Yo San University Assessment
Assessment involves a cyclical process of integrating appropriate measures into all University processes for the purpose of informing and improving practice. Data for the sake of data collection is meaningless and useless. Data need to be analyzed, discussed and formulated by stakeholders into actions that result in improved practice. A comprehensive assessment plan is necessary for the continued success of Yo San University. First and foremost an effective assessment system will assist administrators and faculty in the process of further enhancing student learning. Secondly, the presence of a comprehensive assessment plan will assist external bodies such as our accrediting agency, ACAOM, and others in their tasks of discerning our accomplishments and challenges.
This report is intended to provide a summary of assessment activities at Yo San University from 2007 through mid 2014. It will also provide direction for the function of assessment as the University moves forward into the next ten years. This report will approach assessment from a comprehensive perspective. The achievement of stated educational objectives will provide the focus for the assessment and improvement of all factors in the YSU environment including curriculum, instruction, faculty, student affairs, administration, governance, and community relations.
Current Status: Assessment 2007-2014
Since the issuance of the 2006 ACAOM accreditation report and recommendations Yo San University has engaged in many activities that relate directly to the processes of assessment. Those activities are highlighted in the timeline below:
- 2007 Biennial Student Survey, Faculty Survey, Clinic Survey and Alumni Survey were administered.
- 2007: YSU Board of Trustees retreat included review of the YSU mission and educational objectives statements.
- 2007: Assessment of Qi Development Program was initiated.
- 2007: First Comprehensive Examination process initiated.
- 2007: One on one counseling initiated for students on probation.
- 2008: Tutor program budget expanded considerably
- 2008-2009: Julie Nyquist provided consultation to the Yo San University Administration regarding Assessment issues and processes.
- June 2009: Assessment and Action sessions added to the agenda of the weekly Administrative Staff meeting.
- 2009: Biennial Student survey, Faculty Survey, Clinic Survey and Alumni Survey were administered.
- July 2009: Faculty survey specific to educational objectives was administered.
- July 2009: Ed Mervine appointed as interim Coordinator of Assessment
- January 2010: Tora Opapan appointed as Coordinator of Assessment
- February 2010: Student survey specific to educational objectives was administered.
- February 2010: Academic Standards Committee initiated a year long process of curriculum review
- April 2011: Program Assessment of DAOM Curriculum and Processes initiated with the graduation of the first DAOM Cohort.
- February 2012: External Assessment of DAOM Capstone Projects initiated and completed.
- March 2013: External Assessment of DAOM Program by ACAOM Accreditaiton Site Team initiated and completed.
Table 1 below lists the Assessment Activities that have been engaged at Yo San University since 2006:
Program Administrative Review
- Course/Faculty Evaluations
- Retention/Enrollment Studies
- Administrative Staff Meeting Survey
- New Student Survey
- Student Survey
- Exit Data
- Alumni Survey
- Clinic Survey
- Grade Distributions
- First Comprehensive Examination
- Pre-Clinical Examination
- Graduation Examination
- California Acupuncture Board Pass Rate Data
- Alumni Survey
- Faculty Survey regarding Educational Objectives
- Student Survey regarding Educational Objectives
Yo San University needs an integrated plan for campus-wide assessment of all university functions with focus on the outcome of learning objectives. In generating an integrated assessment plan YSU should adhere to the principles of good practice as articulated by the American Association of Higher Education. Those principles include the following:
- Assessment is linked to educational values. There should be a direct line from institutional goals and mission to campus-level student learning outcomes.
- Assessment is most effective when it reflects an understanding of learning as multi-dimensional, integrated, and revealed in performance over time.
- Assessment works best when the programs it seeks to improve have clear, explicitly stated purposes.
- Assessment requires attention to outcomes but also and equally to the experiences that lead to those outcomes.
- Assessment works best when it is ongoing not episodic.
- Assessment fosters wider improvement when representatives from across the educational community are involved.
- Assessment makes a difference when it begins with issues of use and illuminates questions that people really care about.
- Assessment is most likely to lead to improvement when it is part of a larger set of conditions that promote change.
- Through assessment, educators meet responsibilities to students and to the public.
The Next Steps:
This section will provide a framework for moving forward in the process of actualizing a culture of assessment at Yo San University. We we must acknowledge that assessment is a community responsibility including faculty, administrators and all other stakeholders. As a community wide effort assessment must be comprehensive, systemic (affects the whole institution) and systematic (intentional rather than ad hoc). Assessment findings must be put into practice with assessment data used to implement improvements in student learning. We must seek to employ multiple measures in assessment processes whenever possible.. The process of triangulation enhances the reliability of findings and recognizes the multi-dimensional nature of student learning. Our efforts in the arena of assessment must be transparent. Community members should be aware of learning outcomes, data generated regarding those outcomes and plans for change and improvement. Finally assessment needs to be supported with appropriate staff and resources.
To promote a culture of assessment at Yo San University the following steps have been be engaged and need to be supported:
- The Administrative Staff Meeting with its regularly established “Assessment and Action” agenda item serves as the primary meeting point for the facilitation of assessment processes as well as for the implementation of refinements for the improvement of student learning.
- Efforts have been initiated to refine the range of assessment instruments and processes now in place, so that they are more closely aligned with the YSU educational objectives.
- Faculty/Department Chair meetings regularly include agenda items that focus on assessment data that relate to the achievement of educational objectives and refinements in curricular and teaching/learning processes that relate to those objectives
- The role of “Coordinator of Assessment” has been defined and an appointment has been made. (Tora Flint).
- The YSU Board of Trustees should receive and review reports from the President that include items with focus on assessment processes and subsequent improvements.
Assessment Flow Chart: