Assessment of Institutional Effectiveness

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Assessment of Institutional Effectiveness

As detailed in Characteristics of Excellence in Higher Education, the Middle States Commission on Higher Education defines institutional assessment as an assessment process by which an institution "evaluates its overall effectiveness in achieving its mission and goals and its compliance with accreditation standards" (p. 25).  At California University of Pennsylvania, institutional assessment is guided by the Assessment of Institutional Effectiveness Framework below.

Assessment of Institutional Effectivenss Framework

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Assessment of Institutional Effectiveness begins with the university strategic plan, which specifies university goals, objectives to be achieved, assessment methods for measuring progress toward achieving the goals, and criteria for evaluating success.  Regularly conducted assessments cast a broad net over all areas of the university.  Assessment data are reviewed by many university stakeholders, including the President's Cabinet, Administrative Council, Deans/Provost Council, graduate and undergraduate college councils, academic department meetings, student affairs councils, and program accreditation committee meetings.  Results of these assessments are used to make program modification/improvements, budgetary decisions, and/or strategic plan revisions. 

Institutional assessment is a data-driven cyclical process that provides California University of Pennsylvania with the opportunity to evaluate how our programs and services contribute to achieving university goals amid an atmosphere of continuous improvement.

Institutional outcomes assessment

The category of institutional outcomes assessment is a set of assessments that are designed to measure overall university performance.  The Campus Climate Survey, for example, provided important information about the climate at California University and enables us to improve the working, living, and learning environment at Cal U.  As another eample, IPEDs (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System) enrollment data are collected annually by the Office of Institutional Research.  

Academic and related program assessments

Under this umbrella are assessments related to student learning outcomes and academic programs.  For more information about specific assessments, click the links below. 

Student Affairs assessments

These assessments measure the effectiveness of student affairs programs and services.  For additional information about these assessments see the Reports to the Council of Trustees.