule (PDF) – a potential schedule for the 2 1/2 days of the review. This can be altered to fit the needs of the department, with approval by the Director of Student Affairs Assessment & Research.
The timing of a survey is just as important as the questions being asked. In an effort to ensure staff at ISU have the greatest chance of getting the most viable information from their survey administration, the Director of Student Affairs Assessment & Research has worked to develop a calendar of what surveys were/will be administered from one or more offices in the Division of Student Affairs. Current and future semester calendars are updated on an on-going basis as information about and participation in various surveys are determined.
If you have a survey you would like added to this list, or if you want to discuss timing for your survey, please don’t hesitate to reach out via email or call 515-294-5162.
Assessment is not a solo activity – it is something that is best done in collaboration and consultation with others. With that in mind, assessment resources for the Division of Student Affairs at Iowa State University are provided here.
Primer on Focus Groups – presented to ISU College of Engineering learning communities staff May 9, 2017
Assessment Planning Template (MS Word)