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Amcoa+meeting+minutes+6 27-11


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Amcoa+meeting+minutes+6 27-11

  1. 1. Minutes of the Second AMCOA Meeting, June 27, 2011Prepared by Kerry McNallyHost Campus: Northern Essex Community CollegeI. AttendanceThe second AMCOA meeting was hosted by Northern Essex CommunityCollege from 10:00 a.m.-12:00 Noon on June 27, 2011. Representativesfrom 26 institutions attended the meeting (See list in Appendix A), aswell as , Peggy Maki, Consultant under the Davis Educational FoundationGrant awarded to the Department of Higher Education, who alsochaired the meeting, and Kerry McNally, Administrative Assistant for theAMCOA project.II. NECC President-to-be Lane Glenn Opening RemarksDr. Glenn welcomed the AMCOA Project Team and stressed theimportance of the work that the Project encompasses. He isknowledgeable about learning outcomes and acknowledged that thereare challenges of looking at them as a university system versus locally.Assessment is important work, and critical thinking an important goal ofan education. Although the goals and changes may at times seemdaunting, Dr. Glenn stated that the University system should“continually be moving in the direction of the ideal,” quoting RichardPaul.1
  2. 2. III. Peggy introduced Kerry McNally to the AMCOA Team, as the AMCOAProject’s new Administrative Assistant.IV. Update and feedback on September 30thConference planning – KrisBendikas, ChairPeggy asked Team Members to invite colleagues, especially faculty, toattend the September 30thConference. Peggy said that she will notifythe Presidents and Vice Presidents.Kris Bendikas gave her presentation of the Conference’s PlanningRecommendations, a copy of which is attached to these minutes asAppendix B, along with Ellen Wentland’s suggested outcomes for theSeptember 30thConference, Appendix C. Kris emphasized thatpartnerships should be overarching for all conferences andrecommended concurrent partnership-type sessions.Peggy agreed to be the keynote speaker for the Conference and anyconcurrent sessions.Kris said that it is critical that the LEAP program be explained toparticipants at the Conference. Rumors are circulating thatMassachusetts is becoming a LEAP state, which may not be true, and if itis, what does it mean?Kris further recommended collaborative models for faculty and IRassessment staff.2
  3. 3. Based on the recommendation of the conference planning group, Peggyasked if the AMCOA Team felt she should invite Jonathan Keller fromthe Department of Higher Education to speak about his work at anAMCOA Team meeting or at the Conference. The group agreed that sheshould.Kris brought up the fact that NSSE and CSSE data with other data arebeing used on campuses. Could something like the Keene State Modelbe done in Massachusetts?Some additional topics included:1. Models that link curricular and co-curricular learning2. Articulation of Achievement Levels3. Gainful Employment ReportingIn conclusion, we need to get baseline information on what people aredoing now, focus on collaborations between faculty and assessmentpeople, discuss what LEAP means, and define how to use learningoutcomes to make changes.Peggy polled Team Members to see which aspects of the Planningrecommendations proposal should be adopted. Additional Teamcomments are listed below:1. The Team agreed that partnership and community are essentialin the process of improving assessments.3
  4. 4. 2. The Team agreed to the idea of concurrent sessions.3. Team members said that people are not clear on what LEAPmeans and that education about what it means at the IR andfaculty levels is critical. Presidents, Chief Academic Officers,Faculty, and IR people should all be made aware of it. Thereshould be discussions about it with faculty, academic affairsofficers and the co-curricular side. Peggy emphasized that LEAPdoes not prescribe curriculum; rather it identifies the 15 mostprevalent learning outcomes for General Education that arosefrom a survey of institutions across the US. An institutiondetermines how it addresses some of these outcomes in its coreor General Education based on its mission and purposes.4. Members feel that campuses need an introduction to theprocess of addressing LEAP outcomes and using VALUE rubricsand will need time to adjust to the LEAP concept to see who willparticipate. In fact, several AMCOA members stated that it isimportant to explain how LEAP emerged since many people donot understand its origin as the work of AAC&U. Some facultymembers equate LEAP with NCLB (No Child Left Behind) anddismiss the idea, so more work needs to be done with faculty tohelp them understand that LEAP provides a national frameworkfor identifying and assessing the most common learningoutcomes that US higher education identifies it preparesstudents to achieve.5. Peggy asked if any of the Team Members were using LEAP ontheir campuses. Of the institutions represented at the meeting,Holyoke Community College, Greenfield Community College,Salem State, and Worcester State are using or beginning to useLEAP on their campuses. The AMCOA Team stated it would beuseful to have Team Members from these campuses describetheir experience with LEAP.4
  5. 5. 6. One Team Member commented that IR/Assessment people areinterested in the assessment process, how it is reported anddone, but faculty are not. The IR/Assessment perspective ismore aggregate, while the faculty perspective in evaluatingstudents is more individual.7. Faculty should have a presence in the planning process becauseof what they can learn.8. One Team Member said that there is a separation betweenfaculty who are using the LEAP process and IR assessors who aredoing it. This does not work if they are not doing it together.What works on some campuses that could grow on others? IRoffices are often viewed as data receptacles.9. One Team Member feels that we should be focusing on wherewe are and not the “Beyond.” Beyond signifies change, learninga new process, more work, etc. Defining where we are feelsmore comfortable for now.10. It is important to inform faculty about changing processes earlyon. Faculty express anxiety about programs imposed from thetop down; thus they need to be included in the process.11. “What the faculty wants for assessment” would be more invitingfor a faculty meeting than organizing a LEAP meeting for them.12. In the Working Group Report, there is trend data.13. Peggy stressed that LEAP does not impose a curriculum on acampus or dictate pedagogy; rather it identifies the 15 mostprevalent outcomes that campuses across the US address intheir GE or core curriculum. Peggy is willing to lead a panel toexplain LEAP.14. “Liberal Education and America’s Promise (LEAP)” would be agood info session for faculty.5
  6. 6. 15. Make LEAP part of a collaborative model, rather than separate.16. It is important to distinguish among the kinds of reports that IRprepares—from retention data to student performance data.17. It is important to present assessment changes to faculty. Howdo we present developments to them?18. The issue of using commercially developed software forassessment was also raised. Peggy stated that there are at least15 commercial designers of assessment management systemsseveral of which incorporate eportfolio capacity. A session onthis would be useful for faculty and IR professionals to learnabout as a way to centrally store assessment data and deriveevidence of student learning.V. Datesa. AMCOA meetings. Below are the dates for future AMCOA meetingsfor fall, 2011. Sites have not been determined yet. Peggy requestedmembers to consider hosting future meetings.i. No July meetingii. Thursday, August 18thiii. Wednesday, September 14th(perhaps at a central location)iv. Tuesday, October 18thv. Wednesday, November 9thvi. No December meeting for now. Peggy will revisit the need forthis month’s meeting in the fall.6
  7. 7. b. Three Statewide or regional conferences. Sites have not beendetermined.i. Thursday, November 17th. It would be good if this were ineither the Eastern or Western Region.ii. Thursday, February 9th. This should be in the opposite regionfrom the November meeting.iii. Monday, April 23rd.VI. Chairs and Planning Committees for three statewide or regionalconferences. Stipend for Chairs.Peggy will e-mail members to see which campuses can host the futuremeetings and conferences and who might be interested in chairing eachof the three other conferences planned for 2011-2012.VII. A National Development in Assessing Student LearningPeggy distributed a chart and written description of the proposedUndergraduate Degree Profile developed by for work students shouldproduce at the end of their associate’s, bachelors’ and master’s levels.The UDP is currently being piloted in two accrediting associations and theCouncil of Independent Colleges; it is informed by LEAP.I specificallyidentifies 5 areas of student performance: applied knowledge,intellectual achievement, specialized knowledge, broad integrativeknowledge, and civic learning. Peggy issued a caveat that the pilotprogram is still being tested, so it is unknown how it will pan out. In7
  8. 8. particular, the focus on students’ knowing a second language may be anissue since that is not a requirement at many institutions, Others haveinterpreted “a second language” as referring to non-native learners whoneed to demonstrate knowledge of English.VIII. Foci of First Statewide Report on OutcomesPeggy reported that Commissioner Freeland has requested thatinstitutions initially report on students’ achievement under generaleducation in three areas: critical thinking, writing, and quantitativereasoning because these are the most common outcomes thatinstitutions prepare students to demonstrate.IX. Foci of Future AMCOA MeetingsPeggy stated that we may use future meetings to focus on specificactivities or topics such as discussing the kinds of assignments andstudent responses to those assignments that demonstrate students’achievement of critical thinking, writing, and quantitative reasoning atthe end of their studies. Based on our further discussions we may decideto offer sessions at our conferences that bring people together to discussassignments and perhaps score them. One of the Team remindedparticipants to obtain students’ permission for using their work atAMCOA meetings/conferences to respect their privacy rights. There maybe other foci that AMCOA members would like to address at our monthlymeetings. Given that time ran out, we will return to this topic at our nextmeeting.The next AMCOA meeting will take place on August 18thfrom 10:00a.m.-12:00 Noon. A campus has not yet been selected for this meeting.Peggy Maki will send an agenda and driving directions to the site one8
  9. 9. week before the meeting. Please let Kerry know as soon as possible ifyou plan to attend the meeting or cannot.Mark Your Calendars: September 30, 2011: First StatewideAssessment Conference at Worcester State University9
  10. 10. Appendix AInstitutions Represented at the AMCOA June 27thMeeting:Berkshire Community CollegeBridgewater State UniversityBunker Hill Community CollegeCape Cod Community CollegeFitchburg State UniversityFramingham State UniversityGreenfield Community CollegeMassachusetts College of Art and DesignMassachusetts College of Liberal ArtsMassachusetts Maritime AcademyMassasoit Community CollegeMassBay Community CollegeMiddlesex Community CollegeMount Wachusett Community CollegeNorth Shore Community CollegeNorthern Essex Community CollegeQuinsigamond Community CollegeRoxbury Community CollegeSalem State UniversitySpringfield Technical Community CollegeUniversity of Massachusetts AmherstUniversity of Massachusetts BostonUniversity of Massachusetts LowellUniversity of Massachusetts Presidents OfficeWestfield State UniversityWorcester State University10
  11. 11. Appendix BAMCOA Planning Group recommendations• “Partnerships” should be an overarching theme for all four conferences.o There are a number of partnerships that need to occur as part of assessment:academic -co-curricular, faculty-IR and Assessment, campus-community., etc.o This theme is recommended as being of importance to achieving our individualand collective assessment and improvement goals.• If possible, the conference should be organized with concurrent sessions so that everyonecan attend all the sessions.• The conference should begin with a Keynote address (Peggy?) to frame the theme of“partnership.”• Discussion session: “LEAP and Beyond”o Include an initial discussion about LEAP and the Lumina Degree Profile at thisconference, with follow up in subsequent conferenceso The BHE has recommended that Massachusetts become a LEAP state, but there isstill uncertainty about what that means for campuses and the system• Presentation Session: Collaborative models for faculty-IR-assessmento These roles require very distinctive skills sets. How can they work together mostproductively? What collaborative models are working for campuses?o What are the particular difficulties on smaller campuses when two or more rolesare filled by the same person?• Discussion session with Jonathon Keller, DHEo An invitation for him to speak about the challenges of mining and reporting data,particularly in the context of the expectations of the Vision Project• Presentation session: Identifying models for using NSSE/CSSE datao How can this data be triangulated with other data to support change? Whatmodels have campuses used to mine, review and report on this data?11
  12. 12. • Presentation session: Reviewing the selection of commercially developed assessmentinstruments as well as data gathering, analyzing and reporting instruments availableo Although the Working Group has not endorsed standardized testing as part of theVision Project, campuses that want to use commercially developed tools have amultitude of choices.o Which ones have been used? Which ones have been supported by faculty? Howwell have they worked?Additional topics were generated, but were thought more suited to the conferences that willinvolve faculty more directly. They are:• Developing models that would link curricular and co-curricular learningo Describing Best Practice models of collaborationo Identifying ways to increase collaboration and learning about the benefits ofdoing so.• Articulating Achievement Levelso Determining what a shared outcome would look likeo Exploring the pros and cons of moving towards shared criteria/benchmarkso Developing a process for moving that forward that with another institution• Gainful Employment Reportingo The requirements for reporting are not yet clear, but sharing information aboutwhat and how information could be collected to serve this and other assessmentpurposes at the same time would be helpful.12
  13. 13. Appendix CAMCOA Conference, September 30, 2011EW Suggested Outcomes – 6/21/1113
  14. 14. Session ideas Details from Yammer feed Possible outcomes - Participants will be able to:Collaborative models in MA In what ways can these groups work together? What models orexamples of collaboration exist in Massachusetts? I have a sensethat the assessment component, on many campuses, is the newerpiece. How can that work be informed by IR data, and possiblyvice versa? What might be an example, given the very specifictasks that must be accomplished by IR, of a "best practices" IR/assessment partnership? For us to be able to report results ofassessment we will need to agree on shared criteria and standardsof judgment.• Identify and describe models of IR/ Assessmentcollaboration that support and enhance theeffectiveness of campus outcomes assessmentefforts.• Apply some of the tools and processes identified inthe successful collaborative models to strengthenIR/ Assessment connections towards the goal ofexpanding and coordinating information sourcesrelevant to outcomes assessment and evaluation.Articulating achievementlevelsVery related to this scoring issue is the issue of criteria orarticulation of achievement levels. Although I think a first stepfor each institution, for the purpose of creating ownership, is theidentification of their own outcomes and of description whatthose outcomes should "look like", it is also the case that most ofus will define similar outcomes and similar levels of desiredachievement. Do we want to move towards sharedcriteria/benchmarks for student expand »• Develop a plan for identifying and/or creatinginstitutional-level clear, specific and measurablelearning outcomes.• Identify for each developed institutional-leveloutcome the specific assessment methods to be usedand the achievement criteria that will be applied.• Prepare a summary description of the institutionallevel work for the purposes of cross-institutionsharing and collaboration.• Discuss the pros and cons of developing sharedcriteria and benchmarks.Gainful employmentreportingOne issue facing all of us is the issue of "gainful employment,"and the requirement that for financial aid we will need tosomehow document the employment of our students. This mayfall to IR offices, or assessment offices, or other entities.• Discuss the issues and the specifics involved in thefinancial aid requirement• Determine how to best institutionally address thisrequirement in a way that serves multiple purposesand contributes to outcomes assessment workTriangulating NSSE/CSSEdata with other indicatorsWe could look at NSSE/CCSSE data and discuss ways totriangulate this data with other indicators of student achievementon our campuses.• Discuss some of the specific items included in theNSSE/CCSSE instrument with respect to theirrelationship with other campus outcomes measuresor achievement indicators.• Identify possible models that would provide a wayto include and consider the information gatheredfrom multiple indicators/ methods.Linking curricular and co-curricular learningAnother topic for a conference for Assessment Directors, IRfolks, and faculty might focus on linking of curricular and co-curricular learning towards more comprehensive studentachievement of an institutions Gen Ed SLOs.• Describe models of collaboration between thecurricular and co- curricular areas that havedemonstrated effectiveness in terms of campus-widelearning outcomes assessment.• Identify ways to increase curricular and co-curricular collaborations, thereby enhancing theinstitutional – level assessment efforts.• Describe the benefits of these types of institutionalcollaborations/partnerships.14
  15. 15. “Effective Practices in..."15