The Learning Institution: Aligning and Integrating Practices to Support Quality


Friday, October 19, 2018
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Kellogg West Conference Center
Pomona, CA


Click here for a draft of the program schedule.

Institutions of higher education have a long tradition of creating, internalizing, and sharing knowledge, but these processes are less frequently turned inward for reflection on what is done and how it is done in an integrated, holistic way. A learning institution is one that works to understand itself, and uses what it learns to improve. In this workshop facilitators will go into depth on what it means for an institution of higher education to be a learning institution, describe essential practices of a learning institution, and provide strategies for how to develop and strengthen a culture of learning, evidence, and improvement. Facilitators will also demonstrate how the processes and activities in which a learning institution is engaged are connected to the accreditation process.

Workshop Outcomes
Through completing this workshop, participants will:

  • Explore the meaning of a higher education learning institution
  • Examine the role of key practices of higher education learning institutions, including:
    • Faculty engagement
    • Assessment of student learning
    • Co-curricular learning and assessment
    • Strategic planning
    • Resource allocation
  • Connect elements of a higher education learning institution to the accreditation process

Intended Audience
This workshop is for faculty and staff campus leaders, especially those with responsibilities for assessment, program review, strategic planning, budget planning, and accreditation.

Workshop Facilitators: 

Errin Heyman, who leads WSCUC’s Initiative for Advancing Leadership for and Visibility in Student Learning Outcomes Assessment, specializes in facilitation and assessment of student learning outcomes through faculty development and program/institutional review and assessment processes. She has over twenty years of higher education experience, with extensive practical and theoretical knowledge of online and on-ground pedagogy, curriculum and instruction, and accreditation processes and requirements. Dr. Heyman most recently served as the Dean of Educational Effectiveness at the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences, a multi-campus graduate institution. There she was responsible for the general oversight of academic quality across all university programs and for the coordination of faculty development opportunities, with the goals of enhancing student engagement and educational practice. She helped to lead the interdisciplinary coordination of outcome assessment with a focus on quality teaching and learning effectiveness, as well as curricular improvements. Prior to her work with USAHS, she spent 7 years at West Coast University, where she founded the Center for Excellence in Learning, Teaching, and Assessment. She also spent nearly 10 years at eCollege, a learning management system vendor, where she lead the academic consulting and training team. Dr. Heyman holds an Ed.D. in Higher Education Leadership, with a focus on Curriculum and Instruction; an MA in Teaching of Writing; and a BA in English Writing, and is also serving as an Assessment Coach for the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA).

Kevin Grant is the Director of Student Affairs Assessment & Research at California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo. In this role, he leads and consults across the division towards strategic alignment and effective assessment practices. This role provides a critical vantage point straddling the curricular divide with one foot in Student Affairs and the other in the Academic Affairs. Kevin is a sought-after speaker, consultant and strengths-based coach with research interests in institutional efficiency, strategic structures/planning and civility.  He serves NASPA as the Region VI representative for the Assessment, Evaluation and Research Knowledge Community and is regularly involved in the accreditation work and educational programs of WSCUC.  Additionally, Kevin serves as the assessment and research lead for WITH US: The National Center for Peer Accountability and author of the Bystander Intervention Benchmark Study.  He has taught graduate research methodologies through Cal State Fullerton (most recently in Shanghai, China) and regularly presents in regional and national conferences. As a proud alumnus of the WSCUC Assessment Leadership Academy, he is honored to continue supporting and serving the assessment community.

Laura Massa serves as the Associate Vice President for Academic Programs and Accreditation Liaison Officer for Cal Poly Pomona. As the AVP for Academic Programs she provides leadership for and facilitates the planning, development and maintenance of academic programs, curriculum, and policies governing academic programs. Previously, Laura served as Director of Assessment and Accreditation Liaison Officer at Loyola Marymount University. As Director of Assessment she guided the development and implementation of a university assessment plan, provided support at LMU for core curriculum assessment, program assessment, academic program review, and program-specific accreditation. Laura’s doctorate from the University of California, Santa Barbara is in Cognitive Psychology with an emphasis in Quantitative Methods in the Social Sciences.

Carole L. Huston is Special Assistant to the Vice President of Institutional Effectiveness and Strategic Initiatives at the University of San Diego, a Professor of Communication Studies, and a consultant for a number of institutions. She has served as USD’s ALO and director of the Center for Educational Excellence, and participated in WSCUC accreditation review teams. In her more than 30 years of experience in higher education, Carole has researched and presented on many different facets of learning assessment at AI, AAC&U, AALHE, and WSCUC conferences, including competency assessments in general education, multi-institutional and multi-method assessment projects, integrative learning, program review, and assessing diversity and social justice in faith-based institutions. As an alumna, she currently co-facilitates the WSCUC Assessment Leadership Academy and serves as a co-chair of one of WSCUC’s Community of Practice institutional teams. Carole has co-authored several articles, books and book chapters on assessment, research methods, interpersonal and intercultural communication, and she contributed to the VALUE rubrics project sponsored by ACC&U.

Participants are responsible for their own hotel reservations. Kellogg West Conference Center and Lodge, located on the Cal Poly Pomona campus, is offering WSCUC workshop participants a discounted room rate of $105.00 Single $110.00 Double/night plus occupancy tax. To reserve rooms, contact the conference center at 909-869-2222. Mention “WSCUC – WASC Senior College and University Commission” to secure our group discount rate. The deadline for booking rooms in the WSCUC room block is October 1, 2018 or while rooms are available.

Registration fee includes lunch. Beverages and snacks will be available during breaks. Attendees will be on their own for all other meals.

Registration fees: $325/per team member until 10/4/18.  After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $375/per team member.

Discount for Combined Registration: Putting Data Analytics to Work: Insight, Change, and Student Success will be offered on October 18, 2018 at Kellogg West. The special rate for a combined registration for Putting Analytics to Work and The Learning Organization is $550 until 10/4/2018. After the registration deadline, if space is available, the late registration fee will be $650 /per team member.


This educational program has been developed by national and regional experts and is offered as a service to WSCUC member institutions and others who wish to learn about good practices applicable to all institutions. It is entirely optional, and our hope is that member institutions will find it helpful. WSCUC staff will be present to answer questions related specifically to accreditation expectations.

Event Details

Date: October 19, 2018 - 8:30am - 4:30pm

Fee: Free