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Institutional Assessment

CSN MISSION: The College of Southern Nevada empowers our students and communities to achieve, succeed, and prosper.

Office of Institutional Assessment and Accreditation Mission:

The Office of Institutional Assessment and Accreditation seeks to ensure that CSN accomplishes mission fulfillment by documenting achievement of

  1. strategic plan indicators,
  2. institutional effectiveness indicators,
  3. student learning and achievement indicators, and
  4. evidence-based actions for improvement.

The director facilitates this mission by:

  • Leading, supporting, and coordinating planning, assessment and evaluation, and improvement efforts at the campus, unit, and program levels
  • Documenting evidence of performance targets, metrics, and benchmarks
  • Reporting to internal and external stakeholders on student learning outcomes achievement, goal performance indicators, and program effectiveness at the campus, unit, and program levels.

The office has implemented a seven-step model to guide assessment and improvement across all institution programs, units, and services.  The overarching focus across system units is a motto of Students First and Assurance of Student Learning.

All CSN campuses, units, services, and programs contribute to institutional effectiveness by participating in a regular system of assessment planning and reporting of data collected through direct and indirect measures of student learning, performance activities, or service delivery.  CSN uses a regular assessment system to collect, analyze, and evaluate data for achievement of outcomes, unit goals, and activities.  Documented evidence is used for decision-making in planning and budget request processes.

CSN participates in an integrated strategic planning system where all unit goals align with the CSN strategic plan and Nevada System of Higher Education (NSHE) strategic goals.  Assessment evidence is used to inform decision-making, improvement actions, resource allocation, and determine mission fulfillment.  The assessment system is divided into four data collection units: Academic Affairs, Academic Support, Student Support, and Institutional Support.  All units report evidence supporting achievement of strategic plan and institutional effectiveness indicators leading to CSN mission fulfillment.  CSN units are expected to align their assessment processes with two core guiding structures in higher education: the four essential learning outcomes of the American Association of Colleges and Universities Liberal Arts for America's Promise (LEAP) Initiative, and six standards and learning outcome domains of the Council for the Advancement of Standards (CAS) in Higher Education.

Related Links:


Institutional Research

Strategic Planning

Questions about institutional assessment processes can be directed to:

Sharon "Shari" Peterson, PhD, RDH
Accreditation Liaison Officer and  Director- Office of Institutional Assessment and Accreditation
6375 W. Charleston Blvd. WC E305
Las Vegas, NV 89146
(702) 651-7784
Contact Us
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Institutional Assessment


CSN has implemented unit planning for all executive, institutional support, student support, academic support, and academic units (Schools and Departments).  Unit planning components consist of a unit mission, SMART goals, strategies, effectiveness measures, and action items.  Unit planning is updated annually and modified as necessary, based on assessment evidence from the previous academic year.  The planning and reporting timeline below should be followed with an annual reporting due date of November 1 for data collected the previous fiscal year.

Annually the CSN president in conjunction with the Office of Institutional Assessment and Accreditation conducts an informal review of unit plans using "show-n-tell" (SNT) presentations from each unit plan manager.  The synergistic experience allows collaboration within and across units to communicate priorities and partnership opportunities.  As CSN evolves in our unit plan process, we are working on a formal unit plan review every six years, to retrospectively evaluate the effectiveness, adequacy, and efficiency of unit goals and our process.

All unit plans are published for college-wide viewing in the Unit Planning segment below.

Integrated Strategic Planning
Unit Planning
Unit Plan Training
Integrated Strategic Planning PolicyPlans and ReportsWATERMARK TRAINING-
Unit Planning and Reporting
Year of Review
Unit Review
Academic Program Review



School of Health Science


Implemented Unit Planning

Associate of Arts

Associate of Science

Associate of General Science


Informal  Show-n-Tell Review-
All units

School of Business, Hospitality, and Public Service

School of Education, Behavior, and Social Service


Informal  Show-n-Tell Review-
All units

Department of Business


Informal  Show-n-Tell Review-
All units

School of Arts and Letters


Student Affairs Units

School of Science, Engineering, & Mathematics


Academic Affairs Units

(Deans & Department Chairs)

School of Advanced & Applied Technology


Executive Leadership

School of Health Sciences


Operational Support Units

School of Education, Behavioral, & Social Science


Campus Units

School of Business, Hospitality, & Public Services


Student Affairs Units

School of Arts and Letters

Academic Affairs Units

(Deans & Department Chairs)

School of Science, Engineering, & Mathematics