Closing the Loop

The whole purpose of assessment is to guide us in making improvements to support student learning. “Closing the loop” means implementing improvement strategies as a result of assessment.

Below are examples of academic programs closing the assessment loop. Each example includes the assessment process used and the action taken to support student learning.


Program Assessment Process Action Taken


Collected data from faculty about skills their students are developing (primarily via assessment of student learning on assignments and tests). 

Altered course pre-requisites and added an additional lower-level course.

Indigenous, Race, and Ethnic Studies

Faculty discussion and curricular objectives led to desire for more original research opportunities for majors.

Create common research assignments in all 4/500 level courses and evaluate if those assignments align with their goals.

Romance Languages

Program wide assessment with validated external assessment tool.

Focus course-level changes on areas in greatest need of improvement – for example, enhance opportunities to practice listening comprehension.

Earth Science

Faculty discussion led to a realization of a lack of computational and coding skills for majors.

Designed and launched a new course and assessed how well that course was meeting their goals (through student work samples and student surveys).


Department consultation process with faculty and student surveys identified weakness in student reading of primary sources

Develop and implement new required course specifically to address close reading of primary sources.

Communication Disorders and Sciences

Direct assessment of student writing showed a small minority of students were performing below expectations

Instructors track student performing within a class and reach out to support poorly performing students.

Counseling Psychology Doctoral program

Reviewing student feedback.

Redesign core statistics and methods courses.

Counseling Psychology Doctoral program

Audit of how curricula, courses, and activities attend to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Redesign a course to focus on marginalized communities and power structures in the US.