Assessing Community Engagement

Community partnerships and collaboration are integral to Cal State East Bay’s commitment to community and civic engagement. The university realizes the important role these partnerships play in enhancing the student experience and in realizing the public purpose of higher education. CalStateS4, the Center for Community Engagement’s reporting system, enables the campus to report on community engagement activities and partnerships that demonstrate the ways faculty, staff, and students contribute to the public good and the well-being of our region. The data is critical for reporting and assessment processes related to the California Call to Service, the Graduation 2025 Initiative, the Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement, the National President’s Honor Roll for Community Service, the Student Academic Outreach Programs Report, and other Chancellor’s Office and campus reporting requests.

Within Cal State East Bay’s mission and strategic commitments, the university aspires to create and foster a campus culture that values academic quality, inclusion, sustainability, accountability, and social responsibility. At the core of this effort is the need for data collection and assessment. The role of the Center for Community Engagement is to establish goals, strategies, and targets for community engagement and partnerships through conversation and collaboration with a variety of academic units and community partners. These goals are meant ensure learning experiences and partnerships contribute to student success and community well-being.

The Center for Community Engagement has developed tools for collecting student and community feedback and assessing impact. For community-based learning courses, these tools are available through CalStateS4, the CSU’s student placement and community partnership management system. For more information on how to access and use these tools, please email andrea.wells@csueastbay.edu. The Center for Community Engagement has also developed assessment tools available to departments and faculty to support the assessment of community engaged learning.

CCE Assessment Practices:

The CCE engages in multiple forms of assessment: of our center program and activities, community partnerships, student community-based learning, and the faculty experience teaching CBL.

CCE Programmatic Assessment: Each year, individual coordinators within the CCE complete an assessment brief of initiatives with data collected from a variety of surveys and feedback collected from our stakeholders. We use this process to inform program processes and activities. Significant findings from these briefs are included in our Annual Report. Please contact the cce@csueastbay.edu, if you are interested in seeing these briefs. The assessment briefs look at:

  • Description of Initiative: key players, intended impact, timeline if relevant, highlights of current year activities
  • Assessment Tools: description of methods (surveys, interviews, written reflections, focus group/discussion)
  • Assessment Timeline: frequency, calendar
  • Assessment Point Person: responsible party(ies)
  • Current Year Evaluation Brief: explanation of significant findings including samples of both qualitative and quantitative findings
  • Recommendations: follow up if needed

Community Partnership Assessment: Because community partners form the cornerstone of our work, the CCE disseminates quarterly surveys to our community partners. These surveys are based on the following  partnership benchmarks:

  • Fulfill community identified needs
  • Create and support mutually beneficial and respectful partnerships
  • Create and support sustainable partnerships
  • Support a range of partnerships that represent the diverse needs, qualities, and culture of our students, community, and region                                                                                                                                                 

Student Community-based learning Assessment: Community-based learning is a pedagogical tool used to help meet course or discipline learning. However, CBL also is a teaching method that helps students develop social responsibility, community awareness, self-efficacy, and professional skills. The CCE disseminates quarterly surveys to students in CBL courses that utilize CalStateS4.

Faculty CBL Assessment: Because faculty are the catalysts that make CBL happen, we are also interested in hearing about their experiences teaching these courses. We are interested in pedagogical appoaches as well as course management issues relates to CBL.

Resources:

Rubric for assessing community partnerships

Rubric for assessing service learning courses (attributes and construction)

Rubric for assessing student civic engagement

Sample version CCE's student CBL survey

Sample version CCE's faculty survey

Sample version CCE's community partner survey

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