Admission Bookstores Careers @ SMU Commencement Ceremonies Degrees & Programs Faculty/Staff Directory Giving Opportunities Institutes & Affiliates Library - Twin Cities Library - Winona News & Communication Offices & Services Performing & Fine Arts President's Office Student Services - Twin Cities Transcripts Military & Veterans Services Writing Center - Twin Cities
Inside Pages WebTools WebMail Blackboard IT Helpdesk

Program Assessment of Student Learning

Principles of Good Practice for Assessing Student Learning

Assessment of student learning at the program level (or program assessment) is based on aggregate data about student learning collected at summative points in a program. It is to be distinguished from assessment of individual student learning at the course level, which results in formative feedback to students about their learning and grades. Program assessment also differs from program review, which is a periodic examination of a program using data from a variety of sources, including assessment of student learning at the program level.

The following describes the Schools of Graduate and Professional Programs (SGPP) practices for assessment of student learning at the program level based on nine principle statements outlined by The American Association for Higher Education.

1. Responsibility
Through assessment, Lasallian educators meet responsibilities to students and to the public.
2. Educational values
The assessment of student learning begins with education values.
3. Effective assessment
Assessment is most effective when it reflects an understanding of learning as multidimensional, integrated, and revealed in performance over time.
4. Program outcomes
Assessment works best when the programs it seeks to improve have clear, explicitly stated purposes.
5. Experiences
Assessment requires attention to outcomes but also and equally to the experiences that lead to those outcomes.
6. Continuing assessment
Assessment works best when it is ongoing not episodic.
7. Educational community
Assessment fosters wider improvement when representatives from across the educational community are involved.
8. Expectations
Assessment makes a difference when it is practical and addresses questions central to student learning.
9. Process
Assessment is most effective when it is embedded in a larger set of processes that promote improvement.