Consortium Leadership Training


The Consortium Assessment Leadership Institute (CALI) provides faculty and administrators with knowledge and guidance to create effective assessment plans. Assessment is a critical component of education, but many have difficulty with the formal process. CALI was designed to break down the pieces of the assessment life-cycle and provide training and exercises for each component.

For effective assessment, faculty need to understand how to assess and how to use the results. Many faculty are not sure of how to define their assessment criteria and provide their measured results. Faculty often view the student learning outcome assessments as evaluation of their work as opposed to an opportunity for improvement. Once they have results, they may not be sure how to use these results to make changes in their classrooms. Training is needed for both new and experienced instructors so that they can create valid outcomes, provide pertinent results, and utilize the data to improve student learning.

In 2009 and 2013, the National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA) administered a survey to understand why colleges were doing assessment. In both years, the top four reasons1 were:

  • Regional accreditation
  • Institutional commitment to improve undergraduate education
  • Specialized or program accreditation
  • Faculty or staff interest in improving student learning

Additionally, community colleges had high responses for state mandates and external funding. All of these reasons reflect that assessment is critical for community colleges in North Texas.

If a community college is to survive, assessment must be done. The accrediting body for colleges in Texas, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), requires assessment as part of the accreditation process. Without accreditation, a college would not be able to get federal funding, and most likely their enrollment would be reduced. Additionally, the State of Texas requires colleges to report on student success and completion. State funding is determined based on these reporting results. Community colleges are dependent on this support and strive to improve these numbers. CALI is a resource to train faculty and make them assessment experts in their departments or colleges. CALI not only provides knowledge, but also increases engagement in assessment.

Key Features

The Consortium Assessment Leadership Institute

  • is very affordable; the cost for 2017-18 is $350 for each member college participant and $525 for each non-member college participant.
  • is a year-long regional instructional assessment leadership program.
  • serves primarily department chairs and lead faculty (but everyone is welcome).
  • kicks off at the 2017 Outcomes & Assessment Conference on October 20, 2017, meets for three sessions (November, February, and April) from 10:00am-3:30pm, and wraps up at the 2018 Outcomes & Assessment Conference on October 19, 2018.
  • includes an online CALI course site providing participants enrichment and interaction opportunities between meetings.
  • draws both on the expertise of external resource persons and of CALI participants themselves.
  • affords the opportunity to work with a mentor on an individual project.
  • creates a valuable network of colleagues in many different instructional assessment roles from many different community colleges.

1 George D. Kuh, et al, “Knowing What Students Know and Can Do: The Current State of Student Learning Outcomes Assessment in U.S. Colleges and Universities”