In the fall of 2000 the College distributed to all departments a three-year plan for achieving Level Three Characteristics as indicated in the North Central document Levels of Assessment Implementation: Patterns of Characteristics Matrix. In order to establish a baseline, each department submitted a status report on achievement of Level Two Characteristics on November 15, 2000. All departments filed a second report in the spring of 2001. In 2002 departments filed status reports on the achievement of Level Three Characteristics. Although most departments had, for the most part, achieved Level III goals, the reports from spring 2003 indicate further progress. Some more specific, summary observations from the 2003 report follow:
- The number of sites at which departments publish explicit references to assessment is increasing; nine of ten departments include references in the Catalog.
- Departments are making changes based upon assessment results, although documentation of the effectiveness of such changes is, in many changes, still in progress.
- The inclusion of learning objectives on course syllabi is now the standard in all departments. The primary remaining problem concerns transient part-time lecturers, who sometimes have to be hired in a short time frame.
- More faculty than ever are publishing or making presentations at professional conferences on assessment and active learning strategies.
- All departments now involve students in the assessment process (other than as subjects of assessment only).
- Rewards for participation in assessment activities are entrenched in the annual review and tenure and promotion criteria and processes of departments.
- Part-time lecturers, upon which many departments rely heavily, are being integrated into the assessment process.