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WEAVEonline® is the primary tool the College uses to coordinate its assessment efforts. All administrative and educational support units have a mission statement, and enter outcomes/objectives, measures, findings and action plans each year. WEAVEonline® now has page-specific, expanded help features at the top right side of the screen if you need assistance with entering data into WEAVEonline®.

Mission/Purpose
This is the overall purpose of your office/area, showing how you connect and contribute to the College’s overall work.

Outcomes/Objectives
Outcomes/Objectives are brief, clear statements that describe desired outcomes in relation to broader goals. Administrative and educational support units have objectives that can be classified as process, outcome, or satisfaction oriented.

Process: what the unit intends to accomplish. Typically described in terms of level or volume of activity, efficiency of processes, and compliance with good practices/regulations.

Outcome: what clients will be able to know, do, value, and believe after receiving the unit’s services.

Satisfaction: client satisfaction level after receiving service.

Tips:

  • Refer to the College’s goals as a reference to ensure your outcomes/objectives reflect the College mission and purposes. In addition, this will help with the compilation of an institution-wide plan. (See Strategic Planning section)
  • Limit outcomes/objectives to at least three but no more than five per year.
  • You don’t have to nor should you assess everything every year.
  • Avoid assessing the same outcomes/objectives every year to ensure you are documenting continuous improvement. If you find that there are no other areas you want to assess, consider changing your “Achievement Target” located in the Measures tab.
  • For each outcome/objective, define one or more measures. The more measures you define, the more data (evidence) you will gather.

Below are examples of outcomes/objectives:

  • The Admissions office will increase FTE in 2007-2008. (process oriented)
  • The Office of Financial Aid and Veterans will work to increase Financial Aid dollars awarded to VHCC students. (process oriented)
  • The Registrar’s Office will provide accurate class enrollment data. (process oriented)
  • Students will be able to effectively utilize the services of the Library after attending an orientation session.  (outcome oriented)
  • Respondents will agree that the Institutional Effectiveness Office is helpful by offering assistance in the program review process.  (outcome oriented)
  • Graduates will be satisfied with services provided by the Office of Admissions & Records. (satisfaction oriented)
  • Respondents will rate the quality of the new website as good or excellent.  (satisfaction oriented)

*the above listed examples are intended as a guide only.

Measure
A measure is a tool(s) used to determine if you have met your expected outcome. To increase the likelihood of valid results, you should use more than one measure for each outcome/objective if possible. (see Appendix A for some of the research tools and data available). If you are struggling to identify a measure ask the following questions about your outcome/objective:

  • How will we know if this is being accomplished?
  • What will provide us this information?

For best results use both direct and indirect measures and qualitative and quantitative measures for each outcome/objective. Below are some examples of the types of measures you might use:

Direct measures - objective measures of the unit’s accomplishments or measures of knowledge or ability the customer will receive upon being provided with the unit’s services. For process-orientated outcomes/objectives, examples may include a simple count of unit activities, dates of deadlines, and external evaluations (audits, reviews). Outcome-oriented objectives/outcomes, examples may include pre-test/post-test, performance assessment, observations of qualified staff, etc.

Indirect measures - subjective measures of beliefs, attitudes and perceptions. Most satisfaction-oriented outcomes/objectives will have an indirect measure. Examples include questionnaires and surveys of student’s perceptions such as the Student Satisfaction Inventory, Graduating Student Questionnaire, Graduate Follow-up Survey, etc.

Qualitative measures - contain non-numerical data such as verbal or written feedback from students/staff/faculty.

Quantitative measures - contain numerical data which can be analyzed statistically.

Achievement Target allows you to establish a criterion for success. This is what will allow your Objective/Outcome to be measurable. You must ask yourself what level is acceptable and then seek to sustain or enhance that performance.

Outcome/Objective - The Admissions office will increase FTE in 2007-2008.  Measure
Number of FTE
 
Achievement Target
FTE will increase by 5% during the 2007-08 year.
Outcome/ Objective
The Office of Financial Aid and Veterans will work to increase Financial Aid dollars awarded to VHCC students.
Achievement Target
The FISAP report will reflect an increase of $50,000 (.015%) compared to the previous year.
Outcome/Objective
The Registrar’s Office will provide accurate class enrollment data. 
Measure
Audit
 
Achievement Target
Student credit hour auditors from the governing board will verify the accuracy of class enrollments each semester reporting “no adjustments required.” 
Outcome/Objective
Students will be able to effectively utilize the services of the Library after attending an orientation session. 
Measure
Performance assessment by library staff
 
Achievement Target
90% of students attending a library orientation session will receive a favorable performance assessment by library staff. 
Outcome/Objective
Respondents will agree that the Institutional Effectiveness Office is helpful by offering assistance in the program review process.
Measure
Satisfaction Survey
 
Achievement Target
80% of respondents to the survey will Agree or Strongly agree with the following statement, “The IE Office was helpful in assisting in the program review process.”
Outcome/Objective
Graduates will be satisfied with services provided by the Office of Admissions & Records.
Measure
Graduating Student Survey
 
Achievement Target
85% of the respondents to the Graduating Student Survey will indicate a service rating of "good" or "excellent".
Outcome/Objective
Respondents will rate the quality of the new website as good or excellent. 
Measure
Satisfaction Survey
 
Achievement Target
75% of respondents to the Web Satisfaction Survey will rate the new website as good or excellent.  

Findings
List the results based on the Measure (methods & tools) used. This does not need to be overly complicated. Remember, the purpose is to determine if your Outcomes/Objectives were met. Be sure to discuss your data in relation to Outcomes/Objectives and specifically, the Achievement Target you set in Measures. (See Institutional Effectiveness Handbook Appendix A for the location of some assessment results)

If you do not meet your Outcome/Objective and the set Achievement Target, (perhaps only 60% of students, rather than your target of 75% rated the website as good or excellent) don’t panic. This feedback provides data for you to decide what you might do differently to make improvements (Hint: Action Plan). The changes you propose will be a part of your improvement plan for the next year. Remember, the purpose of assessment is to help us determine whether or not we are being effective, and to allow us to document continuous improvement. We may not always achieve the established outcome/objective, but we must demonstrate continuous improvement.

Action Plan
This is where you show how you “closed the loop.” You must answer the following:

  • How you will use your results?
  • What actions were taken or will be taken based on your data?

If you did not meet your Outcomes/Objectives you MUST have an action plan. If you plan to implement changes based on your findings, you must discuss these, particularly when findings support planning and budgetary decisions. If this is the case with your findings, please include any information in the “Additional Resources Needed” section under Action Plan. Here you will discuss how your findings affect planning and the budget if applicable.

Action Plan Tracking
This module allows you to track Actions over time and to update them as they are completed.

Achievement Summary/Analysis
This section allows for reflection of whether Findings met Achievement Targets. In order to fully “close the loop” on the assessment cycle, a unit must answer the following questions:

What specifically did your assessments show regarding any outcome/objectives that will require continued attention?

How will you use these findings to make future improvements in your program or unit?

Annual/Special Reporting
This module is not required but encouraged for further reflection on results and for noting the contribution of your unit to the college.

Reports
Printing reports:
To view/print a full report of all of your assessment data, select the Reports tab on the top menu.

You may not always achieve your goals, but remember, the purpose of assessment is improvement. Your findings may help you to create new outcomes/objectives for the upcoming year. No matter how good we are, we want to be continually striving to be better! Assessment helps us do that in a formal and organized way.

Last updated: 6/29/2009 11:55:02 AM