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ACE Assessment

Assessment is defined as the process of providing credible evidence of resources, implementation actions, and outcomes undertaken for the purpose of improving the effectiveness of instruction, programs, and services in higher education (Banta and Palomba, 2015). Assessment helps to foster accountability that support attitudinal and institutional change in a positive direction. The Office of Assessment, Culture, and Education (ACE) promotes culturally responsive and equitable assessment practices through the following efforts and activities:

  • Providing guidance on how to gather, analyze, and utilize data to improve campus climate.
  • Developing and enacting goals and objectives for the Division of Access and Engagement in alignment with institutional goals.
  • Communicating to the campus community progress made by the institution in diversity, engagement, and inclusion.
  • Supporting commissions, council, and committees that work to enhance inclusive excellence on campus.

How can we support you?

ACE works with campus partners to ensure that assessment efforts are planned and conducted with the identities, backgrounds, and perspectives of those supported in mind. We view assessment as a process that is not done to members of the campus community, but rather in collaboration with UTK staff, students, faculty, and community members. To this end, we offer the following assistance to campus staff, faculty, and administration in the area of assessment:

  • Guidance in program evaluation for departments, colleges, and units
  • Educational workshops on assessment and accountability (e.g., data collection and usage for decision-making, developing focus groups, etc.)
  • Assessment plan design support and consultation
  • Curriculum development assistance
  • Effective communication of assessment efforts and results to stakeholders

For more information about assessment support, contact us today for a consultation!


Banta, T. W., &; Palomba, C. A. (2015). Assessment Essentials Planning, Implementing, and Improving Assessment in Higher Education. Jossey-Bass. Center for Culturally Responsive Evaluation and Assessment

Henning, G. W., &; Lundquist, A. E. (2018, August). Moving Towards Socially Just Assessment (Equity Response). Urbana, IL: University of Illinois and Indiana University, National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA).

Hood, S., Hopson, R. K., &; Kirkhart, K. E. (2015). Culturally Responsive Evaluation. In K. E. Newcomer, H. P. Hatry, & J. S. Wholey (Eds.), Handbook of Practical Program Evaluation (4 ed., pp. 281-317). Jossey-Bass.

Kezar, A., &; Holcombe, E. (2022, September 19). Accountability for Campus Equity is everyone’s work. Higher Education Today. Retrieved December 19, 2022, from American Council on Education

Montenegro, E., &; Jankowski, N. A. (2017, January). Equity and assessment: Moving towards culturally responsive assessment (Occasional Paper No. 29). Urbana, IL: University of Illinois and Indiana University, National Institute for Learning Outcomes Assessment (NILOA).