Academic Program Improvement
Institutional Research and Effectiveness
Salve Regina is committed to the continuous improvement of academic programs and services. We seek to ensure that all programs articulate expected student outcomes, regularly gather and analyze evidence of student learning, and use the results to inform decision-making and enhance teaching and learning.
Through an organized and systematic planning and reporting process, all academic programs at Salve Regina annually assess student achievement of program learning outcomes. Programs with specialized accreditation maintain accreditation through rigorous standards specific to each program. In addition, regular external program review and student course evaluations serve to enhance teaching and learning.
Annual Reporting and Outcomes Assessment
The assessment of student learning and success is intended to be an ongoing, iterative process that evaluates each degree program’s quality and effectiveness and facilitates program planning and development in alignment with the University’s mission and priorities.
The purpose of an assessment plan is to facilitate continuous program-level improvement. More specifically, program assessment plans articulate the program’s mission and the outcomes students are expected to demonstrate as a result of their educational experience. They also provide an agreed-upon understanding of what is being measured and when, who will collect the information and how the results will be used. All programs are expected to have an assessment plan with meaningful, well-defined and measurable student learning outcomes.
As part of each academic department’s annual reporting process at the conclusion of the spring term, outcomes assessment plans should be updated with the most recent assessment findings and plans for improvement. Programs with specialized accreditation are expected to either submit annual assessment findings and plans for improvement in the format required by the accrediting body or use the template to copy and paste the relevant information. The Office of Institutional Research and Effectiveness provides feedback and ensures that programs have the support and development resources needed to implement sustainable assessment.
External Program Review
All academic programs at Salve Regina undergo a periodic external review by peers from similar colleges and universities or external accrediting bodies. The purpose is to make recommendations for programmatic improvements and to strengthen the curriculum on an ongoing basis. Conducted every five years, this process provides academic departments with the opportunity to reflect on administrative and student learning effectiveness.
Student Course Evaluation
Course evaluations provide confidential feedback about student experiences and serve as an important tool for improving the quality of teaching and learning. Constructive feedback assists in the growth and development of courses and benefits the quality of education at the University. Students have the opportunity to evaluate all courses at the end of each semester. Faculty, chairs and academic administration receive a summary report of feedback after the conclusion of the respective semester.