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Stevenson & Finan AEA 2014 Demonstration: Assessing Graduate Program Learning Outcomes - Building Evaluation Capacity in an Inhospitable Environment  

11-07-2014 12:15

Authors: J.F. Stevenson & E. Finan, University of Rhode Island. The impetus for demonstrating that higher education institutions can deliver on the promise of producing educated graduates has been primarily focused at the undergraduate (baccalaureate) level. However, regional accrediting associations in the United States do require every degree program to conduct assessment. This demonstration uses one case example, a mid-sized public land-grant university, to illustrate methods for building assessment capacity at the graduate level and documents successful institution-wide change despite initial resistance. Special considerations at the graduate level, both advantages and barriers, are highlighted. Scripted steps in the development of capacity and commitment are featured. Seven pilot programs facilitated development of materials, a series of, workshops, and a schedule for implementation. Fifty-two programs in two cohorts are now in this pipeline. Rubric scores for plans and reports document strengths and limitations of the assessment capacity-building program. This special case of evaluation capacity-building has lessons for evaluators in many contexts.

#2014Conference #AssessmentinHigherEducation

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