Self Assessment

In recent years it has become an obligation that institutions of higher education demonstrate the effectiveness of their academic programs in providing high quality education that positively impacts students. Furthermore, most accrediting bodies and others concerned with quality assurance are requesting that institutions assess students’ learning outcomes as a means of improving academic programs. This has led The Higher Education Commission (HEC) to develop methods for assessing the quality of academic program.

Assessment is a systematic process of gathering, reviewing and using important quantitative and qualitative data and information from multiple and diverse sources about educational programs, for the purpose of improving student learning, and evaluating whether academic and learning standards are being met. The process culminates when assessment results are used to improve student learning. A successful assessment program includes the following:

  1. Purpose identification
  2. Outcome’s identification
  3. Measurements and evaluation design
  4. Data collection
  5. Analysis and evaluation
  6. Decision-making regarding actions to be taken.

The purpose of this document is to outline the process of conducting self-assessment (SA) of academic programs. It is HEC that requires universities to conduct periodic self- assessment for its academic programs in order to improve them and ensure high academic standards. Self-assessment is an important tool for academic quality assurance and provides feedback for faculty and administration to initiate action plans for improvement.


The objectives of self-assessment are to:

  1. Maintain and continuously enhance academic standards +
  2. Enhance students’ learning
  3. Verify that the existing programs meet their objectives and institutional goals
  4. Provide feedback for quality assurance of academic programs
  5. Prepare the academic program for review by discipline councils

Self Assessment Procedure

In this section the procedure for conducting a self-assessment is described. Each academic program shall undergo a self-assessment (SA) every two years (assessment cycle). The Quality Enhancement Cell (QEC) is responsible for planning, coordinating and following up on the self-assessment (SA) activities. The steps of the procedure for SA are as follows:

    1. The QEC initiates the SA one semester prior to the end of the assessment cycle through the Vice Chancellor / Rector Office in which the program is offered. However, if the program is undergoing the SA for the first time, the department will be given one academic year for preparation.
    2. Upon receiving the initiation letter the department shall form a program team (PT). The PT will be responsible for preparing a self-assessment report (SAR) about the program under consideration over a period of one semester. They will be the contact group during the assessment period.
    3. The department shall submit the SAR to the QEC through the concerned Dean. The QEC reviews the SAR within one month to ensure that it is prepared according to the required format.
    4. The Vice Chancellor / Rector forms a program assessment team (AT) in consultation with the QEC recommendations within one month. The AT comprises of 2-3 faculty members from within or outside the university. The AT must have at least one expert in the area of the assessed program.
    5. The QEC plans and schedules the AT visit period in coordination with the department that is offering the program.
    6. The AT conducts the assessment, submits a report and presents its findings in an exit meeting that shall be attended by the QEC, Dean and PT and faculty members.
    7. The QEC shall submit an executive summary on the AT findings to the Vice Chancellor / Rector.
    8. The Department shall prepare and submit an implementation plan to QEC based on the AT findings. The plan must include AT findings and the corrective actions to be taken, assignment of responsibility and a time frame for such actions. Table A.2 in Appendix A provides a format for preparing a summary of the implementation plan.
    9. The QEC shall follow up on the implementation plan to ensure departments are adhering to the implementation plan. The academic department shall inform the QEC each time a corrective action is implemented. QEC shall review the implementation plan once a semester to assess the progress of implementation.