Writing Across the Curriculum Assessment Plan List the

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Writing Across the Curriculum Assessment Plan
1. List the OBJECTIVES of the program.
The Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) program has five major objectives:

  • The WAC program has three main objectives for student learning:
    to improve students' writing proficiency;
    to encourage students to use writing as a learning tool;
    to introduce students to disciplinary conventions of writing.

  • The WAC program is charged with ensuring that designated writing intensive (WI) classes in General Education and in the major meet WI course requirements.

  • The WAC program will provide development programs and activities for faculty teaching WI courses.

2. Explain how the department or program will know the extent to which OBJECTIVES are achieved (alumni or other surveys, employment data, etc.).

The WAC program will gather feedback on its performance in a number of ways:

  • Assessment data gathered in WI classes in General Education (GE)

  • Evaluations of the program by faculty teaching WI classes

  • Review of syllabi of WI courses

  • Student and faculty focus groups about WI classes

  • Evaluations of WAC-sponsored events

  • Informal feedback

3. List the OUTCOMES of the program.

The WAC program will be looking for five major outcomes:

  • Improved student writing

  • Writing used as means of inquiry

  • Students introduced to disciplinary aspects of writing

  • WI requirements being met (GE and major)

  • Effective faculty development

4. List and briefly describe the MEASURES that will be used to assess each learning outcome.

The WAC program will employ the following measures for assessing learning outcomes:

  • GE assessment data (particularly portfolio assessment of student writing) will be used to assess improved student writing and the degree to which writing is being used as a means of inquiry and students are being introduced to disciplinary aspects of writing in WI classes.

  • Annual departmental assessment reports submitted to University Assessment Coordinators will provide information about the teaching of writing in the major

  • Evaluations of WAC by faculty teaching WI courses will provide indirect measures of all five outcomes.

  • Syllabi for WI classes will be used to assess the extent to which classes actually meet WI requirements and the degree to which writing is being used as a means of inquiry and students are being introduced to disciplinary aspects of writing.

  • Faculty and student focus groups will provide information about all five outcomes.

  • Evaluations of WAC development activities and the amount of participation in those activities will provide feedback about the effectiveness of those activities.

  • Informal faculty feedback will provide information about any or all of the five outcomes

5. Describe how learning outcomes are made MEASURABLE and BENCHMARKS or other determinants of success are set.

The following criteria will be used for assessing the extent to which the outcomes are achieved:

  • GE portfolios show evidence of improved writing in 50+% of sample

  • Faculty evaluations show 75+% positive results

  • All syllabi state WAC goals and indicate that requirements for WI status being met

  • Evaluations of WAC faculty development activities 75+% positive

  • Regular participation of WSU faculty in biannual national WAC conference

6. Describe the process by which FINDINGS will be derived from the measures.

Data from annual surveys are compiled by Budget Planning and Resource Analysis and reviewed by the WAC Coordinator. Other regularly scheduled assessment activities are monitored by the WAC Coordinator and the WAC Committee.
7. Describe the process by which findings are analyzed to determine what IMPROVEMENTS should be made to better meet objectives and learning outcomes.
Information gathered from all activities will go to the WAC committee, which recommends modifications to the program. Evaluations of WAC workshops are used by the WAC coordinator for planning future development events. Information gathered from syllabi will be communicated to the individual faculty members involved and to the appropriate department chair.
WAC Committee recommendations concerning program change go forward to the University Curriculum and Academic Policy Committee (of which it is a standing subcommittee), then to Faculty Senate for adoption. Other suggestions gathered from assessment activities (e.g., presenting combined WAC and Writing Center information to UVC 101 classes and to GE WI courses) are adopted as quickly as possible by the WAC coordinator.
8. Identify a TIMETABLE for assessment.
Assessment will be carried out according to the following timetable:

  • WI syllabi collected each quarter

  • Faculty evaluation of WAC given each spring (to all who have taught a WI course that academic year)

  • Student and faculty focus groups at least once per academic year

  • Each WAC-sponsored event will call for participants’ assessment of that event

  • GE assessment materials will be gathered according to that program’s timetable.

9. Briefly explain how the program’s assessment plan supports and interacts with ACCREDITATION and LICENSURE requirements (if applicable).

10. Describe how the objectives and learning outcomes of the program are COMMUNICATED to students and others.
Students receive this information in several ways. Instructors are requested to list the three WAC learning outcomes on the syllabus of every WI course. In addition, those outcomes (as well as information about WAC requirements) appear in the printed schedule of classes and on the WAC website. Each quarter, all faculty teaching WI courses receive a letter in which the learning objectives are highlighted; additionally, during the first quarter each year that a faculty member teaches a WI course, he or she receives a 30-page handbook dealing with the aims of the WAC program and providing guidance for achieving those aims. Faculty responses to the annual assessment are published in the WAC newsletter, as are highlights of information gleaned from other sources, such as student focus groups.

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