Wells College Registrar’s Office: Assessment Plan


REVISED DRAFT – September 6, 2007

Submitted by Karla Leybold-Taylor, Registrar



Section I.


Wells College mission statement:


“The mission of Wells College is to educate students to think critically, reason wisely, and act humanely as they cultivate meaningful lives. Through Wells' academic program, residential atmosphere, and community activities, students learn and practice the ideals of the liberal arts. The Wells experience prepares students to appreciate complexity and difference, to embrace new ways of knowing, to be creative, and to respond ethically to the interdependent worlds to which they belong. Committed to excellence in all areas of its reach, Wells College equips students for lifelong learning and for sharing the privileges of education with others.”


The five institutional goals of Wells College:


  1. “Provide an educational experience that supports students as unique individuals engaged in the study and practice of the liberal arts.”
  2. “Maintain an excellent faculty that is skilled in teaching, dedicated to rigorous intellectual development, and actively committed to pursuing new knowledge and learning strategies.”
  3. “Develop students’ intellectual curiosity, analytical and critical capabilities, and aesthetic awareness and creativity.”
  4. “Provide a rich community environment that fosters awareness and sensitivity to social diversity and encourages responsible action in an interdependent world.”
  5. “Develop self-confident individuals who exercise sound judgment and have the knowledge and skills for thoughtful decision-making.”


Section II.


How is the work of the Registrar’s Office related to the college’s mission statement and institutional goals?


The work of the Registrar’s Office relates most directly to institutional goals one (1.) and five (5.), while touching on two (2.) insofar as the office provides services to faculty members that enable them to do their jobs as defined in that institutional goal.


The mission of the Wells College Registrar’s Office:


The mission of the Wells College Registrar’s Office is to provide both timely and highly accurate academic information to students, faculty and staff, as well as to provide high quality, efficient and courteous academic-related services to the same constituencies. In addition, our mission is to provide (on time or ahead of schedule) reports and required information of various types to several external agencies.


The Registrar’s Office provides the following types of information and services, in addition to others:


  1. preparation of the course schedules and registration
  2. dissemination of class rosters, student schedules, grade rosters and grade reports
  3. preparation and dissemination of the final exam schedule
  4. student schedule maintenance (drop/add, withdrawal, petitions, etc.)
  5. input of OCS grades for Wells and non Wells students
  6. preparation of student transcripts for faculty advisors, current students and alumni
  7. preparation of transfer credit evaluations, posting of transfer credit
  8. evaluating and recording other types of advanced standing credit (AP, IB, CLEP, etc.)
  9. dissemination and preparation of curricular materials for faculty to propose new courses, make changes to majors/minors/courses
  10.  annual revision of the academic section of the college catalog
  11. preparation and dissemination of degree audits, certification for graduation
  12. determination and posting of academic standing and honors; preparation of the “Registrar’s List” for review by ASA
  13. international students (SEVIS), Veteran’s Affairs certifications
  14. institutional research functions, including completion of IPEDS (federal), NYSED (state) and MSACHE (accreditation) reports, as well as various other reports and surveys


Section III


The goals of the Wells College Registrar’s Office


Author’s note: As I was trying to formulate specific goals related to many of the services provided above, it became increasingly clear that the transition to Jenzabar EX and the (probable) subsequent change in many procedures (including, but possibly not limited to, registration and drop/add, dissemination of schedules, rosters and grades, degree audit) would necessitate the formulation of different goals than those I would create now. Therefore, since the transition is imminent, I’d like to request a reprieve in developing goals related to services that will be affected by software conversion.


As for the other services the Registrar’s Office provides, I have established the following goals and methods for assessing whether they have been attained.






Goal 1:


Ensure the timely and accurate updating of the academic sections of the college catalog, including those sections that rely on faculty input.


Goal 1 assessment:


  1. Information for all academic sections of the catalog is submitted to Janet Mapstone, graphic designed, on or before her stated deadlines throughout the catalog update cycle. (This may mean frequent reminders to faculty about reviewing their sections and/or follow up phone calls or visits.)
  2. The printed catalog will contain no more than three errors in content that can be directly attributed to the Registrar.


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 1 is not met:


If I fail to submit catalog materials on time and/or there are more than three content areas that can be directly attributed to me, I will develop a plan (in conjunction with Janet Mapstone) to begin the update process earlier in order to give myself more time to meet the various proof deadlines and to conduct a thorough review of the catalog before the final proof goes to Janet for changes and publication.


***Please also see below.


Goal 2:


To provide high quality, efficient and courteous academic-related services to students and faculty.


Goal 2 assessment:


  1. Again, I think the nature of what we do will change in the near future, but once we have new procedures and systems in place, I would like assistance in developing a survey instrument to measure “satisfaction” with the services the offices provides. I would strive for a 90% or better satisfaction rate, with “satisfaction” being determined by students and faculty being “satisfied” or “highly satisfied” with our services.


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 2 is not met:


Once our survey is ready to go and our survey process has been implemented, I will gather and analyze the responses to determine whether we are successful in obtaining a “satisfied” or “highly satisfied” rating of 90% or better from students and faculty, our target constituencies for the survey.

If our satisfaction rate is below 90%, I will analyze the survey results to determine which areas are most problematic and will then develop an action to address shortcomings in these areas immediately. Doing so may require seeking further input from students and faculty as to the specifics of our deficiencies and how best to remedy them. Still, the goal will be to take remedial actions as soon as possible.


Note: As mentioned above, I would like assistance from Assessment Committee members on developing my initial satisfaction survey instrument. Also, if the results of that, once implemented, indicate that our satisfaction rate is lower than our goal rate, I may seek assistance of committee members as well as other student and faculty members for guidance as to how to address shortcomings.


***Please also see below.


Goal 3:


Transfer credit evaluations for prospective transfer students are completed within three business days of receipt from the Admissions Office, except at “peak” times for my office, such as graduation week.


Goal 3 assessment:


1.      Admissions files are date stamped upon receipt and the date compared with the date of completion as noted on the transfer evaluation.


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 3 is not met:


I can easily tell, as can the director of transfer admissions, whether transfer evaluations are being completed within the three day timeframe mentioned above. Of not, I will strategize as to how to fit them in with the rest of my work in order to complete them within the goal time. Such measures may include taking them home and completing them “after hours” or delegating some of my other work to the registrar’s assistant.


***Please also see below.


Goal 4:


Requests for official transcripts are processed within three business days of receipt, except at “peak” times, such as during each semester’s grade entry (again, this may change with software conversion once faculty enter their own grades).


Goal 4 assessment:


1.      Transcript requests are date stamped upon receipt and dates can be compared with the processing date recorded when the transcript is sent.

2.      The office should receive not more than one complaint per month regarding lack of timeliness in receipt of transcripts that can be attributed to the Registrar’s Office.


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 4 is not met:


If our analysis of request date versus date sent reveals that we are taking longer than three business days, or if we receive more than one complaint per month regarding lack of timeliness, we will take immediate steps to figure out what is causing the delay and to arrange work in such as way as to get the transcripts out in more timely fashion. This may include increasing the number of work-study students we employ and setting up another computer work station so that the student worker(s) can do more of the transcript processing than is currently the case.


***Please also see below.


Goal 5:


1. For prospective F-1 students, I-20s are issued within three business days of receipt of completed admissions file and certifications of finances showing sufficient funds. Updates to the SEVIS system are made in timely fashion, according to ICE rules, so as to avoid student or institutional citations for non-compliance.


2. For students receiving VA benefits, timely enrollment verifications (timely = by the beginning of the upcoming semester) and updates (within 30 days of an enrollment change) are submitted via the VA-ONCE system.


Goal 5 assessment:


  1. Prospective students will not experience F-1 visa delays due to untimely completion of I-20 on the part of the Registrar.


  1. VA audits will not show citations for non-compliance.


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 5 is not met:


If prospective students report visa delays that can be attributed to untimely completion of the I-20 on my part, or if VA audits (audits are done at least every three years) show non-compliance, then steps will be taken to ensure more timely completion, in the case of I-20s, and more frequent checking of VA student enrollment to ensure compliance with reporting enrollment changes. Such steps may include finding another individual on campus to serve as a DSO (designated school official); I serve as PDSO (principal designated school official) for SEVIS, and/or sharing the VA reporting responsibilities with the registrar’s assistant.


***Please also see below.


Goal 6:


All required IPEDS, NYSED and other assorted other reports are completed accurately on or before the established deadlines. In some cases, this requires follow-up with others on campus who supply information for these reports.


Goal 6 assessment:


1.      The college will not receive notice of or citations for untimely submission of reports


How assessment measures are used and what our plan will be if/when Goal 6is not met:


Should the college receive a citation from an outside agency for untimely submission of required reports, immediate steps will be taken to figure out why the report was late and to prevent this from occurring again. If the report was one that I simply coordinate, as opposed to completing myself, then I will issue additional reminders to the report completer to ensure the report gets to me on time. If the late report is one that I am directly responsible for, then I will reorganize work flow in such a way as to prioritize these reports over other tasks to ensure they are completed on or before the deadline.


***Please also see below.


***It seems that, if assessment determines any of the goals 1 through 6 are not being met, one remedy to consider might be hiring an additional staff member for the Registrar’s Office. We can only reshuffle the current workload so much without causing a problem in another area while trying to remedy one elsewhere.


However, such a solution would necessitate a relocation of the office, most likely, since our current space is too small to accommodate additional personnel. And, again, we need to assess the impact the impact of Jenzabar on our work processes before we’ll know whether and what type of additional staff might be needed.