What We Do
Beyond Measuring: Transforming Data into Action
The Office of Institutional Effectiveness (OIE) supports continuous quality improvement across the University by providing research and reporting services to support the following endeavors.
The OIE defines assessment as a systematic and iterative conversation about teaching and learning that reflects our common ideals about the ways that current and future students will be formed and transformed by their Loyola experience. According to educational consultant Peggy L. Maki, PhD, this process of collective inquiry is most successful when an institution is willing to “examine its educational intentions on its own terms within the complex ways that humans learn and within the populations an institution serves.”
The American Evaluation Association defines evaluation as “a systematic process to determine merit, worth, value, or significance.” Loyola University Chicago engages in a continual process of evaluation, which is supported by data collected and analyzed by the OIE. In addition to the vast amount of data collected, organized, analyzed, and disseminated by our Institutional Research team, OIE manages the collection of student surveys for course evaluation through the IDEA Campus Labs system, as well as the collection of faculty data through the Faculty Activities System (FAS). This data is then made available to faculty members and administrators to facilitate the evaluation process.
Academic Program Review
A specific type of evaluation required at higher education institutions, this periodic review is conducted to align the goals of an academic unit and its various programs with a university’s priorities and strategic plans. The overall purpose of the Academic Program Review process at Loyola is to evaluate the quality and effectiveness of each academic unit and its various programs and stimulate collaborative, strategic program planning and improvement.
Action Planning and Continuous Quality Improvement
Universities engage in assessment, evaluation, and review to gather and interpret data, which is then used to inform action plans and develop benchmarks. If this process is to be truly useful in shaping a continuously improving institution, it must be faculty-led and transparent. The OIE supports this process by providing accurate and reliable data, facilitating a rich and reflective dialogue among a diverse group of stakeholders, and ensuring follow-through with action plans that include benchmarks and processes for monitoring implementation. Our role is not to conduct assessments, evaluations, and program reviews but to support units across the university to facilitate successful action planning and continuous quality improvement.