|DATE:||January 23, 1997
|SUBJECT:||Minutes of the Fifth Meeting of the Task Force on
Assessment of Students' Learning
|PRESENT:||Bert Ahern, Eric Bass, Jim
Cotter, Edith Borchardt, Nat Hart, Tom Johnson, Nancy Mooney,
Dean Sam Schuman, Engin Sungur
|ABSENT:||Eric Bauer, Carol Marxen
The Task Force on Assessment of Students' Learning met on January 23, 1997 in the Prairie Lounge.
The discussion centered around what people thought the committee should be doing 4-5 years down the road. The point was made that since North Central wants this committee in place, and since their next review will be in 1998-99, the committee will be in place until then for sure. The committee will be over seeing how other committees look at the assessment data that is being gathered. The current thought is to have a standing committee that will continue to advise other committees on the use of assessment data, but this committee would not be approving or rejecting assessment plans. One plan is to have the committee keep a file plan of the goals and the results of the assessment, which would help to make instruction practices more public. There was discussion on whether or not the committee could be kept in place without changing the by-laws and what kind of reaction the assembly and people in general would have if the committee wasn't in the by-laws. Dean Schuman suggested three possible ways to get the standing committee in place: 1) amend the by-laws and get the committee in the constitution; 2) put the committee in place, but don't change the by-laws; or 3) have Chancellor Dave or Dean Schuman appoint the committee (as a last resort). The advantage of a By-laws Amendment is that it assures Campus Assembly ownership of and commitment to the process. A motion was made by Engin Sungur to place the idea of the Standing Committee for the Assessment of Student Learning on the Feb. 3 Campus Assembly agenda. Edith Borchardt and Nat Hart seconded the motion, all were in favor with no opposed and no one abstaining.
While Dr. Lopez's initial reaction to the plan that went before the Campus Assembly in Nov. was positive, there was discussion about whether the presentation of the plan could be simplified because some people had a few concerns. Eric Bass and Dean Schuman, members of the Resources and Planning Committee (CRPC), were asked how CRPC felt about the plan. CRPC had questions and concerns about the plan: 1) felt this might interfere with the conversion to the semester process (which they felt was more important), 2) they wanted a more direct process with more examples they could follow, 3) they wanted to know if "services", i.e. the library, would be included. A Discipline Coordinator talked to Bert Ahern and had questioned whether each class would be gone through during this process. Two main concerns that need to be decided are whether the process should be centralized or decentralized and whether or not the committee wants to include some services in the assessment process; for example, the library, computing services and advising. The goal is to strike a happy medium between being decentralized, so no one is being told what to do, and giving enough guidance and suggestions, so people have an idea of what they are supposed to do. Another concern people have is how to keep this assessment process from getting out of control and becoming added paperwork that means nothing. Dean Schuman brought up the possibility of bringing a faculty member from a school currently involved in the assessment process to answer questions and give added information. This idea was generally agreed with, although there were some concerns about making sure the speaker did not try to impose their system on the Morris campus. It was decided that the next step would be for everyone on the TFASL to look at the surveys that have come in.
The meeting was adjourned at 5 PM.
Submitted by Julie Brotzler.