The unit’s assessment processes are created to be linked to outcomes, goals, and objectives as summarized in the conceptual framework. Faculty members or core program faculty create assessments and evaluate them using these four criteria: reliability, content validity, usability, and fairness of the assessment.
Major assessments included in the SED Assessment System are subject to periodic review by the Assessment Advisory Council using the same four criteria. Members include educational professionals from outside of the SED (a College of Arts and Sciences faculty member, local school principals, and a regional education director). Recommendations are sent to program faculty for their review.
The assessment of candidates, programs, and the unit follows a regular cycle. Throughout the year, faculty evaluate assessment rubrics and do gateway progress checks of candidates. Candidate dispositions are evaluated either at key gateways or annually, depending on the program. Data for each program are aggregated and compiled at the end of each school year. The SED Annual Assessment Report is produced by the end of the summer and shared with faculty. Any changes for program and unit improvement are drafted and voted on by SED faculty in early fall in time for the new Andrews University Bulletin. (See illustration of the SED Annual Assessment Cycle.)
The feedback loop consists of formative feedback, plans for improvement, summative feedback, evaluation decisions, and revision and renewal. The sequence of these elements leads toward improved candidate outcomes and may be recursive. For example, summative feedback leads to making evaluation decisions, which may lead back to further plans for improvement. The decisions may also lead to candidates’ advancement through program gateways, faculty/staff members’ advancement on the salary scale or in rank, administrators’ advancement on the salary scale, or revisions of SED programs. In any case, these evaluation decisions are treated as stepping-stones to re-visioning and renewing the unit’s persons and programs. After proposals are developed for re-visioning or renewing the unit’s programs, these plans are shared with key stakeholders in the programs. These stakeholders may provide corrective feedback that leads to re-thinking these plans. Eventually the feedback from the unit’s partners helps ensure that the unit maintains quality programs for the preparation of teachers and other school personnel.
The SED gathers follow-up information on all programs and their candidates by conducting exit interviews or surveys, alumni surveys, and employer surveys. Exit interviews or surveys are conducted by some programs or departments prior to candidates’ graduation. These are conducted either as a part of an exit interview or as an online survey. The SED conducts surveys of all SED alumni two years and four years after they graduate from their programs. Surveys of employers of all alumni are also conducted two years and four years after graduation. The alumni and employer surveys are conducted either online or via mail. Some SED programs also conduct their own alumni and employer surveys at intervals determined by the program faculty.
Three different entities are responsible for managing the assessment of unit operations: the Provost, the SED Dean, and the Director of Human Resources. The Provost is responsible for managing the processes related to evaluation of the dean. The official records for the Administrator Performance Review are kept in the office of the Provost. The SED Dean is responsible for managing the processes related to budget accountability and chair evaluations. Official budget records and the Faculty Annual Report documentation for chairs are kept in the office of the SED Dean. The Director of Human Resources is responsible for managing the processes related to support staff evaluations. Official records of support staff evaluations are kept in the Human Resources Department.
The SED Dean is also responsible for the assessment of unit operations that relate to overall program quality. The SED Assessment Director, under direction from the SED Dean, collects and compiles data to get an overview of the quality of all SED programs and the accomplishment of goals on the unit’s Conceptual Framework. The SED Assessment Director prepares an Annual Assessment Report, which includes data from alumni and employer follow-up surveys and from each of the SED programs. The SED Annual Assessment Report is first shared with the SED Assessment Committee, then with all SED faculty at a regular faculty meeting. After this, it is presented to the Teacher Education Council, which is attended by other stakeholders, including faculty who teach content areas in the College of Arts and Sciences, local K-12 school teachers and principals, and local K-12 educational superintendents.