Institutional effectiveness is the process of articulating a mission, setting objectives, and using data to form assessments in an ongoing cycle of goal setting and planning in order to measure both institutional and academic quality. Institutional quality is determined by appropriateness of mission and objectives, effective use of resources to achieve objectives, and the degree to which objectives are achieved. Academic quality is determined through student learning assessment and outcomes, retention, placement, graduate satisfaction, and employer satisfaction.
At Utah Valley University, the Department of Institutional Effectiveness and Planning helps to identify key objectives for the institution and determines indicators to measure progress made in achieving those objectives. We also assist departments in developing objectives and goals that align to their departmental mission and to the institutional mission. Furthermore, we assist in determining methods of assessment that shape improvement, innovation and sustainability initiatives as well as review planning, assessment and progress reports on a yearly cycle.
Over the past several years the University has made significant progress in utilizing planning and assessment efforts in program review, improvement, and development. A recent reorganization within Academic Affairs, combined with a new Academic Assessment Specialist position, provides greater energy and focus toward academic program assessment and student learning outcomes. Discussion is underway with academic leadership and the Department of Institutional Effectiveness to further define and support systematic assessment for program improvement and to better communicate student learning outcomes and assessment results.
To strengthen the link of planning and assessment to resource allocation, President Holland has directed leaders to more strategically align resource requests with UVU's core theme objectives and administrative imperatives and to provide evidence of need through the use of assessment.