Academic journal article Peer Review

Highlights from AAC&U Work on Assessment

Academic journal article Peer Review

Highlights from AAC&U Work on Assessment

Article excerpt

AAC&U works with campuses to develop meaningful and sophisticated assessments that inform and improve practices to foster greater achievement for all students. AAC&U provides campuses with tools to assess learning in ways that help improve educational programs and provide useful information to key stakeholders. AAC&U has also published a series on the challenges of assessing campus diversity initiatives and programs. AAC&U began in 2004 to publish a series of papers, manuals, and statements on issues of accountability and the assessment of key learning outcomes.

A comprehensive listing of AAC&U's ongoing work on assessment, as well as links to additional information and resources, can be found online at

Greater Expectations Projects on Accreditation and Assessment

Taking advantage of a unique moment when both regional and specialized accreditons were revising their standards and processes, this project encouraged greater emphasis on liberal learning outcomes and the institutional demonstration of students' sophisticated intellectual capacities. Those involved in the project included representatives from all six regional accrediting associations, four specialized accreditons, one national accreditor, the accrediting coordinator, and seven higher education associations. Some also held (acuity or administrative positions on campuses.

The project achieved agreement on the mission of a twenty-first century liberal education; the desired outcomes from a liberal education; curricular design principles that can help students reach these desired outcomes; and criteria for good practice in assessment of such outcomes. A report from the project, Taking Responsibility for the Quality of the Baccalaureate Degree, documents the consensus among these divergent groups about the importance of liberal learning outcomes for all students, whatever their major.

Additional information is available online at

James Irvine Foundation Campus Diversity Initiative Evaluation Project

This project seeks to determine the impact of the James Irvine Foundation's efforts to help institutions prepare all students for leadership in a diverse society and to promote the success of underrepresented student populations. …

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