Step-by-Step APER Guide

Evaluation of Student Learning at Wake Forest College:
A step-by-step guide to the creation or modification and implementation of
Academic Program Evaluation Reports

The goal of Academic Program Evaluation (APE) is to conduct a longitudinal study of the student learning experience in your academic program. The results of this process are intended to provide a more thorough understanding of:

  • Which student learning outcomes are being met to the level you aspire.
  • Whether some student learning outcomes are not being met to your desired level.
  • Whether there are similarities among students who are not meeting your student learning outcome expectations.
  • What changes/improvements would further enhance the student learning experience in your academic program?
  • Each year’s Academic Program Evaluation (APE) report should be thought of as a chapter in a book telling the story of the student learning experience in your program over time.

Academic Program Evaluation reports should be written to address the needs and understanding of three separate audiences:

  1. Program Faculty – as members of your program, these readers will be most intimately familiar with the field, program, and curriculum;
  2. College & University Administration – as members of the College and University, these readers will be somewhat familiar with your program, field, and curriculum, but will benefit from a more thorough description of the nuances and intricacies of your academic program, your choice of outcomes and measures of those outcomes, and the meaning of your results; and
  3. SACS Review Committee Members – similar to the administration of the College and University, these readers will be somewhat familiar with the generalities of your program, field, and curriculum, but will benefit from a more thorough description of your academic program and academic program evaluation process as they exist at Wake Forest University.

The APE process is linear in nature and will include the following sections:


Mission – Outcomes Measures
Findings – Interpretation – Action Plans

These three sections comprise the APE Plan & will remain somewhat consistent across years
These three sections comprise the APE Results & will change from year-to-year

Printable Step-by-Step APER Guide