Monday, March 5, 2012

Quantifying the Un-Quantified

Greetings Commissioneers!

As I struggle with the request for assessment data on my campus, I've found myself (yet again) in a very familiar place--wondering how to quantify qualitative results. When Associate/Assistant Provosts/Deans/Presidents ask "what students taking away from meetings with advisors," they are usually uninterested in anecdotal responses. So, we're left with the chore of producing some sort of quantitative data to show students are mastering concepts in our learning outcomes. This is an issue across the advising continuum and not just one for U/E advising units, but I thought we could benefit from a conversation here despite the universality of the issue.

So, what do some of you do? Do you have U/E-specific learning outcomes? If so, what methods do you have in place to deliver an advising curriculum in support of those outcomes? And how is the student's mastery of the outcomes measured--are there assignments they complete, how are they collected, what is done with the data, etc?

OK, dazzle me with your knowledge, Commissioneers!