Monthly Archives: June 2012

Organizing The Blog

One of the little things that bother me is the the word “categorized”. It screams out for cleaning, for updating, for fixing. But so often when I sit down to write down the global categories and cloud of tags that will serve as teh outline and backbone of a long term project I think…

nothing, total blank

So I have developed a strategy for this. I wait, twitchily, but wait and see what develops. After a few posts I go and look over the direction that things are going in and then try to document those global directions. These big directions, they are the categories. Big containers that hold the concepts we want to discus.

The smaller bits that are buried within the posts, they get tags so that we can find those things again, breadcrumbs if you will. These I steal from others. My first swipe at tags for this blog come from Carnegie Mellon Site here.


Filed under Practice

Weighted Average Standard Deviation

We recently found a way to calculate the standard deviation of weighted values on a Likert scale using Excel.  The three formulas involve first finding the weighted average score followed by variance and standard deviation.  This was important because Excel does not provide a standard formula to find standard deviation with weighted values.  Assuming that A1: A5 has the raw values and B1:B5 has the respective scores, the formulas are as follows:

The average score (C1) is


The variance (C2) of the scores is


The standard deviation is the square root of the variance


This finding is important for the Office of Assessment because more data analysis can be done on Likert scale survey questions like those in the AACP surveys.  It provides a greater statistical understanding of weighted values and more possibilities as we continue to expand our ideas for future research.

Details can be found on Excel Banter.


Filed under Computational Tools, Methods, Statistics

The Assessment Grid

After browsing the websites of some Pharmacy schools, I came across an Assessment Grid being utilized by the Rutgers Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy. It turns out to be a very reader-friendly way of communicating the ongoing Assessment Plan within the college, and gives the reader some background and a fair amount of detail on the assessment process. It would be great to hear how this grid was developed. Was there a committee that developed it? Or was it just written by a Dean/Associate Dean for Assessment? It’s similar to our ‘matrix’ of outcomes and goals, but less formal, and more readable.

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Filed under Planning, Practice

Assessment Education

We are always looking for ways to introduce assessment to faculty and other stakeholders. West Virginia has a very nice assessment education site that, though general in its nature is tilted a bit towards pharmacy as its author, Maria A. Abate is a PharmD.

Assessment Principles | Faculty Development | WVU Health Sciences Center.


Filed under Culture, Education