Student Affairs Assessment Institute
Tuesday, 24 June 2014 - 1:00pm to Friday, 27 June 2014 - 12:00pm

Location: Marriott Denver Tech Center, Denver, Colorado USA





Overview of Institute

Fill your professional toolkit:

  • Do you wonder how much students are really gaining from the educational experiences you create for them?
  • Are you being asked to present data on the effectiveness of your programs?
  • Do you struggle to find points of data that demonstrate the impact of your work on student success?
  • Is your division searching for ways to create a coordinated system for assessment?
  • Are you searching for an opportunity to develop your skills related to assessment practice?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then we have a solution for you. ACPA’s Student Affairs Assessment Institute can help you develop the essential skills related to assessment for your professional toolkit. The two-and-a-half-day institute will offer plenary sessions as well as separate tracks focused on division-wide planning and department/program assessment. In addition,  break out sessions focusing on various data collection and analysis methodologies will be offered.  Regardless of whether you are a seasoned assessment professional or a beginner looking to learn some basic assessment skills, the 2014 Student Affairs Assessment Institute has something to offer you.

For more information about the Institute, click on the following links:


The ACPA Student Affairs Assessment Institute is a curriculum-based learning experience designed to ensure attendees leave with the assessment skills and knowledge necessary to develop and execute quality assessment plans on their campuses. The Institute schedule reflects this curriculum-based philosophy on assessment education: sessions build off one another and attendees learn assessment techniques within the context of pragmatic assessment questions and issues that are applicable on any campus. In order to ensure that attendees engage in valuable learning experiences, the Institute features two curricular tracks: a division-wide planning track and a department/program assessment track. To help determine if this curriculum-based experience is right for you, please check out our resource on institutes vs. conferences for more information.

The Pre-Institute sessions begin at 1:00 pm on Tuesday, June 24, 2014.  The primary Institute sessions begin at 8:00 am on Wednesday Jun 25, 2014 and end at 1:00 pm on Friday, June 27, 2014. We suggest that attendees arrive on Tuesday and book flights that depart after 2:00 pm on Friday.

Here is a detailed schedule and description of the sessions offered.

Intended Audience

The institute caters to a variety of skill levels in assessment. The institute will offer data collection and analysis sessions appropriate for individuals with varying levels of knowledge and comfort with assessment. In addition, participants can choose between tracks focused on division-wide planning or department/program assessment. For a more thorough description of these two tracks, click here.

Past participants have included:

  • Student affairs professionals at all levels — entry, mid-level, and senior student affairs officers
  • Graduate faculty
  • Academic administrators
  • Graduate students in student affairs, higher education administration, or other related programs

Intended Outcomes

As an Institute participant, you will be able to:

  • articulate the process for developing an assessment plan for your department/division ;
  • develop assessment skills that can be applied at your home campus;
  • address assessment issues specific to your institution;
  • increase your confidence in the use of data for improvement of programs and services;
  • identify other student affairs assessment projects conducted in a variety of institutional types and functional areas that will help you in your own work;
  • meet student affairs professionals from a variety of institutional types who are committed to learning about and conducting assessment; and
  • have the opportunity to consult with an assessment professional regarding specific assessment issues on your campus.


Whether you are new to assessment, taking on new responsibilities in your individual unit, or charged with developing a division-wide plan for assessment, the ACPA Student Affairs Assessment Institute is the answer for your professional development needs!

For a more detailed schedule and description of the sessions offered, please click here.

Assessment Pre-Institute Sessions

New this year! We’ve added pre-institute sessions that run on Tuesday afternoon. Participants have the opportunity to attend one of two sessions.

Assessment 101 will provide an introduction to assessment in student affairs and prepare you to actively engage in the institute. The purpose is to provide an introduction to those new to assessment, as well as provide a refresher for those more experienced. This session introduces the topics that will be covered during the institute

The Assessment and Accreditation session will provide a general overview of the purpose and process of accreditation, review accreditation standards that commonly apply to student affairs units, and outline best practices for demonstrating compliance with those standards related to institutional effectiveness and the assessment of student learning in particular. Throughout the workshop, participants will complete activities designed to increase awareness of and preparedness for accreditation at one’s own institution.

Division-Wide Assessment Track

Participants in this track will walk away with knowledge and skills needed to develop a division-wide assessment plan for their own campuses. This track will include discussions about developing a consistent assessment framework across a division while allowing for flexibility within individual units. This track will also include discussions on using data to respond to stakeholders at the institution and beyond. This track is intended for practitioners who are responsible for managing assessment across multiple student affairs functional areas.

Department/Program Assessment Track

Participants in this track will walk away with knowledge, skills and next steps for developing an assessment plan designed to measure student learning and/or other programmatic outcomes. Participants will be guided through the process of writing outcomes to address the student learning and development that occurs as a result of a specific program, intervention, or set of learning experiences. This track is intended for practitioners who are responsible for assessing individual programs or services within a single student affairs functional area.

Institute Testimonials

 “I very much enjoyed my time at the Institute last year. I learned some new information and reviewed some things I already knew about assessment. I really enjoyed being able to network with people in the field and find out techniques that other institutions use for assessment. I have used many of the materials from the Institute to help others in my division, and I have also used them as inspiration for assessment presentations I have given. The Institute was very helpful and very much worth the time.” - Shari Metzger; UMBC

“I learned a lot of information about designing assessments on a programmatic level and was very nuts and bolts which was good!” - Evan Heiser; Elon University

“I thought the institute was very well designed-it provided a soup to nuts overview of the whole assessment cycle, close and ongoing access to experts in the field, and a jump start or enhancement of any assessment efforts on campus.” - Scott C. Brown, Ph.D; Colgate University

The institute was extremely helpful. We have used information from the institute to design or inform a number of aspects of our assessment program. - Jim Fereira; Anderson University

“It was an amazing experience with a great mix of lecture style settings to learn from the experts, but also conversational and discussion based groupings that allowed for everyone to interact with one another and the national experts. Of all the professional developments I have done, this particular institute stands out as the clear number one, both for the quality of information and the well laid out schedule.” - Justin Janak; Assistant Director, Assessment

“The ACPA Assessment Institute provided an excellent overview of assessment issues and practices. Most of my prior experience focused on assessment in a single department and I was inspired by the opportunity to participate in conversations about assessment at a division level. I use the information everyday - providing assistance to departments on single projects or thinking about comprehensive planning, as well as developing frameworks to coordinate assessment across our division.” - Past participant

Institute Attire

The attire for this Institute is business casual.

Questions? Contact Tricia Fechter, Senior Director – Professional Development, Research & Scholarship, or call 1.202.835.2272.