Overview of Some Ferris Strategies

There are many kinds of assessment efforts that are an integral part of Ferris State University.

  • Program review has a long history at Ferris of providing academic programs, now including general education and pre-programs, with an opportunity to evaluate their success and challenges so that they can continue to meet the demands of the changing work world and educational needs of students.
  • Capstone courses provide programs with a concentrated opportunity for faculty to evaluate the extent to which students have achieved the learning outcomes expected by the program and whether any changes are needed in the curriculum and program to help students better meet these outcomes.
  • General education will now have an opportunity to complete an extensive self study as part of the program review process to insure that our general education program is achieving the ends expected of university graduates. There has been a long history of general education assessment including the administration of the nationally-normed Academic Profiles which allows us to compare ourselves with other institutions, the regular assessment of our students' writing, and many other assessment projects.
  • Courses assessment is a significant part of our effort to enhance student learning. Some assessment includes gathering data on multi-section courses, such as the Freshman Seminar, to determine whether the course is meeting our students' needs and they are acquiring the skills or knowledge at the levels we expect. Every course offers faculty the opportunity to assess their students' learning so that changes can be made where necessary in both content and the learning environment so that they can better achieve the course objectives.

Assessment is important because it lets us know where we can make changes that improve student learning. It is about taking effective action. Many are already working hard at assessment. Academic Affairs is committed to supporting these efforts, to facilitating quality assessment, to coordinating assessment activities and results, and to encouraging the movement from data to effective action.

last updated: July 8, 2005