Institute for the Development of Excellence in Assessment Leadership (IDEAL)

IDEAL is a professional development opportunity that thoroughly equips you to lead your faculty in the development and implementation of a program assessment plan. Over four days of expert guidance and interactive group exercises, you work with colleagues to develop the skills and knowledge to make you an effective assessment leader.

What You Will Learn

IDEAL focuses on the skills and knowledge needed to be an effective assessment leader and to manage the change process in your program or college.

During this four-day program, you are challenged to think about the assessment of student learning from the program-level or college-level perspective and learn to integrate the basic principles of assessment, change management, and facilitation tools. The activities in the Institute take you from the basic principles of program assessment to an understanding of how those principles can be applied in the context of your program/college.

Although the primary focus of IDEAL is on developing sound assessment practices, you also learn how to lead your faculty in the process effectively by applying facilitation tools and basic change management principles.

Topics Covered at IDEAL

Assessment principles

You will learn about best practices in assessing, evaluating and documenting continuous improvement of student learning. Topics covered will include:

  • Evaluating Program Educational Objectives
  • Developing measurable outcomes
  • Developing scoring rubrics
  • Calibrating scoring rubrics for multiple faculty raters
  • Choosing appropriate assessment methods
  • Maximizing the use of curriculum mapping
  • Defining efficient and effective assessment processes
  • Creating and implementing useful surveys
  • Documenting and reporting results


Having a good understanding of the program assessment process is necessary but not sufficient to create a sustainable culture of assessment. Throughout the Institute, you will explore the basic principles of leadership and be challenged to discern their applicability to your own college/program culture. Topics will include:

  • Understanding faculty resistance
  • Practical tips for managing change
  • Effective communication
  • Working for sustainability

Facilitation skills

How to manage groups plays an important part in engaging other faculty in the assessment process. Whether you are leading a team of faculty from multiple departments or working with faculty within a single department, using facilitation tools will enable you to move efficiently through the process by harnessing faculty energy in meaningful directions. In addition to tips on how to facilitate a meeting, some of the things you will learn will include:

  • Working with groups
  • Planning meetings for action
  • Maximizing the use of effective facilitation tools

Upcoming IDEAL Dates

August 5-8, 2019 | Baltimore, Maryland

If you can’t attend this session but would like to attend a future IDEAL, email You’ll be the first to know when applications open for our next session.

Application & Deadline

Please note: The entire workshop will be taught in English and requires basic reading, writing and comprehension of the English language in order to receive the full benefit of IDEAL.

A completed application consists of two parts:

  1. The completed online application form.
  2. A letter of Support from the applicant’s supervisor.
    Each applicant must submit a letter from his or her supervisor detailing the specific level of support for the applicant’s involvement in leading the program or college assessment effort (e.g., release time, reward structure, etc.)

You can either email the signed letter in PDF to Jessica Silwick – or mail to:

c/o Jessica Silwick
415 North Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201

Applications for admission will not be considered complete until the Letter of Support is received. Qualified candidates will be notified of their admission within three weeks of receipt of all required materials.

IDEAL is limited to 40 participants, so apply early. Applications are considered as soon as we receive them, and accepted applicants are placed into our next open session. Interested in attending a later IDEAL session? Email


The registration fee is $2,150, which includes breakfast and lunch for all four days, reference materials, and participation in the year-long follow-up activities.

Interested in attending IDEAL?

Email ABET

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