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Assessment Champion Featured

Dr. Diane Nutbrown - Assistant Professor of Chemistry

Nutbrown1Assessment efforts include identifying reasons for high DFW rates in Chemistry I & II courses with analysis resulting in changes to requirements for enrollment in these foundational chemistry courses. She has lead efforts to adopt ACS standardized exams to assess our students' in comparison to national results and also worked to adopt on-line course enhancements (ALEKS module) that are now used for all sections of Chemistry I & II.  Data analysis of the student performance on ACS exams has been and will continue to be informative for efforts to improve student learning, and reduce the number of students having unsatisfactory experiences in our Chemistry I & II sequence of courses.

Use of Student Learning Evidence

          There are multiple ways that assessment informs change to improve the student learning experience.  Oftentimes, strategies that impact learning effectiveness are employed on a day-to-day basis by faculty as they instruct courses.  These adjustments are made as faculty analyze and implement changes throughout the semester based on formative assessments of student learning as it is occurring.  These improvements in the learning experiences are driven by individual faculty members who are expert in the craft of teaching.  Faculty articulation and reflection on these improvement strategies are collected through course assessment report at the end of a term.  By far, this is the most frequently employed practice in improving student learning experiences.  And, this form of assessment activity is the most under-reported type of strategic change directed toward the improvement of student learning at the course level.

          The Annual Assessment Reporting 2015-2018 is an accumulation of academic assessment efforts over the last three academic years and is produced and distributed transparently.  This document serves to inform stakeholders of the enormity of work that is done on an annual basis and also serves as an evidence repository for affiliated documentation of assessment efforts.

          The General Education Program has been increasingly successful at using assessment as a tool for implementing strategic changes.  Since 2014, the efforts of faculty teaching general education courses across the disciplines have come together to report individual course embedded assessments.  Meanwhile, monitoring the student success metrics is essential in identifying where change strategies have impacted student learning improvements.  In the fall 2017 report, General Education Course Embedded Assessment and Student Success Metrics it shows the incremental improvements in student success in general education program courses from 2014 through 2017.  The data presented in the report shows the efforts of the faculty in coming together for a common good to promote student success in general education courses.

         The University is dedicated to providing high impact learning experiences for all of its students. One of the best ways to assess the effectiveness of current strategies is to triangulate the information from several sources to create a clear picture of these experiences and how our students perceive the quality and extent of these unique learning opportunities. In 2018, the Office of Institutional Effectiveness assessed the efficacy of our High Impact Learning strategies by comparing survey data from the National Survey of Student Engagement with the ESU Senior Survey, combined with Personal Interviews of Faculty, Staff, Students, and Administrators. The Analysis of High Impact Practices and Student Perspective report is used to confirm our institution-wide commitment to this strategic plan initiative while identifying opportunities to make the experiences even better.