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Belmont University | Belief in Something Greater

Reporting Your Results

When you report results, you walk a balance. How much data is enough? How much is too much?

Assessment Reporting Balance

It is not uncommon for report writers to stall at the question, "How much should I include?" but actually, your results can be your guide. What among your findings is the most interesting to your unit? What engendered the most conversation? What do you consider the most relevant to any changes moving forward? It is your priority to get these key points across. Start there.

The Shortest Path to Understanding

If an assessment report is to be read, understood, and used for decision-making, digestibility is the key. Consider your audience. Have you consolidated the key findings into a form that someone can understand on the first read? This is where visual presentations of data can be helpful to consolidate data points into a context in which they can be understood.

At Belmont, you will be asked for these kinds of results.

Raw Data
Just the facts.

Providing the raw data (how many participants in the measure, how many met your benchmark, any comparisons to previous years) adds a level of credibility and transparency to your results. It gives umph to your analysis of the results and suggests that you have kept track of your data in a responsible way.The raw data does not include your ideas about what the data mean to you; that is your analysis.

Raw Data is often presented in text or table form.
Analyzed Data

Your analysis of the data doesn't, of necessity, require high level statistics. Instead, it requires your expertise as to what these results mean to your unit. Did you get the results you expected? Did you learn something? Did key points arise in your discussions of the results? Did you feel that this measure did indeed inform you regarding your outcome?

Analyzed data is often presented as text accompanied by graphs or charts.

Changes

Depending on your unit's assessment cycle, you might include changes implemented since your last report, or possibly, changes that you now intend to implement. The changes included in an assessment report are those that are directly related to your analysis of the data you present. Including changes made based on your analysis demonstrates the use of assessment results.

Strategic changes are often listed in bulleted or numbered lists with text.

Digging Deeper...

Qualitative Data: Coding for Organization

Quantitative Data: Presenting Findings Visually

Writing Effective Outcome Statements

Choosing the Right Assessment Methods