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Assessment is any effort to gather, analyze, and interpret evidence that describes institutional, departmental, divisional, or agency effectiveness (Upcraft & Schuh, 1996).
While many of the processes in assessment and research may be similar, there are two important distinctions:
- Assessment guides good practice and typically has implications for only one institution.
- Research guides theory and tests concepts and has broader implications for higher education (Erwin, 1991).