WASC 101: The Accrediting Process Clear & Simple Richard Winn, Associate Director Stephanie Bangert, Samuel Merritt University Nandini Dasgupta, Samuel Merritt University Bill Neal, Brigham Young University, Hawaii SPONSORED BY ACSCU IN COLLABORATION WITH ACCJC
By the end of the workshop, you will:
Make sense of the three-stage review process
Draw clear distinctions among each stage of a comprehensive review
Understand recent changes in the CFRs and review process
Draw lessons from several examples of campus organization for a WASC review
The WASC accreditation focus
From inputs to processes and outputs
From numbers to meaning-making and reflection
From single measures or simple numbers to indicators of complex, nuanced, context-linked student learning
From monitoring compliance to building internal capacities around student learning
Mom! I taught Spike how to whistle! A learning-centered process . . .
But I don’t hear him whistling . . .
I said I taught him; I didn’t say he learned!
The WASC process embeds this classic cycle into the institution’s culture: 2. Measure achievement of those goals. 1. Set measurable performance goals 4. Use data and reflection to make improvements. 3. Reflect on meaning of the performance data.
Proposal Capacity and Preparatory Review Educational Effectiveness Review 2 yrs to site visit 1½ yrs to site visit Stage 3 Stage 1 Stage 2 The WASC Institutional Review Process: A Learning-Centered Review Model Institutional Learning Through Formative Feedback
How are we learning to be more effective in achieving these goals for each student and for the institution?
What is our capacity (in resources and structures) to support learning?
Are we prepared to support an evidence-based EER report?
What is our goal?
What do we want to know about our institution?
How will we go about knowing it?
How can we “own” the review process?
The Standards and CFRs apply to both reviews, but the focus differs… Capacity and Preparatory Review: Focuses on resources, systems, and infrastructure to support education and needed improvements Focuses on readiness to conduct a rigorous, data- supported Educational Effectiveness Review
Moves beyond a descriptive
summary of assessment
activities to an inquiry about
Documents results of the
to improve student and
Two Lenses on Two Reviews Applying the WASC Standards across Both Reviews The Focus for the Two Reviews:
Educational results :
Completed program reviews
Assessment results at the course, program, and institutional levels
Results of assessment of student services/ support units
Use of these results to plan for and make improvements
Infrastructure to support learning :
Stated learning outcomes
Defined levels of achievement
Program review process
Support for faculty scholarship
Support for academic and co-curricular learning
Standard 2: Achieving Educational Objectives Through Core Functions
Achievement of, or tangible progress toward meeting, institutional goals
Multiple indicators of effectiveness
Evidence of integrity
Analysis of data on diversity; use of analysis for assessment and improvement
Clear sense of institutional purpose
Integrity and good business policies and practices
Institutional and program objectives
Public accountability and transparency
Diversity plans and policies
Standard 1: Defining Institutional Purpose and Ensuring Educational Objectives Student Learning (measures of educational achievement); Institutional Learning (performance data to inform reviews; results of review processes) Capacity (purposes, integrity, stability, resources, structures, processes, policies); Preparatory (issues to forward for EE Review) Primary Focus of Each Review: Educational Effectiveness Review Capacity and Preparatory Review
The Focus for the Two Reviews (Part 2):
Engagement of leadership at all levels in learning processes
Quality improvement system results
Evidence of a learning organization
Planning processes that involve constituents and are aligned with goals
Adequate institutional research
Quality improvement systems designed in alignment with mission
Wide use of evidence in planning
Standard 4: Creating an Organization Committed to Learning and Improvement
Appropriate alignment, commitment, and use of resources to support learning
Evidence-based decision making
Effective governance and decision making
(Any “trailing issues” from the CPR report)
Adequate resources, including:
faculty and staff
policies and practices re: faculty and staff
library and information technology
Sound organizational structures and decision-making processes
Qualified and adequate administration, board, and faculty governance
Standard 3: Developing and Applying Resources and Organizational Structures to Assure Sustainability Educational Effectiveness Review Capacity and Preparatory Review
Organizing the Inquiry Deliverables : What will be the outcome of the research? What form will the product take? Deadline for delivery? Personnel: Who will be involved in the research? How will tasks be divided? How will personnel be organized? Research Methods : How will we go about obtaining the needed information? Researchable Questions : What do we want to know? Why do we want to know it? Educational Effectiveness Review Capacity & Preparatory Review Elements for Standard/CFR ______
Observations . . .
The WASC process impacts the entire institution; “quality” is an institutional value
Those leading the review effort must have considerable access to key constituencies, with clear support from administration
As with any quality effort ( e.g. ISO 9000, Baldrige Award, etc.) the WASC review can be resource intensive – but worth it!
New Requirement for CPR Reports:
Retention and graduation rates, disaggregated by student type and program
Comparisons to other institutions, where possible
Recommendations for improvement, where appropriate
1. Analysis of institutional effectiveness with regard to student success . Build on the CPR’s analysis to understand:
Success for all categories of students
2. Analysis of program review process with an emphasis on:
Programs’ achievement of student learning outcomes
Impact and alignment with other processes
3. Sustaining the effort : Updated data portfolio and evidence relevant to EER, including plan, methods, and schedule for assessment of student learning beyond EE visit.