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Our Philosophy

At Pikes Peak State College, we want to be confident that when students leave the College, they will have the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed at another school or in the 21st-century workplace. To reach this goal, PPSC's academic departments continually assess what students know or are able to do upon completing specific courses and programs of study. Using a similar model, PPSC's Student Services assesses what students learn from participating in co-curricular activities or utilizing specific services.

To be effective as an institution, colleges must make decisions based on accurate information. The office of Institutional Effectiveness is all about that. We provide extensive data that informs our way forward

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Why Do We Assess Student Learning?

There are many reasons why faculty and staff at PPSC participate in the student learning outcomes assessment process. Through assessment we are better able to identify areas of excellence and areas in which improvement is warranted. The main reasons why we assess student learning are:

  1. To confirm or improve student learning and educational quality: Assessment results help answer the following questions “Are students learning what we want them to learn?" and “Is there a way we can promote better learning?"
  2. To demonstrate the various ways in which student support services and co-curricular activities contribute to the educational experience of students.
  3. To transparently demonstrate PPSC’s commitment and contributions to the public good.
  4. To meet the accreditation standards of the Higher Learning Commission (HLC): HLC requires that institutions demonstrate a commitment to educational achievement and improvement through ongoing assessment of student learning (Core Component 4B). Faculty are expected to participate substantially in the analysis of data and appropriate action on assessment of student learning and program completion (Assumed Practices B2C). In its Strategic Plan, HLC reaffirms the importance of assessment and its commitment to “advancing the agenda on assessment and student learning.” View the HLC Strategic Plan.
  5. To meet the requirements of specialized accrediting agencies: Assessment results are used by accredited programs (e.g. Nursing, Dental Assisting, Early Childhood Education) to demonstrate compliance with programmatic accreditation standards.

Model of Assessment: A Department-Centric Approach to Continuous Improvement

Recognizing the value of holistic student learning and development, PPSC has developed an outcomes-based assessment model where student learning is measured in all academic and student services departments. The evidence of student learning we collect during our assessment processes is used to drive improvement and programmatic decisions at the department, division, and institutional levels.
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