Deans and Academic Department Offices

Core Outcomes & University Outcomes

Each unit is defined by its outcomes: How will the University, students, faculty, staff, administrators, or other units benefit from the operations of this unit? These outcomes are developed from two areas: (1) core functions of the unit and (2) university goals.

Core Functions and Outcomes

Each unit identifies its core functions: what programs and services does the unit provide in order to achieve its mission? Examples might include teaching assignments, hire faculty, request resources, allocate resources, develop degree programs, encourage research, faculty and staff development, development of relationships with external constituencies, and many others. For each core function, identify at least one core outcome that clarifies and reinforces its mission.

University Program Goals and Outcomes

The University’s goal is that all colleges and departments will contribute appropriately to intellectual climate and creative exchange, professionalism, civic engagement, inclusiveness, cultural awareness, and respect for diversity. Each unit should identify at least one program outcome specific to your college or department.

  • Units should identify at least 4 measurable outcomes
  • Not all outcomes need to be measured every year, but
  • All outcomes should be measured at least twice in a five-year period.

For examples of program outcomes and further assistance on writing program outcomes, go to assessment resources.

Measurement of Outcomes

For each outcome, one or more performance indicators should be noted. What evidence will be collected that shows that your college or department is achieving that outcome? What specific metric(s) will be used?

Reflection and Development of Action Plans

Information collected through the process should suggest potential changes to how the unit undertakes its core functions, whether or not certain core functions should be replaced by others, assessment plan or methods, timing of activities, or technology use. These plans should be focused on specific actions to be taken over the next year.

Annual Assessment Reporting

The assessment process in each unit is reflected through an (1) assessment results report and an (2) assessment plan report.

Assessment Results Report

This report is submitted is submitted in June of each year and describes the results of the assessment process that year (August – June) and the unit’s reflections on the results and what they mean.

  • List the outcomes that were assessed during the past year and describe the results of each assessment: describe the measure, the target, the sample, and the process used for the assessment. Provide support information: copy of the measure, related data or reports.
  • What are the results from the action plan(s) that was proposed for this year? Did you get the changes you expected? What happened?
  • Reflect on the results: what key findings and conclusions can be drawn? Was the target achieved? What strengths were revealed? What areas in need of improvement (curricular, policy/procedures, the assessment process itself) were found?

* Note: from these reflections come the actions for the next year noted in the Assessment Plan submitted in August.

Assessment Plan Report

This report is submitted in August of each year and provides the plan of action that the unit will take based on the results from last year’s assessment work. This report includes the following three elements:

A: The action plan for the upcoming year

  • Initiative name – a short name for this action
  • Related outcome – which outcome/results prompted this initiative?
  • What is the purpose of this initiative?
  • What specific steps are planned for the year (implementation schedule, those involved, etc.)
  • What are the expected results? How will you know if this action has been a success?

B: List which of your stated outcomes you will measure this year.

  • If you have not already provided this information in Taskstream, describe how you will measure each of these outcomes (instrument used, sample, when the assessment will be conducted)
  • If you have not already provided this information in Taskstream, describe the performance target for each of the measures (what level of performance you will consider as “competent”)

C: What changes, if any, as a result of last year’s process, should be made in your mission, outcomes, or measurement of those outcomes?

Creating the Annual Assessment Report in Taskstream

For step-by-step instructions on creating an annual assessment plan, visit:

For step-by-step instructions on creating the action plan portion of the assessment report, visit: