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Laney College

Learning Assessment Committee Homepage

Mission: to stimulate a culture of ongoing instructional improvement using assessment to facilitate student success.

Assessment Philosophy: Assessment practices at Laney College ensure quality educational opportunities that respond to the needs of the local and global community. Assessment is an ongoing process that improves student learning and institutional effectiveness through dialogue based on evidence. We value honesty, integrity, curiosity, and the courage to ask deep and interesting questions about student learning, our teaching practices, and our effectiveness as a learner-centered college.



SLOs for Active Laney Courses

 PLOs for Laney Programs


>>FALL 2018 MEETING DATES/TIMES (First and Third Fridays, 11-12:30pm, T-750)

Sept. 7       Oct. 5    Nov. 2     Dec. 7

Sept. 21    Oct. 19  Nov. 16


Click on the link at the top of the page for:  Basics of Outcomes and Assessment


Clink on the link at the top of the page titled:  Rubric for Outcomes Approval.
This includes a rubric of what the Assessment Coordinators look for when approving outcomes and examples from various departments of SLOs, assessment methods, and assignments related to the SLOs.


What Is Assessment?

Assessment is the process of collecting evidence to see if students are actually learning what were teaching. The focus is on seeing what the student is able to do or demonstrate, rather than just listing an inventory of what was covered in a particular class. Here is a useful definition from Linda Suskie in her book Assessing Student Learning: A Common Sense Guide (p. 3).

Assessment is the ongoing process of:

  • Establishing clear, measurable expected outcomes of student learning.
  • Ensuring that students have sufficient opportunities to achieve those outcomes.
  • Systematically gathering, analyzing, and interpreting evidence to determine how well student learning matches our expectations.
  • Using the resulting information to understand and improve student learning.

As you may know, the accrediting commission (ACCJC) has changed its standards, and colleges will need to meet a new set of criteria to keep their accreditation. The new standards heavily emphasize outcomes and assessment at the course level, program level, and institution level. This represents a dramatic shift in focus, and it means that if we as a college can demonstrate that were practicing assessment, we could lose our accreditation.

On the next accreditation self-study report and visit, we will need to show what assessment we have been doing. If we haven’t done anything, we will be in trouble! Assessment is supposed to be faculty-driven. So if we as faculty are supposed to decide how to do it, it would be a good idea for us to figure out what it is and the many things that can be done to assess student learning. The good news is that there are lots of possibilities, and nobody HAS to do it in any particular way. You can choose assessment methods that will work for you and that will give you information you can really use to improve student learning.

Assessment isn’t the same as assigning grades. Grades alone do not give enough information on specific strengths and weaknesses of students. In addition, grading standards might be vague, while assessment information is very specific.


Benefits of Assessment:

The instructor is more proactive in helping students learn. Expectations are made very clear, so that students know what to expect and know where to focus their energies. There should be frequent prompt feedback that gives enough detail so that students understand their strengths and weaknesses.

Faculty should be curious to learn how their teaching impacts student learning and, as rational decision-makers, they should want to reflect on evidence, rather than rely on conjecture, to guide decision-making.?(Mary Allen, Assessing Academic Programs in Higher Education, p. 13.)