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					The Voluntary System of
Accountability (VSA)
Responding to a New Era

Christine Keller
VSA Executive Director

                                Ohio Board of Regents
                   Student Success Assessment Summit
                                       Columbus, Ohio
                                        June 23, 2009
        Voluntary System of
        Accountability (VSA)
  Initiative by public 4-year universities to
supply basic, comparable information on the
   undergraduate student experience to
important constituencies through a common
      web report – the College Portrait.
 Sponsored by A۰P۰L۰U & AASCU. Funding from Lumina.
            The Context
• Decreasing public resources to higher
  education coupled with increasing skepticism
• Perceived lack of useful and transparent data
  prevents institutions from demonstrating
  accountability and contribution to public good
  (Spellings Commission)
• Policy-makers and employers demand
  evidence of educational outcomes –
  particularly broad transferable skills
              VSA Goals
• Assemble information that is transparent,
  comparable, and understandable
• Provide a useful tool for students during
  the college search process
• Demonstrate accountability and
  stewardship to public
• Measure educational outcomes to identify
  and enhance effective educational
  practices
          College Portrait
Accessible web report that communicates
information on the undergraduate student
experience in three broad categories.

• Student & Family Information
• Student Experiences & Perceptions
• Student Learning Outcomes
        VSA Participation
• 325 institutions from 49 states and
  Puerto Rico (06/22/09)
  – 13 Ohio public universities
• 63% of 520 APLU & AASCU
  institutions
• 250+ College Portraits posted on
  www.collegeportraits.org
www.collegeportraits.org
Success and Progress Rate

                  Provides a
                  macro-level
                  picture of
                  student
                  progress by
                  tracking
                  student
                  enrollment
                  and
                  graduation
                  across all
                  4-yr and 2-yr
                  institutions
Student Experiences & Perceptions



  6 Common Constructs




                          Selected
                         responses
                            from
                          Seniors
      Student Learning Outcomes
  Learning gains in
   critical thinking,
analytic reasoning,
              written
    communication
        measured at
    institution level

                        Reported in a
                        common
                        format using
                        CAAP, CLA or
                        MAPP
  Ongoing Studies of Learning
   Outcomes Measurement
• Construct Validity Study (FIPSE grant)
  – Results end of July 2009
  – Do CAAP, CLA, MAPP measure the same thing?
  – Does the form of the test matter?
  – Do the tests produce similar value-added scores?
• Learning Outcomes Workshops
  – Summer 2009: Administration of tests
  – Summer 2010: Application of results for
    educational improvement
           What is Gained?
• Tool for prospective students to find “best
  fit” college
• Community-developed public report to
  demonstrate accountability and stewardship
• A foundation for ongoing learning outcomes
  research
  – Better for higher education to tackle the
    challenges of measuring learning outcomes
    than to have it imposed from the outside
        More VSA Info
Websites
 www.voluntarysystem.org
 www.collegeportraits.org

Christine Keller, VSA Executive Director
    ckeller@aplu.org

				
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