About The Center of Inquiry

The Center of Inquiry is dedicated to using evidence to improve learning and teaching at 2- and 4-year colleges and universities.

In 2000, Wabash College received a $20 million grant from Lilly Endowment, Inc. to study and improve teaching and learning in higher education. Since that time, the Center has conducted research projects, such as the Wabash National Study, and collaborated with faculty, staff, administrators, and students at hundreds of colleges and universities to use evidence to improve student learning.

The Center of Inquiry is dedicated to using evidence to improve learning and teaching at 2- and 4-year colleges and universities.

In 2000, Wabash College received a $20 million grant from Lilly Endowment, Inc. to study and improve teaching and learning in higher education. Since that time, the Center has conducted research projects, such as the Wabash National Study, and collaborated with faculty, staff, administrators, and students at hundreds of colleges and universities to use evidence to improve student learning.

In addition to supporting projects at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE), the Center of Inquiry conducted the Wabash National Study of Liberal Arts Education.

The study had two goals:

Learn

To learn more about the teaching practices, programs, curricula, and institutional conditions that support the aims of liberal arts and general education.

Develop

To develop methods and processes for assessing the impact of liberal arts and general education that institutions can use to improve learning and teaching.

From 2006 through 2012, the Wabash National Study documented student learning and the experiences and conditions that promoted student learning for thousands students at dozens of colleges and universities.

The most important lesson the Center learned from the Wabash National Study is how difficult it is for institutions to use evidence to improve student learning. Based on these lessons, the Center developed three programs to help institutions more effectively and efficiently use evidence to improve student learning.

Today, the Center of Inquiry includes three branches

ATLAS, HEDS, and TASP

..and collaborates with institutions through quantitative and qualitative research, surveys, audits, consultation, the scholarship of teaching and learning, and assessment to use evidence to improve student learning.

How does the Center of Inquiry strengthen student learning?

The Center of Inquiry supports the efforts of faculty, staff, administrators, and students at 2- and 4- year institutions to use evidence to improve student learning through consultation, advice on designing assessment programs, surveys, site visits, program evaluation, workshops, and other mechanisms. This is made possible through the Center of Inquiry’s three branches:

Academic Teaching and Learning Assessment Support (ATLAS) is the Center of Inquiry’s support program for colleges and universities. Charles Blaich and Kathy Wise work with colleges and universities to help them more effectively use evidence to improve student learning.

In addition to working with faculty and staff on site visits to their institutions or via video conferencing, the Center of Inquiry also periodically hosts assessment workshops at Wabash College or collaborates with partners to hold assessment workshops at their institutions.

 

LEARN MORE

The Higher Education Data Sharing Consortium (HEDS) is an organization of colleges and universities committed to sharing data, knowledge, and expertise to advance undergraduate liberal arts education, inclusive excellence, and student success at member institutions.

HEDS

  • Facilitates collaborative efforts among its member institutions on institutional research and effectiveness, strategic planning, and assessment.
  • Assembles, analyzes, and shares institutional and survey data among member institutions to advance their educational missions.
  • Fosters the capacity of institutional research, assessment, and institutional effectiveness efforts at member institutions to use data to inform and advance liberal learning.
  • Offers professional development opportunities through its annual conference, regional workshops, and a network of colleagues at member institutions.

 

LEARN MORE

The Teagle Assessment Scholar Program is designed to develop and support people who are, or who have the potential to become, national leaders in using evidence to advance student learning.

LEARN MORE

Learn more about the Center of Inquiry.