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Program Evaluation and Assessment: Integrating Methods, Process, and Culture
Unformatted Document Text:  develops in its students. I recommend that departments not let this become a time-consuming effort. Looking at the websites of other universities and the American Political Science Association and keeping the statement of goals and objectives pretty simple can assist in moving on to assessment without getting bogged down. Make it clear that the program will revisit the goals and objectives statements as faculty continue their discussions. Many programs find it most helpful to revise statements of goals and objectives after their discussion of assessment results because this dialogue almost always produces substantive discussion of what the faculty wants its students to know and be able to do. Multiple measures Recommended methods range from quantitative to qualitative and from assessing individual students to evaluating programs and campus environments. While Table 1 above includes a lot of specific examples of various types of assessments, there is no attempt to provide an exhaustive list. Rather, the table seeks to help readers understand several types of instruments that fit under each of the categories. Whether the program is hurriedly crafting an initial cycle of assessment to meet a self- study deadline or is developing a comprehensive, long-term assessment system, using multiple measures is essential. For example, accepting a national exam as your entire assessment system will provide you with a summative evaluation of student knowledge. However, the program needs additional types of assessment information to know how to interpret the results and what reforms to advance. By using multiple measures, you can get information on both educational processes and outcomes. One without the other is not nearly as useful. Politically, multiple instruments help the program respond to the methodological preferences of faculty. Decision makers should make it clear that no decisions will be made based on a single data point thus 10

Authors: Young, Candace.
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develops in its students. I recommend that departments not let this become a time-consuming
effort. Looking at the websites of other universities and the American Political Science
Association and keeping the statement of goals and objectives pretty simple can assist in moving
on to assessment without getting bogged down. Make it clear that the program will revisit the
goals and objectives statements as faculty continue their discussions. Many programs find it
most helpful to revise statements of goals and objectives after their discussion of assessment
results because this dialogue almost always produces substantive discussion of what the faculty
wants its students to know and be able to do.
Multiple measures
Recommended methods range from quantitative to qualitative and from assessing
individual students to evaluating programs and campus environments. While Table 1 above
includes a lot of specific examples of various types of assessments, there is no attempt to provide
an exhaustive list. Rather, the table seeks to help readers understand several types of instruments
that fit under each of the categories.
Whether the program is hurriedly crafting an initial cycle of assessment to meet a self-
study deadline or is developing a comprehensive, long-term assessment system, using multiple
measures is essential. For example, accepting a national exam as your entire assessment system
will provide you with a summative evaluation of student knowledge. However, the program
needs additional types of assessment information to know how to interpret the results and what
reforms to advance. By using multiple measures, you can get information on both educational
processes and outcomes. One without the other is not nearly as useful. Politically, multiple
instruments help the program respond to the methodological preferences of faculty. Decision
makers should make it clear that no decisions will be made based on a single data point thus
10


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