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Assessing Current I nstitutional Practices: The ALFI Toolkit . PLA with a Purpose Symposium Columbus, Ohio April 29, 2014. Serving Adult Learners. Adult-Learning Focused Institutions (ALFI) Project Origins

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assessing current i nstitutional practices the alfi toolkit
Assessing Current Institutional Practices: The ALFI Toolkit

PLA with a Purpose Symposium

Columbus, Ohio

April 29, 2014

serving adult learners
Serving Adult Learners

Adult-Learning Focused Institutions (ALFI) Project Origins

CAEL’s 1999 Benchmarking Study of six high-performing, adult-serving colleges and universities

  • Best Practices in Adult Learning, a CAEL book
  • Study findings distilled into Principles of Effectiveness for Serving

Adult Learners

cael s alfi project
CAEL’s ALFI Project

CAEL’s Principles of Effectiveness for Serving Adult Learners

  • Outreach
  • Life & Career Planning
  • Financing
  • Assessment of Learning Outcomes
  • Teaching-Learning Process
  • Student Support Systems
  • Technology
  • Strategic Partnerships
  • Transitions
all of the principles
All of the Principles

The Principles of Effectiveness are:

  • Integrated – they work together
  • Indivisible – they form a whole
  • Imperative – not just “a good idea”
the alfi assessment toolkit
The ALFI Assessment Toolkit

The ALFI Assessment Tools

(2 surveys)

  • Institutional Self-Assessment Survey (CAEL & NCHEMS) is for adult degree program administrators and faculty.
  • Adult Learner Inventory (CAEL & Noel-Levitz) is an adult student survey based on ALFI.
slide6
ISAS

Institutional Self-Assessment Survey (ISAS)

  • The ISAS is a survey that iscompleted by administrators, faculty, and staff and offers an opportunity for dialogue across departments about adult learners.
  • It provides the framework to reflectively examine how resources, structures, and practices impact the success of adult learners.
isas survey categories
ISAS Survey Categories
  • Institutional Background
  • Mission, Leadership, and Organizational Structure
  • Tuition and Financial Aid
  • Teaching and Learning
  • Faculty Recruitment and Development
  • Student Services
  • Key Constituencies
completing the isas
Completing the ISAS
  • Approximately 50 items
  • One survey is submitted; completed by an institutional team
isas items
ISAS Items

The ISAS: The Institutional Self-Assessment Survey

  • Sample Item:
    • To what extent does your institution partner with other organizations (community-based organizations, employers, other post-secondary providers) to deliver student support services:
      • Not at all
      • Not very much
      • Somewhat
      • A great deal
      • Almost always (provide examples on supplementary page)
the ali
The ALI
  • Survey to capture the experience of adult students in undergraduate programs
  • Developed through a partnership between CAEL and Noel-Levitz
  • ALI focuses on eight of the nine CAEL ALFI Principles (Strategic Partnerships principle is not covered because students are unlikely to know about this area)
  • Version for four-year institutions and a version for two-year community colleges; same items with text adjustments
  • Structure of the instrument follows the Noel-Levitz model with students indicating both the level of importance and the level of satisfaction for each item
  • Items rated on a 1-7 scale (1 is low; 7 is high)
ali items
ALI Items
  • 47 items rated for importance and satisfaction
  • 10 optional items defined by the institution, rated for importance and satisfaction
  • 2 summary items – overall satisfaction and likelihood student will recommend to other adult students
  • 18 standard demographic items (gender, age, employment, class load, etc.)
  • 2 optional demographic items (one major/program and one other
ali scores
ALI Scores
  • Importance scores
    • How important is it for your program to meet this expectation?
  • Satisfaction scores
    • How satisfied are you that your program is meeting this expectation?
  • Performance gap scores
    • The discrepancy between the expectation (importance score) and the reality (satisfaction score).
the alfi report provides
The ALFI Report Provides:
  • Comparative data:
    • External: Your team’s and your students’ ratings vs. students and teams at other institutions that have used the ALFI Assessment Tools
    • Internal: The institution’s perspective vs. adult learner perspective for each scale
alfi is not
ALFI Is Not:

An evaluation of performance based on an external evaluator’s “grades”

using the tools
Using the Tools

How Institutions Have Used the Tools

  • Identifying and marketing strengths
  • Setting priorities for strategic planning
  • Preparation for accreditation review
  • Internal program review
  • Development of strategic plans
  • Aligning resources to best meet the needs of adult learners
using the tools1
Using the Tools

How Institutions Have Used the Tools

(cont’d.)

  • Baseline data for future assessments
  • Including data in annual report
  • Creating recruitment messages
  • Facilitating discussion & debate
  • Helping with market niche reporting

Focusing attention on adult learner needs and issues

to learn more about using alfi
To Learn More about Using ALFI
  • http://www.cael.org/Whom-We-Serve/Colleges-and-Universities/Adult-Student-Services/ALFI-Assessment-Tools
  • www.cael.org
  • http://www.cael.org/pdfs/21_ToolsforTwoYearColleges
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