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Self-Assessment of Academic Advising Program at WIU Presented at ILACADA Conference
May 29, 2014
MACOMB, IL — Four academic advisors at Western Illinois University recently shared their knowledge about the process and experience of engaging in a self-assessment of Western's academic advising program. WIU College of Arts and Sciences Lead Academic Advisor Caryn Morgan, Department of Communication Academic Advisor Jennifer Grimm, College of Business and Technology Advising Center Academic Advisor Jean Bird and University Advising and Academic Services Center Academic Advisor Julie O'Brien presented, "Undergoing an External Review: How Assessment Builds Collaboration and Fosters Innovation" at the May 22 Illinois Academic Advising Association (ILACADA) annual conference held at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.
According to Morgan, ILACADA issued a call for proposals around the time Western's team was completing the self-assessment process. She said many of the advisors felt the experience was a timely topic for the conference, so they submitted a proposal and it was accepted.
"Our assessment included a visit from an external reviewer, and the process was modeled after the Illinois Board of Higher Education's cyclical review that academic departments go through; however, an external review of the program had not been used previously. In fact, this type of assessment is fairly new to academic advising programs nationwide," Morgan explained. "The purpose was to share our University's experience and give recommendations of how the process could work for others. Many attending ILACADA this year are preparing for their own program assessments, creating assessment plans and/or inviting external reviewers."
Morgan said, through the one-day conference, the advisors who attended were able to make professional contacts with colleagues in different stages of the assessment process.
"Those contacts will be beneficial to us, as well as to the colleagues we met, as we respond to, and act on, recommendations from our external reviewer," Morgan noted. "We are very grateful that ILACADA provides a one day drive-in conference each year that makes this type of professional development and networking accessible to more academic advisors. We are also very appreciative that WIU provided support for us to travel to the conference," she added.
For more information, contact Morgan at (309) 298-1610 or via email at CN-Morgan@wiu.edu.