Student Outcomes Assessment

The purpose of student outcomes assessment at Iowa State University is to continually improve student learning. Information is gathered at the department, college, or university level to ascertain students' knowledge, understanding, and ability to use their knowledge at the end of their academic programs. Assessment results are used for program improvement.

The Faculty Senate approved policies and procedures in 1991 for student outcomes assessment. The North Central Association (NCA) approved Iowa State University's assessment plan in 1994. In 1996, an NCA accreditation team recognized the university's progress in implementing the assessment plan.

Most academic assessment activity takes place at the department level. In addition, university-wide surveys are conducted periodically.


  • Faculty in all undergraduate and graduate programs formulate intended learning outcomes for each academic major.
  • Faculty identify appropriate means of assessing the achievement of the intended learning outcomes, gather and interpret assessment data.
  • Departments and colleges use the findings to improve curricula and instruction.
  • The university annually submits to the Board of Regents a summary of the assessment activities in all units undergoing program review.
  • The Student Affairs Assessment Team provides additional leadership in student affairs assessment.




College Outcomes Assessment


Course-Level Continuous Improvement Plans