AGuide – Step 7

AGuide Navigation: Introduction | Step 1 | Step 2 | Step 3 | Step 4 | Step 5 | Step 6 | Step 7
Step 7: Report Your Findings

You need to report your findings to your program administrator and the Academic Assessment Committee who will review them and respond with feedback. Decide what recommendations and changes will be made according to the resources available.

Based on the results that you received, will any modifications be made to improve student learning?

Use the results to:

  • Evaluate SLOs: Are there too many, do they need clarification, are they appropriate?
  • Evaluate curriculum: Does it address all of the learning goals? How can courses be modified to do so?
  • Evaluate teaching methods: Can any improvement be made in this area toward empowering students
  • to achieve learning goals?
  • Evaluate the assessment methods used: Were they appropriate?

(Reference: Assessment Workbook, CSU Stanislaus, adapted from Suskie [2004], Chapter 16.)

The following lists are from Reporting Assessment Results from Ball State’s Assessment Handbook.

Suskie (2009) lists five basic ways to summarize assessment results: tallies, percentages, averaging results into an overall score, averaging results into sub-scores, qualitative summaries (grouped listings, themes, examples). You can also look at differences between groups, over time, and with peers.

Sharing Assessment Results

Suskie suggests the following guidelines for sharing your assessment results:

  • Use good teaching practices to share assessment results.
  • The briefer the assessment report is, the more likely it will be used.
  • Three kinds of information are most important to share.
    • How you and your colleagues define a successful student
    • Whether you are satisfied with your evidence of student success
    • What you are doing about unsatisfactory results
  • Tables, charts, and other visuals may be more effective than traditional written reports.

Honest, Balanced, Fair, and Useful Reporting of Assessment Results

Suskie recommends doing the following to ensure appropriate reporting:

  • Share only aggregated results.
  • Present results completely, fairly, and objectively.
  • Provide appropriate attribution.
  • Document the author, office, and date of assessment reports.
  • Offer to make additional information available.

What will audiences for assessment results care most about?

  • Matters they can do something about
  • Interesting and unanticipated findings
  • Meaningful differences

Assessment Report Format

The choice of report format should be based on the material in the report and its audience. Full reports are useful to audiences interested in the details of an assessment. They can also serve as complete records of assessment activities. Assessment summaries are used to highlight particular findings, to focus on specific issues, and to summarize assessment activities for audiences not inclined to read a full report. Results can also be used in assessment notes, brochures, or flyers to publicize an assessment project or finding or highlight a particular program. Web reporting provides easy access to a wide range of audiences, makes specific data available and interactive, and enables audiences to answer customized questions.

A primary reporting mechanism for the CI Process is, of course, the SLO Report Form, but you will have many other occasions to use the results of the process in different contexts and formats (e.g., annual reports and the EAPR process), and you will want to be prepared to present such results in the most effective way.

Assessment Report Components

  • Description of activities:
    What did we do?
    Why did we do it?
    How did we do it?
    Whom did we assess?
  • Description of results
    What did we find?
  • Interpretation
    What do our findings mean?
  • Suggestions/Implications
    What should or could be done based upon results of the assessment?