General Education Assessment

Introduction

The General Education Assessment Committee (GEAC) was established as an ad-hoc group in Spring 2008 by Faculty Senate.  The GEAC's primary charge was to develop and implement assessment policies, procedures and tools for evaluation of the General Education Program at UW-L.  After a three-year review of the committees roles and activities, Faculty Senate established the GEAC as a standing committee in the Fall of 2010.

Process

Prior to the 2010-2011 Academic Year, each course included in the General Education program was required to be assessed annually. The General Education Committee has approved a new assessment schedule that now requires each course included in the General Education program to be assessed only once during every three year cycle. This academic year, 2011-2012, starts the first three year cycle. The new policy, established by the General Education Committee in their 2010-2011 year end report, is copied below. This policy urges departments to focus on under-assessed SLO's which are listed in point #3 of page 2 of the year end report. For the sake of brevity, this list is not copied but can be obtained from GEC.

Each three-year cycle is organized around a set of SLO's such that SLO data will be collected each year based on the following timeline:
SLOs to be Assessed 
AY 2011-12I-1 through I-3; and II-1 through II-7
AY 2012-13III-1 through III-4; and IV-1 through IV-5
AY 2013-14V-1 through V-5; and VI-1 through VI-4

If a course has SLOs in multiple SLGs, the course can be assessed in the year of the department’s choosing. However, all courses must be assessed at least once within this three-year cycle. The GEC strongly encourages departments to choose to assess some of the SLOs that are listed above in point #3 (page 2) during the next assessment cycle.

GEAC has developed a three phase process for managing the assessment of general education courses. For each course included in the General Education program, the controlling department or program is responsible for developing and documenting an assessment tool (Form A), for documenting and reporting their analysis and results after application of the tool (Form B), for making modifications to the course, documenting these modifications and reporting the modifications (Form C). An outline of this process is listed below.

  1. Form A: Due on October 1
    • Department selects a single SLO to assess
    • Department defines a task to assess the SLO
    • Department defines a rubric to classify students with respect to the SLO based on their performance on the task
    • These items are documented for purposes of General Education Program Assessment by submission to GEAC on Form A
  2. Form B: Due on July 1
    • Department coordinates instructors to assign the task to all students in all sections of the course
    • Department uses the rubric to classify students performance on the task
    • Deparment analyzes the results and indicates whether changes to curricula, pedagogy, assessment task, or assessment rubric are warranted
    • These items are documented for purposes of General Education Program Assessment by submission to GEAC on Form B
  3. Form C: Due on June 1 (of the following year)
    • Department documents any changes that were actually made to curricula, pedagogy, assessment task or assessment rubric as the result of analyzing and discussin assessment results. This document must directly address the items included on Form B and is submitted to GEAC on Form C.
Flowchart of the assessment process for each general education course. Departmental activities are given as blue and GEAC activities are given as green. The decision to appeal a denial of Form A invokes an appeals process. This process is described in the document entitled Policies and Procedures for Appealing GEAC Form A Denials (dated March, 2011)
GEAC is willing to consult with departments seeking assistance with the assessment process. Please forward any questions to the committee chair. More detailed information regarding the assessment process and the website for submitting forms is listed below.