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Ethical Standards

Assessment, research, and evaluation in the Division of Student Affairs is founded on guiding principles from several professional organizations. The Division of Student Affairs Assessment Committee endeavors to clearly communicate these standards and expectations to student affairs professionals within our division, as well as to the stakeholders we serve.  

These ethical standards are presented most concisely from the American Evaluation Association: 

  1. Systematic Inquiry 
  2. Competence 
  3. Integrity/Honesty 
  4. Responsibility for General and Public Welfare 
  5. The complete AEA Guiding Principles and Training Presentation can be found here: 


The Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) statement of shared ethical principles can be viewed here: 

Assessment Competency Framework

This competency set for assessment was created using the ACPA/NASPA Professional Competency for Assessment, Evaluation, and Research, and the Assessment Skills Framework presented by Horst & Pendergast (2020). The purpose for developing these assessment competencies for the Division of Student Affairs was to assess the knowledge, skills, and abilities gained from A-Team members completing the Anthology Student Affairs Assessment Credential. However, there is a broader campus need for an assessment competency framework. The first 10 of these competencies will serve as a rubric to guide the creation and evaluation of professional development in assessment across the institution, such as the Professional Development Subcommittee of CLASS (Committee on Learning Assessment for Student Success) and the Assessment Capability Leadership Institute (ACLI).

See link below:

Division of Student Affairs Assessment Competency Rubric

CSUSB Division of Student Affairs Assessment Competency Rubric


No exposure or experience.


New to assessment, developing awareness of assessment topics, limited practical application of assessment knowledge.     


Solid Grasp of foundational concepts, beginning to understand nuances and to apply at their own level.


Adept in the practical application of assessment and use of results, ability to explain, and beginning to lead others


Thorough and extensive understanding and application, ability to fluidly navigate within and across organizational units and structures, ability to coach, lead, develop with customized support

1. Definition, Purpose, and Value of Assessment

No exposure or experience. Can identify assessment merely for accountability as different from assessment for improvement. Promotes assessment for improvement, can distinguish the application and purpose of assessment across different contexts (enhancement of learning, improvement of program/unit effectiveness, accountability requirements). Utilizes assessment, evaluation, and research processes and results to inform practice. Effectively balances the need for assessment  Employs an integrated definition of assessment from more than one application or discipline. Can lead and support others in customizing projects incorporating assessment, and research (AER). Uses multiple approaches and ways of knowing in AER work.
2. Understanding the Assessment Cycle No exposure or experience. Can describe the basic components of the assessment
Provides detailed "descriptions of each description of each step in the assessment cycle, and the relationship amongst the steps" step in the assessment cycle, and the relationship amongst the steps. Explains steps of assessment cycle to others, coordinates elements required in the cycle, develops cycle for unit. Describes "interactions and interactions and overlap between steps & nonlinear processes in assessment cycle, plans and relates assessment cycles at unit, division, and institutional level." overlap between steps & nonlinear processes in assessment cycle, plans and relates assessment cycles at unit, division, and institutional level.
3. Understanding the Relationship Between Assessment and Other Institutional Practices No exposure or experience. Can broadly describe the relationship between assessment and processes like program design, program review, etc. Provides detailed "explanations for interaction between assessment, program review, and strategic planning at the unit level." interaction between assessment, program review, and strategic planning at the unit level. Provides nuanced explanation for the interaction between assessment, program design, program evaluation, strategic planning across all levels (student, program, unit, division, and institution). Relates, synchronizes, and integrates processes of assessment with other institutional processes across all levels.
4. Identifying and Creating a Culture of Evidence No exposure or experience. Can provide a general description of a culture of evidence. Describes main features of a culture of evidence, contributes to that culture through support in creating or contributing to opportunities for evidence-based decision-making processes. Facilitates the shared meaning and language of a culture of evidence, promotes and develops the practices, values, and norms for that culture. Understands the interplay between a culture of evidence with other aspects of organizational culture, cultivates its development, and identifies milestones of progression.
5. Knowledge of Ethical Principles No exposure or experience. Can list at least 2 sources for ethical principles guiding work in the discipline, and/or profession. Applies ethical principles to all work; understands implications of ethical guidelines for one's work and work of others in developing and implementing assessment practices and processes. Promotes and supports the application of ethical principles in assessment processes and practices and in the development of others. Monitors and resolves situations that challenge professional values and integrity, explains ethical guidelines, rationale, and implications for use/misuse to others.
6. Promoting Equity in Assessment No exposure or experience. Can articulate a general understanding of the relevance of issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion to assessment. Can describe how assessment tools facilitate engagement and empowerment as well as exclusion and marginalization. Proactively addresses issues to avoid mis-utilization of assessment tools, promotes diverse inclusion into the process of assessment. Can identify and maximize avenues for inclusion and reflection by diagnosing and effectively navigating power and value issues that come into play with the assessment process; develops others in culturally responsive use of assessment tools and results.
7. Developing Outcomes at Various Levels of Assessment No exposure or experience. Can classify levels of assessment (course, program, department, division, institution) and identify outcomes situated within these levels. Distinguishes between outcomes and strategies, provides detailed explanations for the differences and relationships between outcomes (learning, program, operational) as well as steps to reach desired outcomes. Articulates outcomes of different types (e.g., learning, program, operational), analyzes relevant assessment considerations given the level at which assessment is conducted (alignment, implementation, reporting, outcome assessment). Evaluates frameworks for outcomes, facilitates multi-level communication and engagement around the structure of assessment activities and the use of assessment results that is appropriate and useful at each level of the program/institution.
8. Evaluating Measures No exposure or experience. Describes basic types of measures, their intended uses, and the general pros and cons associated with them. Appropriately matches measures to purpose & context, effectively chooses measures after weighing pros and cons, identifies reliability and validity evidence in relation to use and application of measures. Participates in the design of assessment instruments. Integrates multiple measures into planning outcomes assessment, can determine the utility and value-added across various types of measures. Evaluates and creates reliable and valid measures customized to various contexts, synthesizes multiple measures into meaningful and actionable conclusions. Leads measurement activities that span multiple methodological approaches.
9. Functional Understanding of Assessment Analysis and Results No exposure or experience. Can describe differences between qualitative and quantitative analysis. Properly interprets assessment data in practical terms, recognizes mixed methods, understands the role of data analysis to identify equity gaps. Applies appropriate analysis techniques to assessment data, describes strengths and limitations of analyses employed, uses data analysis to examine equity gaps. Proposes and leads analysis processes, guides interpretation of results with respect to continuous improvement and closing equity gaps, understands the nuances and applications of data analysis across different contexts.

10. Communicating and Utilizing Assessment Results              

No exposure or experience. Recognizes the importance of representing assessment results accurately and fairly, as well as ensuring assessment reports are useful and actionable. Interprets assessment results accurately. Properly accesses and reports different levels of data (e.g., raw versus summary), maintains appropriate transparency and confidentiality when reporting results. Uses assessment results to advocate for meeting student needs. Adjusts communication of assessment findings to the needs of the audience. Facilitates the discussion of results and generation of action plans within an
institutional level.
Explains limitations and applications of assessment data and results. Reviews and guides broad data communication processes to maintain proper data governance, clearly communicates findings to various stakeholder groups, integrates assessment findings into actionable continuous improvement plans and multiple institutional levels.
11. Knowledge of CAS Standards No exposure or experience. Knows where to access CAS standards and Self-Assessment Guides (SAGs) for their area, and understands their purpose. Can explain how CAS standards apply to their area as standards for review and guidance for program improvement. Directs and coordinates the implementation of the Self-Assessment Guides (SAGs), reviews and communicates results with units, integrates findings into assessment plans, uses results for improvement.  Facilitates and supports the use of CAS standards for the assessment, development, and improvement of quality student learning, programs, and services within and across units to guide outcome development, staff development, and strategic planning.