MCLA and BCC Awarded Davis Foundation Grant


NORTH ADAMS, MA - Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) and Berkshire Community College (BCC) have been awarded a grant from the state's Board of Higher Education under the Advancing a Massachusetts Culture of Assessment (AMCOA) project, funded by a Davis Educational Foundation grant.

The grant, awarded as part of a competition in conducting experiments in assessment for public higher education institutions, will fund a project in "Written Communications Assessment" between MCLA and BCC, that will articulate learning goals for student writing at two critical stages of their education, to ascertain current achievement levels and to develop strategies for improvement where needed.   

Faculty from MCLA and BCC will collaborate and work with a nationally known expert in college writing to develop a rubric for written communication at the sophomore/associate's degree level.  A separate group from MCLA will develop a corresponding rubric for the senior/bachelor's level.  Both groups will assess authentic artifacts and use that data to determine action steps for coordinating efforts to enhance college writing within their own institutions, as well as to increase student success in writing for those that transfer.

The colleges expect that this experiment will establish a process that can be replicated by other two-year/four-year college partnerships and be extended to other outcomes.   

The collaborative proposal between the two institutions was one of the top six proposals selected through a rigorous scoring among five scorers and evaluation by the Commissioner's Advisory Committee.

According to Peggy Maki, Assessment Consultant for the AMCOA Project, "Indeed, all of the proposals submitted--a total of 17 institutions submitting either single proposals or collaboratively developed proposals--represent institutions' deep commitment to assessment."