Judgment of Compliance: The College certifies COMPLIANCE.
Approval by Faculty and Administration
Wayne Community College faculty and administration participate in a formal process of course and program review and approval through the structure of a college-wide Curriculum Committee. As stated in the WCC College Procedures Manual, the purpose of the Curriculum Committee is the following:
- "To review and recommend current curriculum program/course changes;
- To review and recommend requests for new curriculum programs of study or requests for curriculum deletions;
- To review and recommend articulation agreements with secondary and post-secondary institutions;
- To coordinate recommendations from advisory agencies, accrediting or certifying agencies and state offices affecting curricula; and
- To review, revise and recommend internal procedures/processes associated with curriculum committee functions and/or curriculum program approval."
The Curriculum Committee is composed of a cross-section of college faculty, staff, and administrators. Its authority is to make curricular recommendations to the President, the Administrative Council (the President's administrative team), and the Curriculum Committee of the Board of Trustees.
Following approval by the Curriculum Committee, curriculum changes that require approval by the WCC Board of Trustees are sent to the Board's Curriculum Committee for action. The committee subsequently presents its recommendation to the full Board for a vote. Actions such as new program offerings and/or dissolution of existing programs require Board approval (Board Minutes) before being sent to the NCCCS for review and approval. It should be noted that new curriculum programs are developed following procedures outlined in the CPM 03-0201 and follow guidelines provided by the North Carolina Community College System's Curriculum Program Application Procedures.
Establishment and Evaluation of Program and Learning Outcomes
Each academic program at WCC has established program outcomes. Program outcomes are initially established in partnership with the program's Advisory Committee, representing professionals currently employed in the field of study, through employers, through national and or state accrediting or approval entities such as the NC Board of Nursing, and the knowledge and experience of the program faculty. Program outcomes are published on course syllabi and are kept on file in each departmental office.Beginning with the 2005-06 WCC General Catalog, program level outcomes will be published under the appropriate program of study in the catalog. Program faculty, under the supervision of the division and/or department heads and the Director of Planning and Research, periodically review all programs of study using the College's established program review process, the Academic Program Review. This process provides the on-going review of instructional programs. It addresses the college mission, student learning outcomes, demographics, performance standards, student and graduate survey data, FTE, part-time/full-time assigned personnel, strengths and weaknesses of the program and advisory committee recommendations. If the review process determines that program outcomes need revision, the appropriate department head and faculty, with input from the external advisory committee and other entities as appropriate, make the revisions. All academic divisions reviewed and revised, as needed, their programs' outcomes in the spring and summer terms of 2004 and updated the outcomes where appropriate.
Multiple methods of measurement are used to evaluate student attainment of program outcomes. In the spring of 2004, a Learning Outcomes Matrix was created as a means of identifying the relationship between college-wide student learning outcomes (general education competencies) and program level outcomes in each program of study and to indicate the assessment measures used to evaluate student outcomes achievement.
Faculty members in each program area also revised course level student learning outcomes that are the smaller building blocks leading to program level outcomes. Course level learning outcomes are noted on all course syllabi. The course level learning outcomes, like program outcomes, are developed using data obtained from the program's advisory committee, external accrediting bodies, review of the literature, best practices at other institutions, and the knowledge and experience of the faculty. College student outcomes and program and course level learning outcomes are measured through multiple assessment methods indicated on the program Learning Outcomes Matrix and on each course syllabus. The BUS 239 syllabus and Business Administration outcomes matrix are a good example of this process.
In sum, the Learning Outcomes Matrix combined with the respective program syllabus provides the faculty member a program plan of action that will result in specific and quantifiable measures of student learning down to the course level. After gathering and analyzing the data on student performance, the faculty member can then begin to make the appropriate behavioral adjustments to his or her classroom and/or laboratory delivery techniques.
Outside accrediting/approval agencies also mandate an external assessment of program outcomes through licensure/certification of the graduate. Licensure and certification pass rates are one of the state-mandated Performance Measures annually reviewed by each North Carolina community college. Licensure and certification pass rates for WCC's programs for the past 4 years can be found at Comprehensive Standard 3.3.1. Programs with mandated national or state accreditation or licensure also undergo thorough periodic review by their respective accreditation bodies. Recommendations and/or suggestions from this process are used to validate the attainment of program outcomes and, where necessary, revise the area(s) of concern. An example of a programmatic review from a national accrediting body, the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA), and how the college made improvement from this feedback, can be found at FAA visit.
Another assessment tool used for measuring student learning at the institution and program level is the Graduate Evaluation of Learning Outcomes Satisfaction Survey. In late spring 2004, the Office of Planning and Research surveyed 486 of the 2004 graduates on their satisfaction with attainment of WCC learning outcomes. The survey response rate was 44% (211 respondents). The results of the survey indicate that, with one exception, students evidenced over 90% satisfaction with their accomplishment of these learning outcomes.