What is IE?

Institutional Effectiveness – or “IE” – typically refers to the process of assessing the quality of student learning, educational programs, academic and student support services, and the administrative units across the university.  Simply put, IE involves evaluating the extent to which established goals are met and using the results from these evaluations to inform decision-making and improvements.  The two overarching purposes of IE: improvement and accountability.
The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC), the association that accredits TAMU, defines Institutional Effectiveness as the “systematic, explicit, and documented process of measuring performance against the mission in all aspects of an institution.”  (Resource Manual, SACSCOC, Revised 2012).  SACSCOC acknowledges that the commitment to continuous improvement is at the heart institutional effectiveness practices at any university.
SACSCOC defines IE at three primary levels:
  • At the institutional level, IE is an ongoing, integrated, institution-wide, research-based process focused on continuous improvement to accomplish the mission of the institution. 
  • At the administrative support level, IE is the process through which a wide array of support services across the institution identify expected outcomes, assesses the extent to which the outcomes are achieved, and implements improvements based on the resulting information.   
  • At the program level, IE involves the systematic assessment of educational program outcomes and student learning outcomes in order to identify data-based improvements to educational programs and student learning across the institution. 
A final essential component of IE, and a requirement for accreditation, is the assessment of an institution-wide initiatives (known as a Quality Enhancement Plan or QEP within SACSCOC).  Such initiatives are designed to address one or more issues identified through assessment efforts with the intended outcome of enhanced student learning.     
The TAMU Office of Institutional Effectiveness & Evaluation supports efforts at each of these levels by:
  • Conducting university-wide survey research (REPORTS)
  • Facilitating annual assessment reviews of administrative support units and all educational programs throughout the university (ASSESSMENT)
  • Supporting student learning outcome assessment efforts across the university (ASSESSMENT)
For more information on SACSCOC accreditation at TAMU, see http://provost.tamu.edu/initiatives/sacs-coc-accreditation
For more information on the current TAMU QEP, see http://provost.tamu.edu/initiatives/quality-enhancement-plan/qep