Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLNAC Frequently Asked Questions

Academic journal article Nursing and Health Care Perspectives

NLNAC Frequently Asked Questions

Article excerpt

What is the rationale for the emphasis NLNAC places on the requirement for an SPE, a systematic plan for program evaluation and assessment of outcomes?

To NLNAC, PROGRAM EVALUATION IS THE CONSTANT ASSESSMENT AND REFINEMENT OF THE PROGRAM THROUGH A COMBINATION OF PROCESS-FOCUSED AND OUTCOMES-FOCUSED APPROACHES. This evaluation is undertaken to enable judgments about program quality relative to previously defined standards and criteria. This process confirms student achievement' and guides the improvement of student learning, while providing a mechanism for program self-examination. It is understood that for a program to offer a quality education to its students, it must have a qualified faculty and a strong unit structure.

The NLNAC policy is a guide for programs in the formulation, development, and implementation of a program-specific plan, geared toward assessment of the program, its place in the institution, and its community at large. It is not the function of NLNAC to mandate procedures or specific instruments for program assessment. However, some basic considerations are necessary for the development of a successful SPE.

* Consensus on program definitions, goals, and student learning objectives. This guides the selection of assessment methods and facilitates the use of assessment results.

* Development of a planning document structure. This provides a means to determine program priorities, define expected levels of achievement for each criterion, delineate timelines, and facilitate program decision making. The SPE also serves to guide further examination and sharing of information.

* Identification of assessment methods, tools, and instruments. These must be demonstrably linked to the program characteristics that they purport to cover, so that they speak to the technical adequacy of the methods used and, where appropriate, provide evidence that the tools demonstrate reliability, validity, and/or trustworthiness. …

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