Student Achievement Standards

Student Achievement Standard 1:

The program has established a Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) policy that includes criteria for evaluating student progress in academics, socialization, independent living, and career development, and the impact of such evaluation on student advancement toward program completion. The program specifies how students advance through a full course of study and maintain satisfactory academic progress.


The federal definition of Satisfactory Academic Progress is: “A required measurement of a student's academic progress toward their academic goal. Progress must be measured by both grade-based (qualitative) and time/pace of completion (quantitative) standards. For programs lasting one year or less, SAP must be assessed at the end of each payment period. For programs lasting more than one year, SAP must be assessed annually (corresponding with the end of a payment period). SAP must be measured cumulatively.”

The preceding federal SAP definition addresses measurement of a student's academic progress, based on substantial public input. SAP for these programs must also address measurement of student progress in the areas of socialization, independent living, and career development.

Required for Review

  • Provide the institution’s SAP policy and describe how this is applied to students in the program.

  • Provide the program SAP policy, including information about how SAP is measured in academics, socialization, career development, and independent living.

    • Weblink and materials that indicate the program’s SAP policy, such as admissions materials, orientation materials and presentations, agendas, or other materials that state and explain the SAP policy to students

    • Documentation of the policy and process followed when students fail to meet SAP

    • Description of criteria used to determine SAP in work-based experiences and the process for remediation when students fail to meet SAP

Student Achievement Standard 2:

The program has established a program level Student Learning Outcomes assessment plan and a process that allows it to measure student achievement in varied domains, including academics, social, independent living, and career development.


Student learning outcomes articulate what students know and can do in various domains upon completion of the program. Student learning outcomes should be appropriate to the nature of the program, clear, concise, measurable, and observable. The process/plan will include written student learning outcomes expected of all students in the program, the methods used to assess the extent to which the student learning outcomes are met, and a schedule that indicates when data are collected and analyzed.

The Student Learning Outcomes Assessment Plan must contain the following elements:

  • Written student learning outcomes, which include the following key elements:

    • Who: (the student) “Upon completion of this program, students will be able to…”

    • What: skill/information

    • How learning/attainment is demonstrated: (e.g., by exam, project, presentation, portfolio, participation in social clubs, completion of internships)

    • Description of the methods the program will use to assess the extent to which the student learning outcomes are met, (e.g., letter grades, rubric graded, pass/fail)

  • Data the program will collect

  • A schedule that indicates when data are collected and analyzed (at least annually).

Required for Review

  • State the student learning outcomes for the program.

    • Weblink to the student learning outcomes

  • Describe the assessment plan and process used to determine if the student learning outcomes are achieved.

  • Provide the schedule for collecting and analyzing the data.

  • Provide documentation that the program tracks student learning outcomes according to schedule for all metrics (academics, social, independent living, career development)

  • Indicate how information regarding the achievement of student learning outcomes is shared and with whom

Student Achievement Standard 3:

The program provides an individualized learning plan for each college catalog course a student attends that identifies what the student is expected to learn; how the student will be evaluated; and supports, strategies, accommodations, or modifications that are needed for the student to master essential learning.


All students in the program participating in college catalog courses must have a learning plan for the course. “College catalog course” refers to courses in the college catalog that are taken by matriculating students for credit toward a degree or certificate. Supports, strategies, and accommodations identified in the student’s person-centered plan are included in the learning plan.

Programs must have a process to outline the individual learning goals and expectations for each student in each college class that is based on the course syllabi and the learning goals for all students in the class, with accommodations and modifications as needed. Note that modifications are only allowed if the course is being audited or otherwise not taken for credit toward a degree. The program will share the learning plan with the student and with the faculty member teaching the course. The program staff will support the student in learning the material, if needed, and to the extent possible will collaborate with the faculty member on evaluation of student learning.

The individual learning plans must be developed by a professional staff person or faculty member. If undergraduate or graduate students are involved, they must be under the supervision of professional staff.

Required for Review

  • Describe the process for analyzing syllabi and course expectations, identifying what individual students are expected to learn, and how they will be evaluated and supported.

  • Provide several redacted examples of such plans, including the course syllabi upon which it is based.

  • Indicate the position(s) of the individuals who conduct this process (e.g., faculty, program staff, graduate students).

Student Achievement Standard 4:

The program provides students with a written report at the end of each academic term (e.g., quarter, semester, trimester), understandable to the student, that clearly indicates evidence of student progress in the areas of academics, socialization, independent living, and career/employment.


The program reviews written reports with the student at a minimum at the end of each academic term. The program retains these records for a period of seven years.

Required for Review

  • Provide a description of the program’s assessment to determine student achievement. (e.g., rubrics, pass/fail, academic grades, portfolios) in each area.

  • Provide a copy of the report format that the program reviews with the student, the timeline for report review, and a description of how the report is made understandable to the student.

  • Provide several samples of redacted student reports.

Student Achievement Standard 5:

The program sets goals for student pace of completion and retention rates that are ambitious but attainable and appropriate to the mission of the program. The program monitors and reports pace of completion and retention rates.


Completing the program within a reasonable period of time is important for student retention and success. Retention is also a key factor in determining if a program is meeting the needs of its students and for accountability purposes.

Required for Review

  • Provide the goals set by the program for student pace of completion (the amount of time it takes students to complete the program). Provide the actual results—the number and percentage of students who completed the program on time during recent years. For students who did not complete the program on time, provide information about how long they took to complete the program (by year of enrollment).

  • Provide the goals set by the program for student retention rates (the number and percentage of students who remain in the program) by year of enrollment and the actual results for the last three years. Indicate the reasons students provide for leaving the program prior to program completion.

  • Provide documentation that the data are made publicly available.

    • Provide weblink where data are posted

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