Program assessment helps determine whether students can integrate learning from individual courses into a

   coherent whole and graduate with the knowledge, skills and abilities outlined in the Program’s learning


Program assessment is the process of establishing program learning outcomes, and assessing student performance for each outcome. At the most basic level, program assessment is the process of 1) Setting goals  2) Gathering information about progress toward those goals and 3) Taking action on the information received. Program assessment is described in each department's Assessment Plan, which include outcomes, threshold values, curriculum maps, and assessment schedules.


The purpose of assessment in higher education:

Assessment is good educational practice because it demonstrates what is going on in the classroom, and provides data on improving our programs through continual monitoring of student learning. The steps of assessment include:

    1. Define what we expect our students to learn (learning outcomes) - GOALS
    2. Assess if learning outcomes are being achieved - INFORMATION
    3. Respond to assessment and integrate results toward continued quality improvements - ACTIONS

At Montana State university, assessment of student learning is governed by the Student Outcomes Assessment Policy and directed by the Assessment and Outcomes Committee, and MSU Core Curriculum Committee.


Program Assessment Step-by-Step

Program Assessment Overview

Assessment is good educational practice because it demonstrates what you are already doing, improving your program through continual monitoring of student learning. 

Assessment Report Templates

Assessment Report Templates

All undergraduate academic programs at Montana State University are required to submit a report on the previous year's assessment activities annually, and biennially for graduate programs.

Assessment Grants Special Project (2022-2023)

Assessment Grants

The Office of Academic Affairs is offered Assessment Innovation and Effectiveness Grants to programs to enhance their assessment efforts in programs or courses in demonstrable ways as part of a special project in 2022-2023.

Submitted Assessment Exemplars

Submitted Assessment Examples

See examples of submitted assessment reports. 

Assessment Planning Resources

How do I develop learning outcomes (course and program)?

How do I develop Program Assessment Rubrics?

How do I develop a Graduate Program Assessment Plan?



Questions or Suggestions?

Deb Blanchard, Assistant Provost
[email protected]