ACCU has participated in conversations on mission assessment for several years. The ACCU Board approved work on the CIMA project in early 2014, with initial discussions and formation of plans between ACCU and CHERC taking place shortly thereafter. Individuals were identified from ACCU member schools to be a part of the Steering Committee. At the 2014 CHERC Annual Forum, members of the steering committee and the core group met to get acquainted, create a timeline, define roles, and establish next steps. The project was presented to the CHERC group with the goal of soliciting interest in becoming a reviewer or pilot testing with select groups of students.
In June 2014, the core group met at the University of Notre Dame for a five-day working retreat. The team drafted the survey instruments and best practices guide. The group also discussed important administrative tasks and created a detailed timeline, outlining the roles and responsibilities of each team member. Over the summer, team members carried out focus groups, refined the survey instruments, and drafted additional text for the best practices guide.
In fall 2014, 12 schools participated in pilot testing for the senior undergraduate survey. These results were collected, and the team met again in Chicago in January 2015 to review the pilot tests. Drafts of the survey instruments and assessment principles guide were revised, and administrative tasks were further refined. In fall 2015, 19 campuses participated in the pilot test of the first year student survey. The graduate and professional student survey and alumni survey were pilot tested in fall 2016, with 12 and 9 campuses, respectively.
In January 2018, ACCU launched the first survey in the series, the Mission Identity Graduating Student Survey, with seven participating campuses. The second phase of the launch, the administration of the Mission Identity New Student Survey, will launch in August 2018.