INSTITUTIONAL SUPPORT FOR ASSESSMENT
The President, the Provost, the Vice Presidents and the Board of Directors led in the development of an institutional plan for Continuous Quality Improvement in 1991-92. Subsequently, the Strategic Quality Planning Committee composed of the executive staff, members of the faculty's executive board and the executive committee of the board of directors, identified assessment of student academic achievement as the chief academic component of the University's Continuous Quality Improvement Initiative. In a January, 1994 strategic planning report to faculty, staff and board, President Kinnison stated:
Wittenberg's students' performance should be assessed with reference to the learning goals for general education and for each major and with reference to the mission statement of the University. Wittenberg student performance should be compared with that of students of schools in our referent group. We should use such assessment information to improve instructions and programs
Provost Greer's goals for the academic years 1994-95 and 1995-96, reviewed and approved by the President, include statements about her responsibility for implementing an assessment plan. The Provost is an ex officio member of the Faculty Committee on the Assessment of Student Academic Achievement, and the Assistant Provost for Academic Programs provides staff assistance for the committee.
In January, 1994 the Board of Directors approved the President's recommendation to allocate approximately $225,000 over the next three years to support the course development and faculty development necessary to realize the potential of the new general education program. In addition to course development activities, these funds are being used to cover the costs of on-campus workshops in assessment and support faculty attendance at assessment conferences elsewhere. In June, 1995 the Board of Directors Committee on Academic Affairs endorsed in principle this assessment plan.
The faculty Committee on Assessment, working especially with departments and inter-departmental programs and the Director of General Education, supported by the Provost and her staff, will lead the implementation of the plan. To ensure the implementation, evaluation and improvement of Wittenberg's assessment plan, the faculty Committee on Assessment has recommended: 1) that the five-year budget planning process incorporate annual allocations for assessment activities, as specified in the assessment plan, and for continuing faculty development in assessment; and 2) that the University appoint a qualified person to be responsible for institutional research as a significant portion of the position assignment and that the appointment be accompanied by allocations of appropriate equipment and reasonable office budget. It is understood that much of this person's energy would be devoted to assisting in the collection of data and conducting analyses in support of assessment.