Assessment Leadership Academy- Frequently Asked Questions

 Frequently Asked Questions

Academy Pedagogy
Academy Requirements
Who Should Participate in the Academy?
Application Process
Academy Costs
Required Books

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What pedagogies will the Academy use?

The Academy pedagogy will integrate theories of adult learning with active pedagogies for ongoing engagement using readings, case studies, project-based learning, problem solving, collaborative learning, role play, and simulations. Participants will use their home institutions as a context for practice and learning. In addition to a project for their own institution, each participant will evaluate the assessment practices at another institution. The Academy will blend face-to-face and on-line learning in a schedule that accommodates active professionals and eliminates excessive travel. Regional and national assessment leaders will enrich the curriculum through readings, in-person lectures, interactions, and one-on-one consultations.

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What will the Academy require of participants?

Participants should plan to spend about ten hours a week from mid-March 2020 to mid-January 2021 to complete Assessment Leadership Academy requirements. Initially most of that time will be dedicated to assigned readings. Participants also will complete about five homework assignments and one major project. ALA readings include major sections of about a dozen books and about seventy articles, monographs, chapters, and websites.  Participants must complete the relevant required readings before face-to-face meetings in order to benefit from the activities designed to process, expand, and consolidate learning.

The Academy requirements are designed to support participants' learning and provide evidence concerning the impact of the ALA. Certificates of Completion are awarded to participants who satisfy all Academy requirements. The following are required:

  1. Completion by established deadlines of all assigned readings and assignments. Readings include an array of journal articles, reports, monographs, and major segments of about a dozen books.
  2. Participation in all face-to-face meetings.
  3. Completion of a project on the participant's home institution. Projects should be useful to the home institution and should be designed so they can be completed before the end of the Academy. Projects may involve one institution, or Academy participants may develop collaborative projects involving more than one institution.
  4. Analysis of assessment practices at an institution other than their own. 

The project follows an inquiry process, that includes a literature review and timeline; consideration of campus culture and resources; project assessment; and dissemination. Possible projects include:

  • Developing and implementing campus workshops and support for assessment
  • Developing and implementing a plan for providing feedback on and support for departmental assessment efforts
  • Developing or refining the assessment of general education
  • Developing a campus infrastructure that supports sustainable assessment
  • Developing and implementing a collaborative assessment project with another institution

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Who should participate in the Academy?

Potential participants should be committed to:

  • Developing assessment expertise
  • Serving in an on-going assessment leadership role at their institution
  • Completing all Academy requirements, including active participation in all scheduled meetings, homework assignments, and projects*

In addition, the following characteristics are highly recommended:

  • Experience in assessing student learning and in institutional leadership roles related to educational effectiveness
  • Completion of WSCUC-sponsored workshops and assessment-related events, such as the Assessment 101 workshop, workshops on WSCUC's core competencies, or equivalent
  • At least two years full-time, professional experience within higher education

Institutions that nominate potential participants should commit to:

  • Support the individual's efforts both during and after the Academy

*Please note: We recommend that participants not be enrolled in graduate or other similar programs during the ALA. 

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What is the application process?

About 35 professionals are admitted to the Academy each year.  Participants are selected through a competitive application process. Campuses may nominate an individual or a two-person team; applications should be forwarded with institutional approval from an administrator at the level of dean, provost, chief academic officer, or higher. Applications should be submitted on-line no later than February 15, 2020.

Click here to submit your application.

What information should every application include?

The application form will ask for the following information:

  • Your reasons for interest in the Academy
  • Assessment experience, including a description of assessment leadership roles you have played
  • Indicators of leadership capacity and experience, such as participation in academic governance or serving as a department chair, faculty development director, or other administrator
  • Relevant areas of expertise (e.g., knowledge of the assessment literature, the teaching and learning literature, national issues and controversies in higher education, statistics, research design, institutional research)
  • Record of participation in relevant educational opportunities, such as ARC workshops, WSCUC retreats, and national assessment conferences
  • Documentation of campus support and intentions for engaging the applicant in an on-going assessment leadership role from an administrator at the level of dean, provost, chief academic officer, or higher

Applicants will be notified of acceptance by March 1, 2020. They will immediately receive curriculum materials, a schedule, assignments, and related Academy information.

Click here to submit your application.

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What are the Academy Costs?

Tuition cost is $5250 for participants from accredited WSCUC and ACCJC institutions and $5750 for those coming from institutions that are not WSCUC- or ACCJC-accredited and/or are located outside the WSCUC region. In addition, participants will meet in person three times (dates and locations listed below) and will be responsible for their food (+$700) and lodging costs.

In addition, participants will review the assessment practices at an institution other than their own, which may require travel expenses.

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What books will I be required to buy?

Required readings include all or parts of a number of books. The list below is tentative.  You may already own many of these books or can find them at your institution; if you need to buy them, we estimate a total cost of approximately $300-$400.

  1. Allen, M. J. (2004). Assessing academic programs in higher education. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  2. Banta, T. W., & Associates. (2002). Building a scholarship of assessment. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  3. Diamond, R. M. (Ed.) (2002). Field guide to academic leadership. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
  4. Driscoll, A., & Wood, S. (2007). Outcomes-based assessment for learner-centered education. Sterling, VA: Stylus. 
  5. Eynon, B. & Gambino, L.M. (2017). High Impact ePortfolio practice. Sterling, VA: Stylus.
  6. Keeling, R. P. (Ed.) (2006). Learning reconsidered 2: Implementing a campus-wide focus on the student experience. ACPA, ACUHO-I, ACUI, NACA, NACADA, NASPA, and NIRSA.
  7. Kezar, A. (2014). How Colleges Change: Understanding, Leading, and Enacting Change. New York: Routledge
  8. Kuh G. D., Ikenberry, S. O., Jankowski, N. A., Cain, T. R., Ewell, P., Hutchings, P., and Kinzie, J. (2014). Using Student Evidence to Improve Higher Education. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
  9. Nichols, J.O. & Nichols, K(2005) The Department's Guide to Assessment Implementation in Administrative and Educational Support Units.  New York: Agathon Press.
  10. Suskie, L. Assessing Student Learning: A Common Sense Guide (3rd edition; 2018). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

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