About the CNM Learning Assessment Process

Learn more about CNM's learning assessment process.

Please note: The Learning Assessment process is being phased out with the final assessment report of the cycle due October 15, 2023. All programs and General Education areas will move to the Universal Themes Assessment process in Spring 2024.

SAAC Representatives 

CNM’s faculty-led Student Academic Assessment Committee (SAAC) drives program assessment. Each of CNM’s seven schools has at least one voting faculty representative on the committee who brings their school’s perspectives to the table and helps coordinate the school’s assessment reporting. In addition, SAAC includes four ex officio members, one each from the College Curriculum Committee (CCC), the Academic Affairs Council, and Academic Operations. The latter is the Senior Director of Assessment, whose role is facilitative.

SAAC Responsibilities 

SAAC has two primary responsibilities: 1) providing a consistent process for documenting and reporting outcomes results and actions taken as a result of assessment, and 2) facilitating a periodic review of learning outcomes.

SAAC faculty representatives have put in place a learning assessment process that provides consistency and facilitates ongoing improvement while respecting disciplinary differences, faculty expertise, and academic freedom. This process calls for all certificate and degree programs, general education areas, and disciplines to participate in assessment. The goal is assessment of student learning within programs, not assessment of programs themselves (a subtle but important distinction).

Assessment Cycle Plans

The faculty of each program/area develops and maintains its own assessment cycle plan, outlining when and how all of the learning outcomes will be assessed over the course of six years. SAAC asks that the cycle plan, which can be revised as needed, address at least one learning outcome per year. SAAC strongly recommends assessing each learning outcome for two consecutive years so that changes can be made on the basis of the first year’s findings, and the impact of those changes can be assessed during the second year. At the end of the six-year cycle, a new six-year assessment cycle plan is due. 

Program faculty may use any combination of course-level and/or program-level assessment approaches they deem appropriate to evaluate students’ achievement of the program-level learning outcomes. For breadth and depth, multiple approaches involving multiple measures are encouraged.

Assessment Results 

A web-based application is used for reporting annual assessment results. The application is used to summarize the prior year’s assessment findings and describe changes planned on the basis of the findings. This application can be prepared by any designated representative within the school. Ideally, findings from multiple measures in multiple courses are collaboratively interpreted by the program faculty in a group meeting prior to the completion of the report.

SAAC maintains a team site in SharePoint where faculty can access past reports, example rubrics, and professional development materials. In addition, the Academic Operations SAAC representative is available to assist individual faculty with specific assessment needs.