Assessment is how we determine, as a college that what we’re doing, inside and outside of the classroom, improves student learning. We have a well-established campus culture of assessment based upon collaboration, inquiry, and respect. Student learning is the most important job that any college does. However, student learning doesn’t stay the same from year to year. Courses and programs change. The demographics of our student population change. Technologies change our course delivery methods. That is why assessment planning is so important. If you have questions about assessment at RCTC, please contact Mike Mutschelknaus at email@example.com.
Faculty and staff, our assessment materials are located in the ongoing tab of your D2L Brightspace account. If you have questions about assessment, contact Mike Mutschelknaus at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our commitment to planning is reflected in our Institutional Assessment Plan (IAP), which focuses on faculty, student affairs, and college-wide assessment. The IAP is the master plan that guides all assessment at our College. 2019-2022 IAP
Assessment of student learning doesn’t just happen. We coordinate our assessment to capture the learning that happens inside and outside the classroom. Much of what we learn in college, after all, occurs outside of the classroom. That’s why assessment is a continual, ongoing process at our College. At the course level, faculty assess their individual courses (Closing the Loop) and courses with multiple sections (Gateway courses). At the program/discipline level, faculty assess at least two outcomes per year, rotating through the student learning outcomes over a period of four years. Student Affairs does the same rotation with their student learning outcomes. Finally, faculty and staff collaborate to assess our College’s four core student learning outcomes on a rotating basis as well.
|Academic Year||Course Outcomes (Faculty)||Program/Discipline Level Outcomes (Faculty)||Student Affairs Outcomes (Staff)||College Core Outcomes (Faculty& Staff)|
|2019-2020||Closing the Loop Gateway courses||Outcomes 2 and 3||Outcomes 2 and 3||Personal & Professional Accountability|
|2020-2021||Closing the Loop Gateway courses||Outcomes 3 and 4||Outcomes 3 and 4||Communication Critical Thinking|
|2021-2022||Closing the Loop Gateway courses||Outcomes 4 and 1||Outcomes 4 and 1||Critical Thinking
Global Awareness & Diversity
|2022-2023||Closing the Loop Gateway courses||Outcomes 1 and 2||Outcomes 1 and 2||Global Awareness & Diversity
Personal & Professional Accountability
Assessment levels provides details about our assessment structure.
Essential Learning Outcomes provides a visual overview of how our assessments fit together.
Student learning outcomes (SLOs), quite simply, are the skills and abilities we strive to instill in our students. Our SLOs are focused, specific, and measurable. In order to make sure our students are learning, we—as a college—must be able to specify and measure what we want our students to learn. That’s why assessment outcomes are so important.
- College assessment: Faculty and staff use Essential Learning Outcomesto improve the student experience at our College. We have four College Core Outcomes that we assess inside and outside the classroom.
- Course assessment: Our common course outlineshave SLOs that faculty use to assess student learning in their individual courses and in shared courses as well. Sections of the same course that are taught by many faculty—such as speech, psychology, and freshman composition—are examples of shared courses. These assessments improve courses.
- Program and discipline assessment: Faculty assess their curriculum with program/discipline learning outcomes. These outcomes are available on each program/discipline home page. Degrees, certificates, and course sequences are all examples of the curriculum. These assessments improve our multiple-course sequences.
Evidence of Student Learning: We have proof our students are world-class learners. It’s not enough to assess student learning within our college. We also want to know how our students use that learning once they graduate. We want to know that they have the necessary skills to achieve their goals. We have that evidence. Here are some examples.
- The Practical Nursing and Associate Degree Nursing programs consistently pass the national licensure exam above the state and national averages. The PN program was ranked #1 in the State of Minnesota and the AD nursing program was ranked #6 in the State. Both programs have continuing accreditation from the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) through 2028.
- Since 2015, 97% of students (117/120) in RCTC's Facilities and Service Technology (FAST) program have scored at or higher than the national average on the National Occupational Competency Testing Institute (NOCTI) assessment for buildings, utilities, and maintenance.
- Since 2015, all RCTC carpentry students (55 total) have scored higher than the national average on the NOCTI Carpentry Assessment.
- The pass rates for the Surgical Technology exam were 100% in 2019 (20/20), 77% in 2018 (17/22), and 100% in 2018 (19/19).
- In 2019 10 RCTC graduates took the Registered Health Information Technician (RHIT) exam and 10 passed on their first attempt, resulting in a 100% pass rate. The national average for the same period is 76%. Additionally, RCTC scored above the national average in all 6 domain areas.
- The pass rates for the Certified Tumor Registrar (CTR) Exam for the Cancer Registry Management Program (CRM) was 83% in 2019, 100% in 2018, 100% in 2017.
- There have been 26 graduates of the CRM program and 18 have taken the CTR National Exam. As part of the assessment for a transcultural nursing course, for example, one student commented,
“This trip taught me to follow my passion. It reinforced that we have differences, but we all love, grieve, and are all human. This taught me that patient care should be individualized but our basic needs are all similar and how nursing is the heart of healthcare.”
Assessing student learning takes time, energy, and people. That’s why our college makes sure we have the necessary resources to further our efforts on behalf of student learning. We have a dedicated Assessment of Student Learning Committee. Our administration is committed to embedding a culture of assessment. Our faculty and staff care deeply about assessing student learning because learning is how we help our students have bright futures. Here’s how we help our faculty and staff.
- We systematically keep track of all our assessment data in the IAP with Taskstream, a subsidiary of Watermark.
- Faculty Instructional Development Grants (FIDG) provide stipends for faculty engaged in assessment projects.
- We rely upon the collected repositories of wisdom from the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment and the Association of American Colleges and Universities.