Sustaining a culture of assessment: An ongoing systematic analysis of outcomes and benchmarks as part of curricular assessment and planning


Assessment of physical therapy curricula requires a dynamic process to keep up with new evidence and changes in practice to remain forward focused. Isolated assessment of courses falls short of the comprehensive assessment that is warranted to meet the challenge of staying ahead of the curve in curricular planning. The purpose of this educational session is to share our systematic, distributed curricular assessment plan and student benchmarks used for our DPT curriculum as part of our ongoing curricular assessment and planning.

Methods and/or Description of Project

We will describe our systematic ongoing curricular assessment plan which includes, 1) data sources, 2) collection time frames, 3) data reviewed, 4) review time frames within our Curriculum Coordinating Committee as well as, 4) time frames for engaging full faculty. Data included are curricular threads, student curricular assessments, faculty and adjunct curricular assessments, student benchmarks of goals and expected outcomes, clinical qualifying measure performance, clinical education outcomes, CI feedback, Scorebuilders and NPTE scores, graduation rate, employment rate, graduate and employer surveys, strategic planning goals for the university, school and department, and CAPTE criteria. We will discuss examples of how data collected and reviewed has led to timely modification and enhancement of the curriculum and how our systematic assessment plan keeps curricular evaluation an ongoing dynamic process that engages the faculty year round. We will also outline our student benchmarks for progression in our curriculum as tracked by the Academic Advancement Committee..


This approach has been successful in making review of the curriculum on ongoing dynamic process that engages our faculty year round. Benefits of this approach include, 1) improved faculty knowledge of curricular content and integration across courses, 2) ability to make timely modifications to the curriculum in response to both internal and external stakeholder feedback, 3) ability to compare performance on student benchmarks to ongoing curricular content, and 4) academic advancement tracking has permitted has identified patterns of performance that permitted modification to enhance curricular progression.

Conclusions/Relevance to the conference theme: Through the Looking Glass: Transforming Physical Therapy Education

Effective curricular assessment and planning needs to be ongoing and engaging to faculty. Sustaining a culture of assessment can be important in keeping the curriculum current and alive with the forward focus on developing contemporary physical therapy professionals.


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4. Haramati A., (2015) Educating the educators: a key to curricular integration. Acad Med Feb:90 (2): 133 - 5

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Course Objectives

At the completion of this educational session the learner will:

1) Describe the importance of ongoing systematic assessment of the curriculum
2) Describe key stakeholders to that contribute important data to curricular assessment and planning
3) Describe the benefits of regular engagement of faculty in review of benchmarchs and stateholder feedback as part of curricular assessment
4) Provide examples of how onging curricular assessment led to timely implementation of curriculuar modification

Instructional Methods

Lecture with audience discussion

Tentative Outline/Schedule

Introduction: Importance of sustaining a culture of assessment (10 mins)
Overview of the systematic ongoing assessment plan (35 mins)
Review of data collected and timelines
Review of committee and faculty engagement timelines
Student benchmarks and the interface with curricular assessment and planning (15 mins)
Review of outcomes (15 mins)
Discussion, Questions and Answers ( 15 mins)

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  • Control #: 2751372
  • Type: Educational Session
  • Event/Year: ELC2017
  • Authors: Sandy Waller, Dr. Laurie Neely, Dr. Karen Gordes
  • Keywords:

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