Assessment of Student Learning

University of Minnesota, Morris







DATE:             October 9, 2008


SUBJECT:      Assessment of Student Learning Committee Minutes  


PRESENT:       Michael O’Reilly (chair), Cheryl Contant, Julia Dabbs, Julie Eckerle, Susan Hennen, Nancy Helsper, Tom Johnson, Kristin Lamberty, Arne Kildegaard, and Laura Thoma


Minutes taken by:  Linda Pederson



The meeting began at 11:00 AM in Blakely Conference Room 8.  O’Reilly welcomed the members to the meeting, followed with a brief introduction of members.


ASLC Minutes, 04/17/08

O’Reilly asked for approval of the ASLC minutes dated April 17, 2008.  Motion (Johnson, O’Reilly) to approve the minutes; unanimously carried.


Student Learning Outcomes

O’Reilly said the University Senate recently adopted seven student learning outcomes on the TC campus recently and said we must decide how to relate our assessment program to address learning outcomes.  Discussion followed.  Dean Contant said a task force will be put together, drawing  members from the Curriculum, Academic, Assessment, and Student Service committees, to put together learning outcomes for UMM.  Contant noted we will probably put together a single list of outcomes that incorporates both student learning outcomes and student development outcomes whereas the TC had developed separate lists of seven items for each.   Other comments:

-       Assessing student development outcomes is difficult; it comes later in life; learning outcomes are on site.

-       Identify outcomes and measures we are currently getting that can be used for assessment.

-       A member asked about  the set of learning outcomes that were presented at the FFR 2008.  It was noted that material presented at the FFR 2008 is available on the Faculty Center Website.

-       Contant said a small group from UMM (M. O’Reilly, J. Ericksen, L. Meek, C. Contant) will attend the Assessment Institute, IUPUI, Indianapolis, October 26-28, 2008.  Trudy W. Banta and George Kuhl are keynote speakers.  Contant said they will try to get energy and a plan put together while there, and the team will get up to speed on the assessment process; identifying the steps to take, what has been done, the changes made, and where we stand with the assessment process.

-       Need good assessment measure at institutional level, programmatic course base, and student; doing very well at course and program level.  Will discuss with individual students, student affairs, and student activities about the program reviews and program reviews we’ve been doing.

-       Some disciplines have specific objectives, some are very good, some need to be done.

-       What do we, as an institution think we should be doing?

-       Integration of learning – freshman to senior year

-       Assessment needs to be institutionalized into the future; we need to do it at an institutional level, which brings us back to learning outcomes.

-       Institutional level of assessment – what is measured, at what level, feedback group is most important.  Go back and make changes to things we believe are problems, or go back and enhance the good outcomes.

-       Challenge is to document assessment.  Higher learning is ongoing; need to get a handle on what we are doing and where we go.

-       The group of four will work on this following the Assessment Institute.

-       A member said should connect institutional level to programmatic level.

-       Contant said we participate every 2 years with NSSE, but said she did not know if the results  –have been reported back to Campus  and said this is an opportunity to do an institutional review.  Helsper said after 2004, the NSSE report was taken to committees, but said the following two reports need to go out to the committees.

-       Contant said she will discuss with the Division Chairs about creating a task force, and the group will meet with the task force following the Assessment Institute.  O’Reilly said information about the Assessment Institute is on the web.

-       Assessment reports are on the web, members discussed reviewing discipline reports of each division.  Each year, expectation to submit assessment report, every two-three years, discipline should submit how they reacted to report.

-       Helsper said we are preparing  for the NCA visit, Spring 2010.

-       A member said it reasonable to ask for assessment reports, every other year, but said it should alternate with the catalog revision years.  Another member agreed the request is reasonable, what are the expectations, clarify what the norm is, and get a schedule set up.

-       Program review have slipped, haven’t done on a formal basis, need to bring back and get on a cycle to correspond with reports.

-       Read reports, identify what is strong, and address issues


O’Reilly asked that future meetings rotate to Division Conference rooms and the Student Center.  Next meeting is schedule for November 13 at 11:00 AM in Imholte Hall 218.