ERIC Number: ED284893
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986
Reference Count: 0
The Why, What, and Who of Assessment: The Accrediting Association Perspective.
Manning, Thurston E.
Accrediting associations assess colleges in order to find out what has been accomplished, and to find out how it might be better accomplished. Assessment of educational outcomes can be a useful way to demonstrate the success of alternative means. However, accrediting agencies do not rely exclusively on outcome measures, since they only assess what has been effective in the past. Outcome measures do not necessarily assess current conditions or predict the future. Accrediting agencies assess students, institutions, and programs according to the institutions stated purposes and objectives, which include the educational achievements of their students. The acceptability of the institutional objectives may also be examined. There is no national agreement, given the heterogeneity of American higher education, on the definition of what it means to have earned a particular degree. Assessment should be performed by the accrediting agencies, the institution, and the states. Difficulties associated with assessment include the complexity of goals, participants, and outcomes; use of the information; the temptation to use shortcuts; and the need for better measurement techniques. (GDC)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: Assessing the Outcomes of Higher Education; see TM 870 436.