Academic assessment is a continuous process designed for understanding, supporting and improving student learning. It is an outcomes-based approach, where key aspects of student learning and development are aligned through the institution, program and course levels.
Evidence of student learning is measured, analyzed and improved through a continuous process loop. Student learning outcomes are made explicit and public, with appropriate definitions of means of assessment and criteria for success. Assessment considers a wide range of relevant performance information: direct and indirect, standardized and non-standardized measures. Evidence is gathered, analyzed and interpreted to determine how well outcomes match expectations. Results are used to document, explain and improve learning outcomes, as well as identify budget and strategic plan implications.
Purpose of Assessment: SCNM is committed to the improvement of student learning. As such, assessment's overarching purpose is the enhancement of student learning through consistent, continuous and appropriate data collection and analysis. The data inform changes necessary to positively impact student learning through effective strategic, financial, and organizational planning. Through assessment, SCNM is well-positioned to meet its mission and graduate competent, confident naturopathic physicians.
Goals of Assessment:
Overseen by the director of academic assessment and program development and works in cooperation with the dean of student affairs.
Purpose: The Academic Assessment Committee (AAC) serves as a standing committee of SCNM with initial responsibility to develop a college-wide program for the assessment of student learning. Members of the committee collectively have responsibility for supporting assessment efforts at SCNM. The AAC is overseen by the director of academic assessment and works in cooperation with the dean of instruction to (1) plan, implement, and evaluate the assessment work of the college, and (2) keep historical records of any changes or actions made as a result of assessment. The AAC facilitates implementation of the assessment program, recommends approaches for building the capacity to conduct assessment, and regularly updates the assessment program to reflect new priorities. The AAC reports its work at Curriculum Committee, Faculty Senate, clinical faculty and academic faculty meetings via consent agenda items and periodic presentations. As is customary, the chair of the Curriculum Committee then reports to the Faculty Senate.
Charge: Specifically, the AAC is responsible for the following:
Membership: The AAC consists of four full faculty members; the director of academic assessment and program development, director of clinical training and operations, learning specialist, and the dean of academic affairs. It is chaired by the director of academic assessment and program development.
Those who seek additional information, have questions, or wish to make comments may contact the director of academic assessment and program development, Tammy Aragon, who may be reached at 480.222.9266, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The academic assessment program at SCNM was created to enhance student learning throughout the college. It is designed to promote a pervasive culture of continual assessment that guides institutional decision making at all levels. The program is based upon the following:
Vision: A world that embraces the healing power of nature
Mission: SCNM is a school of medicine and health sciences grounded in naturopathic principles. Dedicated to the ideal that everyone deserves high-quality healthcare, we engage students in rigorous innovative academic programs, discover and expand knowledge, and empower individuals and communities to achieve optimal health.
Strategic Plan Area: Academic Excellence
1.1 SCNM fosters student success
1.1.1 NPLEX I pass rate increases to 90% by September 30, 2018
1.1.2 1st year retention increases to 90% by September 30, 2018
1.1.3 5 year retention increases to 87% by September 30, 2018
1.1.4 Graduation rate increases to 76% by September 30, 2018
1.2 SCNM’s clinical training prepares graduates for careers in a rapidly changing healthcare environment
1.2.1 NPLEX II pass rate increases to 90% by September 30, 2018
1.2.2 A task force comprised of faculty, students, administrators, and outside healthcare providers/experts, conducts a needs/gap analysis of SCNM student skills, competencies and interdisciplinary healthcare literacy by September 30, 2016
1.3 Build a technologically advanced Biosafety Level 2+ laboratory facility on SCNM's campus
1.3.1 A task force will conduct a needs assessment for the laboratory, create a campaign plan and actively fundraise the capital needed for the project by September 30, 2016
1.4 SCNM leverages technology to enhance the student academic experience
1.4.1 A task force explores and pilots technology innovations to utilize outside experts, provide hybrid learning opportunities and reduce seat time by September 30, 2016
1.5 SCNM collaborates with other academic institutions, healthcare organizations, hospitals and clinics
1.5.1 Embed 7 SCNM naturopathic physicians at a multi-site hospital network, medical home or Federally Qualified Health Center by September 30, 2018
1.6 SCNM expands evidence-based knowledge among Students and Graduates
1.6.1 Conduct a follow up training on evidence-based instruction by September 30, 2016
Students are expected to demonstrate the following knowledge, skills and attitudes upon completion of the program.
SCNM’s Academic Assessment Program may be viewed in its entirety at the link below.
Components of the plan that reference the assessment cycles and instruments may be accessed through the following links:
SCNM’s academic program is assessed using criteria linked to the student learning outcomes and is recorded on the Assessment Plan and Record Template.
Both direct and indirect assessment instruments are utilized to determine student learning as given in the following links.
SCNM maintains records of prior year assessment activities to document student learning data and resulting changes in curriculum, assessment and other relevant areas. These records are essential for comparison and provide direction for future work.
Assessment results may be viewed by clicking on the links below.
Academic Assessment Record for 2010-2011
Academic Assessment Record for 2011-2012
Academic Assessment Record for 2012-2013
Academic Assessment Record for 2013-2014
Academic Assessment Record for 2014-2015
In academic year 2015-2016, the Office of Academic Assessment piloted an institution-wide assessment plan to document evidence of performance in its operations in order to improve its institutional effectiveness, capabilities and sustainability. SCNM is comprised of 22 operational areas. The Operational Area Assessment Plans—which currently include goals, outcomes, procedures, criteria for success and identification of individuals responsible for assessment—may be viewed by clicking on the link below.
Online Assessment Information
Books on Assessment