Assessment Procedures

Assessment at NMU is important for both academic and service departments.  For academic departments, the assessment focus is “student learning”, to ensure that our students are learning what our curriculum indicates they have been taught.  For service units, the assessment emphasis is “efficiency and effectiveness” of operations to support and facilitate student learning.  Assessment is directly related to the Systems Portfolio document prepared every four years.

Academic Program Assessment of Learning

All academic departments should have an approved Assessment of Learning Plan on file with Academic Affairs. The Plan includes Learning Outcomes (objectives) and Means of Assessment (procedural methods, instruments and/or rubrics). Annually, departments submit Assessment of Learning Reports containing Summary of data (results) and Actions taken based on data (changes for improvement).  The data collected and actions taken based upon it are the most important aspects of assessment of learning.

  1. A Guide to Academic Assessment of Learning (2012) defines terms, includes the evaluation rubric and provides samples from a variety of NMU programs.
  2. Academic Report Template(2012). To respond to criticism on feedback clarity and consistency, the evaluation rubric is now embedded into the template. Departments can self-evaluate their Plans and Reports. When departments realize they do not meet the rubric's expectations, they may contact their assigned Assessment Committee liaison for help or ask for specific suggestions within their submitted Plan or Report.
  3. Submit reports via NMU SHARE (http://share.nmu.edu) using your NMU userid/password. Select the Outcomes Assessment Academic Depts link. The deadline is November 1. Some departments awaiting external data may need an extension until December 1.
  4. The Academic Department Assessment of Learning Committee reviews the reports and provides comments to the department.  Approved Plans and annual Reports are posted within this website. The full logical procedure is documented in Academic Units Annual Assessment of Learning Procedure(2012).

NOTE: Further resources are available under the Resources menu at the left. Samples of NMU program objectives organized by category (career prep, communication, critical thinking, discipline knowledge, discipline skill, global/diversity)

Service Units

Service units submit both an outcomes assessment report, describing their efforts to improve their department over the past fiscal year (July 1 through June 30), and a plan describing departmental improvements for the upcoming fiscal year. 

  1.  It is most helpful when units create plans to address areas of the Systems Portfolio identified as needing improvement. The areas are listed in the AQIP Systems Appraisal.
  2. Plan and Report Template (v. 2012)
  3. Instructions/Guide (2012) - includes samples
  4. Submit reports via NMU SHARE (http://share.nmu.edu) using your NMU userid/password. Select the Outcomes Assessment Service Depts link. The deadline is July 1.
  5. The Service Unit Assessment Committee reviews the reports and plans and provides feedback to the department based upon this Service Unit Outcomes Assessment Plans and Reports Scoring Rubric. Approved plans and reports for Service Units are posted in this website.