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September 2020

In this issue:
  • What is "The Loop"?
  • PITA Grant for Learning Outcomes Assessment
  • Exemplary Learning Outcomes Assessment Work
  • Announcements & Reminders
  • Learning Outcomes Assessment Resources
What is The Loop?

The Loop is a newsletter designed to keep faculty and staff informed of learning outcomes assessment activities taking place around campus, while also providing resources for those engaged in program-level learning outcomes assessment work.

 The Chancellor’s Senior Survey (CSS) AY 2019-2020 Executive Summary and Full Report are now available. Faculty and Staff also have access to the newly revised Senior Survey Dashboard. The CSS measures the degree to which educational programs at Illinois are enabling students to achieve stated learning objectives, while also providing a measure of students’ perceptions of the effectiveness of academic programs and services at the unit, college and campus levels. Data from the CSS can be utilized for learning outcomes assessment at both curricular and co-curricular programs.

The Chancellor’s Senior Survey (CSS) AY 2019-2020 Executive Summary and Full Report are now available along with the newly revised Senior Survey Dashboard. The CSS provides data on:

  • Student participation in university-sponsored and campus-related activities
  • Self-assessment of the campus-level learning outcomes
  • Perceptions of campus climate
  • Opinions about students’ satisfaction with the academic experience at Illinois

Senior Survey data can be utilized for program-level learning outcomes assessment, particularly for programs that have aligned one or more of their programmatic learning outcomes with the campus-level learning outcomes.

Teresa Ostler, Social Work 
PITA Grant for Learning Outcomes Assessment

An assessment focus was formally added to the Provost’s Initiative on Teaching Advancement (PITA) grant. Dr. Teresa Ostler, from the School of Social Work, was awarded the first assessment focused PITA grant for her proposal, "Integrating and Evaluating Live Simulations across Degree Programs: Transforming how Students Teach and Learn about Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Relation to Social Work Competencies and Practice in a Challenging Time." Dr. Ostler will be awarded a $7,500 grant to carry out the project over a one-year period. 

Exemplary Learning Outcomes Assessment Work

During their reviews of Learning Outcomes Assessment Plans and Annual Assessment Updates, the Council for Learning Outcomes Assessment (C-LOA) identifies programs engaged in exemplary assessment work. Typically, no more than 10% of programs receive exemplary status each year. This section highlights a selection of programs that have received the exemplary designation.

Early Childhood Education, BS
Sharing Assessment Results
The program shares assessment results with stakeholders inside and outside of the department including program faculty in the Early Childhood Teacher Preparation Program, Curriculum and Instruction, Special Education, Human Development and Family Studies, Art and Design, and Music. Results are also shared in early childhood program faculty meetings.

History, BALAS
Reflection and Growth Improvement
The program reflected on their assessment activities, resulting in a number of realizations that lead to improvements in their assessment process. Based on a variety of final assignments and the mastery of learning outcomes demonstrated in these assignments, the program decided that clearer guidelines were needed for the gateway and capstone classes. The program realized that although there are some benefits to having outside readers assess student work, the necessary time commitment exceeds their capacity. The program also realized that it can be difficult for outside readers to evaluate students' papers without a larger sense of each course (i.e., some courses place a higher weight on the final papers than others, leading to varying outcomes). 

Spanish, BAT
Use of Assessment Results to Improve Student Learning
The program utilized portfolio scores from 2019 edTPA submissions to re-design two of three early field experience courses in order to create a focus on special teaching methods designed solely for the teaching of World Languages. Portfolio scores were also used to re-organize the sequence of field experience courses to be able to provide Spanish BAT Teacher Candidates with an improved level of the essential knowledge and skills that all teachers must have regardless of the subject matter. 

Announcements & Reminders
  • Navigating the Assessment Update Process: This virtual workshop will take place via Zoom on September 22 from 8:30 AM - 9:30 AM. Workshop participants will receive guidance on completing the Assessment Update Form that is due October 1, 2020 and learn about different outcomes assessment taking place across campus. Please register for the workshop if you can attend, or if you are interested in the topic and you cannot attend. We will share materials with everyone who registers for the workshop. Click here to register for the workshop.

  • Annual Learning Outcomes Assessment Update: Don't forget, the deadline to submit the AY 2019-2020 Learning Outcomes Assessment Update is October 1, 2020, for all academic programs.

  • Assessment Institute: If you're interested in learning more about outcomes assessment, the Assessment Institute, hosted by Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis, will be held virtually from October 25-28. There is typically a fee associated with this conference, but registration is complimentary this year. For more information about the Institute or how to register, go here: http://www.assessmentinstitute.iupui.edu.
Learning Outcomes Assessment Resources

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