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Assessment Essentials: Planning, Implementing, and Improving Assessment in Higher Education

ISBN: 978-0-7879-4180-2
432 pages
May 1999, Jossey-Bass
Assessment Essentials: Planning, Implementing, and Improving Assessment in Higher Education (0787941808) cover image
This is a one-volume Assessment 101....A comprehensive, useful introduction for novices and a valuable review and update for veterans.
--Thomas A. Angelo, associate professor and director, The Assessment Center, School for New Learning, DePaul University

This step-by-step guide provides the most current practices for developing assessment programs on college and university campuses. Assessment Essentials outlines the assessment process from the first to the last step and is filled with illustrative examples to show how assessment is accomplished on today's academic campuses. It is especially useful for faculty members and others who may be new to the assessment process. In clear, accessible language, Palomba and Banta describe effective assessment programs and offer a thorough review of the most up-to-date practices in the field.

Each chapter of the book addresses a specific aspect of assessment and is designed to walk users through various steps of the assessment process. This comprehensive resource shows how to:
* Develop plans and goals that are right for the needs of an individual campus
* Encourage involvement and support from students, faculty, alumni, and employees
* Select useful methods and approaches
* Use the most advantageous performance measures
* Develop tests and classroom assignments
* Choose appropriate surveys and focus groups
* Accurately assess general education, campus environments, and student experiences
* Effectively analyze, report, and use the assessment results
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The Essentials of Successful Assessment.

Developing Definitions, Goals, and Plans.

Encouraging Involvement in Assessment.

Selecting Methods and Approaches.

Using Performance Measures and Portfolios for Assessment.

Using Tests, Classroom Assignments, and Classroom Assessment.

Listening to Students' Voices.

Relating Assessment to the World of Work.

Assessing General Education.

Assessing Campus Environments and Student Experiences.

Reporting and Using Assessment Results.

A Matter of Choices.
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CATHERINE A. PALOMBA is director, Offices of Academic Assessment and Institutional Research, Ball State University. She is a 1998 recipient of the Best Practice in Assessing Learning Outcomes award from the American Productivity and Quality Center.

TRUDY W. BANTA is professor of higher education and vice chancellor for planning and institutional improvement at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. She is coauthor of Assessment in Practice (1995, Jossey-Bass) and Making a Difference (1993, Jossey-Bass), and founding editor of the newsletter Assessment Update, also a Jossey-Bass publication.
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"This is a one-volume Assessment 101.... A comprehensive, useful introduction for novices and a valuable review and update for veterans." --Thomas A. Angelo, associate professor and director, The Assessment Center, School for New Learning, DePaul University

"Certainly the best 'first book' for anyone responsible for assessment on today's college or university campus. Puts all the basics between two covers." --Peter T. Ewell, senior associate, National Center for Higher Education Management Systems

"Assessment Essentials will become a standard reference and an essential resource. I intend to recommend it warmly to beginners in my workshops." --Barbara Wright, associate professor of German, University of Connecticut

"Assessment Essentials can provide them with an excellent guide as they seek to document and enhance their educational impact." (The Journal of Higher Education, 3/02)
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