Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges
Western Association of Schools and Colleges
Rubric for Evaluating Institutional Effectiveness – Part III: Student Learning Outcomes
Levels of
Characteristics of Institutional Effectiveness in Student Learning Outcomes
(Sample institutional behaviors)
  • There is preliminary, investigative dialogue about student learning outcomes.
  • There is recognition of existing practices such as course objectives and how they relate to student learning outcomes.
  • There is exploration of models, definitions, and issues taking place by a few people.
  • Pilot projects and efforts may be in progress.
  • The college has discussed whether to define student learning outcomes at the level of some courses or programs or degrees; where to begin.
  • College has established an institutional framework for definition of student learning outcomes(where to start), how to extend, and timeline.
  • College has established authentic assessment strategies for assessing student learning outcomes as appropriate to intended course, program, and degree learning outcomes.
  • Existing organizational structures (e.g., Senate, Curriculum Committee) are supporting strategies for student learning outcomes definition and assessment.
  • Leadership groups (e.g., Academic Senate and administration), have accepted responsibility for student learning outcomes implementation.
  • Appropriate resources are being allocated to support student learning outcomes and assessment.
  • Faculty and staff are fully engaged in student learning outcomes development.
  • Student learning outcomes and authentic assessments are in place for courses, programs, support services, certificates and degrees.
  • There is widespread institutional dialogue about the results of assessment and identification of gaps.
  • Decision-making includes dialogue on the results of assessment and is purposefully directed toward aligning institution-wide practices to support and improve student learning.
  • Appropriate resources continue to be allocated and fine-tuned.
  • Comprehensive assessment reports exist and are completed and updated on a regular basis.
  • Course student learning outcomes are aligned with degree student learning outcomes.
  • Students demonstrate awareness of goals and purposes of courses and programs in which they are enrolled.
Sustainable Continuous Quality Improvement
  • Student learning outcomes and assessment are ongoing, systematic and used for continuous quality improvement.
  • Dialogue about student learning is ongoing, pervasive and robust.
  • Evaluation of student learning outcomes processes.
  • Evaluation and fine-tuning of organizational structures to support student learning is ongoing.
  • Student learning improvement is a visible priority in all practices and structures across the college.
  • Learning outcomes are specifically linked to program reviews.