An evaluation of a program -assessment process based on the study protocol used with Ajzen's theory of planned behavior

Veronica Marie Kraly Morrison, University of Pennsylvania


The vast literature on program assessment is diverse enough to present a daunting research challenge to assessors seeking to tailor evaluation to specific programs. Assessors need a systematic process involving judicious use of the research and an opportunity to customize an assessment to specific institutions/stakeholders. An assessment process was created to address this problem of practice. Unlike typical assessment protocols, which are not based on any theoretical framework, this one was based on aspects of Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behavior (TpB). The TpB has been used successfully in many contexts, the majority of which were healthcare-related, but it had never before been used as a foundation for program assessment. Ajzen used a step-by-step protocol to choose human-subject characteristics to focus on in each of his studies, a protocol which was here adapted to form an eight-step process for choosing education-program elements to focus on in an assessment. For practicality, slight assessment-related modifications, based on the literature, were made to the eight steps. These modifications resulted in a revised eight-step process, a description of which was given to two panels of experts in differing fields so that they could evaluate its merit. Within each panel, the experts responded to the description consistently, implying that the reviews were reliable. When the two panels' responses were compared to each other, there was again consistency, suggesting that the eight-step process is a promising means of assessing a program in higher education in America. A number of higher education constituencies may find this research and this protocol to be useful.

Subject Area

Higher education

Recommended Citation

Morrison, Veronica Marie Kraly, "An evaluation of a program -assessment process based on the study protocol used with Ajzen's theory of planned behavior" (2006). Dissertations available from ProQuest. AAI3241808.