2015-16 Divisional Assessment Report

Introduction

The Student Affairs and Enrollment Management Divisional Assessment Team was established in 2011-2012 to develop and formalize divisional assessment activities.  Given the importance of assessment within the division (and within the institution), team members are expected to be responsible for assessment within their respective areas.  The SAEM Assessment Team consists of representatives from each department, who each commit to a minimum of three years on the assessment team.   Team members are expected to participate on one of two subcommittees, Training, Development & Outreach (TDO), or Marketing & Communication (M/C). 

In addition to the SAEM Assessment Team, there is a Steering Committee that plans, coordinates and supports overall assessment activities.  The Steering Committee includes the chair of the Assessment Team (Kathy Evans), as well as Rick Kolenda (Residence Life), Christy Huynh (Career Services) and Sara Rebeor (Residence Life).  Michele May provides administrative support to the Steering Committee and the Assessment Team.

Since the inception of the Assessment Team, the priority has been to create a culture of assessment within the Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management.  To that end, the goals of the Assessment Team are:  1)  To develop a culture of continuous improvement within the Division; 2) To develop capacity and knowledge within the Assessment Team and within the Division; and 3) To align the goals of the Assessment Team with the College and Division strategic plans.

 

Recent History:  Progress in 2013-14 & 2014-15

 

As recommended by Middle States 2012 report, we made significant strides in gathering and using assessment data for continuous improvements in the following ways:

  • Establishing both expectations and a process:   Our Divisional Assessment Team, with representation from all departments, established expectations for assessment of program goals and intended outcomes and encouraged the use of data for improving programs and services.  Assessment expectations are discussed at every bi-weekly Divisional Directors meeting.

 

  • Managing Survey Fatigue / Other Logistics:  Given some concerns association with campus-wide survey fatigue, we developed a reporting relationship with Institutional Research where all electronic surveys are scheduled and approved prior to being deployed.  Each department must submit an Assessment Project Request form to IR for all needs assessments, and electronically administered surveys.   IR manages the approval and scheduling process as well as sample sizes for all surveys.

 

  • Sharing results:  We encouraged departments to seek out opportunities to share the assessment results, and specifically to share how the results were used to make improvements to programs and services.  The Marketing & Communication subcommittee launched the We Heard Your Voice poster campaign in Spring 2015.

 

Accomplishments in 2015-16

 

We achieved significant progress in our efforts to develop a culture of assessment in 2015-16.  ALL departments submitted Mission, Vision, Goals, Outcomes & Objectives (Part I), as well as a departmental Assessment Plan (Part II), seeking IR approval when appropriate.  Approximately 70% of all departments/units submitted year-end Assessment Reports, a significant improvement from 2014-15. 

 

Using the Divisional Assessment Team’s guiding goals, below is a detailed reported on accomplishments in 2015-16:

 

Goal One:  Develop a culture of continuous improvement within the Division

Efforts to continue to create a culture of assessment within the Division remain the primary focus of the Assessment Team.  Specific efforts included:

  • Sharing out accomplishments and completed assessments
    • One department is featured at each monthly Assessment Team meeting.  The featured department reports out on a recent evaluation, including the results as well as the ways the findings are used to improve programs and/or services.  In 2015-16, the following departments shared assessment results:  Admissions, Career Services, Disability Services, Counseling, Athletics, Lifestyles, and Orientation. 
    • Departments share assessment results at two Assessment retreats (held twice annually);
      • Assessment Showcase – January 19, 2016:  all departments did poster session with assessment results;  Disability Support Services did ‘featured department’, results of focus group assessment (Fall 2015)
      • Assessment Retreat – June 9, 2016:  Counseling Services ‘featured department’, results of national benchmarking assessment (Spring 2016)
    • We Heard Your Voice – campaign to disseminate information gathered through assessments and to share how data is used to make improvements to programs and services.  Although the campaign began in 2014-15, the flier was redesigned and a comprehensive schedule developed for Spring 2016, Fall 2016, Spring 2017 and Fall 2017.  In Spring 2016, four departments were featured in the campaign.
    • Large-scale assessments shared with Institutional Research in 2015-16:  Student-Athlete class conflict (Athletics), Senior Exit Survey (Athletics), CCAPS Mental Health & Counseling Benchmarking Survey (Counseling Services), and Transportation Survey (Student Development). 
    • Sharing results across the Division:  The Lifestyles Center shared data from the CORE survey and the ACHA survey to Divisional Directors.
  • Guide departments in developing a 3-year assessment plan:  Although departments have done a great job embracing annual assessment activities, many lack a long-range assessment plan. 
    • In response, Steering Committee developed a form for departments to complete a 3-year assessment plan, beginning in 2016-17.
      • To assist departments in completing 3-year assessment plan, TDO offered 2 workshop & assessment ‘liaisons’[1] worked with departments/units individually
  • Become a recognized leader in SUNY
    • Members of the Assessment Team continue to network with colleagues across the state, and attend conferences/workshops on the topic of assessment. 
    • Staff member (chair) conducted and published a study on strategies to enhance culture of assessment at another institution.
  • Using Results:  As a result of the divisional assessment process, all departments/units are expected to indicate, on their Assessment Report (Part III), how results will be used for continuous improvement.  The following improvements were made in 2015-16 as a result of findings on assessment in the previous year (2014-15):

 

  • Auxiliary Services: 
    • NACUFS:  Added nutritional information to Late Night Menus; Credit and debit cards accepted at several cash operation facilities; Increased Laker Dining Dollars to $80 per semester on Full Board Plan
    • NACS:  Launched Our Dare to Compare awareness campaign on textbook pricing; Increased student/faculty interaction fund to $200 and allowed department to use it twice per semester
    • Career Services:
      • Employer Relations:  Increasing employer outreach efforts through launch of industry centric model
      • Etiquette Dinner:  eliminated new ‘format’ for dinner – returning to traditional dining format to increase satisfaction and outcomes
    • Counseling Services:
      • Comment Box (satisfaction):  Hire more part-time staff to alleviate wait list
    • Disability Support Services: 
      • Smart Pen Feedback:  Offer more training sessions at different times
    • Lifestyles: 
      • Smoking cessation (tracking & perception):  Further outreach on availability of programs to support smoking cessation.
      • CORE:  Continue focus on heroin awareness; Collaboration with other department to address mental health issues and AOD use; Investigate suicide prevention strategies
      • Sexual assault training (outcomes):  Start training earlier in the semester
    • Walker Health Center:
      • Get Yourself Testing (participation):  Continue to offer free testing; collaborate with Lifestyles for additional outreach and  commitment to marketing event

Goal Two:  Develop capacity and knowledge within the Assessment Team and within the Division

  • Knowledge of current concepts in assessment/Continuing professional development in assessment and related topics:  The following workshops, seminars, and webinars were provided to staff in 2015-16:

10/13/15:  Developing Outcomes:  Mary Odden, Campus Labs consultant:

                   13 participants

10/20/15:  Webinar:  Creating a Culture of Assessment:

                    6 participants

12/3/15:    Webinar:  NASPA benchmarking surveys:

                    5 participants

12/14/15:  Webinar:  Designing a co-curriculum, Tracking Student Engagement:

                    7 participants

1/9/16:  Assessment Showcase:

               63 participants (ALL departments/units represented)

2/9/16:  Brown Bag discussion:  Assessing Student Financial Wellness:

              8 participants

4/6/16:  Workshop:  Developing a 3-year assessment plan:

               12 participants

6/9/16:  Assessment Retreat:

               39 participants (ALL department/units represented)

  • Awareness of future trends: 
  • Assessment Steering Committee regularly reviews scholarly publications related to assessment.  New releases reviewed in 2015-16 include:
    • Student Affairs Assessment:  Theory to Practice by Henning & Roberts
    • Leading Assessment for Student Success  by Bingham, Bureau & Duncan
    • Coordinating Student Affairs Divisional Assessment  Edited by Yousey-Elsener, Bentrim & Henning
    • Assessment retreat:  At our June Retreat (2015) we had a national expert on assessment give the key note address.  Dr. Kimberly Yousey-Elsener also facilitated two group sessions on conducting focus groups, and analyzing focus group data
    • Efforts are underway to establish a team of focus group facilitators who can support divisional assessment projects

Goal Three:  Align the goals of the Assessment Team with the College and Division strategic plans

  • The Division of Student Affairs and Enrollment Management developed a strategic planning document with divisional goals and objectives that align with the College’s Tomorrow plan and provides direction to our departments and units.
  • The SAEM divisional annual report was completed within the framework of the College’s Tomorrow plan, with each unit providing evidence of their contributions to institutional ‘Impacts’ and ‘Performance Drivers’. 

 

Summary Progress Report (Assessments completed in 2015-16) 

Admissions:

  • Parental / Guardian interactions (Karen Archibee)
  • Applications from out-of-state (Karen Archibee)

Athletics:

  • Review of study table hours Fall 15 & Spring 16 (Sue Witmer)
  • Student-Athlete Class Conflict (JJ O’Connell)
  • Senior Exit Survey (Tracy Bruno)
  • Outreach to alumni athletes (Eric Summers)
  • Increase attendance at athletic events (Malcolm Huggins)
  • Improve competitiveness of athletic teams (Mike Bielak & JJ O’Connell)
  • Comparison of student athletes to overall student population (Sue Witmer)

Auxiliary Service:

  • NACUFS Customer Satisfaction Survey (Sandy King)
  • NACS Satisfaction Survey (Susan Raby)

    Campus Life:

    • Effectiveness of Laker Life Training (Mike Paestella)
    • Event Planning outcomes survey (Holli Stone)
    • Campus Recreation student employee training survey (Sandy Jeffers)
    • Campus Activities NASPA benchmarking (Barbara St. Michel)

    Career Services:

    • Industry specific resources (Jennifer Roxas)
    • Career development program learning outcomes (Gary Morris)
    • Career Fair outcome survey (Gary Morris)
    • Resource Center Satisfaction & Usage Survey (Gary Morris)
    • GST 110 course evaluation and outcomes survey (Jackie Wallace)
    • Graduate outcomes survey (Gary Morris)

    Community Services

    • Community Services survey (Alyssa Amyotte)

    Counseling Services:

    • CCAPS Mental Health & Counseling NASPA Benchmark (Kate Wolfe-Lyga)
    • Demand for Services (Kate Wolfe-Lyga & Kathy Evans)
    • Outreach/Counseling Programming Evaluation (Kate Wolfe-Lyga)

    Disability Support Services:

    • Improvement in Service Delivery Focus Group (Starr Wheeler)
    • Premier Software Training Outcomes (Starr Wheeler & Pat Devendorf)
    • Demand for Services (Starr Wheeler & Kathy Evans)

    Financial Aid:

    • Staff Development & Training (Mark Humbert)
    • Improve internal audit efforts (Mark Humbert)
    • Maintaining state and federal compliance (Mark Humbert)
    • Decrease student loan default rate (Jennie Hoffmann)

    Lifestyles: 

    • Bystander Intervention Program outcomes (Shelly Sloan)
    • Electronic Cigarette Program outcomes (Trisha DeWolf)
    • Orientation:Summer Program Satisfaction & Learning Outcome surveys (Dan Roberts)

    Residence Life & Housing:

    • Residence Life & Housing survey (Sara Rebeor)
    • Student Leadership Development (Sara Rebeor)
    • Student Staff outcomes (Sara Rebeor)
    • Student Conduct:NASPA Student Conduct Benchmark (Dan Roberts))
    • Student Development:Transportation Survey (Kathy Evans)

    Walker Health Services:Quality of Care Chart Review (Allison German)

    • Analysis of Chlamydia Rates (Angie Brown)
    • Condom and STD awareness survey (Angie Brown)
    • Demand for Services (Angie Brown & Kathy Evans)

    Recommendations for 2016-17

    • Provide specific, detailed feedback to departments by ‘rating’ department submissions (exemplary, moving in the right direction, facing challenges, facing significant challenges).  This rating scale has been used by Academic Affairs to rate their assessment efforts for the last two years. 
    • Provide departmental/unit ratings to VP and Divisional Leadership team
    • Continue to provide variety of training/development opportunities including annual showcase & retreat
    • Continue to develop strategies to share results
      • Get departmental/unit assessment reports on Assessment website
      • Provide template for analyzing benchmarks (UAlbany model)
      • Steering Team to national assessment conference (NASPA or ACPA in June/July 2017)

     

    Respectfully submitted on behalf of the Assessment Steering Team:

     

    Kathleen S. Evans, Ed.D.                                                                                                                November 22, 2016


    [1] members of the Steering Committee assigned to support individual depts/units