Evaluating a program in higher education: a conceptual process and its application

Slimmer, Virginia
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The purpose of this study was to develop a conceptual process for evaluation of a program in higher education; to apply that process to an on-going program; and to provide a meaningful information base for decision makers, thus facilitating the marketability of that program. The study, presented in three sections, includes: a short review of literature on evaluation and on marketing, relating each to higher education; three papers submitted to scholarly journals; and a summary, bibliography, and appendices of developed instuments.;The evaluation model developed by Slimmer (1981) was presented, encompassing the component functions of collecting, analyzing, interpreting, and decision making with delineation of each function. This process was applied to an on-going home economics program in a midwestern university. Data from six instruments provided an information base about the strengths and weaknesses of the program justifying decisions regarding maintenance, modification, expansion, or curtailment of segments of the program. Respondents were currently enrolled students, graduates, tranferred students, administrators, instructional faculty, and high school principals and counselors. Outcomes and recommendations for the program were developed. The systematic evaluation process provided identification of target markets, societal wants and needs, thereby establishing a base for the development of marketing strategies which were recommended for that program.

Professional studies in education, Education (Higher education), Higher education