HLC Self Study
Chapter 6 Graphic

Summary

Estrella Mountain Community College has placed learning at the center of its educational mission by utilizing curriculum-integrated assessment, following an Institutional Assessment Cycle and adhering to a General Education Abilities Matrix. Faculty members across the College are engaged in distinct processes of continuously improving learning. Supported by effective teaching and learning pedagogies, dynamic learning environments and robust learning support services, a critical focus of the Estrella Mountain Learning College Journey is the success of all students.

The following Strengths, Challenges and Recommendations serve to demonstrate that Estrella Mountain Community College provides evidence of student learning and teaching effectiveness that illustrates the College is fulfilling its educational mission.

Strengths

  • Estrella Mountain Community College provides documented evidence of student learning and teaching effectiveness that demonstrates the College is fulfilling its educational mission through its programs and services.
  • Estrella Mountain has effectively increased faculty ownership of, and participation in, assessment. Faculty members utilize multiple measures to assess student learning.
  • Increased assessment of student learning outcomes is evident in planning processes, funding requests and events college-wide.
  • The Office of Planning and Institutional Effectiveness provides strong support for the assessment of learning.
  • Workforce development programs are created and improved upon in response to industry needs with industry input.
  • The College has in place appropriate practices and processes to hire and support diverse, expertly credentialed faculty.
  • Faculty professional development options are plentiful and accessible at both the College and the District levels. Adjunct faculty training opportunities have been expanded and improved.
  • Estrella Mountain co-curricular programs offer students a broad array of experiential and diverse learning opportunities.
  • Estrella Mountain provides learning spaces tailored to support student learning and effective teaching. Faculty members use multiple modalities to enrich their classes.
  • Estrella Mountain has expanded learning support services through Academic Affairs and Student Affairs to enhance student learning and improve retention.

Challenges

  • Estrella Mountain Community College needs to enhance the ways in which it utilizes assessment data to improve learning.
  • Estrella Mountain needs to increase its use of assessment data to direct resource allocation. 
  • Due to a troubled state economy, budget constraints and reductions pose a threat to maintaining quality service in support of student learning and effective teaching.
  • There is a increasingly heavy reliance on part-time faculty and staff to address demands caused by enrollment growth.
  • The Honors Program and Phi Theta Kappa need a permanent, full-time, shared support staff member and additional space for Honors students and Phi Theta Kappa students to network.

Recommendations

  • Estrella Mountain Community College, including faculty leadership, needs to continue to encourage participation among residential and adjunct faculty members in institutional assessment activities.
  • Estrella Mountain needs to utilize a common language to recruit employees who are dedicated to assessment and geared toward a Learning College environment.
  • The College should explore methods to reallocate resources in order to provide more permanent resources to support growth.