In order to facilitate assessment and the reporting of our results, our division has implemented an assessment planning process. Assessment Committee Representatives worked closely with their departmental colleagues to develop an assessment plan that accurately represented the goals and desired outcome of their department.
The process started with representatives and their colleagues revisiting the Mission and Vision of their department and evaluating whether any revisions were appropriate. Based on the mission, vision, and any already established goals, assessment committee members were tasked with generating a list of Goals that their department wanted to work toward. This process took about a month.
After the list of goals were established, committee members were tasked with generating outcomes related to their goals. For the purposes of this plan, only three outcomes needed to be established. Once the outcomes had been established, the committee member needed to complete the remaining requested information to determine exactly how we expected to measure and evaluate their outcomes within the restraints of our assessment cycle. This information includes but is not limited to a timeline for data collection, a desired performance threshold, and plan action steps for the possible results. This process took approximately 1-2 months.
If there were any outcomes for which the process for gathering the data did not already exist, we worked collaboratively to establish those processes. In some cases, this meant that our threshold for performance during year one was to establish the process (in subsequent cycles, these thresholds were/will be adjusted). The timeline for establishing these processes varied based on what work was already being done and how difficult the process was to implement. With all new processes, there were instances where we chose to investigate a method that was not ideal and did not work as expected. As such, some processes were established in the matter of weeks while others are still being established.
At the end of each assessment cycle, we evaluate our results and make necessary adjustments to the plan based on our action steps. In this way, the plan is a living document that will evolve after each assessment cycle.
While our intention is to always improve our services, there may be a point in which the assessment of an outcome becomes automatic: we continue to track this outcome but there is little room to improve. In these instances, we will need to restart the process at Step Two to develop additional methods for measuring progress towards our goals.